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  1. #1
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    COW #375: Thunder Bug - WIPs Thread

    COW #375: Thunder Bug - WIPs Thread

    Name:  COW 300 Rules banner.jpg
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    For more information and details about the rules of Creature of the Week go here:

    http://www.conceptart.org/forums/sho...d.php?t=271896

    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Topic:
    COW #375: Thunder Bug

    Brief:
    It's nothing new in the Animal Kingdom to have critters that can produce their own form of electricity. Often times it's weaponized as a form of defense or for hunting. But our creepy crawly can use it for whatever they please.

    This creature is some sort of bug, that can utilize electricity which it generates from its own body. It can be made of electricity itself or has undergone some anatomicla adaptation that allows it to produce it's own electricity. As said what purpose the electricity serves is up to you guys!


    Round Requirements:
    -Must be a 'bug'
    -Capable of producing it's own electricty in some way



    Deadline:
    Sunday January 1, 11:59:59 PM EST (GMT -4)


    This thread is the WIPs Thread, meant for uploading any wips, sketches, and ideas for your creature's concepts, as well as any crits, comments, reference images, and discussions relating to the topic! Please submit your final entries to the Finals Thread which can be found here, otherwise your entry will not be included into the poll:
    http://www.conceptart.org/forums/sho...04#post4012004

    If you have any ideas for a future topic for Creature of the Week you are free to add your own ideas and suggestions to the Topic Suggestion Thread!

    If your looking for a little inspiration for your designs, we have a good Site Reference Thread available!

    Have a gander through hundreds of winning entries from previous topics at Creature of the Week at our Winners Gallery!
    Art is not about competing against others and being better than everyone else, but it is about competing against yourself and discovering your greatest potential!



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  3. #2
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    Alright, got the room all to myself! lol
    Where is everyone?
    Name:  Thunder-Bug-Final.jpg
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    Last edited by scorge; December 22nd, 2016 at 02:00 PM.
    Check it out
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  5. #3
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    @Scorge: I don't know how you do what you do man. The concept and execution of the art is always just amazing man. Been struggling a little here in life but good things on the horizon. Hopefully going to be starting my own business soon here in the New Year, so I am very excited, nervous, a little bit of everything. Hope all is going good your way and again, great work. It's impossible to rival with you man, you're just too good at the creature game.

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  7. #4
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    Thanks Nick. New business sounds great! Doing what?

    To be honest I'm not sure why I can't stay away from this stuff. I guess I owe the COW too much to stray. My goal is merely to inspire others to join, not drive them away. Thanks for the kind words my friend.
    Check it out
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  9. #5
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    Scorge: For sure Mr. Dave and your work stays inspiring me no doubt. For me creating concept art is more fun than playing video games or a lot of stuff for that matter. I feel at 35 years old that I am always on an epic battle to try and find / make the time to get down on my own art work; it was definitely a lot easier to have the leisure time for sure when I was younger, now there's always something to have to be done. I don't know how people have kids and get anything accomplished, I date a girl with a kid and it's hard enough.

    In regards to inspiring I think it would be good if everyone talked about process and theory more here in the forums to help better create the artwork . I mostly just see talk about the actual concepts or random chitter chatter but it would be cool to see how others use their layers, if they even use layers, what their thoughts are on correct drawing, value use, color, etc. Anything on perspective, composition, if people prefer to work from black and gray to color or just in color. What brushes and programs do people like to use, so forth and so on. It would also be good to see more works in progress showing from a form or line drawing and then evolution of the image from there. I feel it's important to always experiment with different styles and techniques cause if not then it's just getting stuck in the same old routine of creating an image and what better way to get inspired than to see someone else do it. Another thing that would be great to talk about more in here would be referencing and how to reference at that, especially for stuff like creatures. I don't think a lot of people even know where to start with stuff like that nor do they understand the ideas of stuff like "skinning". Either way, it would be good to get more involved with the science of creating the images aside from just random posts and chitter chatter in the forums.

    On the business tip, I am having an opportunity to finally go solo with my tattoo operation. So I have found a solid spot that is zoned and the land lord is cool with along with keeping low over head and start up. So it's very exciting times here because I have never been able to work for self and not be someone else's slave worker. I've always been told that if you work for self you can focus on building your dreams but if you insist on working for someone else then you will work hard to build their dreams; either way my clients are still my bosses, but I can pick and choose who and what I would like to work with, and on. I am also trying to do computer work, mural painting, and some traditional art on the side for when the tattooing may come to a slow. Ultimately it's all about being creative and trying to pull a living from it. It's been many, many years of hard work to get to this point, and now all I can do is try my best to try and make something out of nothing work once and for all. It's either this way for me or slave away at a pointless / mundane job, just to get a check to do it all over again the following week; not worth living like that in my opinion.

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  11. #6
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    Another bug enters the arena! Bit late, I know, but I think I will manage to finish it until the deadline.

    I admit I'm always a bit intimidated by amazing artworks like yours, scorge. But when I ponder about it for a while I see all the stuff I can learn from it. I look at it close, analyzing why it looks so amazing and trying to adapt it for my own creations. So they are all extremely inspiring (and motivational) for me as well!
    My personal goal is to reach the same level of awesomeness some day and I'm quite sure I'll reach it if I keep just observing and drawing.

    As for the lack of participating people: Probably most just don't participate mostly because of the festivities? At least that's my guess. (or they just don't like bugs )

    Aaanyway. Here is my take on this topic. Included my initial sketch as well.

    Name:  Thunderbug05.jpg
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    Last edited by Orm Irian; December 26th, 2016 at 07:12 PM.

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  13. #7
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    You guys are too kind. I suppose I need to start posting more about my process, although my turnaround is usually pretty quick, I always forget to save progress shots.

    You've got a very good point Nick, there used to be a real outpouring of assistance in the way of advice, technique, paintovers, myself included on both sides of that coin. Too often for me it's more about finishing the concept and moving on, but in doing so I have forgotten my roots in this forum. Need to improve that.

    @Orm Irian: I'm really humbled to hear that you check what I'm doing to learn, I'll do my best to start actually helping you speed up your process and using your concept skills more efficiently to get that idea across. Once I get my new machine up and running, I'll take some time to help you out with the latest concept. Hopefully today.

    Dave
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    Name:  Thunderbug-Paintover.jpg
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    In the spirit of the old school COW, did a paintover and some notes. Hopefully it's pretty self explanatory.
    Check it out
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  17. #9
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    Oh my... That. Is. Absolutely. Gorgeous. Really.
    Thank you so much for taking your time and doing that paint over, it is really, really, really appreciated.
    Hope I can repay you somehow someday.

    Also thanks for your notes - I will especially take that #1 rule to heart.. I tend to focus onto those details far too fast.

    Now I almost don't dare to upload the newest version of my creature, but I will do it anyway! I tried not to spent too much time on it though, since I was waiting for your answer (really was worth it).

    I will overhaul my creature at whole though, now having your fantastic input as help.
    I now can see the different weaknesses my concept had... Didn't really like the head so far, now I know how to improve it, also the torso looks much better, not to mention the neck.. and the eyes.. and the legs.. and the lightnings.. and pretty much everything. (really love those few small blue spots you added, it gives the otherwise quite brownish coloration a very nice touch)

    Name:  Thunderbug07.jpg
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  19. #10
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    Cool designs. Always very inspiring!

    Here's what my taser beetle looks like so far. I had trouble with the pose so I used a quick sculpt in sculptris, to figure things out.

    Name:  tb_wip1.jpg
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  21. #11
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    @Scorge: That's what I am talking about man! Pure awesome! That is going to really help Orm Irian out and anyone else as well that reads up on that. The technical stuff is what I feel really brought people to the COW, not just finishing up the illustration. At the end of the day, people are coming here to learn from one another. You're awesome Dave!

    @Orm Irian: Your entry is coming along great. Definitely keep in mind the things that Scorge explained and it will help you lots. The not zooming in thing is super important to discipline yourself on.

    @Fabianguiza: Your piece is looking good but I would look out for using over saturated colors. Typically in painting the most saturated colors are used to target areas of interest. Also be sure to ground your creature more to that tree branch using a cast shadow along with maybe a little overlapping of the branch and the legs of the creature.

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  23. #12
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    WIP Set_001

    You can see here that it all starts with a lose sketch. I use Photoshop CS2 and just get shitty with it. Whatever it takes to get the concept out. I laid out a bunch of other loose thumbnails that I didn't like and decided to settle with this idea. I use a hard round brush with shape dynamics and opacity pressure set with no flow. Sometimes if I want to sketch looser I'll uncheck the opacity pressure and just put flow pressure, or just take away the pressure settings all together and toggle the opacity manually.
    Name:  ThunderBug_w1.jpg
Views: 1062
Size:  236.4 KB
    Next I clean up the line work, throw a multiply layer on top with 50% gray and experiment with whatever shading and lighting. This doesn't mean I'll work from black and gray into color. I am actually going to go into straight color for this image.
    Name:  ThunderBug_w2.jpg
Views: 1060
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    From here I go ahead and just get rid of the multiply layer. I'll set up a separate layer under the line work and use a 3 way gradient to throw some color on the image. From there I will use a regular hard round brush most likely with flow pressure off and start working the colors. It's great to set a solid color on a multiply layer and work up all your color on this one layer cause you can lay in lights and darks as you wish. Sometimes I put this multiply layer on top of the line work especially if I have sketched traditionally. The HSB slider is a great way to manage your color selection process, I use this madly to choose all my coloring tints tones and shades; I feel this really speeds up the color selection process. Notice that I am not neat at all with my color lay in, I choose to clean it all up as I paint it out. I would be much neater if I were to keep the line work in the piece, but in this case this thing is gonna be fully painted out.
    Name:  ThunderBug_w3.jpg
Views: 1057
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    This last post here just shows how I set up my layers for this particular image. The overlay layer is for better gauging the lighting. *HUGE TIP* If you create an overlay layer and paint with black, white, or any of the grays you can adjust the lighting in your image very easily. This is much better than have to use the dodge tool in my opinion. From this point I am going to go back into Corel Painter and paint the image out most likely using the new simple water tool modified along with taking advantage of Painter's great blending features like add water, grain, etc.
    Name:  ThunderBug_w4.jpg
Views: 1063
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    If anyone has any questions or comments I am fully open for that. If you feel there is something I could do better to better this process that would be great as well.

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    Name:  electric bug.jpg
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    Is this bug like enough?

  26. #14
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    @Billakong: Looks dope man! I couldn't help but paint into it some, I really like the tail.
    Name:  Scorp_w1.jpg
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  27. #15
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    @Lege: I decided to do one for you as well. I even did it in Painter like you are. Hope that's cool. I think it's great that you have a process like you do, it's important to understand the range of options when working digitally. Unfortunately, I think that's where you get hung up. You're so concerned with your process, that your designs, compos and colors suffer as a result. You're too busy worried about how to do things, instead of what you're doing.

    Here's some pointers:
    -Avoid symmetry in forms, meaning if you decide to give this guy banded legs, one, they shouldn't be tubular, bug's legs rarely are, and two, if something is banded, like the texture on the legs, it's not uniform and consistent on every single one. Doesn't look natural. Try to stay away from straight lines as well. If you're drawing something like the head or shell, that is symmetrical, then take advantage of a center line to help you accomplish that symmetry.

    -When it comes to color, look at nature. even the most colorful lifeforms have complimentary colors. Keep in mind that light is color.

    -Try placing your feet first. They will help you determine not only the angle of the ground plane, but what kind of stance your guy has. This is also easier to turn the feet, because the ones you have right now are all facing in the same direction. Again, not natural. Even for quadrapeds, like cats and cows, he feet are always turned out a little bit. Helps with balance.

    - Think of the scene as a whole. That means stepping way back, or in this case zooming way out and seeing if anything looks too stiff, or if there any tangents that can deceive the viewer into thinking a form works differently than you intended. This also allows you to paint with big forms in mind. Remember rule #1?

    -Break things up and double check contours. The shell you have appears to be round because of the end where the head emerges, but if we look up its length, the contours say otherwise. You've drawn it as if it staright up and down, when in fact it is supposed to be receding back. As for breaking up forms, it's always great to have a broad area to give the eye a rest, something we all know about, but when you pack that form with repetitive texture or patterns, it becomes flat and lifeless.

    I'm sure there's a ton of other things I could say about the subject, but this should help out for now I hope. You really are improving dude, but your foundations are still way off. Sorry if this all sounds harsh, but these are things I think you should know. Again, any questions let me know.Name:  Legebug-Overpaint.jpg
Views: 904
Size:  181.9 KB
    Check it out
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