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Thread: trying to learn to paint
September 3rd, 2002 #1
trying to learn to paint
Photo ref. I'll break into doing my own work once i get more skilled.
edit: It's a WIP, the blackoutline will be deleted once i add the neck
Hide this ad by registering as a memberSeptember 3rd, 2002 #2
great start davi....hmmmm i´m working on developing my painting skills too....aiming for BROM´s style (detail)
September 3rd, 2002 #3Registered User
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Wow :eek: , this is a tough lighting to paint. Very soft lighting.
Here is a way to break down the info from the photo ref:
First think of the head in simple planes (front, side, top, bottom) and look for the main light sources descriping the big planes (usually you can find dominate light, fill light, and bounce and local color showing through where lights are week & can't wash it out in color. Remember, in RGB when all color of lights combine you get clear white light).
By working this way you are using light/color to help you create form and planes.
Another thing to watch out for is the gradation of the local color and the gradation from the center of light. On the body the smaller the form the reder it gets (head reder than body, nose reder than face). Lighting gradation gives you more of a sense of scale and brings atomashere into the painting.
Something to keep in mind:
Different Plane = Different light = Different value = Different color
Once you get the basic plane down then you are ready to start painting down the lesser planes. Kind of like sculpting with light.
PS- When I squint my eyes, I think the left side of the face should be darker on your study.
Last edited by KChen; September 9th, 2002 at 04:25 AM.
September 4th, 2002 #4
THANK YOU KEVIN!
September 4th, 2002 #5
wow, kchen rules.
September 4th, 2002 #6
good lord, thanks KChen. I was never excepting a reply of that measure.
I understand the plane stuff completely and it helps alot.
I'm using OC to paint because i'm afraid of the big programs. One of my main problems if figuring out what colors am i actually seeing. I don't have a way to import the colors from the photo, which makes it pretty tricky(which also helps me learn how to not need to use reference in the future).
September 4th, 2002 #7Registered User
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Yes, color is a bitch. It's all about relationships. Even if the color you mixed is right and the next color is off, you color for the 1st color is distorted.
One thing to realize with paint is that there is no way you can ever replicate the exact color range that you see. For example, you might see millions of colors but it is only to possible to mixt one-tenth of that intensity of color that you do see.
So the trick is to capture the relationships of the colors to create a illusion of that intensity. EX: I may paint everything much cooler and desaturated to really make that warmth of the sun to pop out. To match the intensity I see in real life.
Another trick is to use broken colors (impressionist) and have the viewers eyes to mix the colors in their brain to create and more vibrant color that have more depth. That why is better to not completely mix your paint.
Notice how if you cover the yellow spots on the bottom, everthing else is actually very cool & desaturated. They help stage up to create the vibirancy of the yellow. Kind of like having the rough green leaves to make the rose redder and more fragile. It's all about contrast and relationships.
Here is another example of using grey, greens, blues to stage up the red and orange so we can feel more of the bright sun shining on the horse and rider. Look at the white on the ground. It's not really white, but of green grey shade. Everything is nuetralized to pop out the horse and rider. Everything in the BG is a very muted warm. And the sky is so vibrant yet have to be desaturated by the atomasphere that it can only be achieved by broken color (blue and orange makes very ugly color if you mix it flat).
That's why a lot of painters start their students with limited pallete. It forces them to rely on relationships to create a illusion of color. Learning how to use contrast(value, hue, saturation) to create intesity and greys to create color.
Color is made out of 3 main things:
The first thing to look for is value. If value is off then color is off.
Second is to consider it's temperature and how it relates to the big picture. It's always better not to stare at one area when you mix color, cause your eye will adjust to see what ever it wants. It important to look slightly off the target and see the impression of the overall image and it's color relationship.
Just remember there is the actual color and there is the color impression you see. What you want to mix is the perceptive color.
Just remember color is light. So when you try to mix a color of an object. Think of it this way:
Local color + Color of light (dominate, fill, bounce light) + Color of Atomasphere (air reflecting light) + exaggeration to match your impression = color you mix
A good practice is to paint small to learn to see how color relates. It also takes a lot less time.
Thinking in plane is a good tool to train your eye. Because if it is a different plane it will have a different color, you need to see that suddle overall gradation and transaction.
Third is Saturation. In oils, it is better to paint it a bit more saturated than you think. This is cause it is easier to desaturate than to pump it up.
The trick is how to change saturation without changing the hue and value. You can do this by either adding comlimentary colors and greys.
This is where doing a color wheel paint mixing exercise is important. It teaches you to the properties of your medium.
In photoshop I use the color picker to see how does the color relate to the color chart so I know where to find it the next time.
Richard Schmidt have a good book that explains this. You can look it up here:
There is also another site that have great notes on painting by Andrew Loomis:
The best way to study color is to do some master copies and landscape painting. It will really open up your range in color and see how other artist create amazing effects with limited paint.
Hope this makes sense and will help
BTW, what is OC?
Last edited by KChen; September 4th, 2002 at 01:59 PM.
September 4th, 2002 #8
Wow, that's an incredibly informative post KChen, thanks for posting it. OC is OpenCanvas, it's a free computer painting program. A lot of people use it to collaborate on drawings because it allows two or three people to network together and work on a drawing at the same time over the internet. Pretty neat program.
September 11th, 2002 #9Registered User
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the painting is looking pretty good. one thing that would really look good is fixing the eyes. they could use a wetter look so they don't look so muddy or blotted. Not sure if the entire face is to be the focal point or the eyes which ever it is really go at with detail. add blemishes to the face all the suttle little marks on the face and creases, that will help to make it look very photo realistic. but man over all it is coming along really well.
"the earth speaks to all of us, and if you listen you can understand it."