Tuesday, 19 March 2013

Psychedelic Space Ape

For this next design I decided to try something a bit more abstract. I began by finding an image of a gnarly gorilla. 

I cut out the gorilla's face and then masked out the left hald, duplicated the layer and then flipped it horizontally to create a more mirrored and symmetrical effect to the gorilla's face. 
Over top a solid black background I added a few blending modes including a gradient overlay and curves adjustment layer to tweak out the colour in the gorilla's face.

Next came the tedious process of painting in each strand of hair, using the Wacom drawing tablet made things much easier. I decided to use bright and dull shades of both green and blue to define the different tonal values. 

Next, I added some green ooze dripping from the gorilla's mouth.

Now to incorporate the ape into a suitable environment. I painted in a Rorschach-esque splatter design behind the gorilla to add a bit of depth, adding in some dripping paint effect.

To finish off the design I added a few light effects in the background to give the illusion of stars, keeping with the symmetrical theme. And here you have the psychedelic space ape.

Higher Primate laptop skin

I was told to build a personalized laptop skin cover to fit a 13" Macbook pro for a school assignment. I have been listening to an online podcast a lot recently called the Joe Rogan Experience, which inspired me to incorporate a design for Joe's brand "Higher Primate" into my own design. I found this image online and created a path around it, removing it from it's original background. I then separated the mushroom from the monkey and added an outer glow to it.
I then started playing around with different gradients/blending modes to come up with some psychedelic effects for the background of the laptop skin. I ended up deciding on this.

I increased the contrast by applying an adjustment layer based on curves.

Then to give the "Higher Primate" something to sit on I decided to use a custom set brush preset to create a cloud effect. Using different tones of white and grey i was able to create some depth.

I then added the dieline and made sure to position the eyes over the spot the glowing apple symbol will be. This way the eyes can be removed so that the light will shine through just the monkey's eyes. Here is the end result. 

*Higher Primate Color Variant 1 by *GMrDrew on deviantART

Illustration Friday 3 "talent"

The word of the week is Talent “I have no special talent. I am only passionately curious.” ~ Albert Einstein

A personal hero of mine who I consider to have a lot of talent is Mr. Robert Marley. Bob's messages of peace and love through his revolutionary style of music changed the world, leaving behind a legendary legacy.

I began by searching for an image of Bob that I liked. I landed on this one.

 I brought the image into Photoshop and built a new layer over top of the reference photo. using a hard edged brush with 100% flow and 100% opacity I began painting in the different tonal values and colours in blotches. Then using the brush tool with the opacity and flow set to 30%, I began sampling different colours and slowly blending them together to give a nice smooth effect.

After I finished with the blending process, I enlarged the head and continued his hat down around his head to fit the composition I had in mind. I then deleted the reference photo and decided to add a splattered paint effect behind Bob's head to complete the composition. I used the colours green and yellow on black seeing as they are the colours in the Jamaican flag, not to mention they went well with the colour composition I have. Here is the finished result.

Sunday, 3 March 2013

Illustration Friday 2 "wheel"

The word of the week is "wheel" - “I see nothing in space as promising as the view from a Ferris wheel.” ~ E. B. White

For this week's illustration I decided to depict the creation of one of man's greatest achievements. I began by quickly sketching out my idea on paper. I knew I wanted to do something with cavemen, so I decided to sketch out a couple of prehistoric dudes as they miraculously discover the wheel.

I scanned the image and then began outlining it in Photoshop with an 8pt soft edged brush. Using the Wacom tablet made this whole process as natural as possible.

I created a new layer underneath the outline and began the painting process using a soft edged brush. I started by painting a base coat with 100% opacity and 100% flow to fill in the characters. I then set the opacity and flow really low to about 20% for the highlights and shadows.

I realized the composition was off in regards to the fire and the direction of the cavemen so I fixed this up and painted in the fire. The fire was created with a 62 pt "scatter brush" preset. I then used the blend tool to warp the flames together. I built the red flames and yellow flames on a separate layer so that I could add an outer glow to the "red flame" layer just to give the flames a little more realism.
To finish up this illustration I threw in a beach background with a paint filter to put these guys into an environment. Instead of the typical stone wheel that is expected, I went with a skateboard wheel. Why? Why not. Here is my finished result.

Friday, 25 January 2013

Illustration Friday 1 "myth"

The word of the week is "Myth" -“Myths are, in fact...neither primitive nor untrue. They are, rather, a kind of poetry that helps us make sense of the world and our place in it.” ~ Stephen H. Furrer

Seeing as this is my first blog post I figured I would try a new technique for the first time as well. For some reason I have never explored painting with Photoshop so I decided to give it a try. 99% of this image will be done with just the brush tool in Photoshop CS5.
I decided to use the "myth" that there is a shadow government secretly controlling every nation and steering the direction of earth in their image. This is a topic that has come up quite frequently and so I figured since it was on my mind, it would be appropriate for this assignment.

I started by drawing out a quick design on paper of what the main graphic would be.

I then created the podium. Using the shape tool I created the basic shapes of the podium and filled them with the right colour. I rasterized the shapes in order to use the burn tool to darken certain edges to create depth. I then used a wooden texture that I downloaded online to give the podium a more realistic appearance. This is done by simply setting the blend mode of the texture to overlay and positioning it in the right areas.

From here the painting process began. I used an image of good old Bill Clinton as a reference of colour when using the brush tool. At first I sampled each colour as I went, painting in solid blotches in my design. Here is a sample of what it looked like once I was done quickly blotching in the colours.

To give it a more realistic appearance I blended the colours using a soft edged brush with the opacity and flow both set to 50%. I just made sure to take many samples so the blending was smooth. This was the finished result of the blending process.

Ok so we have our puppet, but where is the puppet master? Using the brush tool again, I created a supernatural looking hand holding the controls to the marionette.  I used an adjustment layer based on hue/saturation after to get the colouring just right.

I then created a basic TV monitor shape and threw a black background on to create contrast. The composition was looking a little bare so I recently added some smoke/cloud to create some depth. This is a work in progress but here is what I have so far.

Going back to my design after a few days I was able to see it from a different perspective. I didn't like the way the TV frame was looking, it threw off the composition in my eyes and so I scrapped it. Instead, I continued the cloud effect to frame up my main illustration, making it the focal point of the entire graphic.

Here is the end result. There is always room for some tweaking, but I am satisfied with how it turned out.

If you enjoy this artwork, then you will love the work of Mear One. What this man can do with paint and a simple brick wall will blow your mind.

Check out his blog here --> http://mearone.tumblr.com/
or, watch this amazing video of him hard at work -->  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b9p8Og6-YcY