August 30, 2015

Lakota warrior 'Kills First' on Huion tablet

After creating trial cartoons and impressionistic portraits on the Huion 610 Pro Drawing Tablet I thought I'd try a realistic color portrait. Reference image was a small B&W photograph of Lakota warrior 'Kills First' (...) taken by Gertrude Kasebier. The image I am working on is large enough to make giclee prints. Below you see the sequence of this portrait; the newest phase on top. At this point I am making the drawing after which I will apply detailed textures. I am thinking of making a photo-realistic version and a more impressionistic version for print. I may touch up the prints with an analog airbrush afterwards. 

August 28, 2015

Kiowa warrior - digital painting

I picked up my Huion digital drawing tablet again. It has certain advantages over creating analog art, in particular airbrushing. If you project drawings to trace, you need to print the reference image, digital does not require this. Undoing or changing parts of the painting is easy in digital art. If your not sure if a change will work well, just save the image and experiment on the copy; if things go wrong, you can always revert to the saved image.

If hue, contrast etc. are not to your liking, you can change it any time. It is also possible to work in layers that can be turned on or off at will or given a filtered or unfiltered transparency. Working on minute detail is easy with digital tools; just zoom in to increase control. Correcting mistakes is as easy as pushing Control + Z on the keyboard and there is no 'blue shift' when covering colors with white lines or areas as is the case in analog airbrushing.

Below are some of the steps I recorded. The oldest phase is at the bottom and the newer ones about that. The drawing was based on a painting of the fabulous Howard Terpning who created an absolutely fabulous portfolio. Mr. Terpning never ceases to inspire me and his art is never matched by any photograph. He is in an elevated category of his own.

August 23, 2015

The Sopranos Freehand Airbrush

Lately I've been submerged in digital work, DTP, webdesign etc. and had no time to airbrush. Since two days ago I decided to make time for that and submit Inspire's waterborne H2O paint to a proper test. It is the best airbrush paint I've come across so far. No clogging whatsoever and hardly any tip dry, even after the paint had been in the open paint cup of my Iwata HP-BH for a long time (a day or so).

I had an old piece of drawing paper (49 x 32 cm) laying about and started to freehand airbrush a double portrait of The Sopranos. Inspire's H2O allows to spray very consistent thin lines. I used Black Smoke for this portrait, just filled the paint cup almost to the brim with water and added three drops of paint. No reducer or other media, stirred well and began to paint. Air pressure just high enough to push the paint out.

Below you see the sequence of this portrait. Below that the latest photograph of this work in progress. It is almost done, I just need to add some texture and then it will be finished.

Sequence so far

Most recent phase

Inspire H2O is easily removed after spraying, which makes sense since the paint does not clog or leave tip dry. First run water through the gun (also blow back), then cleaner in the same way and finally water again. The needle is squeaky clean. The paint is really a charm to work with. I can honestly recommend it to artists who spray fine detail.

Aug 25 2015 - Finished.