Good day everyone,
Today I will speak about a theme that is very very close to my heart. Digital painting.
It started actually just six months ago when my wife saw me laying on the couch scrolling through iPad without any “goal” in particular so she told me “Hey, why don’t you start drawing something?”. So I did.
I am the kind of person that never thought that will be able to draw more than a stick-man since I haven’t got any art education so I just gave it a try anyway 🙂
Initially my first tool was iPad Pro + iPencil + software called ProCreate (you can check these guys here ). That was such a wonderful experience, the pencil was drawing shapes and colors exactly like on a real peace of paper).
So I started to paint and because I have no idea what to start with I begun with faces (portraits of people to be specific).
All went good so I thought, hey, why don’t I do this as an actual hobby? But what do I need, is the iPad the best tool for making my digital dream come true?
So I went online and checked million of reviews (actually my wife did 🙂 ) and decided to buy a Wacom Cintiq 27QHD. That in itself was a quite expensive peace of hardware but it worth’s every penny.
In combination with Photoshop it is truly the ultimate painting device. Next I watched and rewatched how the best do it, how they paint, how they sketch, what brushes they use.. etc.
My favorite artist (from which I actually borrowed the brushes for Photoshop and I use it even now is Aaron Griffin ).
What I do when I start a new PSD project in Photoshop is that I choose first the music (on Spotify). For me having music in my ears while drawing is like having a glass of wine while cooking, it sets the mood and loosens up your mind.
Also I like to finish a portrait in one go even if it takes longer than expected. My average portrait painting is around 1:30 hours so it is bearable 🙂
Learning Photoshop was actually very fast. There are not so many shortcuts to remember and if you learn them and use them is like riding a bike.
Zoom is “Z” ; Brush mode is “B” ; Pick color is “I” and go back is “Ctrl+Alt+Z”. Then there are some zoo in and out for brush (to make it bigger or smaller) so you do “[” and “]” and that’s about all you need really.
If you never painted before it is very fun to open a new layer and test different brushes and lines to see what you need for the future painting.
In case you don’t like anything or you consider that something special is needed you can make your own brushes or edit the ones you have. There are millions of tutorials for Photoshop out there so “Google is your friend”.
I like painting people because you have infinite options plus you never get bored. You can get inspiration from people from your life, from internet or just create a totally unique person with a few brushes.
For example I like to put things together like: certain hairstyle + some glasses + jacket + pose. So I start looking for jackets that I like. Hairstyles on Pinterest.. etc etc.
That I use as reference and then try to see how they fit. It is really fun and you learn a lot about people just by observing in Metro different scenes, angles and shadows.
Again, I never had any school for this so whatever I paint is because I consider it nice and use common sense when I make the proportions (I never get formulas for distance between eyes and nose, nose and mouth etc).
Also I almost never start from the same place. Sometimes I start with the overall shape of the body and then “stick” eyes and the rest of the “organs” :), other time I just begin with hair and go inwards from there with mouth, nose, eye(s).
It is really fun to try new things and experiment.
I also love processing pictures. I learned the most from watching videos or pictures like the one above that I made for my last drawing. If you pay attention you can “see” how the progression takes place, how shapes are formed etc.
If you want to keep track of things that I do you can follow me at Artstation. I don’t have a huge amount of drawings there but I try to do at least one a week and update it.
Painting (digitally) is something I discovered recently, in my 30’s so it is very special to me because I proved to myself that people can start a totally new hobby (which may turn into profession) if they want to. It is never too late to try new things.
If you feel excited in general and keep yourself motivated you can do anything you like in life. So for an IT person like me to go on another path after so many years was something that gave me hope.
I wish you find as many surprising things about yourself as I did and follow the dream. As Elon Musk use to say “Never give up” 🙂
See you next time,