Saturday, September 02, 2006

Digital Painting

Photoshop is a great way to manipulate images, but it is also a good tool for creating images from scratch. A few years ago, I picked up a book How to Paint Like the Old Masters by Joseph Sheppard. Sheppard paints like a modern day Michelangelo. I picked up his book with the thought of actually doing some oil painting, but I decided to see if his techniques would work in digital painting. For the most part they do! I did this Spider-Man from scratch in Photoshop, starting with an underpainting, similar to what Sheppard describes.

I find I like to keep shape dynamics off on my brushes. I usually have other dynamics on, affecting the opacity based on pen pressure. This setup keeps me busy with both hands, one with pen and the other with the keyboard. Since I don't do shape dynamics, I am always hitting the square brackets [] to alter the brush size. As well as hitting the D (sets the colors back to black and white), X to swap the foreground and background colors, and spacebar to move around. Seems to be a constant battle, tabbing to show and hide palettes.

I'd like to give Painter a try. It seems to be more geared towards illustration. That and upgrading from my Wacom old Graphire to an Intuos is also on the list.