Every Sunday you will be sent an update of the posts that happened in the week direct to your inbox (you can unsubscribe from these if you prefer).
Once a month I will organise a video hangout too, where I will paint/draw and we can all chat!
THE STRIPED BRAVOGG – PROCESS
Here is an example of the process of my ‘Striped Bravogg’ from Secrets Of Strangehollow:
This lovely chap started off as a rough digital sketch that you can see on the left above. From there I transferred the outline to the illustration board using graphite rubbed on the back of the drawing and transferring like carbon paper. I like this method although it doesn’t work if I want a nice loose sketch, that I need to make sure to paint over directly.
My reason for not drawing on the watercolour board is because when you erase on the board it can damage it, and then of course will affect the way the watercolour paints on it, often making it unusable.
Here is the final watercolour painting. As you can see I failed to create the lovely dappled light I had planned in the sketch, but I still love the character of this creature.
My aim was to capture the essense of bears and big cats in one beast. I love the flat feet of bears and how they look so harmless and cuddly, and yet they are not!
REPURPOSING AN OLD SKETCH/IDEA
In 2019, when I was working on my 12 dragons for my 2020 Calendar, I had a few ideas that never got used. This was one of them. I still really liked the vibe in this sketch and wanted to make it into something else.
This is a mixture of drawing and a little bit of photo-bashing in the background to create the scene and painting over the top. The mermaid was then painted over the top of that. I sketched this up in Photoshop using my Wacom (I now have sold my Wacom tablet and no longer use Photoshop but Affinity Photo instead or Procreate on my iPad for colour composition and some sketching).
Once I was happy with the composition, I then went ahead and did a colour test digitally:
My aim with these colour tests is not to recreate it exactly with watercolour but to get a vague idea of where I want it to be. As you will see from the final painting it is a lot brighter and more saturated than this which is what I was aiming for.
I enjoy this part of the process as the nature of watercolour means that I can’t always make it do what I want and occasionally happy accidents happen! (sometimes things have to be scrapped and started again).
Next I print out the image in black and white onto two pieces of A4 paper (left hand print out above is A4) that have been taped together (you might just be able to see the join in the one on the right). I then cover the back in graphite powder and lay the image onto my illustration board, tape it down and transfer by drawing over the outlines I want to be definite. Anything I don’t want to have hard edges I leave out and add in by hand with just the paint. Early stages below.
The finished painting.
IDEAS THAT NEVER MADE IT
Here’s an example of a post I made on Patreon last year that never became a painting. I keep these ideas for future inspiration but occasionally they will never see the light of day! In fact the background of the first sketch did turn into one of the chapter paintings for Secrets Of Strangehollow!
This is Elizabeth's Enchantment tier reward (from when she was on Patreon). I hope you like him Elizabeth! Also a big warm welcome to my newest member, Lexie!! Lovely to have you here!! YAY! He will be going into my new creature book! I'm still trying to think of...