A little over one year ago I created an Orc Shaman illustration for an Art Order challenge.
This is a good measurement of my skill level at the time. While I was proud of the finished product it wasn’t long before my skill level advanced past the level of finish that this piece shows off.
Since I’ve recently graduated from the Metropolitan State University of Denver and I now have a plethora of free time to devote to personal work I decided to go back and re-paint this illustration to bring it up to the level of other pieces in my portfolio such as my recent Troll Hunter.
I still feel that the initial sketch and line art are strong and hold up when compared to the rest of my work so I’m happy to use the same chassis.
One of the elements that I’m less satisfied with in the original is the over-exaggerated value contrast. As I moved into developing the lights and darks I tried to include more graceful transitions in the light .
As I developed the underpainting I tried to restrain my level of saturation – I can always pump up the vividness of the colors as I paint in the later stages. Here the colors are added in thin transparent layers so all of the initial line drawing is still visible throughout.
Now we are caught up to the piece as it stands currently. I have just begun to paint directly on top of the image with opaque colors. The original drawing gets covered up in most ares but there will be some places where it still shows through, even in the finished product. As I painted I toned down some of the more rapid value shifts even further and I am concentrating on keeping a matte finish in some areas. One of my nitpicks about the version from last year is that the colors in the entirety of the image seemed too glossy.
Next Time: more direct painting and some subtle glazes to get a rich variety of tones and hues throughout the image.
Part One: https://kenkokoszka.wordpress.com/2013/07/06/orc-shaman-redux-part-1/
Part Two: https://kenkokoszka.wordpress.com/2013/07/28/orc-shaman-redux-part-2/
Part Three: https://kenkokoszka.wordpress.com/2013/08/11/orc-shaman-redux-part-3/