Monday, February 23, 2015

A Pile of Dwarves - progress shots

I recently painted a picture of all of the dwarves from The Hobbit movies. For once I actually took photos of several stages in the drawing/painting process, so I thought I'd share them here. Sorry for the quality of some of the in-progress shots - I'm often working in the evening, and the light really isn't great.

Beginning to sketch their faces, and working on layout. I didn't start this with the plan that I would do all 13 dwarves, so I had some squeezing to do.

All the sketching is finished (mostly). You can see that I had to move Dwalin so that the dwarves with larger beards would fit. I also later shifted Nori and Oin (top corners) because they had ended up at too much of an angle.

Beginning the inking process - there are so many braids!

All the basic inking is done - all of the sketch lines have been covered, and the pencil is erased. There are still some details missing, and the lines are all the same thickness, so it's somewhat static.

Now I've gone back to thicken the lines that separate each dwarf from the others (otherwise they just all blend together) and create some dimension in the other lines. I still haven't added the last details like lines in the hair, but I didn't get a picture of that step.

I've started the watercoloring process here - I did all the skin first, and then started on the hair, trying to make sure that the colors were different enough from each other. You can see the addition of detail lines in the hair.

All finished! Color added to all the hair and clothes. I shifted some things and added a few more ink lines (mostly because I realized that I hadn't given Balin or Thorin shoulders... oops!). I also went back in with liquid silver leaf to paint all of the beard ornamentation and other shiny metal bits, like Thorin's armor. The shine of it looks really fantastic, and you can see how bright it is in this photo.

Here's a scan of the painting - gives you a straight-on view of the image, but unfortunately the scanner didn't catch the sheen of the silver leaf, so those parts just look grey.

Overall I'm really happy with this one. It was fun adding the silver leaf, and now I'm really good at drawing braids. I also know a lot more about drawing man noses! I'm also glad that they all pretty much look like the characters. Having such distinctive beards helps, but I feel like I did a good job on the faces as well.

Saturday, February 21, 2015

Views from the Train

I traveled to Germany over the holidays, and will hopefully be doing a post (or several) with my pictures from the trip soon. In the meantime, here are some small watercolor paintings I did based on photos I took from the train windows (we went on a lot of trains).

They are all on watercolor paper, 5.5" x 7.5"

Friday, February 20, 2015

Rainy Day Bookmarks

It's been surprisingly warm and sunny for Oregon this time of year, but we've still had some rain, fog, and cloudy days. I was thinking about how pleasant it is to have a book and your hot beverage of choice (mine's currently white tea) while it's steadily raining outside. Storms are also great for reading cozily, but we get more of the steady rain here.

Out of these thoughts (and the fact that I had some leftover scraps of watercolor paper) a series of bookmarks were born, to accompany you on a rainy day.

Click on the images to see them full size, and you can purchase them here.