Dreamside Publishing Update

Just a super quick update video today to let you know some potentially exciting news on the publishing side of things. Cool things are happening..!

Understanding Eye Highlights

This week's video is all about a simple technique you can use in your drawings to make your characters' eyes pop. Stylization is, for me and many others, the most entertaining aspect of character drawing. But, before we stylize, we should understand anatomy. Today's video focuses specifically on drawing areas of light and shadow on the eye. Enjoy and happy drawing!

Sketching a Character from Scratch

This week's video will give you a close look at my sketching process. It involves quite a lot of drawing, erasing, and drawing again. I call my way of sketching "reactive." That is, I work best by drawing roughly, observing what works and what doesn't, and making changes accordingly. Thankfully, digital painting allows me the luxury of endless revisions ;)

I hope you character designers-in-training out there will find this a particularly useful video. Happy sketching! 

Painting Realistic Scenes with Bounced Lighting

Dreamside's vivid colors don't come so much from using more intense hues, but rather the relationship between objects within scenes. This natural phenomenon is sometimes called "light bounce" and is one of the most complicated aspects of the book's illustrations. Understanding natural lighting is very important when creating believable scenes.

Have you ever noticed that the color from a bright, boldly-colored plastic will sometimes seem to bleed onto adjacent surfaces in bright light? This is because objects reflect light to varying degrees.

In today's video, I go through a very simple and basic example of light bounce in a scene made up of basic shapes. Then, I demonstrate its application in a Dreamside illustration. It's not easy to convert 3D shapes into 2D drawings and doing so requires lots of practice. But, I believe effective lighting is one of the most powerful ways to create stunning imagery.

Dreamside Development Diary 2

Another development diary showing off the nearly-finished progress on the final spread painting for Dreamside's fourth chapter. Enjoy!

Quick Update...

Today's video is just a quick update regarding a publisher pitch my agent and I are assembling. Nothing specific to announce yet, but I wanted to keep you updated on every step of Dreamside's release plans. Hopefully we'll know soon enough whether Dreamside will be released independently or through a publisher. See you next time!

Painting Tutorial: Clouds

This one's pretty much just for those ambitious young (and not so young) artists out there. Dreamside features a whole lotta clouds in its many fantasy illustrations. I've had to become pretty adept at painting them! And now, Grasshoppers, I'm passing on my experience to you to use in your own illustrations. My tutorial is meant for anyone who wants to learn so, even if you don't have a fancy-schmancy Wacom tablety thing, you can apply this process to traditional painting. No excuses!

If you decide to get busy painting your own clouds, please do share the results with me via the Contact page. If you send attachments (links are SO much better ;), please keep them smaller than 1MB. Thanks for watching!

My Favorite Artist...

...Mother Nature! I never stop admiring her endless beauty. So much of my artistic inspiration comes from nature. What really amazes me is that one tiny flower can be as gorgeous as an enormous mountain. Today's video gives you a quick peek at a well manicured garden and demonstrates the way I strive to integrate that natural beauty into my Dreamside art.

Painting rainbows... faster

If I described the production of Dreamside's art as "time-consuming," it would be quite an understatement. Every so often, when I'm working on repetitive tasks, I look for ways to cut down on the production time through automation. Luckily, working digitally has such advantages.

Nothing has taken more drawing time than the Dream Girl's rainbow hair. It's complex for many reasons. So, I naturally examined Clip Studio's capable brush system to see if I could use it to speed up the drawing process while maintaining the hair design's iconic and decorative beauty.

Sure enough, after about a week or two of experiments, I found a solution I think works pretty well! Check out the video to learn more about it.

Putting Perspective in Perspective

One of the most difficult aspects of transforming a 3D object into a 2D image is understanding perspective. After many years of determining the best method, artists looooooong ago created a system for determining correct line placement in one, two, and three-point perspective. I'm sure you've at least come across these at some point if you've ever tried to draw a landscape image that uses complex shapes.

Despite using mostly organic shapes in its design, Dreamside has quite a lot of scenes with rigid objects. For example, Sarah's patient room, the hospital interior, and the large city surrounding the hospital itself all feature sets that require careful perspective planning. Today's video focuses on Clip Studio's incredibly useful "perspective ruler" that's designed to assist artists in this time-consuming process.

It's amazing to see how technology can improve and speed up our workflow as artists. If you're a more artistically-inclined Dreamside fan, feel free to share links to your own perspective work (no large attachments, please!) via my contact page. See you next time, Dreamers!