NOTE: Since Tumblr is being Tumblr, here’s the FULL SIZE version
So, it’s the end of 2013 ("But Karbik, we’re halfway into Janu—" shuddup, I’m slow). Some people have been doing that "stick-an-image-you-made-from-every-month-into-a-square-thingy" but I figured I had something more interesting for you (also I don’t have enough images to fill the whole thing): thumbnails!
I am really fond of doing thumbnail sketches before any bigger painting because of the opportunity to try out ideas before you really dive into it and because it gives me a plan, a target to strive towards instead of stalling an hour into painting and despairing because I don’t know how to stop the colours from clashing.
Do mind that these here are just the colour thumbnails though, the pencil-and-paper thumbnails before those tend to be too horrid to share (for instance, here are the sketch thumbnails for Eurasian Rim).
I AM NEVER FLYING YOU AGAIN:
Rivalling Derision for the “most awful use of orange in 2013” award.
By the way, the inspiration behind the mechanical dragon’s design was the Skyranger from XCOM: Enemy Unknown (great game, 10/10). Note the turbine positioning.
This was where I had the idea of going to some colour scheme website (a’la Kuler) and trying out the colour schemes from there as basis for a painting. This was also where I realised that’s an utterly dreadful idea. But I’ve found myself oddly in love with that warm orange-red and blue combination that the final version had. It has made an appearance in several other images to…
Sometimes the initial idea is just so clear that you nail it on the first try. Like having a photo etched to the back of one’s mind.
The variant with the shelf in the foreground wasn’t a scrapped alternative, I actually intended to make both variants but then lost interest.
YOU HAD ONE JOB:
One of the more dive-in-without-planning image, henche the big changes in environment. it changed from a foresty place to a beach because that’s where the stereotypical picnic takes place and
Since the image was very much echoing the cinematography of Pacific Rim, the colours pretty much chose themselves. "Let’s see….dark, rainy night…lotsa tiny lights on mech…giant floodlights on mech and helicopters….mysterious beam of light from the sky….yep, that’s Pacific Rim all right."
Tried various ideas, all intended to show the tools as being…infused, with an aura, as something wonderful or something. The final idea was meant to have magic/smoke wisps by the edge of the tablet, but….
Sometimes one has to concede that one’s execution can’t match one’s vision. At least not yet.
Finally big enough to carry you:
Read through A Redtail’s Dream, wrote down 20 or so ideas for images, sketched them all, chose my favourites, did black-and-white thumbnails of those and out of those chose my favourite one to define further. And still I was at two minds on how to go about this idea by this stage.
In hindsight, I kind of regret altering that cliff from what it was in the thumbnail.That kind of big, boulder-y and jagged cliffedge feels like it may have been far better than the layered rock thing it is now, but well….alas, hindsight.
Knew I wanted to have the lower section be a cool blue with a white light from above, but the upper section was more difficult. I wanted something with hard, sharp lighting akin to say, Tragelaphus's work (there's a reason the centerpiece revolves around deers) but couldn't quite figure how to execute it. Dark highlights on white background? Too sharp contrast with the lower section. White highlights on blue background? Too samey with the lower section. Rainbow barf? Hmm, maybe not..