AuthorTopic: [Digital Painting] - Game Poster/Cover art  (Read 16253 times)

Offline Corinthian Baby

  • 0010
  • *
  • Posts: 223
  • Karma: +1/-0
  • Meditating Pixel Placement
    • View Profile

Re: [Digital Painting] - Game Poster/Cover art

Reply #10 on: August 07, 2012, 06:42:54 am
Man, some great stuff in this topic. Well, I got around to tryin to put some of it to the test in a new edit, and pixelation is successfully moved, so here it is:

Changed the arc of the headband, brightened up the whole painting on a separate levels layer, tried the smudge tool to imitate oil paint, and tried to make him more masculine, (mouth, scowl) while adjusting some of the edges (face, shoulder) with a wireframe trace overlay. Also tilted the sword to be more like Grimsane's edit, because I think it works better for composition, likewise painted some more sky to coverup the city, even though I didn't flatten it like he did. (I will though, don't worry, just didn't get to it.)

Here is the wireframe overlay for comparison, although I suppose a 50% transp transformed of orig would work as well:

Doesn't line up perfectly, but unsure if I should follow it too exactly.

GPick seems like a cool program to help with colors so might check it out, otherwise, still habitually color picking, but I think the colors here work well, especially in contrast to the darker version.

I have done that trick before, where you merge down, copy that to a new layer, and use it as a new base. It's way easy to check the progression, so I did it here, and I think it's improving. Good organized layers are evidence of good workflow, which I am trying to get better at. To not fall in love with work is something I've heard before, and experienced, especially in traditional painting. One little mistake and you have to paint over it. I've also had paintings lost in time, stolen or painted over entirely, so I've felt the struggle before, but that's part of the reason why I like digital painting. You can undo, and have infinite copies of it. Transform controls def offers a lot of freedom, hence the sword rotation. Def one of the things I don't miss about painting on canvas is making those colors, or trying to get a color back later, though appreciate the formal competency it has given me through practicing it.

Familiar with the work of Drew Struzan, and love his style. Those Star Wars posters for the prequel trilogy are great, and I have used for comp ref. Another great is John Alvin, don't think I'll ever get over his orig Bladerunner poster. I'm just wondering if the comp here is compelling enough to be comparable to that general style (not to their own work of course, they're masters.) Was experimenting with that dragon from the older version but can't seem to fit into a place that makes sense. Also thinking about using some kind of soul energy, also like the other version (the grey dude over the hero), but again hard to have a major element just to the side without detracting attention from the central focal point. Although, I could push the title up and have more vertical space, hmm.

Actually, after studying some of those posters I got some inspiration for a new more collagey comp, sketched it out on paper:
« Last Edit: August 07, 2012, 07:41:03 am by Corinthian Baby »

Offline PixelPiledriver

  • 0011
  • **
  • Posts: 997
  • Karma: +6/-0
  • Yo!
    • View Profile
    • My Blog

Re: [Digital Painting] - Game Poster/Cover art

Reply #11 on: August 07, 2012, 05:35:43 pm
Some rough stuff:



At first I thought the title referred to monsters.
Monstrous Wars! Rawr!
But after giving it some thought and taking in the tone of the image I came to the idea that its a representation of war as sad, gruesome, and evil.
Forgive me, I haven't played the game yet, so that may be an inaccurate interpretation.
Didn't get to the text, which is equally important of course.

Actually I wasn't as focused on the meaning of the edit as the composition while drawing it.
The study of st paul has a curve in it:


I wanted to use the curve in his body as half of an ellipse.
This is all I started with and cared about.
A simple design theory:


Here's the flow:


And the here's the overall shape:


I'm not suggesting that your image should look like this.
You are going for a more hierarchical type of composition.
But explore some drastically different composition theories quickly.
Its good to see a sketchy design in your latest post.
Try to make about 15-30 (or more) of these, all with different theories and layouts.
There's really nothing wrong with the current setup, or the sketchy design.
But don't limit yourself just because you have a lot of paint on the canvas already.

You're on a good path and you'll end up with something cool.
« Last Edit: August 07, 2012, 05:37:34 pm by PixelPiledriver »
And knowing that it is, we seek what it is... ~ Aristotle, Posterior Analytics, Chapter 1

Offline Corinthian Baby

  • 0010
  • *
  • Posts: 223
  • Karma: +1/-0
  • Meditating Pixel Placement
    • View Profile

Re: [Digital Painting] - Game Poster/Cover art

Reply #12 on: August 07, 2012, 09:11:10 pm
Very interesting investigation of composition, pixel piledriver. Although, you're first interpretation of the title was correct, dragons get unleashed on the world and start tearing it apart, rather than the main character slicing up children, but the flow of the image is more important. Good observation noting the curve of the figure, and using that as a starting point for composition. Something I need to do more of.

I feel that basic shapes are best for compositions, especially in the hierarchical style. Yours goes in a circle, my approach is more triangular. I did a rough mockup for each type: (and made them smaller so I'm not always posting full res for comp studies)

circular:

Changed the rift, which is kind of like a black hole that souls of the dead leak out of, to encircle the chara's head. The frame def adds a visual focus that sucks you in. The negative space adds to the weight of the situation, and I get some room to play with a crumbling cliff or city background.

triangular:

More akin to traditional movie posters, tension btwn each subject. Also by dividing the canvas diagonally, it lends itself visually to the world being pulled apart, as there is unbalance, and overall seems more dynamic.

I agree that it's necessary to exhaust comp ideas, that's why I'm playing around with it now before I continue painting.

I can see either of these working, is the new one worth pursuing?

edit: can't stop playing with this now, here's another one:

Teeters more towards diamond structure.
« Last Edit: August 07, 2012, 09:51:42 pm by Corinthian Baby »

Offline Corinthian Baby

  • 0010
  • *
  • Posts: 223
  • Karma: +1/-0
  • Meditating Pixel Placement
    • View Profile

Re: [Digital Painting] - Game Poster/Cover art

Reply #13 on: August 15, 2012, 05:22:38 am
Still working on this, developed the orig composition some more after ruling out some of the trials:

Major Changes:
-Font/Logo.
-Tried to fix the perspective within the realm of creating a BG.
-Made minor facial adjustments.
-Developed the rendering of his torso. My ref is cut off around this area so there's some guesswork involved. Is the anatomy alright? Does his shoulder look off? Is his head too big? Should there be part of the other arm shown to hold the sword?
-Rendered the medallion and headband some more.
-Started sketching out the sword.
-The rift portal halo frames the main chara's face.
-Trying to shift the border so both sides are the same length.

My main concerns are anatomy and perspective at this point. Though I'm afraid the less sketchy silhouette of the katana looks less menacing than before and could effect composition. I also considered moving the BG dragon to more along the horizon to suggest that it is maybe ravaging the world. Thoughts?
« Last Edit: August 15, 2012, 05:26:35 am by Corinthian Baby »

Offline Grimsane

  • 0010
  • *
  • Posts: 423
  • Karma: +2/-0
    • View Profile

Re: [Digital Painting] - Game Poster/Cover art

Reply #14 on: August 17, 2012, 06:28:46 am
is that green thing a dragon or a brain fart? :lol:

joking aside, I'm glad to see you still persevering away at this, I'll offer some more suggestions and possible things to consider, how old is he? because the baby face doesn't quite match that body in my mind, this might be too mature and masculine but i'd suggest trying not to marry the reference too much, it is really showing. and It might be just me but with the downward viewing angle of the main character I think the horizon would be much higher, probably higher than in my quick mouse edit. also the sword, I am starting to wonder if it will even work well, if you did something like in PPD's edit then it would work but just the blade it's disconnected and doesn't necessarily flow with the composition, if you put it on his back you could do some nice rendering of the handle, and also free up some canvas space for some other elements, which is desirable if you decide to go in the poster direction. well that's all I have for now



*ed, well I was going to just suggest trying to use some elements overlapping with the black borders for effect, and figured I'd try the sword but it looks ridiculous, and just randomly sketched up some other ideas  :huh:



I'm so sorry  :'(  :lol:


I'll also point out that the dark halo/void region around the head is implying the character is consumed by darkness in some way, and if that's not the case I'd move it.
« Last Edit: August 17, 2012, 07:02:52 am by Grimsane »

Offline StaticSails

  • 0001
  • *
  • Posts: 78
  • Karma: +0/-1
    • View Profile

Re: [Digital Painting] - Game Poster/Cover art

Reply #15 on: August 17, 2012, 04:16:07 pm
I think having the sword tilt away is probably hurting the composition it doesn't lead your eye to the hero. Keep in mind that the huge contrast in value and color will turn it into a focal point.

Grimsane makes some good points, mostly about the face. It's too baby faced right now. I think his solution is a little too extreme, something in between should work. Don't be afraid to move away from your reference.
I liked the idea of the hilt. Behind him could work, but infront of him you can practice drawing hands! Win win.

I tossed some rim lighting in because I wanted some of the forms on the left side to pop out a little and not just blend into other colors.

The background should probably soften as things go into the distance. This is just how focus works. Arne's art tutorial taught me this. Reference it, it has a lot of important info.

Played with the hair a little, I thought it was a little too noisy and pushed some colors into it. The pure black/grey/white looked off in an image that had so much hazy color floating around. Same with the other greyscale parts.

Bright halo instead of a dark halo? Your call.

Offline Dr D

  • 0010
  • *
  • Posts: 415
  • Karma: +0/-0
  • Not a real doctor.
    • View Profile
    • PJ Gallery

Re: [Digital Painting] - Game Poster/Cover art

Reply #16 on: August 18, 2012, 02:23:22 am
My main concern with this piece is story/composition.

What I really want to know is what he is doing.

PPD touched on this somewhat on his post.

I can't really tell if he's sad, in deep thought, or just looking extremely downwards.

Due to the camera angle chosen, we can not see what is in front of the character, and are barely able to see what's behind him. He is obviously the main focal point of the image but seems very lackluster. It might be my lack of imagination, but I can't really make anything out of this piece. We need more context clues, maybe choose a different angle/perspective. Show a secondary point of interest to relate to the character.

All I see right now is a guy with crazy hair, a white headband, sword and necklace, and I can't really get more out of it than that. I think you should ask yourself where exactly you want to go with this piece, what you want to showcase, and what the point of the character in the picture is, and maybe reconstruct.

Offline Corinthian Baby

  • 0010
  • *
  • Posts: 223
  • Karma: +1/-0
  • Meditating Pixel Placement
    • View Profile

Re: [Digital Painting] - Game Poster/Cover art

Reply #17 on: August 20, 2012, 02:51:51 am
Alright, some good points coming up.
@Grimsane:
It's a dragon, thought something in the bg might conjure up some interest in a subtle way, but not sure that it accomplishes that. The main chara is in his teens, probably from 15-17 somewhere. I thought the ref might be around the same age, so I followed it pretty closely. Tried to address the BG/perspective. You edits looks more flat and receding, whereas it's meant to look like he's on a cliff pretty high up with a vista behind him.

I dig the idea of breaking the border for interest, but due to the central focus of the comp, I don't have a huge opportunity to. As silly as that alt edit is, it's interesting to see it interpreted in that way and it's interesting to see how the same elements can convey something completely different given a quick posture/focal change.

@StaticSails:
Great edit! I just wish it wasn't jpeg so I could see the brushstrokes up close. As soon as I read Grimsane's post, I thought of the same comp that you suggested, sword in hand, just facing the other way. You made some valid points and I tried to incorporate them into the painting, following the edit somewhat closely. I would say dark halo because it's not actually a halo, but a portal behind him, though the light one looks cool as well. Thinking about encasing the figure in some sort of fiery glow a la Goku's kaio ken to denote some kind of soul energy. (as it is relevant to story, and might look cool). I def need to look at Arne's tutorial more in depth, I've only really skimmed it.

@Dr D :
I suppose I can see where your confusion stems from, it is somewhat ambiguous, but it's meant to generate interest in the game while showing some of its core themes. The main chara is in deep contemplation/day-dreaming but he's also battle ready and concentrated. It can be read as any of them, and dreaming is also relevant story-wise. It's a throwback to the one man army/weight of the world type of composition a la classic samurai flicks;

Part of the ambiguity is to create interest kind of like an advert, to drive people to look into what the product is. I'm not opposed to reconstruction but it'd be basically starting over, when the investment here is that it serves its function. I think you would be right if it were its own painting and not part of something bigger. (the game it coincides with.)
---
Ok, for actual update/edits:

Main version, tried to make it look like he is maybe flicking his sword out of its case. Again it can be interpreted that he is opening it (start of battle) or sheathing it (battle won).
Alt 1: No rift portal/halo:                                                                                Alt 2: Rough/fading border
                 

Offline StaticSails

  • 0001
  • *
  • Posts: 78
  • Karma: +0/-1
    • View Profile

Re: [Digital Painting] - Game Poster/Cover art

Reply #18 on: August 20, 2012, 06:49:32 pm
My brushstrokes barely exist, I mostly use a soft brush or a kind of soft brush. Don't worry about your texture until you've got your form and composition figured out. Keep playing with those thumbnails. Study what is happening in the posters and work you like. Why is it good?

I think you might want to abandon this painting you're emulating. It's creating conflicts with composition. If he's looking down, he's looking at nothing.
This guy is looking to the right implying that there's something else out there. Not a great composition, but it's a little better.

If you're gonna have a portal behind him you'll need it to read as a portal. Either show where it leads or at least hint that it leads somewhere. Right now it reads as an aura or something, so you might want move it from being directly behind him. Right now it's a black halo, not a portal.

Offline Liksmaskaren

  • 0001
  • *
  • Posts: 14
  • Karma: +0/-0
  • Ring mig! Jag šter dina barn.
    • View Profile

Re: [Digital Painting] - Game Poster/Cover art

Reply #19 on: August 21, 2012, 02:34:04 am
I would like to see something more like this:


Yeah, the edit looks like shit but I made him look at the image and I also moved him to the power corner.
Hardo Rocko!