Fish and Roses and Trees and Fountains and ALL THE THINGS

I finished my painting that I reeeeally briefly mentioned last week, and since it’s the thing I’m happiest with, I’m going to show that first;

Me and Bertie

A little me and my birdy.

It was definitely a nice distraction from uni work, which I have been finding stressful lately. As it got closer to being finished I found myself spending more and more time painting and enjoying myself. It was nice! Overall I’m really pleased with the piece and learned a lot about improving my rendering technique and using colour/value. It also made me feel more confident about making art from my imagination. Now I don’t have a painting on the go, I think I’ll work on several shorter things like photostudies before I dive into another longer paint. I also have an oil painting sketchbook now, which I’m going to start working in, both at home and during life drawing. My newly purchased daylight-coloured lamp will also help with that after my old yellow coloured one broke. Basically, this week I bought a lot of things. Like a new set of earphones for myself, a Nintendo 3DS for my brother and a big box of freshly baked bread for Jonah from Hobbs House Bakery. I like buying things.

Oh yeah, splashed £200 on an Industry Workshops ticket too… Ouch.

Going back to the colour/value point for a second, I learned a really great technique for quickly checking your values in a digital painting from artist Tom Scholes a few months back, and thought I should share. A lot of people make a black layer over their painting and set it to colour mode to get their painting into greyscale and check values, but there is actually a much quicker and truer method using the ‘proof’ mode in Photoshop. If you open Photoshop now and go to ‘View’ in the menu, and click ‘Proof Setup’>’Custom’, a scary dialogue box comes up. Click the ‘Device to simulate’ dropdown and select ‘Dot grain 20%’. Ok. Noooowww, if you press Ctrl+Y, you can quickly and instantly flip between greyscale and your original colours. Better yet, you can colourpick from this black and white version of your image, and it’ll still pick the colours of the colour version, which doesn’t happen with a black colour layer. Bam! I think it’s pretty great and I rely on it super heavily. Tom wrote a much more comprehensive post about the science behind it here, if you’re interested.

Snip 3

So you’re probably interested in how our level is going. The answer is pretty good.

Snip 3

The water has changed. Again. And we have water lilies and more trees.

Snip 3

I made some rose bushes and rose trees.

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And in general it’s starting to look really purdyyyyy.

Snip 3

The answer to your other question is yes, I’m still mood swingy and crazy.

I’m so awed with how our project is progressing from week to week. We’re really ahead of schedule, and already we’re finding that we’re having to add extra assets to our asset list to keep ourselves going. It’s very chill and I’m glad, because I think being mood-swingy and working against the clock would kill me. I have a slowly growing list of things to come back to in due time and correct or work on, but I don’t mind. I’m working through it slowly but surely. It’s just things like unwrapping this or that, hiding seams on this or that, reducing the tri count of this or that, or fiddling with the texture on something. One of my priorities for next week is to fix the textures on the cottage roof tiles so they’re less out-there and a bit more weathered looking. Same goes for the wood and such. Should be ok.

Currently though, I’m making…

Snip 1


Snip 2

Huh huh, they look funny.

I’m handpainting these guys (trying to do it in a prettier but kind of similar style to the limited fish from Fable) and it’s super fun. I wanted to have some ornamental, bright fish that you would get in ponds, but it occurred to me about halfway through working on them today that these fish, koi and goldfish, probably aren’t even salt water fish! They’d die! They’re living in a lake of tears for God’s sake. Salt water. However, they will still look very nice in the big water fountain in the center of the map, and maybe other ponds we could make. To combat the problem I landed myself with, I’m going to research salt water lake fish and make a couple of those too. I don’t mind, they’re good fun and will add more diversity to the map anyway.

We’ll see where we’re at next week. 🙂

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