Hey there! For this Christmas I wanted to paint Vic a present, and why the heck not, share my process with you all.
After passing my sketchbook on to Vic so she could choose a doodle to get things started (yup, I’m not only cheap but also unimaginative) she pointed out this one.
I used it as a starting point and came up with the following sketch, about A6 in size. I love composing with big shapes, so the idea behind working so small is that I can really focus in the shapes, curves, overlapping and composition without getting lost in the details.
I knew from the beginning that I was going to paint this one with gouache, so doing a color key was a must. Gouache is one tricky medium, specially in the color department, so it’s better to know clearly where you want to go with it beforehand. I slapped some colors in a new multiply layer on top of my drawing.
I then enlarged the sketch in photoshop so it fits an A4 and printed it. I taped it to my lightbox and taped a white piece of paper over it (some really basic 300gm paper I think, it’s actually called Basik). Having the sketch below allows me to work directly with paint without having to somehow transfer it to the final surface, so it’s a kinda nifty trick. I turned the lightbox on whenever I needed to see my lines. I worked basically flat, no rendering or soft edges, some drybrushing here and there but nothing fancy, just kept my color key as a rough reference in my computer’s monitor. This is the result.
Here it is with some added photoshoppery and a detail just for funsies (click to enlarge)