Grand Space Opera: Light Age #1

Tutorial / 05 December 2020

As promised today's blog post is about the current Artstation challenge Grand Space Opera: Light Age! 
I've been wanting to join the challenges since a while but somehow always missed it. But this time - even though I still came a little late - I'm participating. And I am so excited because it's SciFi stuff and I love SciFi stuff! I get to design Alien characters, actually I think I never did that before. Unbelievable and seemingly impossible, I know. But there is a first time for everything, right?

So I took some notes first, those are secret though. I am not posting them to my submission progress page. But I might add descriptions to the final character sheets. I'm meaning to say that there is a little theme to each character. So far I made two...

Let me know what you think and if you're in the challenge as well, feel free to share your submission page in the comments :)

That storyboard

General / 01 December 2020

First off: I'm so excited about finally participating in an Artstation challenge! Specially excited because it's spacey and Sparth is amongst the judges! I had to! :D
If you wanna see what I'm doing and be up to date with it, you can always check my submission progress. Because right now what I was gonna share is some of my storyboard pages. Only a few, don't wanna reveal too much. But I'm actually done with it. 

Storyboard pages

The comic is called "Flint & Mortimer", it's not my story and not my characters either. And if you haven't seen them yet, feel free to take a look at my character concepts I did for this project :)

Next post is gonna be about the challenge, I promise!

Sketchbook time

General / 23 November 2020

For a change today's blog entry is not about concepts for my personal project. It is about sketches!
I've been craving to do sketching just for exploration since a while now and finally managed to come up with a schedule that includes an hour of sketchbook time per day :-)
I'm really happy about this and having a lot of fun when doing them. Currently I have two missions with this.

Mission 1
Finding the way and materials that work the best for me when colouring my linework

Mission 1
Filling that sketchbook until the end of this year (not that many pages left, should be manageable)

Water colour pencils Derwent Inktense. I do like those but they are called "inktense" for a reason. Note to self: The pencil colours are really flashy and I gotta be careful when using them and especially how and on what kind of drawing I am using them.

That one is with coloured ink for all those yellow(-ish) parts. I just didn't have a suitable blue anymore so for that I used the watercolour pencils again. I like the ink a lot, always did. But I didn't use them in a while and some of them dried out over the years. So that is one explanation for why I didn't have a well matching blue. In case anyone is curious: I have some Winsor & Newton and some Ecoline inks. The ones here in particular were by Ecoline.

Here I used coloured ink again for almost everything. Except for the green because all three green tones that I have are way too bright and shiny and/or cold for this very warm toned sketch. So for the green I used a brush pen. In the end I went in with colored pencils just slightly to make at least a little bit of atmospheric perspective.

On some of these I used colored ink and two of the coloures are watered down because I tried to safe what had dried by putting some warm water in. The two are dark red and blue. For the blue that kind of worked but the dark red is neither dark nor really red (see bottom left). The rest is done in either non-watery ink or brush pen.

What are your favourite colouring techniques in traditional media?

Personal Project #7 - Final Character Design Of Yngvi

Making Of / 20 November 2020

She has a final form too. But wait... I think the unfinished form never made it online. 

Actually though, there wasn't that much process prior to this character illustration. Mainly because I had already settled on the basic faction colors and outfits and did almost all the experimenting on Hilda.
Although originally I had planned to give Yngvild the coat and then in the process descided against it. You can see the coat-version on the concept sheet I uploaded into my portfolio. 

Yngvild is higher rank than Hilda, she's the commander and I chose presenting her in her formal outfit because I think it supports her personality well and shows that hierarchy better.

Now I'm really excited to move on with the project! There are tons of things I want to do regarding the world building but I also really want to finally start with some comic pages! I'll also rename the project, so see "Skymir" as a title-draft.

I've been planning to get the storyboard for Flint & Mortimer (not my story or characters) out of the way within the following two weeks (ideally within one) and will come up with a more structured plan regarding my personal project. I have to sort all of these ideas of what I want to do sorted in order to start and make progress without getting lost in the world building. Yep, there is always that danger. But if you're aware of it you can control it!

Personal Project #6 - Final Character Design Of Hilda

Making Of / 30 October 2020

It's Hilda in her final form! I'm finally done with it and happy. Well, I haven't put that character sheet together yet but that's what follows and then I can move on to that Yngvild design. Because she too could use a makeover and I am looking forward to it so much. Also storyboard-wise I've been productive and overall I was reall "in the flow" this week.
Tomorrow I'll take a break from everything, maybe Sunday too but that's not for sure yet. I'm very tempted to just move on. But on the other hand it's nice to have a full weekend when you can, right?

Anyway, I've done all the sketches you've seen of Hilda so far (#1- #5) in Autodesk Sketchbook and this one started the same way. However I then took it to Photoshop for coloring and all. To be honest that was mainly because I wanted to try some brushes :P
I had so much fun with this one, felt completely in the zone :D

When are you - or what makes you - be "the zone"? Do you notice any pattern?

Personal Project #5 - You Guessed It, Even More Sketches

General / 26 October 2020

Haven't updated the blog in too long, but here it finally comes. I kept working on my design for Hilda, I decided that probably the pineapple hairstyle is the best regarding silhouette, her personality and I even came up with a fun way to integrate it in the story. But no spoilers!

Talking about the outfit, oh my... I do like the overall version with the belt a lot ("Rambo 2.0") but I also quite like the designs "yeehaw" and "eye for an eye".


So I played with "yeehaw" and "eye for an eye" a little more. But damn... so hard to make a decision, can I just have several outfits for her? Maybe out of all these number 4 looks the most complete and she wouldn't be freezing like with the "yeehaw" outfit, because most of the time the environment is not going to be in a hot climate.

Or maybe if I mixed those outfits from the first image (which I didn't put numbers or names on, that one) with some elements from number 4?
Opinions are very welcome!

Personal Project #4 - Even More Character Concept Sketches

Making Of / 05 October 2020

So I worked on my character concepts a little more. I still wasn't satisfied with the look of the outfit, especially the silhouett as it was in my previous post. Also I wasn't entirely convinced of any of the hairstyles. 

That's why I ended up trying the overall version again but this time I added a belt. I think that this works pretty well and I think I am settling with the funny looking hairstyle below. I think it's unique and I like that.

Still, I want to add more details and accessories (of course she has a weapon too) and I could still improve the silhouette by adding some stuff in different areas. Yet, I'll have to simplify the design for the comic later on. But that's fine, as long as it still works and looks cool. Next I'll also play with color a bit.

What accessories would you add to my rebellious souldier?


Personal Project #3 - More Character Concept Sketches

Making Of / 25 September 2020

I continued working on the character concepts for my personal project and it's finally getting somewhere. I am happy. While in my first blog entry from two months ago things were not quite settled yet and in the second entry from one month ago when I had chosen some favourite designs for the characters clothes, in this third entry things are starting to take shape.

The idea is that there are three base outfits that can be tweaked with armor and geared up or personalized to a degree. There's gotta be a two-part outfit with pants and jacket, a one-piece (overall) and another two piece consisting of pants and coat.
After I decided for a direction (set one to five) I'll continue playing around with that set. Maybe adjusting some details, changing some parts and eventually try out some colors.

So I got to the part where I have three base outfits. The one with the jacket, the one with the coat and the one piece version. It was already decided from the start that Yngvild is gonna have the coat, because the coats are reserved the higher ranks like her.
Regarding Hilda I wasn't sure if I was gonna give her the overall or the jacket outfit. But I'm probably gonna go with the jacket and pants.

I also tried some variations with different tops she could wear or even the same jacket but with the sleeves cut off. After all I think that doesn't work too well and decided to have Hilda have other kinds of customizations to her still-intact jacket. Also I am still not sure what she is going to wear underneath it. I am thinking a simple T-Shirt, a shirt with a print on it (would be a bit of a hassle to actually draw every time in the future comics), or maybe a pattern as that would be easier to draw repeatedly, a simple tank top or long sleeves.
For Yngvild I think that a black turtle-neck would look good and matches her personality. With Hilda I can go a little more wild and I should (maybe more). 

A big big question though is which hair style is she gonna rock?


Comic Character Illustration #3

Making Of / 25 August 2020

This is the last part of my Flint and Mortimer character illustration post. I'm done and happy with it and I'll most likely get to do a cover artwork for this project as well, which I am really happy about! There are going to be two comic book versions and one cover for each. 

Today I already updated my portfolio with all the character artworks for Flint and Mortimer (including the final character illustration) and the full video of the drawing process as a timelapse as well. So check it out if you are interested in seeing how I drew those two guys on my iPad.

At this point I am considering to make a YouTube channel where I can post more timelapse videos, anybody have experience to share or requests to make? I'd be happy to hear what others did or like to watch online (within the art field).


Comic Character Illustration #2

Making Of / 21 August 2020

As I promised in my last blog entry today comes part two of the character drawing process video. Again it's a timelapse. In case you haven't read the previous post, this is a character called Flint for a comic project that I am currently working on. It's done on the iPad in Procreate.
I've been quite enjoying this one actually and by now I moved on to the second main character named Mortimer.

I am almost done so I hope that by Monday I can put the third part of the drawing process (adding Mortimer) to the blog as well.
If the pants didn't already give it away: it's a story taking place in the 70's. I am still considering adding some details in the end. I don't know, like flowers on the shirt or some accessoires. So I don't entirely consider this finished yet.