Thursday, January 16, 2014

First Magic Card illustration in oils: Aerie Worshippers

Just Spoiled for the next Magic set is my first oil-painted card

There is always a bit of trepidation and lack of knowledge of end-results when doing something the first time.  This being my first Magic card oil, I had to guess what size of painting would work to have enough space to render the faces properly and have the right scale for the image and its reduction to tiny card-size.  I went with a fairly large 18X24" format as I thought the subject lended itself to a large, aesthetic painting good for wall decoration and future appreciation outside of the game application.  Not too happy they cropped it in closer, but I guess that underscores why its nice to have originals.

A year ago when I did this I was struggling with getting a good surface, free of priming brushstroke-marks and smooth with some tooth.  I experimented by gessoing my panel and dabbing with a sponge to create a slight stipple and then sanding on top.  I achieved a fine texture that worked well, but have since found pre-primed boards that are the same thing but even better. (and no work!)

After printing out the drawing I rub charcoal to the back and trace over the lines.

The transfer to the board is a bit ugly as the lines migrate and lose their smoothness.  I prefer this extra step to my early process of mounting paper to the panel with clear gesso, as its more archival and won't warp the panel.

I mix a few tints of raw umber acrylic and go over the transferred lines to get a drawing on the board that will be strong and visible as I paint.

Acrylic washes tint the linework and put the whole painting in the right contexts so that I can paint one object at a time, visualizing the final effect from the start.

Painting from back to front, rendering each area at a time...

The final painting is completed and properly photographed...

1 comment:

Dave Kapah said...

the contre jour lighting is amazing
and the stars are so bright and clean.