Concept Artist, Raj Khatri, takes us through his step-by-step fan art progression of his favourite band, Iron Maiden. Starting with the initial sketches in the pages of his college notebook, he transports the sketching into the elaborate stages of adding drips and streaks; highlighting; playing with tones, and such other details, before finally reaching the envisioned representation.
From Sketch To Canvas
What Raj Khatri began as light sketches between the lines of his college notebooks, eventually found expression on the digital canvas. He executed and represented his love for the British band, Iron Maiden, through the application of layering processes; complex colour blocking; shading and blending, and the likes. He elaborates, in detail, each of these steps in detail, thus showcasing what it took to arrive at the final picture.
Started out by scanning copies of original sketches from my college notebooks, done in 2000-2001, proceeding onto digitally cleaning and balancing the black values to get the details and contrast out from the scanned images.
Since Iron Maiden are a British band, composing all of them in the shape of the Union Jack was the base concept, digitally linking the sketches was a primary step.
Ready for digital painting, the first shading of mid tones were applied onto the top character, likewise isolating the layout into individual characters, before adding the second layer of shading and blending.
Shading with dark tones and blending in together, creases and wrinkles were brought into effect, adding the first layer of highlight.
Colour blocking was applied to the second character, Eddie from ‘Seventh Son from the Seventh son’, followed by Midtone shading, highlighting and blending for the second character.
The same process was then executed for the third character, Eddie from ‘Fear of The Dark’, as also for the fourth character, Eddie from ‘Best of the Beast’.
Recomposing all the shaded characters back together, adding a flat colour behind, made it possible to see how the shape was forming or coming together.
Proceeded onto colouring the characters using the gradient map, then drawing the basic shapes and streaks for drips on it.
Toning the dark values of red, and balancing the overall colour spectrum of the layout, before painting the details of shadows and highlights on the drips, finally adding the round edged border to the layout.
Added more details to the drips, also placing the painted logo of the band in the center.
Adding additional drips and more details to them; adding shadow to the logo. Applied a layer of flash off-whitish beige colour on top of all layers in the ‘Darken’ mode.
Final colour adjustment, using colour balance and levels to manage the overall contrast and red values. Added sharpness by taking a merged copy of the layout on top of all layers and adding the ‘Sharpen’ filter. Then reducing the capacity to 60-70% as per your taste and finally completing the artwork.
Published in Issue 37
To answer some of the basic questions for designers, freelancers and creative studios, we interviewed some of the creative legends to guide and share their wisdom. The issue includes interactions with Preeti Vyas from VGC on ‘How to pitch for clients or retain the existing one’ and Ashish Deshpande from Elephant on ‘Challenges of working with a startup’. A must read, if you are planning for the financial year ahead or worried about your handling your money matter, this issue can give you much-needed insight and guide you to a better financial health of your business or freelancing. So don’t wait, just order your copy NOW!
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