Beowulf Step by Step Part 3

This is the final part in my Beowulf step by step series. The process for this one is the same as my previous pieces so first off I will re-quote myself; "I treat my digital work the same as I do a traditional painting. I start with a finished drawing then do a flat color wash as an underpainting. I also change the actual color of the linework as well, this I do in my traditional by tracing my drawing with colored pencils, or by printing out the drawing in a different color before mounting.

After that I roughly block in my colors and values, colorpicking from my original studies, it helps save lots of time.

Then I re-work and refine everything, make any appropriate changes until I finish. That is a very rough summation of my process but I figure it helps."

There are a few things that were unique to this piece. Mostly as you can see I had to pay particular attention to the edges of certain parts such as the wings of the crows. While I start off blocking them in roughly I then go in and create specific hard edges to them. Since in the end I do not want hard edges I go back in and repaint and soften them. This may seem like extra effort for no reason but I find that it helps me more specifically control my shapes.

So this is a run down of my process as always if you have any specific questions feel free to ask.

Beowulf Step by Step Part 2

Man it has been a busy few weeks. Writing can really consume your time. I am sorry for the delay but here is part 2 of my step by step pieces.

My process here is pretty much the same as before, with some slight changes. Such as you can see between steps 6 and 7 I altered the colors from what I originally had. I used a colorize layer in Painter for this, I really really love the way it works. It allows me to change any color I want without altering the value. The only other significant difference that is seen is in the early steps where you can see I started off by planning out the highlight shapes. This helped me figure out how much contrast I would need in certain areas for focus.

Since the rest of the process is the same I will just quote myself for the rough explanation.
"
I treat my digital work the same as I do a traditional painting. I start with a finished drawing then do a flat color wash as an underpainting. I also change the actual color of the linework as well, this I do in my traditional by tracing my drawing with colored pencils, or by printing out the drawing in a different color before mounting.

After that I roughly block in my colors and values, colorpicking from my original studies, it helps save lots of time.

Then I re-work and refine everything, make any appropriate changes until I finish. That is a very rough summation of my process but I figure it helps.

But if anyone has any questions about my process I will gladly answer them. I hope you find this informative."

I hope you enjoyed my process.

Beowulf Step by Step Part 1

This is a step by step for the first piece in my Beowulf series. I had never posted a step by step before but thought some might be interested in my process.

I treat my digital work the same as I do a traditional painting. I start with a finished drawing then do a flat color wash as an underpainting. I also change the actual color of the linework as well, this I do in my traditional by tracing my drawing with colored pencils, or by printing out the drawing in a different color before mounting.

After that I roughly block in my colors and values, colorpicking from my original studies, it helps save lots of time.

Then I re-work and refine everything, make any appropriate changes until I finish. That is a very rough summation of my process but I figure it helps.

But if anyone has any questions about my process I will gladly answer them. I hope you find this informative.

The End of a Legend (Beowulf Series image 3 of 3)

The final image in my Beowulf series entitled The End of a Legend. This one depicts the final battle between Beowulf and the dragon. Unlike his previous battles this one takes place years later after Beowulf is made king. A dragon begins to terrify Beowulf's land setting fire to all he sees. Beowulf with a group of thanes then faces off against the dragon. When the battle begins all of Beowulf's men except for Wiglaf abandon him. At the end of the fight Beowulf and the dragon both lie dead and Wiglaf sees to him. Wiglaf being Beowulf's only relative becomes the next king.

To contrast with my other pieces I wanted this one to depict the end of the battle, the aftermath of the carnage. I thought a nice way to show this was through the use of an above view so we could see the crows looking down upon the feast before them. I thought this quite appropriate as crows are very symbolic of death.

With the design of the dragon I wanted to keep with the same mammalian and aquatic fusion that Grendel and his mother had. I decided to give him a mane down his whole neck. I figured that any creature who lives in such a cold environment would need to have some form of warmth. He has the similar fin nature to his ear that Grendel and his mother does, but the main aquatic feature I gave him was to base his design off an eel.

I was really proud of how this piece turned out, I hope all of you enjoy it as well.

Mother of Grendel Grief-Wracked and Ravenous (Beowulf Series image 2 of 3)

Part two of my Beowulf series. This is the second battle Beowulf has in the epic, where he faces off against the mother of Grendel. Unlike the first piece, I wanted this one to depict the heat of the battle. I wanted Beowulf struggling to fight to show that even he can not handle the wrath of Grendel's mother.

I also really wanted to get that fierce emotion across of Grendel's mother. To show how much she loved her son as her love was turned into unmitigated rage against his killer.

Unlike Grendel I wanted to depict his mother with a slightly more humanistic appearance to make her a bit more sympathetic. For even Beowulf says that unlike the beast Grendel he can understand that Grendel's mother had to do what she did to avenge her kinsman.

Since Grendel's mother is said to look like that of a water demon I thought what if I combined a naga or serpent creature with that of a merrow and have a serpentine tail but with a fish fin. I figured this would work for how she travels on land and sea. The text also describes her as a sea-wolf and I wanted to play up that fusion. So I gave her aquatic features such as; fins, hand-webbing, and gills. I then also gave her the wolf-like features of her wolfen eyes, fur covered hands, and large mane.

This was really fun to create, I really enjoyed playing with the design Grendel's mother.

As always this was created in Corel Painter.

The Son of Cain Hunts in Heorot (Beowulf Series image 1 of 3 )

This is the first piece in my Beowulf series entitled "The Son of Cain Hunts in Heorot". I wanted each of the three pieces in the series to depict a battle with the three monsters Beowulf faces. This one shows Beowulf as he begins his epic fight with the beast Grendel.

I wanted this piece to depict the beginning of the battle as the first punches are thrown. Where Beowulf shows great confidence before this supposed threat, as his loyal men cheer him on against the demonic descendant of Cain.

The design of Grendel comes from specific parts of the original text. I show Grendel as this ominous shadowy figure that is almost completely silhouetted. I got this idea from a really interesting part of the book where Grendel is described as a dark shadow that lurks beneath the clouds.

Besides being a giant,
Grendel is also said to have been disturbed by the noise of the great hall, thus why I designed him with the large ears. The rest of his physical appearance actually comes from descriptions of his mother. She is said to be a demonic sea creature who is refereed to as a sea-wolf. When I read that I wanted to play up that idea of fusing mammalian and aquatic creature aspects. So Grendel's ears were based upon a wolf but then enlarged to gain a more bat like quality. To incorporate the aquatic aspects I gave Grendel webbing that can be seen in between his fingers.

The piece was drawn out on paper and then painted in Corel Painter. I enjoyed painting it and hope you all like it as well.

Beowulf Faces Grendel DRAWING

I meant to upload my drawings much sooner but better late than never. I have actually already finished the paintings for the whole series but one step at a time.

This is the first piece in my Beowulf series. Beowulf braces himself for the epic fight with the beast Grendel while his men cheer him on.

So How Would You Train Your Dragon?

Finally got to see How to Train You Dragon last night, and frankly it was amazing. I loved the story, the characters, the animation, the style, the music; I loved it all. It is definitely going on the DVD list. The best part though was that it was inspiring. I was currently fighting with some ideas on my Beowulf project, and all the issues I was wondering about, the movie helped me solve. So now I feel re-energized and ready to paint.

Also I am finished with the drawings to my Beowulf pieces and I am deep in the paintings. I do not really have the time to upload them all now but in a week or so expect to see a lot.

The REAL Beowulf

I know it has been a bit since my last post but I assure you I will have a lot to show you soon. I wanted to upload this to start off. It is from my reference shoot with my model Wil for the Beowulf project.

Since I generally like to show my process on this blog I figured I should show some of my reference shots for once, and I figured since this shoot turned out particularly well I would show something from it.

I am actually quite far on the project as of right now I am working on the third and final finish drawing for the project. Expect to see some finish drawings soon as well as some other posts.

Now in COLOR

I have been a bit busy as of late so I have neglected my posting. I do however have many things to post. This one is the color studies for my Beowulf project.

I think I will end up going with the bottom ones for the first two projects and then a combination of the 2 for the third one, with it being dominantly the green one. It does seem to give a more eerie vibe which I like.

I have already shot my reference and even finished some of the drawings so expect to see those soon.

BEOWULF value studies

Here is some WIP for my upcoming Beowulf project. Each image represents a battle Beowulf has. First the battle with Grendel, then Grendel's mother, and finally the dragon. I have some color studies in the work as well and will post those soon.

Also later today is the big photo shoot for this project. Perhaps I will show some of the shots as well.