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An Army Summoned

The mood of an image can be defined through colour and brush strokes. In this workshop Mike Corriero shares his process and thoughts about creating a dynamic image.

Action in an image can be produced through brush strokes and direction of elements. When you study motion, it’s usually broken down into effects such as streaks of blurred colour, forced perspective, exaggeration of anatomy, and speed. An image doesn’t need to be fast-paced in order to convey a sense of motion. You could show the act of motion in a still figure through the way you lay down your brush strokes and stylise the character.
The word “motion” can be defined in so many ways, as it pertains to the movement objects as well as a change in posture or gesture. Along with action comes the introduction of mood through strokes and colour scheme. I find that the mood of an image is more easily produced through a simplistic colour scheme, rather than a chaotic one.
To me an analogous colour scheme provides enough variation in hues yet keeps the unity of the image and helps the illustration flow better. You’ll find this technique used a lot throughout the film and games industries.
When producing a scene involving the elements of water and fire, you’ll find that sticking to a simplistic colour scheme works out for the best. For example, an underwater scene will consist mainly of blues, blue purples and blue greens but the overall concept is going to stretch along the cooler colours from the point of green to the point of purple on a colour wheel.

From issue 12.


Click here to download the full workshop for free (PDF)
Click here to download the support files (15.42Mb)
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