In this workshop I’ll describe how I go about painting a heroic male – a counterpart to the female on the cover. I’ll go through my entire process from initial sketch and concept to the final painting – and everything in between. The basic premise is fairly simple. Start with an idea and do your best to bring it to life. The tricky part is all that ‘in between’ stuff. Trying to capture the correct mood is important, as is making sure the concept comes through in the final piece. Having things get muddy and confusing lessens the impact, especially with a concept as simple as this one, ‘Hero fights dragon’.
Here are some things to keep in mind while we go through this workshop. I use Photoshop CS2 with a customised set-up. I use shortcuts that I made for myself to ensure that my workflow is faster for me, but it may or may not work for you. It’s something to keep in mind, though, as making your own set-up as comfortable as possible seems like a good idea to me.
I don’t use many layers – I do most of my work on one layer. Also, I don’t use many brushes – I tend to use one that I tweak, depending on what I need from it. The other tools I use most often are the Smudge brush and Eraser. I try to keep things as simple as possible… it makes my life much easier.