Kamina shades

My husband requested a sketch of his self-insert, Carda, wearing Kamina shades. So I obliged him.

Kamina is a character from the anime Gurren Lagann, and he wears awesome manly shades of awesomeness.

So much so that it’s become an internet meme, slapping his shades onto other characters that people find awesome. Although I think the Pikachu with those shades is a bit much.

Politically incorrect

It’s Memorial Day, and I keep seeing really cool patriotic stuff on the blogs I read.

So I wanted to do a patriotic pic with a fantasy bent.

This is the pic so far. I’m still blocking in the colors and fiddling with the flag in the background. I don’t want it too detailed, or the griffin will look lousy on top of it.

The trouble is, showing any kind of patriotism over in the depths of DA seems like a good way to get flamed. Especially once I put the words on it.

Oh! thus be it ever, when freemen shall stand
Between their loved home and the war’s desolation!
Blest with victory and peace, may the heav’n rescued land
Praise the Power that hath made and preserved us a nation.
Then conquer we must, when our cause it is just,
And this be our motto: “In God is our trust.”

Which, of course, is the last verse of the Star Spangled Banner.

Alas, wings

I got it mostly done tonight, and went ahead and posted it. But I think I’m going to go back tomorrow and touch up the wings a bit. Both pairs of wings are kind of … line-y and don’t look all that feathery. I think we need some serious airbrushing.

Aside from that, I’m pretty happy with how this came out. I used the Gouache brushes, which make hard, solid lines, and shaded over them with the Airbrushes, that made soft, indefinite smears. The combination of hard and soft pleases me. I think I achieved a furry look over on the leopard one’s hindquarters.

Griffin art exchange, progress

I looked at my old sketch, and decided it was too stiff and overworked. So I sketched out something a little more appealing to me.

Not so stiff now! The other griffin is mine, and they’re playing catch with some sort of leather ball. Or a magic ball. So I can draw sparkles. I’m not sure yet.

Then I dropped in one of Painter’s excessively gradient gradients.

Then I disturbed its perfection with a big fat oil brush. Wet Brush, I believe.

The colors aren’t ones that I’d normally use, but it’s kind of nice painting a sunset in green and orange instead of blue and pink. Makes my brain work harder.

Then I started roughing in the griffins …

…and had to call it a night, since I’d been working on it two hours straight and I was tired.

More coming soon!

A simple backgrounds tutorial

After looking at a bunch of art where people don’t draw backgrounds, I decided to draw a very simple backgrounds tutorial.

This was how we taught kids to draw backgrounds in art class. A line in the background, where everything above it was sky, and everything below it was grass. Kids can grasp that very easily, and it was always amazing how quickly they learned where to put things.

Hopefully beginning cartoonists can start with a horizon and work up from there. Putting mountains on a horizon line is easy. So is putting clouds in the sky and some trees in the foreground. And before you know it, you have a background.

Of course, actual perspective is a lot trickier, but this is just the basic stuff for folks afraid of backgrounds.

Griffin art exchange sketch

Over on this griffin club on deviantart, I signed up to join in a griffin art exchange, where folks swap characters over and draw them. I wanted to see somebody draw my griffin Caligo. I wound up with this dude who is osprey/wolf, which has given me more trouble than the usual eagle/cat.

Here’s my reference for the wings and pose:

The trouble is, when I stick on the canine back end, it just looks horribly off balance with no proper tail feathers. Some folks draw their griffins with really elaborate tails, but not this one. Ah well, I’ll keep experimenting.

Also, wings have this really interesting S-shape going on in them. I can’t draw them from memory at all … I always have to get reference.

Sketching Sonic characters

I was looking at Sonic art on DA, and so much of it is so poorly done. It made me want to draw Sonic and company.

So here’s Sonic and Sally spying as Silver and Blaze talk to Mephiles. Mephiles is in his creepy not-quite-Shadow disguise, and looks like a creepy puppet Shadow with no mouth. And Sally’s packing heat because girls + guns = awesome.

Phoenix pokemon

Been playing HeartGold a bit, and I’ve been trying to catch Ho-Oh, the legendary phoenix pokemon.

All the pictures show him flying around, so I wondered what he looked like at rest.

Hanging out in fire, obviously. And with a body that fat and legs that short, he looks kind of funny sitting on the ground. No wonder they only draw him flying.

Sonic Final Fantasy logo

I started randomly sketching Sonic characters, and I decided that I wanted to make them into a Final Fantasy logo.

Here’s the official Final Fantasy 11 logo, so you can see the style I was mimicking.

First, the sketch:

Then I inked all the lines …

Then I added another layer and added big chunks of shading, also known as shadow pools. I haven’t done this style in years, and I kept having to do it over until I remembered how it works.

From here, I couldn’t figure out how to make Painter select and shade only the black stuff, so I dumped it over to Photoshop. Lifted all the black to a new layer, locked the transparency, grabbed a big fat airbrush and went to town.

From there, all that was left was to find the Final Fantasy font and make the text look all nice and official-like.

And there you go! A Sonic version of a Final Fantasy logo.