Friday, 3 February 2012

Beware the Twigmen!

This was originally one of two early concept backgrounds for a client, but we realised the brief was resolvable using the first image only. It sat forgotten for a long time until I went to inspect the storm damage at Edinburgh Botanic Garden and snapped the roots of a fallen tree which on viewing, reminded me of a stick-like creature. Actually the more I look at this photo the more creatures I see - the current count stands at five! Once I'd decided to sketch a couple of them the discarded concept seemed an ideal backdrop.
Twigmen was originally started in Photoshop, but I fancied some practice with ArtRage's Oil brush so the original was loaded as a tracing image set to automatically choose colours from that tracing image. I really liked the freedom of this stage and kept some of the original results on the background trees because it reminded me of my favourite christmas present as a child - painting by numbers kits! Ah the memory of unstopping those tiny plastic pots and  catching the potent wiff of linseed oil has stayed with me all these years. Meanwhile back in ArtRage, once the canvas was covered with a layer of active oils normal painting resumed. Click on images to enlarge.