Well, I finally joined the band wagon and set up a blog. These things tend to take me a long time to join, while technology rolls on ahead. We'll see how it goes from here. With hope, the work I post here will be interesting and worth your time.
To get started I'd like to show you a breakdown progression I did recently. In later posts, I'll show stuff like this because I like the process of creating illustrations. After a series of thumbnails I came up with a final drawing, shown at right. The AO22 also known as the Cimmaron was an oiler that fueled the pacific fleet from 1939 to 1968. My dad served as a lieutenant aboard her and so I was honored to be able to draw her.
Next I went to Photoshop and started some color. I wanted a tintype kind of feel and worked reasonably monochromatically, but with minor color additions to give a nostalgic "Navy" feel. After blocking in a 'post-storm' sky I shifted to the foreground ship and laid in ruff values. Note; the number on the ship is in the right place but isn't a style that would appear on a US navy vessel.
I was satisfied with the appearance of the ship itself, but something was bothering me with the sky and water -I guess what I'd loved at the start wasn't happening anymore (the honeymoon's over) ...and I started again.
I don't know what possessed me to paint this new sky but I did. I suppose I was looking for a more stormy sky and it ended killing my lights in the clouds. My daughter saw it and refused to sit on my knee and "help" me draw because it was too scary. Even my wife saw it and hated it, asking why it was such an unhappy image. This is what you get if you think too much in the paint stage rather than the thumbnail stage.
So...I guess it really was love at first site for the sky and lighting. After a few undos (this, friends is the best thing about working digitally) we were back to a better sky and on our way to finally addressing the water. I handled water last because of all the lighting issues incurred there in. So after going back in an cleaning up and refining, I ended up with the final version you see below. Turned out alright I think. the best compliment I could get was from my dad who after a thoughtful smile turned to me and said, "It looks just like her".