This project overview will show you how to create a dynamic environment digital painting with the use of your own photography, brushes and textures. The techniques I use combine 2D digital matte painting with concept art painting. I use a multitude of textures and brushes to complete and finalize the concept.
The theme for the digital painting is â€˜Kowloonâ€™ (a city in China). When I design concepts I like to shoot my own photos just to get ideas for perspective and I like to paint above my photos to develop concept art. When I was painting this scene I was aiming at creating a warm mood, yet a dirty and busy city street in the slums of Kowloon.
Depending on the type of concept art sometimes I paint completely from scratch and sometimes I will use photo manipulation techniques to make concepts. It is always important to remember that the photo itself is just a beginning step. At any point I should have enough control over my subject matter to change and add to the photo.
The idea is not to be bound by photography within concept art, but to use it as a tool to paint and create a scene the way you see it in your mind. The idea is to allow the photo to support your vision or enhance your imagination. Before using photo manipulation in your concept art work flow I recommend doing painted studies and understanding lighting when painting from life and photo references.
Step 1 - Getting References
At the start I like to collect a range of reference material this helps me to understand the topic that I am painting. I like to make a folder of photos and artwork I like to draw inspiration and visual reference from. It is important to search for good quality references, as it is possible you could use some of the textures or you could paint from the references in sections of your piece of art.
Reference Sheet of Kowloon, garbage, and street signs