Thursday, September 13, 2012

1001000 1101001

As continuance to the previous post, I'll present the rasterized drawing this time around. To recap, it was sketched on plain paper, scanned and then colorized in Photoshop. Surprisingly, the picture looked rather plain on paper, but when I scanned it and fiddled with the contrast, shadowy areas started appearing here and there. I instantly thought "Whee! Instant shadowing!", but as always there were drawbacks involved, i.e. more contrast, more shadows, more cleaning up afterward as the faux-shadows spilled out into places they shouldn't. The eyes, serial number and hand decals were added into the blue bot, whereas the green scanner light and knee decals were added to the yellow bot. Only the eyes (where applicable) on both bots use filter-effects this time around. The serial numbers and knee decals were done via the text tool, and the hand decals were whipped up with the shape tool. What surprised me about the shape tool was that one couldn't automatically set a stroke to a shape, and one needed to add it via blending options. A new trick I tried this time around was the warp function, where I could apply some perspective distortion to the text and decals.

Present in the picture are two bots: the one on the right is built for surveillance and exploration, and the one one the right is designed for uh... political persuasion, I guess? I'm relatively satisfied as to how they turned out, although I can't express any particularities that I'm most proud of. I can pinpoint a few dislikes easily, however. The thumbs on the blue bot are too 2D and look like paper flaps. The blue bot seems to have a problem with it's posture as well, and it seems like it might fall on it's behind at any moment. The side of the head on the yellow bot was gone over without much of a plan, and it shows. On a side note, this picture is the largest of all others to date, with an original width of ~1900 pixels and a height of ~1600 pixels.

They dream in ASCII

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Aye Aye!

Last weekend I tried drawing on paper; mainly sketches and such. I ended up scanning two drawings. I planned on making one a vectorized drawing, and the other a rasterized drawing. The vectorized one, in this case, is a collection of eyes. I'm sure I've mentioned this before, but a character's eyes are a thing I really like to focus on. As it stands, I have a tendency to continuously draw the same general type of eye, so this time I tried drawing several different ones to see if I can vary my approach somewhat. The original drawing has a handful of eyes that are missing from this picture, as I wanted to present a smaller set to avoid cluttering up the picture. It took about six hours or so to finish, from sketch to vectorized version.

I encountered a peculiar problem when trying to export the picture from Inkscape. It appears that, at least on my Windows platform, Inkscape filters tend to be a bit on the unstable side. This is readily apparent when applying a heavy filter to an object (or a group of objects) and then trying to resume work. The program will start to exhibit noticeable lag, especially when zooming in and out. This wasn't the main issue here, however. I noticed that when I tried to export the original image (over a thousand pixels in width and over seven hundred in height), the filters were lost during export. Luckily I only used three simple noise filters, which were light and weren't really necessary in the first place, so potentially I could have done without them. The solution was to export the picture in a smaller, more manageable size. This kept the filters intact.

Mirrors of the Soul

Tuesday, August 21, 2012


I remember mentioning that I entered a logo competition earlier this year, so I thought I'd post about it now. I didn't win (as should be expected at this point), and as such I can freely publish my entry here. It was meant for a certain union of university students, and was to promote such values as co-operation, learning and responsibility (among a few others). Without further ado, the picture itself:

I tried to emphasize all said virtues primarily with my colour choices: blue for responsibility, cooperation and openness - yellow for the rest. The hands should portray cooperation and openness, with the abstract book in the background signifying learning. It took about four hours to finish.

I'll just leave this picture here as a bonus! It's a result of my fiddling about with vector art, inspired by logo-art and socialist propaganda. It's a logo for a fictional space mining company. It took an hour or two to finish. Both this picture and the competition entry were drawn as vectors, with no freehand drawing involved.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Kis Kis Kis

Previously - I was somewhat surprised to learn that there isn't a suitable word in English for what my new hobby means in my native language. After some searching online and otherwise, "Fitness Boxing" is the best I can come up with. It's like boxing, but without actual bouts with another person. It's mostly about exercising one's muscles. Even though my arms feel like lead bars after a short while after each session, surprisingly the feeling doesn't last long. It's said that the impact from punching the sack relaxes the muscles, thus leaving less strain to deal with later.

Good God, has it really been this long since my last post? Tempus Fugit and all that, I suppose. Work and holidays have been taking up my time, not to mention vidya games (but that's pretty much a given in my case). This is the final entry for the sketch-stretch. I won't give any clues for this one, suffice to say that it doesn't directly refer to what it portrays.

It took me ages to complete the damn picture. It was my first encounter in drawing fur, and it was far more time-consuming than I anticipated. In fact, I hadn't really considered the ordeal at all; I think I was focused so much on the line-art (in my usual fashion) and thought that the fur was simply a coat of colour. To make matters worse, I had a moment with where I was satisfied with the work so far, but I had to go and make a little tweak here, a little correction there, and soon found myself sinking easily over a double amount of time into the drawing. I honestly lost count on how may hours I spent on it, but let's say around eight.

So, enjoy the thing I guess. I still think it looks like a damn mutant, but by God I wasted too many hours of my life on it not to showcase it. At the very least, I can leave it here as a warning as to how not to draw fur / animals / similar themes. That being said, I think I might switch to vector-art for a while, as I promised a few posts back. Let's see how that goes, shall we?

Sketch-Stretch 5

Monday, June 4, 2012

Falcon Punch

Previously - Made evident from the Assassin's Creed titles and symbols, the game in question had kept me rather busy. I should say "games", as the series consists of four titles up to date, with a fifth due to release near the end of this year. I should also add that games in particular have always kept me busy, and are a large part of my life. I wouldn't describe myself as a hardcore gamer or some such extremist, but I still manage to spend an awful lot of time glued to the ol' monitor.

I was not that pleased with what resulted from the sketching this time around. I had done the line art and base coloring before taking a break, and upon returning to work I noticed that I had lost my reference picture. In frustration, I hurried the picture to some form of concluded state as fast as I could. I did try out working with a large image this time (1000 x 1000 px), and I think it shows in the overall smoothness of the image. Larger files do take up way more space in source-files, however. I turned out to be an exercise in shadowing once again, and I could have been more brazen had I retained the reference image.

Sketch-Stretch 4

Friday, May 11, 2012

Fluency in Pizza-Italian

Previously - A pet project of mine, involving a certain seal in space. I'm co-authoring it by doing the coding, sounds and animation. The rest I've left to more capable hands. It's an avoider-type game where you score points by collecting various consumables while dodging dangerous objects. As soon as I finish up the sounds, add some effects & animations and get the power-ups working, version 1.0 should be ready for the public.

The picture below was suppose to contain radically different items than what is currently featured, but ultimately this was the most consistent choice to make. It features a recognizable logo that I whipped up in Inkspace and then imported into the picture. The texts tend to immediately give away what the picture is referring to, but not in the sense in exposing the main subject. It took a whopping 6 - 8 hours to do by my estimate, and involves the prominent use of pattern overlays and bevel filters.

Sketch-Stretch 3

Tuesday, May 8, 2012


Previously - My thesis work has kept me pretty busy for these past four months. So much so that I've neglected all other studies excluding it. It's taken me roughly a year to finish, due to work getting in the way. With a total length of 65 pages, it's now awaiting review. I hope to have it out of the way by the summer of this year.

This pic was drawn (or micromanaged into life..) with vectors. As previously advertised, it was made with Inkscape. I primarily used the straight-and-bezier-line-tool  (or whatever it's actually called) to draw a lot of the shapes, occasionally cheating by making shapes out of various fonts. A lot of gradients went into this one. I'm worrying that I'm overdoing it with them however, as I'm not too good with subtlety. I used two filters - one on the main ship body and one on the lights attached to it. Filters drastically slow down any operations within Inkscape, so I use them sparingly. The starry background was made in Photoshop, as adding noise is apparently a raster technique. It took me roughly four to six hours to finish. Much of this time was spent fiddling with filters, gradients and such, rather than creating shapes.

Sketch-Stretch 2