Angelique Portrait

Formatted my laptop yesterday, backed up majority of my files on the system but forgot to backup my GIMP 2.8 settings. I had to create new settings for getting a thin to thick pressure look and make new brushes (default GIMP brushes are quite terrible). My old brushes are on my desktop computer, an 8 hour drive from here. I plan on getting the computer back in the next few weeks – I love those brushes I’ve got on it!
Here’s a portrait I did of my friend Angelique (went to TLC with her) because the format:
Line. Normally I go with a red color for the line – but mixed it up here and used the green. Working on a square format rather than the normal wide landscape. It felt restrictive and didn’t allow me to do the normal landscape effects I ususally use in my digital paintings.

Black and white tone. Simple, nothing special. But I like it.
Color. Usual color palette – yellow for a skin, red hair, and green for the background. No blue in this. I usually use blue for the sky/background and green for the ground. The square share is weird to work with.

redditgetsdrawn zombie

I’ve got a better setup in my room now for working on the computer. My energy has been low for a long time, this is why I haven’t been updating the site. I’ve been focusing mostly on making games.

I never got a replacement Tablet for the Wacom Intous 5. Instead, I’ve kept with the small one. It’s alright, and does the trick but doesn’t allow me to paint all day as a get a sore hand.

Here’s a zombie painting I did from RedditGetsDrawn. I would post the reference but I checked back on the listing and it seems it’s been deleted! Must always save the reference images.

Anyway, here you go:


Zombies are fun to draw. This one had somewhat of an Asian look. I rearranged the scene somewhat – sending the guy on the left towards the back and bringing the zombie forward. Moon/landscape in distance/water, and a fence to separate the zombie and guy.


Tone. Merged the guy into the background somewhat. JULY-ZOMBIE-COLOR (Large)Pushed forward the guy out of the background with using the skin tones (yellow and red), these are the same as the skin tones I used on the zombie. For the water I used green, and landscape/sky blue. You can see all the tones of colors/gray-scale I used on the left.

I have a few pencil drawings that I need to either photograph with my phone and upload or buy a new SD card for camera.

I hope you enjoyed that digital painting and I’ll be sure to upload more in future – it’s important I keep slugging away with these digital painting :D


Circling Wellington building painting

Slow on the digital painting recently. I’ve been filling up my sketchbook with pencil drawings. This morning though I went to Lower Hutt Starbucks and finished a cityscape work and started a painting from life. Here’s the result. Great to get something uploaded since it’s been several days.

Here goes -



This is the reference I used. On the left is a sketch from Hastings, center is a building which is visible from parliament  and the right is a pencil line sketch of an area on Cuba Street. I started merging together my pencil drawings into digital paintings towards the end of last year and it’s been great to get back into it again, I’ve really only been working on RedditGetsDrawn works so fun to do some work that involved just the environment - no characters!



Line work. The center building was the first area to complete in line. I went and did the grayscale tone for the building as well before deciding it needed more detail and bringing in the reference on the left and right. Fills up the page.

I wanted to make sure that the three pieces worked together without feeling out of place, where they line up is important. Overlapping and such is not a problem.

And gray-scale tone. I used a range of brushes in this work in order to give a variety in texture. Make sure to balance those lights and dark throughout the piece. Looking back



Color. Wanted to keep with colors I was familiar with, but added in a brown to experiment with. This is working well with the reds. The right side of the page has evolved since color has been added, no longer is it a pillar but instead it’s a building structure. These things happen.

Color explored with RedditGetsDrawn Paintings

Here’s some more digital works. This time I used reference from RedditGetsDrawn.


Portrait photo reference. I usually go for photos that have more of the body but this one was interesting with the tape covering her mouth. The background was plain, with only the vertical tiles. I added in quick flicks. I wanted to work different here – created a map top down view rather than a perspective looking over the ocean to the hills in the distance.




The tone changed the map idea with more of a focus on perspective  - the normal way I do these scenes. I’ve used range of brushes. Normally I stick with the one brush in the whole painting but adding more adds texture and variety to the piece.

Color. Went with a orange for the skin. Since I’ve been using a range of tones with the color I feel I can explore other colors without having problems of the colors not working together – like in washes. Using the range of tones allows for clarity and flow within the color – and spreads throughout the whole painting.


This was a great reference of these two people. When I was little my uncle would give me piggy back rides.  Extremely large scale for the figure sitting on the others shoulder.



Grayscale tone. Much of the work is flattened out – the ground area doesn’t contain the texture that the line version had. Minimal focus on the face details - leaving out eyes/nose/mouth.


A range of saturation was used in the figure. Previously I had only worked with adjusting values. I love the brush for the leaves. TODAY.LINE

Figure on the left. I used a photo I took in Wellington for the environment  I often just use my imagination. Working from reference will be helpful. Especially using my own photographs.


Mixing up the colors with a blue for the figure. Pink was used in the building, not sure how I feel about it – doesn’t fit the flow of the painting. Maybe a nice brown would have worked better. Fun times with the green, covering the majority of the painting. The hills and sky in the distance are painted blue.

Badly Painted Microsoft Paint Works

Slow recently on the blogging. I’m not that motivated to upload my photographs to my photography blog here due to the slow connection and continued timeouts. I need to head to the library and see how the connection is there. When I was in PakiPaki I had a decent connection that allowed me to queue 5 or so photos without a timeout. In Wellington I uploaded 200 no problems. I really need a fast and reliable upload speed.

Anyway, I shouldn’t talk about uploading photography – let’s talk art. During my trip to Hawkes Bay I took my A5 landscape notebook, clutch pencil and Fallout 3 art book. Together these allowed me to work from reference anywhere. This is especially handy in the car where I don’t have my laptop for reference (no smartphone, but really should invest in one). I also used the clutch pencil and a5 pad to draw street scenes – Hastings and Napier CBD. Sadly I lost my clutch pencil on one of my final nights in Hastings. I’m off to Wellington tomorrow so will likely buy another from the French Art Shop (I tend to not draw if I don’t have one).

I often draw from photo reference thanks to Reddit and the subreddit RedditGetsDrawn. There is another similar related subreddit known as RedditGetsDrawnBadly . Here people can post photos and they will be drawn badly. Microsoft Paint is recommended. I decided to give it a shot and open Microsoft Paint and produce paintings with the similar technique as I do with digital paintings in GIMP. 
K0OcjaT (Large)

What a great photo. It’s high res (this version is smaller than the full version) and contains the majority of the body. Love the contrast of red hair and green clothing. ivy.line

Natural Paint brush. Looking back at this now I will use the pencil tool for future works. It’s smaller, tighter and allows for more detail. This is super important as a majority of detail is lost with gray-scale color tone layers.ivy.toneAnd grayscale  tone added. I was surprised with how large the paint files were – 1200 by 900 pixels isn’t bad. It certainly allows me to do something with them in the future. ivy.color

And color added. Limited colors (four in total) but a range of tones in the color. The green for the clothing is new, everything else has been used in previous works. Working in a new program and doing something different allows me room to experiment somewhat, I feel I tend to get stuck into the same trends at times with GIMP. 

Full body pose reference. I’ll never turn down the chance to draw a full body, even if the quality isn’t the best. This allowed me to practice legs. The majority of the the character paintings I do are portraits. I work with arms and legs, but often legs are left out. guy.line

I’ve switched from the brush tool to the pencil tool. This feels like working on the line layer in GIMP. The only thing that’s missing – red. Less of a focus on the background (usually i create the hills in the distance/objects in foreground). For this I just created a basic scene using the reference in the photograph.


Grayscale. Keeping this simple. Black for the hair/sweatshirt. Skin is light gray. Didn’t bother with tones in the skin. Light and mid gray for the walls/step. Lastly, black and mid gray for the floor. Everything works together fine.


Color. I went crazy with this is added new colors to everything. I kept with the colors I usually use (yellow for skin/red hair/blue background) but it’s not the same hex number. For the floor and steps I went with a purple. Like the last painting I used a range of tones in each color. This is noticeable in the blues and purples. atQ3RHz

I remember seeing this on RedditGetsDrawn. I didn’t draw it though. It’s too much of a closeup. I prefer medium or full view shots rather than extreme close up. I guess if the quality of the photograph was higher it would be alright. Damn this out of focus photography!


This was done before I switched to the pencil tool. The line on this is very basic, I add information into the painting during the grayscale tone stage (normally it’s the otherwas around!).


Went with the mountains in the distance and water coming forward to the foreground style. This is the basics for the majority of my RedditGetsDrawn character works.


Color tone. Switch around with the colors. Instad of using the blue for the sky I used it in the ground (usually I used a green for the ground). For the mountains and sky a brown was used. I think this works well for the mountains but I’d like to use a different color for the sky – could either be the blue or mix it up and use green. WD3KCGG


Loved the mouth location on this. Had to draw it, too cute.

girl.lineThis was the first painting of this series in Microsoft paint. I was still getting use to it and saved over my line layer with the color, so only the one image. I didn’t paint a gray-scale tone layer either. The usual yellow for the skin, and red in the hair/lips. For the shirt I went with a new brown. Blue in the background, but it’s just used as a fill and gives no location to the character.

I think I’m going to have to explore brown.

Hastings Imagine Painting

Currently staying at a farm just out of Hastings. Slow on the digital painting, but getting plenty of Photography and Pencil Drawings done.

Here’s a digital painting I did from imagination. I had a kid observing me and giving me in instructions on what to add.
marns-line (Large)

I started with the figure, then added the floor. For the background I went with large circles as hills. I was told to add a cave into the mountains, this is visible on the left. There is a figure rising from the hill.
marns-tone (Large)Tone added. Much of the detailed areas in the line version are removed. Added though, is tone and shape. marns-color (Large)

Color. I explained how I use a restricted amount of colors – three here, and that I use a range of tones (3 usually) of the colors. This isn’t finished, yellow could be added.

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