Beads are cool, dude.

Beads. My parents had them hanging over doorways when I was a kid, during the 70's. They were far out and groovy...and loud.

So what kinds of ways can you use beads in your art? Medicine men, shaman, fortune tellers and rock stars might benefit by having beads drawn onto their costumes. Nothing makes the mystic look more, er, mystic than things dangling and embedded in their clothes like beads, bones, and stray strands of tattered cloth. Enjoy these free reference textures. Groovy!

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Clowning around

So far, I've talked about the process I go through when creating new illustrations. I like to start on paper (though I'm getting better at drawing digitally...I prefer that paper, tho:), scan it in and work on the computer from there. I also like to record the process and that's what this week's post is all about.

I watch a ton of artists on YouTube as they create their work. It gives a rare insight into the decision making process, also allowing us to see when mistakes are made, and how those mistakes are corrected or worked around.

This post features a video of me creating the color comps as I explore how I want to complete the finished artwork of the illustration called 'Watch Yer Back.' Enjoy and see you next week. As always, please follow me on the social media sites on the bottom of the page. Share with your buds too, please. Thanks!

Free Texture: Leather, oh yeah

Howdy and welcome to this week's free set of pictures/textures! No other material has so much fascination associated with it than leather. I can be something a rogue wears to provide protection, while offering flexibility in combat, or it can be...naughty (whip! whip!). Where was I?

One of the beautiful features of leather is it's imperfection. Little divots, pockmarks, scratches and discoloration, make leather both fun and challenging to work with. Add these images to your own personal library of reference and enjoy!

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color me bad...then run

Clowns are scary in a sketch but are they still as scary in color? It's an interesting question when you think about it. Would the movie Jaws be as scary if the shark had been rainbow-striped or bright yellow? Would the movie The Grudge be as horrifying if Kayoko was rocking mom jeans and a pink shirt, or if she had a pony tail instead of the hair in the front (oh god...that mother elfin' hair in the front....what....the.....faaaaaaaakkk? Probably. lol.

The point, of course, is that color says a lot more than we think. Color informs our emotions and our feelings. Even our decision making skills depend on processing color. So, if you're in the middle of the ocean, alone, and you see a massive pink dorsal fin, your brain might say what the heck, as opposed to the reaction it would create if the fin was gray. Water = blue, your arm bleeding in water = red, gray dorsal fin = you're dead.

It is the perpetual question and theory crafting that is color that makes something as seeming simple as coloring a clown something that requires thought. My clowns don't make people laugh. They don't make balloon animals....out of balloons. My clowns are jacked up. So traditional color thinking wouldn't  necessarily apply.

To prepare for painting the clown on the iPad, in an app called Procreate, I took the original photo of the clown and duplicated him on several layers, then merged those layers so I'd have one comp split into quadrants.

Once all the prep work is done I begin putting small color daubs on the page, using color theory in most cases and insanity in some others. You see this clown? Do I look like I make sane decisions? Okay lol, next I start laying down color in each quadrant. The goal is to find one of these that 'speaks' to me. In some cases, four of these may not be enough. In those cases, I simply create a new layer and paint four more until I'm happy with the result.

color clown.jpg

I hope you guys enjoyed this week's post! Next week I will post a video of the color comp process mentioned in this post. Have an awesome week and please follow me on the social media buttons on the bottom of this page for more goodness. Take care:)

Free texture Thursdays weeeee!

Today's free set of textures features a wicker theme. What on earth can you do with these, you ask? Graphic designers and illustrators rely on photos of real things to help us recreate them in the imagined world. Imagine a tribe of orc shaman wearing armor that looks like wicker or a small band of survivors on the ocean on a raft they weaved together.

Simple things that we take for granted in the real world can take on new roles and lives in the stories we weave! You can download these for free using the link below. Enjoy and please share these with your buddies:) Be sure to follow me on the social links at the bottom of the page. Thanks!


Here's a preview of the textures in today's download: