Thursday, June 2, 2011

Magic Fire Goblin

This is another painting created for the World of Warcraft Trading Card Game and it's another goblin, one of my favorite subjects. This fellow is being hit with a magical blast that contains both hot and cold energy. As you can see, it's literally knocking him off his feet.

I've included a few steps along the way to the final art so you can see the basic progression of the piece. As always, it began with a drawing (in this case, a digital drawing, drawn with a hard brush in Photoshop). From there, I blocked in basic colors and shapes, working things up until I had a nice balance of color and value. This step was also just done with a basic brush or two in Photoshop. Sometimes I actually prefer these early stages of a piece. There tends to be a loose vitality in them that's hard to maintain in the final.

After establishing the colors and values, I opened the picture in Painter and began blending and refining it, adding texture to some areas and smoothing it out of others.

Finally, it was back to Photoshop to finish it off with more refining, detail work and textural touches like the spatter you can see in the energy blast.


  1. Nice !
    So what is it exactly that you can't get photoshop to do that compels you to also use painter ?

  2. Thanks, Larry!

    You asked a good question. I use Painter primarily for it's blenders, which allow you to soften, combine and move color around while also adding a bit of texture. Some of the blenders act like a wet brush being dragged over watercolor, some are more like using a blending stump on a charcoal drawing.

    Painter also has a number of brushes with a more natural look and feel than Photoshop's brushes but the blenders are the my primary tools in that program.

    One more thing: Painter allows you to load paper textures and you can set a brush (a pastel brush for example) to pick up the grain of the paper. That allows you to get a textural effect like dragging a pastel over rough, handmade paper. It's a powerful program. I should probably use it more than I do.