OKAY!! SO I’ve gotten a couple asks about expressions. This is so sloppy and hastily done that I hope you can read my writing and that any of it makes sense?? FIRST OF ALL THIS IS NOT A GUIDELINE It is me giving to you some of my knowledge about how I do expressions. THERE IS NO FORMULA TO IT. EXAGGERATE. EXPERIMENT. Look in the mirror, play with your face, make silly expressions! It’s fun, and you learn a lot through observation. SO PLEASE THIS IS PROBABLY VERY INACCURATE and I’m betting I’m missing some very important points, BUT HERE YOU GO. I sincerely hope I have helped you through your block!!
I’ve been getting a lot of asks lately about the brushes and textures I use in my work, so here’s a BIG FAT REFERENCE POST for those of you who were curious! Bear in mind that I’m really lazy and don’t know what half the settings do, so don’t be afraid to experiment to figure out what works best for you :>
I use the pencil tool with SAI’s native paper texture both for sketching and for applying opaque color with no blending. Lower opacities give it the feel of different pencil hardnesses, while full opacity makes it more like a palette knife, laying down hard-edged, heavy color for detail work or eventual blending with other brushes.
Mostly made this because I’m lazy and I didn’t want to have to keep turning my textures off/opacity up when I wanted to ink something (even though I don’t do it very often), or lay down flat colors. I find the line quality to be much more crisp than Photoshop, and you can manually adjust in-program stabilization to help smooth out hand wobbles.
The plain ol’ brush tool acts as sort of an in-between for me in terms of brush flow. It’s heavier than my usual workhorse brush, for faster color application and rough blending, but not as heavy as the pencil tool, which has no blending at all. I like to use the canvas texture on this brush to help break up the unnatural smoothness that usually accompanies digital brushes, but it works just fine without.
A brush tool set to flat bristle is by far my favorite to paint with. I don’t use any textures with it because I think the shape of the brush provides enough of that by itself. I use it for everything from rough washes to more refined shaping and polish. It’s just GREAT.
Best used for smooth blending, washes, gradients, and smoky atmospheric effects.
Basically a grittier version of the watercolor tool, because too much smoothness weird me out. Good for clouds and fog, as the name suggests, or just less boring gradient fills.
To further stave off the artificially smooth look of digital painting, I almost always overlay some sort of paper texture, and it’s almost always this one, which I scanned and edited myself. You’re all welcome to use it, no permission required!
Using overlays in SAI is just as easy as using them in Photoshop. Just paste the texture into its own layer above everything you want it to apply to, and change the layer mode to Overlay. That’s it!
Want a more prominent texture? Up the contrast. Something more subtle? Lower the contrast or reduce the layer opacity. You can also use a tinted overlay to adjust the overall palette and bring a little more color unity to an otherwise disparate piece! Just be aware that too much texture can hurt the readability of the work beneath it, so I’d err on the side of subtlety.
Hope that helps!
A mouth-watering fuck-ton of hand references.
[From various sources]
Everyone likes to joke about how hard hands are to draw, but at least there’s plenty of great reference out there! And obviously there’s always the reference attached to your wrist.
If only every difficult-to-draw thing was so convenient D;
I did these for my animal drawing final, but I figured they might be useful for someone here. YEY BEARS.
Some awesome leg tutorials done by n3m0s1s.
There’s always space for yet another armor tutorial, right? (ﾉ´ヮ´)ﾉ*:･ﾟ✧
Note that the armor I drew would be worn around 15th century, the more into the future the less and less components knight’s armor had (i. e. in early 14th century instead of greaves a knight would wear long boots only; in 12th century knights didn’t wear plate breastplates and instead a chain mail only). Also the design of armor pattern changed by year and was different in every country (i.e. in eastern Europe armors, while still looking European, were heavily influenced by Turkey). so just make sure you always do research whenever drawing an armor. And one more thing to keep in mind is that armors were expensive, knights wearing a full plate armor weren’t an often sight.
Some links that may be useful:
- Armour Archive (I strongly suggest to browse its forum, there is no country or period of which armor wouldn’t be discussed)
- Therion Arms (armorer’s page; each accessory is photographed in big resolution and several time so it’s a nice page to use as reference for drawing)
- Revival Clothing (another store, but both with medieval clothing and armors; I suggest to read the articles, they’re often supported with pictures)
- Basic Armouring:A Practical Introduction to Armour Making (pdf)
- Educational Charts (pdf, shows how armors and weapons changed over the years)
- Medieval & Renaissance Material Culture (actual medieval resources, mostly paintings. And my favourite subpage - women in armor)
- Dressing in Steel (youtube; a demonstration how to dress in armor)
- How shall a man be armed? (youtube; another demonstration but with 4 different knights from different periods)
Because attempting to animate in the purgatory that is a midway between Sai and Photoshop is akin to sawing off your dick with a nail file, I got around to this last week.
The goal is to allow for viewing of wip animations being made in Sai without having to load the project into Photoshop, Flash, or whatever your external timeline of choice is. Essentially, you export each frame as a .png into a folder and then just overwrite them in the same way when you want to update a frame.
On load it defaults to whatever directory it’s sitting in, but if you want to keep it somewhere else you can select the folder source post-load.
Images are loaded alphabetically, so all of these are valid:
- a.png, b.png, c.png
- 1.png, 2.png, 3.png
- Frame1.png, Frame2.png, Frame3.png.
It runs off .png files because I don’t see why you’d use any other format in 2014. If anyone desperately wants .jpeg support or something I can add a toggle though.
Image locations are loaded fresh upon each iteration and held within the program so you can add, update and remove frames without stopping it if you want to. This means you can leave it open on a second monitor and have a looping preview without leaving Sai.
Shit runs on .net 4.5 since C# is cakewalk for stuff like this.
So I’m not sure what to call this
But I figured I’d at least try to impart my knowledge of (hank hill voice) weapons and weapon accessories.
If you like this, tell me, and I might do another tutorial some time!