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Painting Raged Ravan

  • Software: GIMP
  • Level: Advanced
  • Subject: Raged (or angry) Ravan

This is basically a closure for the Part 1.

After putting in details to the rest of his gear, including the arm covering, did some work on refining his hair. It was quite easy as most of it were in shadow area. Placing few midtone and hightlight strokes did the trick.

Finished Painting

Raged Ravan Painting

As mentioned before, you can review the intermediate WIP close ups at the thread in CGPainting.com. For a larger view, and to buy a print, check out the deviantART entry.

Illustrating Vector Art of Lady Justitia

  • Software: Inkscape (or Adobe Illustrator or Corel DRAW)
  • Level: Advanced
  • Subject: Lady Justitia

I got inspired to do this work when Rizky asked how would one do vector art of Lady Justitia.

Lady Justice is a personification of the legal system. She is often depicted as a blindfolded goddess holding a sword and a scale.

Here is a walk-through of my attempt using Inkscape – consisting of a set of images and the screen capture video. You should be able reproduce similar results using other vector editors too.


Doing thumbnails and sketches has almost become a regular in my work-flow.

Concept - Rough

After a pretty rough doodling in GIMP, I do a clean sketch in GIMP itself.

Concept - Sketch


Having a solid base color for each of the parts becomes quite easy later on while adding details. Thus, I take time to create shapes and order them properly in Inkscape. (I import the sketch as a guide for shape construction).

The video is quite long – it is actually a play list of a few of them. You will see how I keep shuffling the order of the sketch, using it as a guide, to create the different shapes.


Lady Justitia - Details - Face
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Painting An Amulet in GIMP

  • Software: GIMP (or Photoshop)
  • Level: Advanced
  • Subject: Golden Amulet

For the past couple of days, I have been attempting at trying to paint gold and other glossy/reflective materials more realistically. I realized, when working on Raged Ravan, that the approach I am currently taking does not seem to be apt.


Amulet - Line Art

This is a pretty random design, and is not very pleasing. It can actually be shaped any way. The focus of this study was actually on painting gold texture.

Gold – Study

Before working on the above line art, I wanted to study the way a golden glossy surface behaved. Hence I started with a spherical gold surface.

Gold sphere - line art Gold sphere - flat

My first impulse was to shade it with usual gradation of shadows, midtones and highlights – but that is what I have been doing and the result is less than satisfactory. After a bit of pondering, I realized that the gold (or any other metal) has a highly reflective surface. It would almost be like a mirror with a faint yellow tint. Basically, we need to render the area behind the viewer in the weird fish eye kind of distortion on the circle.

That means, I need to first assume there is something behind the viewer and for sake of simplicity, I assumed a normal horizon line and a source of light.

Gold sphere - horizon line Gold sphere - horizon line rendered

Hence I tried a couple of different darker shades. Initially I tried a warmer dark yellow, and later settled for a cool dark yellow tone. The convex surface of the spherical surface would create a curved line. It would dip down at the center if the eye level is above the horizon. It would bulge upwards in the center, if the eye level is below the horizon and the viewer is looking up at the sphere. It may take a while to figure out and visualize it. But after a bit of practice, and study of actual reflective objects, it can be intuitive. ( Note that a sphere has convex surface. If the surface is concave, the horizon lines drawn on it will be flipped. )

Gold sphere - highlights

Applying highlights is the fun part. Assume the light source and put a contrasting hightlight tone. You will notice that it is still a bit ambiguous in terms of whether it is convex (sphere) or concave. To fix this, render the slight gradations of the shadow areas.

Gold sphere rendered

Gold Texture Applied To Amulet

Now let us look at the the same principle applied to the amulet.
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This will be a short study of the ‘secondary lighting’ concept we saw previously.

Check this digital painting concept I did few days back.


Notice the usual rendering of the demons structure done through rendering how the light from the left reflects over it.

Demon - Primary Lighting details

To give some more drama to the painting, I introduced the ‘secondary light’. Instead of just taking the ambient light on the opposite side, I introduced another element to the scene – a secondary light source.

Demon - Secondary Light Details

The purple was chosen as it was a light source, and would be complementary to the yellowish hue of the primary light color. If you are not introducing a secondary light, the the ambient light can be rendered by just reducing the saturation and increasing the brightness of the color you have used on the opposite side.

A much larger version is uploaded at deviantART. See the Demon entry at deviantART to study the closeup details.

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