Character Art : A Tutorial Guide by Ice Dragon Art

Character Art : A Tutorial Guide by Ice Dragon Art

Character Art : A Tutorial Guide by Ice Dragon Art
Creating effective and compelling character art lies at the heart of most Daz Studio art projects. How do you create characters that prompts you to know more about them, to ask questions about their story and character traits? What decisions do you make along the way to produce characters that you can believe in?

Sonja McClung (IceDragonArt) has created many fantasy characters using Daz Studio and provides a wealth of high value tips to guide you on your character creation journey.

Software used in this tutorial : Daz Studio and Photoshop.

Duration : 1 hour 50 minutes

1. Laying the foundation in DAZ Studio and considering backgrounds
2. Learn crucial elements for successful character artwork
Focal points
Colour sets
3. Faster art : Sonya’s favourite shortcut keys for speedy art
4. Powerful editing tools : learn Photoshop blend modes. Which are the most effective and why!
Multiply – Darkens an image
Screen – Lightens an image
Overlay – Boosts contrast
Color – Blends only the color
Luminosity – Blends only the brightness
5. Using “dodge and burn” layers in PS
Multiple ways to apply
6. Adjustment layers in PS
LUT tables
Gradient maps
7. Textures and mapping
Applying textures – playing with modes – using mask effects in selected areas
Applying textures on top for blending and effective artwork
8. LUT (Look up tables)
What are they?
How to add LUTs
Uses of LUT
9. PS Filters including the NIK collection
10. Ice Dragon Art’s best resources for character art and where to find them

About Sonja (IceDragonArt)

“I’ve loved fantasy for as long as I can remember. Fairies, elves, dwarves, centaurs, and of course, dragons. I love the possibility of the impossible that fantasy brings, the wide open opportunity to get lost in a world that is far different than ours, full of magic and wonder, feats of heroism that defy the odds and best of all, good always conquers evil. What’s not to love?

I’ve always loved to draw as well. I can’t remember a time that I didn’t have a crayon (or a pencil, or a paintbrush) in my grubby little hands. I took a long hiatus from drawing when I was raising my kids (best art project ever!) and started to really get back into art in the last 6 years or so. I picked up Photoshop and immediately fell in love with being able to draw and paint digitally. A couple of years later, I found Daz Studio, a 3D art application and was totally hooked!”

What’s Included and Features
Main Tutorial : 1 hour 50 minutes
00:00 Introduction, Sonja’s content library
00:05 Keeping the character fixed in the scene
00:10 IceDragon’s categories – how she sets them up
00:15 Character : KamilyAnn – customizing
00:20 Matching the lighting direction and strength on separate elements, when considering compositing in Photoshop
00:21 Which light sets IceDragon uses’ the most to get the fastest results
00:25 3Delight lighting sets
00:30 Using contrasting ideas to create an interesting render
00:35 Character : Hell Horse
00:40 Working on the eyes of a character : using the curves layer
00:45 How to highlight features in your character render
00:50 Layer types in PS to help emphasize parts of the image
00:55 Secondary focus in a character render
01:00 Character : Vara. Using Dodge and burn to stand out some features
01:05 What is a lookup table and how they’re useful
01:10 Background texture to suggest more of a story
01:15 Character : Roselyn. Lighting up a character’s skin/hair
01:20 Lighting used with the Roselyn character scene
01:25 Color Efex Pro plugin
01:30 Q&A Segment. IceDragonArt’s favourite Stock sources
01:35 Character artwork : Falling
01:40 Character artwork : attitude bundle
01:45 Character artwork : treasure hunters
01:50 Character art billboards and colour gradients
Supplemental Tutorial : 23 minutes
00:00 Ice Dragon Art’s content library + render settings
00:05 Character – “Calendar Guy”
00:06 Iray preview or spot render?
00:10 Treasure hunter render – telling a story and setting a mood
00:15 Character : Vara – overlay and screen in PS “burning” the colours
00:20 Emphasizing aspects of the image
00:23 Q&A – better control with masking
Sonja’s PDF Guide including Shortcut keys

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