painting in photoshop

Digital Portrait Painting Tips

July 3, 2020 DESIGNirvana 0

Improve your digital portrait painting skills

Hey! What’s up! I’d like to talk to you about ways to improve your digital portrait painting skills. Here are the 5 tips or exercises to improve your portrait painting skills in Photoshop digital arts. Let’s get started!

Number 1: Study facial features.

My first tip to improve your portrait painting skills is to do studies of facial features. If you struggle painting lips for example, make a series of lip studies. Even quick and rough studies can help a lot. These quick studies of facial features usually don’t take up too much time so the chance of getting frustrated is smaller.

Number 2: Make a quick sketch.

My next tip is to make quick sketches and set yourself a time limit. Improving your skills is all about practicing, a LOT. Making quick sketches and limiting the time to 10 minutes for example enables you to get a lot of practice in a short amount of time. Also, don’t worry about the end result too much but think about the exercise itself and you are working on improving your skills with every sketch you make.

digital painting artNumber 3: Use the right hues of color.

Of course it is a lot of fun to make colorful portrait work but working in color is a lot harder than working in black and white. Values are extremely important when you want to make realistic portrait paintings. You can use all the right hues of color, but when the value is off the portrait won’t look very realistic. Specially when working with for example a skin palette colors. So working in gray scale is a great practice. When you make value paintings, you can focus more on shapes, edges, details in the facial features, etc. Once you are more confident painting portraits, you can switch to full color paintings or you can use coloring techniques to color your black and white portrait paintings.

Number 4: Learn construction.

My next tip is to learn construction, study the Loomis technique for example. Learning construction like this, helps you to decide where the facial features should be placed in your portrait painting. The head can be divided into three equal parts for example giving you markers for the hairline, the eyebrows and the underside of the nose. Learning techniques like this is a great way to practice measuring in your portraits and doing exercises with these techniques will improve your portrait paintings.

Number 5: Draw over your reference photos.

digital painting tipsMy final tip is to draw over your reference photos. This is a way to study construction by drawing over a photo and thinking about the basic shapes of the face. There are different ways to use this technique. You can make a rough lay over on your reference photo and copy these lines. You can then use this ‘line art’ to build up your painting, giving yourself a head start. You could also make an even more abstract layover of your reference, using mostly angular shapes. This makes the shapes very simple and easy to duplicate. This time, don’t just copy the line art, but draw it yourself. It is a wonderful exercise to improve your hand eye coordination. Next, you can use this abstract line work to build up your portrait painting. But perhaps you are not too confident about your drawing skills yet. What you can do is make a more detailed line drawing on top of your reference. People might say this is cheating, but I think it’s still a great practice since it will help you understand the structure of the face.

In time you will become more confident and continuously make your steps more challenging. So just go ahead and make the line work as detailed as you feel is needed for your skill level and use that line drawing as a base for your painting.

And remember, you’re not a cheat as long as you don’t claim you drew it by hand. Just enjoy the practice! These were my 5 tips to improve your portrait painting skills. I hope you liked these tips and you have learned from it.

Other great websites and resources: https://medium.com/@jaejohns/10-best-digital-painting-tutorials-to-help-you-paint-like-a-master-30b6b75a34d5

https://www.ctrlpaint.com/dp101-1

Creative Restraints: Why They Are Not Necessarily Bad

November 26, 2018 DESIGNirvana 0

It freaks you out when you get interrupted by your senior designer just when you are about to do some awesome things with Photoshop. Yeah, this is a part of a website designer’s life. Every day we have to deal with extreme pressure, not to mention chasing insane target, and yet, people expect us to be creative 24×7 as if we are some sort of Martians. Well, we are not whining all the time. Work pressure is something normal with any creative work and definitely, we are not against this; rather what makes our job all the more difficult is the designing constraints. There are so many creative constraints in web design that make it tough for a designer to come up with something truly inspiring.

But constraints are not necessarily bad. They may look liked barbed wires restraining your movements and your creative freedom but in reality, they are not. They are the best tools for creativity. They challenge you and get the best out of you by pitting you in a position where you can let your creative part go wild. And because of these constraints, you will be trying to do new things and continue making experiments with the design part unless and until you come up with something aesthetically pleasing.

What these restrictions are?

Restrictions vary project wise. But there are certain restrictions that we have to encounter in almost all projects irrespective of their nature and clients’ specifications. Following are some basic constraints that trouble almost all web designers irrespective of the project scope –

*  Timeline
*  Preferences of the client
*  Expectation of the Customer
*  Browser restrictions
*  Screen Size restrictions
*  Our own personal preference
*  Our inability to work on certain platforms
*  Software restrictions

However, no matter how long this list of these restrictions may appear, these restrictions are not necessarily a bad thing. These restrictions will put you in a challenging position and thereby instigating you to rise above adversaries and deliver your best.

Too Much Freedom is certainly not A Great Thing

Freedom is all we desire. But in some cases, too much freedom can lead to trouble especially when you are in a creative domain. Chances are that when you are given unbridled freedom; you might get yourself lost in its vastness or vagueness. For say, if the client only says that he needs a great design and nothing else, will you be able to come up with anything? Definitely not, because the client has failed to specify in clear English, what he actually wants. So, if he has given some sort of specification like what he wants in the design and what he does not want, it will be easier for you to come up with something creative.

In short, restrictions help you stay focused and do our job the best way possible; without these restrictions, you will not be able to concentrate and waste your precise time on things that may not be related to the project. Here are the following benefits of restrictions that even the strongest supporters of freedom and democracy cannot rule out:

*  Making it easier to take quick decision
*  It helps us focus on things we are assigned with
*  Increases precision
*  It draws out our best

Take you out of our comfort Zone

Designing a website with a subtle touch of creativity is certainly not an easy feat. Now, staying creative 24×7 is super tough and definitely not something for the faint-hearted. So, the easiest way to stay creative is to eliminate the unwanted distractions that come thick and fast whenever you hit the work desk. The best way you can eliminate these distractions is by imposing self restrictions. These restrictions will not let you go wild while designing templates and speed up the process. And you may never know these restrictions may help you rise above everything and excel in your field.

You can even try new things like. You can impose a few more restrictions in a designing project apart from all those already set by the client just to challenge yourself a bit. You may never know you might be able to come up with something more interesting and awesome that you might have imaged ever. You can try any of these followings and I hope, it will get you out of your comfort zone:

*  Using only standard web fonts
*  Using only illustrator and no Photoshop
*  No images above the fold

When you will be imposing restrictions like these, you will be entrusted with the responsibility of doing something great with the available resources. And because of the limitation of resources, you will have to do something extraordinary with the available options and probably, this will lead to the birth of something awesome.

So, hopefully, you have come to realize the importance of restrictions in a creative process.