Hope you're all having a wonderful week so far! Over the weekend, I was sketching late one night, and this little little guy came about. In the morning, I decided to take him into Photoshop by using my camera phone..something very new for me as I just stepped into the 21st century about a month ago. YAY for being able to receive emails on your phone! I took a snapshot of the sketch, then sent that sketch via my phone to my email account, downloaded the file, took the file into Photoshop and set it as a top layer set at "multiply". I then added another layer below that layer and then just started having fun coloring with brushes in Photoshop. I used my mouse as I don't have a wacom or stylus, so I just started eeking out the shapes and colors with the mouse and brushes. Adding more layers and setting them to "multiply" at different opacities and such allowed me to "play." I think this spontaneous project helped me to "see" the entire picture color-wise in ways that a traditional painting hasn't allowed me to. Not over-thinking, and just "going for it" while testing colors and layers and opacities helped me to just focus on lighting, mood, and overall feel of the piece. I plan to do more of these "quick sketch-to-color" illustrations along with my traditional work to keep building up the skills that are so hazy since my college years. As time flies, I know I've gotten so rusty at color, value, shading, anatomy, etc.
The upshod for me is that sketching and "playing" and just experimenting with techniques is one way to keep fresh and excited about your work. As the days and years pass by, it's neat to see which skills you rely upon to guide you as you create and to see where those skills need some polishing. In some ways it reinforces your confidence in your inate "style" and I think that is something that helps you stay inherently you. Our ability to view others' work and be influenced via the internet and social media on a daily (some even hourly) basis, is sometimes a blessing and a curse. As an artist who had never happily shown her work to others until just about 3 years ago, I can attest that keeping your vision and confidence about your work is something that needs constant nurturing. It's so easy to get lost in a world of so much talent and inspiration. Keep on creating and being you, and that voice will ultimately be heard. I truly believe this.