I am going to start a WIP (Work In Progress. My main medium for my artwork is Pyrography, i.e, burning designs on wood.
My subject is this Sentinal picture that I have imported intpo Inkscape, and creating a page from preferences to the exact same size as the wood, I have graphed it into 1xCentimeter squares with a secondary 10 x CM grid, for easier Drafting by hand from screen image to the wood, which I will also graph in pencil first.
This may be useful also for those that find it difficult to draw, as the grid methos makes drawing a little easier as one can copy an image square by square. This method has been used for many many years by many an amateur and famous artist throughout history, and is a good way to get an image down in proportion, without lots of measuring for positionng etc.
Anything can go wrong at any time when using my hot wire to draw in the image, so WIP's of this nature need patience and time. I hope you will enjoy the process as it develops, and at a few hours a day, it could take some time. I have posted initially the Inkscaped/graphed image. I will post another few photos of the method and progress following this image today if all goes well, and I am using the gallery correctly.
Hope you enjoy this as we wait for NMS to pop, and I hope I can make progress with no misshaps, hehe, hot wire on wood, means take care and DO NOT make mistakes. <img src="//images.proboards.com/v5/smiley/tongue.png" alt=":P" text=":P">
If you are interested in how to use Inkscape to set up a grid for working screen to paper/wood, or to printout, I have a link to a tut I made a while ago.
Will post a fresh link tomorrow with a .pdf version as I have taken my site down for now. Any tuts I will convert to .pdf at some point in the next few days.
Made a little progress today. I now know that this piece of wood is a sheet of my Laser quality ply, as it is harder to get consistant dark tone on this than the Asian ply. Asian ply is slightly softer but just as light in colour. I have also cut the area I am working on down, as there is a lot of area with difficult detail in the grasses that would take forever if i kept it to the full image. It's killing a bit of time while NMS pops, so i am in no real hurry. The hard part will be getting the grass detail in after i have finished the rocky outcrops. hehe, that's going to be fun. >.<
As an addition and in response to add to my first comment below. This particular laser quality ply's top veneer is quite hard, like Birch is, on this particular board. Often it can be softer like Asian ply is. This means that it absorbs heat more on this piece, and makes it harder to get an even burn at one tone. However it can help in getting texture that is partially a result of the grain structure as a natural outcome to the slower build up of tone. just takes a lot longer than working on a softer wood, but as in this case the extra effort can be rwarding if one takes care. Also there is a nice grain pattern in the area were the sky is, and I may emphasise this grain structure with my shader when I am ready to shade in there, as I can see a potential for a nice sky effect.
You cannot actually see that grain pattern in this shot btw.
Okay good people, tricky bit of burning here on this rocky outcrop. Between the Scanner drone and the bottom of outcrop, the grain is bunched. This means soft and hard alternating grains, that absorb heat and burn at different rates, creating a banding effect. When one is burning on wood, every piece of wood or board, is different from the next, including variations of grain even across one particular board. This is where Pyrography get's challenging. The secret is to sand very smooth and most times that evens the odds on consistancy of texture.
An example say of a charcoal artist using the paper grain to create texture, then the pyro artist also utilises the grain if he or she can. You can get some interesting results. Even graphic art using different overlays, filters and effects does a similar thing, in that they are looking for an effect or a texture that they feel fits the piece they are working on. Goes for any medium really.
So in getting some texture into these outcrops, I have to use several shading methods built up in layers to get an effect that looks rocklike. Not necessarily a direct copy of the original picture, but a best fit for the scene using heat and the texture of the wood to get a best fit for that interpretation of that scene if you get me. In my case here now with this bunched grain, I am hoping that as I add more layers of carbon by application of direct heat, that it will mimic to an extent, a stratification often seen in such formations. hehe, and given the varying grain spacings across this piece I may well get something like what I want, but it is always uncertain and part of the fun and challenge of pyro. So onwards as I try and wrangle some decent texture over this initial banding effect cause by the grain structure. <img src="//images.proboards.com/v5/smiley/smiley.png" alt=":)" text=":)">
Okay, 35 minutes later and I have gone as dark as I would like on this one. Could go darker but would lose a lot of texture if I did. I wanted to keep the horizontal grain visible so left it at this tone. Will tackle some more tomorrow.
Okay good people. I have now toned down the sky a little with a light even shade to try and pull the background back a bit, and, to pop the moon a little better.
Now, given that using burner has given me these nice sepia tones from light to dark, and the wood has given me some nice textures, that together have given the Sentinal a nice Industrial worn look, and the whole scene a darker atmosphere than the vibrant original, I am going to go with that a bit further. The wood has a really nice winding grain in it, which is hard to see in the photos, and even harder now I have added a bit of tone in there. But I think I can create a sky that will match this darker mood to the piece utilising this grain structure. I will upload a macro shot of a small portion showing this grain that I hope will show what i mean after this post.
I have lots of scope in darkening the whole scene as i progress from here and hopefully this darker Dystopian mood will be effective, if not, well it's just a darker day on a miserable planet as oposed to a bright and vibrant one. So here is the progress, and wish me luck that i don't blow the whole thing with this sky work I will be starting over the weekend after my shifts.
Did a litlle more yesterday afternoon utilising the grain to get some funky cloud in there (ie, just following the grain structure). Will even it out a little more by darkening all the sky and cloud a little more. A slow and tedious task but wont take too long.
Working on the theory that less is more, I just darkened everything in the sky area and added just a touch of oil based pencil. Will not post any more now till the foreground is finished, as that part will be pretty boring if I did progressive shots of it over the next week. :p Hope you like so far.
I will post up the finished project below in a few minutes.
But first I will show you the equipment I used.
Pyrography from the Greek meaning to Fire Writing, Fire Art, etc. Is basically creating images, decorations etc on wood, paper, bone, Leather, Gourdes and more using heat as the medium. I line my work with a hot wire, basically the machine has a dial that increases or decreases the voltage, which generally is quite low, but it can heat the tip to anything up to 1200 degrees on highest setting. I generally never go over half way on the dial as that is sufficient for dark carbonisation of a thin layer of the woods surface.
I shade with a different machine and tip, which woks exactly the same, but I use a small flat shading tip, which is basically a hammered out piece of metal. This distibutes the heat and scorches the wood in a larger contact area than the wire tip.
Altering the voltage, controls the heat, and along with pressure of the hand, speed of movement and other techniques, you can control the depth of tone and depth of burn. Anything from heavy rustic burns to more subtle ones. Easy to use, but ca take years to master. Though some esablished artists are able to get to grips far quicker having experience with other mediums.
Using my pencil graph I lay down on the wood initially I could have copied the initial image over time, but having so much detail in the picyure that was of varying greens, would have taken many hours to pick out the detail. So after the initial three main plants, I put in my own grass texture. lets call it flame grass for now, hehe, I am a Leo, hence my title 'Sun-Lion' , so that name for the grass is fitting in this example Lol.
I have kept it quite light tonaly so that the main element of the Sentinal stays prominant. I have not shaded the grasses too much as it would have just become a slopp mess, but it will do for this project. The project has taken between 25 and 30 hours total as far as I can work out, so this medium is not for the person in a hurry.
Thanks to those that have followed this prroject from start to finish, and I hope you like it. Not my best work, but I think it does justice to NMS.
New to colour Pencils for the most part, I thought I would have a go at doing the Korvax, who, I believe are the robotic race mentioned by Sean. imo they have downloaded an imprint of their brains contents/neuron map however one wishes to describe it, into the shell, ie Robotic/Cybernetic body=Shell, this recording has been imprinted into the Shells AI, therefore the entities 'Echo' is that copy.
I find it such a great image, I just had to give it a go. Building slowly in up to 5 or six layers to gain depth of colour before the tooth of the paper gets too full, in order to try and get the right colour mix. Though I have found it difficult so far in matching the colours exactly, this exercise in doing this piece, will hopefully help train me in working with my limited colour set to attain the correct ones for whatever image I work on in the future. I hope you enjoy this first part of this partcular Work In Progress.
Added some more colour to the piece, slowly working in the detail. The whole head will need another layer of blue to get closer to the printed image I have cut, so lot's to do yet, and will take quite some time, but a very enjoyable piece to be working on.
One problem any artist will come across using any colour medium, is colour mixing and matching. Now so far in the Korvax, I have just gone by eye and done test mixes (layering different coloured pencil then blending) on scrap till I get close. But, the area below the head is a pale grey/green sort of mix, and I tried many combos without getting close enough. Then I thought I would use a colour picker in one of my art apps (SERIF DrawPlus x5). Using the colour picker and the RBG colour sliders, I was able to find a mix, I tried a few colours from my pencil set (that came close to the ringed colours) and managed to come fairly close. So, using a histogram or whatever one calls these do-hickies, is a big help. See result above.