Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Atlantis Jellyfishes

This blog entry will be short since I already posted a couple of entries on this project previously. This is just to give a brief description on how I did the background since I've received queries about that already.

The first photo shows how I laid down the base color on the spread. I used very, very light and even strokes from one end to the other using Light Cobalt Turquoise 9201-154. After being done with that I introduced the darkest shade Prussian Blue 9201-246 from the edges where the light would fail to reach. I used the cross hatching technique when I introduced the middle tone which was Bluish Turquoise 9201-149.
When I do cross hatching I color to blend two or more hues by shading in squares of varying directions, one on top of the other. While also varying pressure this creates dimension and depth.
What I discovered again (the first time I saw this was when I colored the blue bear from Animorphia) was that when I introduced the darker blue the lighter blue seemed to lift from the page and come forward. Blue is after all a cool color, which recedes naturally when used with other colors. What was interesting to my eyes was how the lighter blue began to embody the character of a warm hue and, instead of receding, when observed next to a darker blue. Observe closely once more the above picture and notice how the lighter shade seems to float above the darker blue, like a curtain of smoke, or better yet bubbles rushing to the water's surface after being disturbed by the jellyfishes' movements. I immediately used this magical contrast to create more bubbles. In the end, what initially was a static rendition of the underwater world became a dynamic depiction of life in the deep.
I experimented with bubbles. I erased round shapes on the base, and only colored the insides after I have finished with all the layers. In that way the inside colors also reflect the same shades outside.
Here is a short clip of how I colored the big bubbles. I introduced varied shades of the blue inside it while leaving the outlines free of color. By the way, someone mentioned that another way to keep the outlines of bubbles white is to use a burnisher before laying the base color on the page. The burnisher will retain the shape of the image drawn even when colored over.

After leaving it for several days I thought I'd go back to coloring it again, excited to start with the foreground image below. Someone who saw my WIP posted on my Facebook account noticed the dots I drew on the yellow orange surface. I told her that the image looked boring up close without some kind of texture. After all that's what we delight to see when we peer into microscopes, how the actual surfaces look like. Well, there it is. Dotted :)
And here is my finished work. Have a great journey, coelenterates, I'm going to miss working on you guys. Wonder what they call a bunch of them, a school?

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