Diabloceratops Polished a bit….

I enjoyed my Diabloceratops speed paint but  after taking another look at the reference pictures from over on Archosaur Musings I wasn’t happy with the proportions. So being unable to leave well enough alone and quite liking the diabolical appearance of the animal I spent around an hour generally messing around with the speed paint, moving bits, painting over and adding detail until I got it looking more like the pictures.

I worked in black and white again but did a final overlay layer with some colour for fun. This is a really common technique in Photoshop work, and to be honest I really don’t like it.

Since it literally just overlays transparent colour on black it ends up looking muddy and lifeless. To me it’s a signature ‘lazy Photoshop technique’ , throws some colour on without any of the richness from underpainting or consideration for well, the use of colour!

So with that in mind and general laziness setting in I played around with colourising the tonal image using a textured colour layer in the hope of a livelier result.  After a whole couple of minutes of messing around here’s the outcome:

It’s better than the usual result but I still think it’s a pretty naff way of adding colour, there’s enough grey coming through from the original image that the colours are still quite dead. If I try it again I’d look at colourising the tonal image more specifically, or actually starting in colour.

5 thoughts on “Diabloceratops Polished a bit….

  1. Hi Matthew,
    sort of got what you said about the way coours can be used in Photoshop and go along with not using the “shortcut” method,although I think that the use of some colour, as shown in your second painting, does enhance the overall image.

  2. Looking good! One of my favorite new dinosaurs, for sure.

    There are ways of using adjustment layers that might fix some of the problems you have with the color, but like you said, it’s probably just easier to start with color. While my illustrating skills are pretty anemic, I have been doing a lot of experimenting with color in my designs at work – I do book covers – and have been pleasantly surprised with the results.

  3. Thanks Dave,

    I reckon colouring the b&w tonal work itself using adjustment or even just different layer modes would work ok, but a lot depends on what you use to colour it.
    I’ve seen people using anything from photos to other paintings in different modes to liven up their use of a monochrome image, or just to break up the clean digital look.
    I’ve done it for some of my stuff, I have a rusty bbq plate which features in a lot of paintings in an overlay mode!


  4. Hey Matt, great work, I was at the soft centre animation workshop you were running. I don’t know if you remember but I mentioned that as a part of my theory for my art course this year I have to do investigations into my chosen art media (animation) and I was wondering if you could I could ask some questions via email in regards to your work? if thats cool just reply to my email funkdillyunk@hotmail.com

  5. Pingback: Listen to the Scientist.. « The Optimistic Painting Blog

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