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Whew! So I had a busy weekend. Still recuperating. I had the awesome opportunity to travel to Reaper HQ (nice bones prototypes floating around there...) and take a Master class with Kirill Kanaev (Yellow One on CMON) who is a fantastic teacher and truly amazing painter! I had a wonderful time, but for much of the class I realized that I could not paint AT ALL. Actually, I'm pretty sure all of us felt that way! Really. I'm not kidding. The style of painting, brushes and technique were completely different than what I was used to. It was a mind-blowing experience. So I'll try to share a bit of the process! I had this grand plan of doing a step by step, but got distracted painting, so it'll be a bit of a leap here or there. First, pretty sure Kirill sculpted the bust we used. Mad props! It has a bunch of different areas to play with like metal, leather, cloth and skin! The first thing we did was learn about volume. There is never enough volume. Everyone needs more volume! I kid, but it took us all a bit of thinking before we figured out how to apply this. We looked at zones of the face, and the color ranges found in each. This is from the Gurney book: And it makes sense if you think about a face. I ended up picking Jack Nicholson as my model to copy. The idea is to copy the 2-D pic with matching skin tones onto the 3-D bust, and map out zones of highlight-shadow. Yeah... so this took a bit but eventually I figured it out. And It was fun to choose colors to match the skintone and mix until I got the right ones! Um, I used: olive green, creamy ivory, rust red, green ocher, red shadow, soft blue for most of this. I added in some pure white and black later. And metallics later as well, but I'll get to the armor later... the fun part was I didn't use a single "skin" color!!! You can see where I played with colors below on the watercolor paper. I like doing that to get a sense of where I'm heading and my choices. too yellow moving in the right direction better... but dark. ah hah! So that's what he means when he says volume- make the highlights cover the forehead, cheeks, chin in a geometric pattern that matches the general sense of frontal highlighting. It only took 4 hours for me to get it. sigh. triangles for cheeks, chin is a circle, forehead sort of a circle, ignoring all the lines and stuff. I had to forget the anatomy of the bust and focus on the anatomy of the 2-D pic, concentrating on the type of lighting I was mimicking. He showed us this later using the airbrush on the fire giantess to demo directional lighting. blurry iphone, but you can see the general schemes and the areas that end up shadowed and lighted. Anyway, we all painted for about 8 hours, our brains imploded and we went out for alcohol. er, I mean, class was dismissed and we had free time... here's day 1, all of us. You can see the different skintones we chose based on our very unique reference photos. I really liked Rhonda's bronze skin and Anne's pale zombie-dead skin! So day 2 we split on those who wanted to work further on the face (wow, there was a lot of detailing in that group!) and those of us wanting to practice textures. Yay textures! I'm a smooth blender, so playing with another way to approach fabrics was super! Here's Kirill demoing stuff: He doesn't use a wet palette, that's Jen's in front of him. He uses a teeny tiny brush, like a 2-0. I think the Russians have nicer brushes since those pesky kolinskies live there... My basecoat plus an attempt at stippling. a tiny brush works best for this. really, the stipples need to be even tinier than the ones I have. I need to buy smaller brush... here's a closeup. This is a fun texture. it uses the tip of the brush, so don't use your nice brush to try it out. The same idea for highlights and shadows applies. Start with stipplies in the shadows and gradually work up to highlights. Like a rough wool. We also did cross-hatching. It makes and insanely smooth gradient that I think is even nicer than a blended area. again, I need to make smaller hatches more closely spaced than these. The idea is to draw the cloth structure in using the lines, so they aren't spaced, they're layered vertical-horizontal, etc etc. Layers and layers. Looks like linen or canvas. So soft! I kind of got distracted and forgot to take pictures on the metal, fur and leather. But the metal was another mind-altering experience. What he did was take a base metallic color, mix it (like demi-metallic) with a greenish-brown paint and some gloss medium/varnish in order to keep the shine. the whole metal we coated in a yellow-brown over top of the metal basecoat. It lent a very realistic sheen to the area. then we added in dents, bloodstains, rust and scratches. I went and bought myself some vallejo chrome since it's shiny- it works great for random scratches. What I liked about this part was trying to make the metal look real, rather than perfect. here's a front with my fur, partial leather and metal. the deep scratches were a thin layer of my red shadow mixed with, er, stuff... can't remember- but anyway a dark color washed out above and a light line drawn below to mimic that hard edge. You can see a bit of the chrome lines tucked in there. It's hard to photo metallics, so I can see why a lot of folks prefer NMM. the bloodstain get gloss medium. The rust doesn't. He always mixes in a bit of the base metallic with whatever he's using to shade to keep the shine! Here's all of us at the end of day 2: You can see the different metal effects we played with and the range of skintones! And which of use kept up with the faces versus textures. I stayed a bit later on monday and got in some last minute pre-flight stubble instruction. I used the soft blue mixed with black and some of my olive, though I think I need to back away on the green. Too much green, needs more blue/purple. Anyway, it was awesome and fun and exhausting and I can try to dig through the rest of the photos and my notes if anyone wants more. I bought a second bust to practice on, so I may use this thread with an entirely different reference photo and start all over! Now I want to paint busts!!!