Joshua Green (jowain91)

4 replies · posted

Bledning techniques digital paint

Hi everyone I was wondering if you could help me? I have been painting digitally for years and years but I always stumble on blending. My work always looks muddy or flat. Do you have any advice or techniques that could help me improve. So far I have stuck to a round brush with pressure sensitivity and dynamics. I use photoshop and also procreate. Here are some examples of some studies I have done.

Thanks for your help!

  • I'm not a painter, so take this for what it's worth, but it doesn't look like a problem of blending to me, just a lack of the contrast and variety that would make blending interesting. The girl in the Marvel hat is almost entirely hard edges, which isn't interesting, and the hands at the bottom are bland because they are all soft edges without sufficient contrast.  Again I'm not a painter, but I would recommend checking out this series if you haven't already: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CzCGP6kUvLU&index=5&list=PLLmXZMqb_9sbNLM83NrM005vRQHw1yTKn

  • I also agree the contrast range needs to be expanded; it's too narrow.  Go extreme, go over the top.  Push past your comfort zone; break it.  Break it hard.  I'd rather you have a wide range and know when to pull back than to try and push past your narrow range.

    I also suggest taking a look into Hue Shifting, especially for things like skin tones.  While adding black and white can certainly increase your contrast, it makes your skin tones look muddy and dull.  This is just not how we perceive the world (exceptions, of course).  I also suggest picking up this book, which talks about how color and light interact.  Are you sure those shadows are black, or are they just slightly blue?  Go outside at different times of day and do some studies.  You'll be surprised how color changes based on light.

    Here's an extreme example of hue shifting for skin tones.  The light is towards the yellow-orange while the shades of the skin are bluish-purple.  What effect does this have on the character?  How can you match this with your own work?  Analyze it, then apply it to your own work.  Work on your observation and analytical skills and apply what you learned.  Keep experimenting.  You got this.

  • Thank you both for the advice! I will take a look at those links, you are right I do need to vary the hard and soft edges. I will keep going and experiment a bit more :)

  • I can only agree with the two above me. Try to get a wider range of values and hues into your pictures to make them look less muddy. Here´s a little something on blending in addition!