I’ve posted the first compilation of concept sketches and creative notes for the Exalted Art Challenge for my Patreon Patrons, if anyone’s curious to check out some Behind the Scenes exploration a month ahead of everyone else.
Cross-posted from my Patreon blog
The time is neigh, my October Art Challenge approaches! So far, this year has been about allowing myself to rest and recuperate while also letting my muse off the chain to wander different paths for awhile. The next excursion is going to be with the Exalted Art Challenge that I created with the Exalted RPG Discord community!
For those who don’t know Exalted, it’s a tabletop roleplaying game much like Dungeons & Dragons where you get to become a character with epic-level powers! It features a world full of mystical places, vengeful gods, and faerie creatures with a rich tapestry of lore to explore. Its roots in non-Western mythology have made it one of my favorite worlds to play in on my days off!
I’ve even drawn illustrations and written many words for a story set in this universe entitled The Uncrucified. I’ve been sorely missing the characters from this story and wanted to get back into the mood of creating in this universe by challenging myself to a list of 31 art topics inspired by this fantastic setting! I expect many characters from my storyworld to show up for this art challenge.
I know many of these topics don’t make sense to non-players, but I hope to introduce you to them with a bit of explanation and art to go along with each one! In fact, enjoy a little sneak peek of thumbnail sketches for a few of the topics for a taste:
Patreon-Only Sneak Peeks!
Because my Patrons are the coolest, I wanted you guys to feel special during this event! You’ll be getting Patreon-Exclusive Early Access to my collection of exploratory sketches with my thoughts and notes on the topics each week , while the finished paintings and prose will be shared at The Uncrucified’s project blog. A compilation of the finished art will be posted here on Patreon once I’ve completed all topics!
For those keeping up on my Patreon Discord Server, I’ll be sharing the sketches as they happen in my Ang’s Sketchbook channel as well! (Read here for instructions on how to join my Discord Server dedicated to my Patrons and fans)
I’m hoping by doing this event I can create more art in the TTRPG vein which is work I’d like to do more of in the future to channel my long-time passion for gaming! I also plan to experiment with an expressive painterly digital style, since I have been so married to detailed tight line work for a long time now!
With luck, I can finish all the topics in a month, though I won’t be too hard on myself if I can’t finish one a day. The big goal is to remember how to play with art again and enjoy the process more than perfectionism!
I hope you all are ready for the ride! I’m excited to see what happens during this hugely experimental time. Are there any Exalted players here? Sound off in the comments! If you’re an artist who loves the game, I invite you to do this challenge with me and share in my Patreon Discord in the dedicated Art Challenges channel! I’d love to see what you all might do for this list!
More soon. I can’t wait to begin!
May went by way too fast, you guys! I was able to take about a week off before I had to hop back to prepping Backerkit for the Goddesses of Spring Kickstarter to make sure that was working smoothly for those of you who picked up pins. But do not worry, I plan to take a true and proper break once this FINAL Kickstarter finishes its ‘lifecycle’ and everything is shipped!
In that bit of downtime, I took on the Six Fanarts Challenge which are my first paintings in Procreate! I’m extremely proud of these. It’s nice to be reminded I can still paint this way after years of working almost primarily in ink and watercolor:
(Check out this post for the collection and narrated time lapse video!)
I’m also pretty terrible at downtime and as usual when I am trying to take a break, my brain is alight with all the things I’d like to do! I’ve been thinking of the ways I want to re-focus and make some changes to organize my studio, refine my social media output, etc. now that this project has finished one major phase and begins to enter another.
The focus of this next and final phase is going to be the Wall Calendar and Art Book, the latter of which will feature some unpublished pieces (that my Patreon Patrons will totally be getting a sneak peek of before everybody else!). These pieces are going to be much more in a dark and elegant vein as I bridge the gap between Mucha’s style and my own personal style. It’s going to be very different, but still something I hope you all will enjoy!
June is going to be about finishing up one last Art Challenge to let my brain wind down (The 6 Outfits Challenge), setting a study schedule, wrapping up Kickstarter (I hope! These delays are killer), doing taxes, and re-organizing the studio to be more efficient now that my inventory has grown so very much!
Lastly, as much as I like to focus on my fanciful art here, this month has also been mentally rough for so many folks, especially as I write this. For those who don’t know us, my husband and I are an interracial couple. Seeing recent events unfold is a strong reminder of how safe my husband and family are not in this world, a constant 24-7 truth we’ve become good at ignoring just so we can live our lives. I’ve shared some places you can donate here where you can also help others during these tense times, if you are able.
Please be kind to others and speak up when you see injustice! Let this horror help us come together with renewed and combined strength.
Digest of May’s Posts
- MSAD – Week 1 – Face Mask Designs + 6 Outfits Suggestions Needed!
- Six Fanarts Challenge – Part 1
- 6 Fanarts Challenge – Part 2 + Video Compilation Sneak Peek!
Patreon Rewards Added in May
Today I’ll be talking about how I created Satyr for the 30 Day Monster Girl Challenge. For my version of Satyr, I went with my own fantasy twist of a well-known figure from Greek and Roman mythology.
The Satyr of myth is usually a mischievous male with the lower body of a goat who is known to lecherously pursue nymphs and dryads. The Satyr were also drinking buddies with Dionysus, the god of wine and merriment.
For more about the Satyr, check out one of my favorite Greek mythology resources, http://www.theoi.com.
Tools and Techniques
For this painting, I used Photoshop CC and a Wacom Cintiq 21UX.
For my Satyr girl, I wanted to go with the theme of grapes to honor Dionysus and his wine, so she ended up with a purple complexion crowned with grapevine adornments. Like many Satyrs, she is also a player of instruments, in this case a flute.
A selection from my references for Satyr.
Step 1. Quick digital gesture drawing done to capture the movement and energy of the pose. This isn’t very precise and is more about energy than accuracy.
Step 2: A cleaner line art is drawn on a layer atop the gesture. I used Lazy Nezumi Pro set to ‘subtle’ to help stabilize my lines in Photoshop and make them smoother.
Step 3: Added a base layer of color so no background color will accidentally show through.
Step 4: Added the flat colors after much deliberation on what her skin color should be.
Step 5: Colorized the lines to make the grapes, grapevine, and flute stand out.
Step 6: Added a shadow layer using warm grey above everything clipped to the Group and set to Multiply.
Step 7: Added a highlight layer painting in white set to Overlay. Also clipped to the Group.
Step 8: Final touches of pure white in key places such as the leaves, grapes, and hair to help lead the strengthen the focus, flow, and dimensionality of the piece.
For more in-depth instruction on how I created this image, Pledge to any $10 and up level at my Patreon to gain access to the narrated video tutorial! You can also buy the individual tutorial separately at my Gumroad shop, but you won’t receive the other extras you would by purchasing via Patreon.
You can watch a video preview of the tutorial for Satyr without narration here: