Starting to learn Digital Painting

I recently started learning to draw digitally and I have to say at first it’s really not that easy to handle the pen tablet 🙁 But luckily I could afford a pen tablet at all!

If you consider using your computer you’ll need good graphic processing software and a pen with pressure feature. I think most digital artists use Photoshop and some specialized in comics/manga use Manga Studio. As for pens, I suppose I’m on the safe side saying almost every professional uses Wacom pen tablets. At the beginning you can work with an average tablet without a screen but if you consider going pro you should really try to get your hands on a high-end tablet with a screen to draw on directly (although it’s not necessary once you get used to the different hand-eye coordination you get with conventional tablets).

Here’s an image of one of the characters I had to design for drawing classes, Harald – I didn’t choose the name ^^;

character design: Harald

Harald profile draft

As you can see the line-art is really bad sometimes…Well that’s exactly the biggest problem most artists have (at least the ones I know). Line-art is very time-consuming and can give you a hard time. Manga Studio seems to be better than Photoshop for the work because of its line-correction feature (which can be a curse if not used correctly). Nevertheless, there are a lot of artists relying on Photoshop alone! I used Manga Studio to try out the toning but at the time I drew Harald I didn’t know I had a line-correction tool  -_-

Bitmap Font Design Homework

In Typography we were assigned to create our own bitmap font from real life objects.

If you’re not sure what bitmap fonts are here’s a short explanation:

Bitmap (also known as raster graphics image) is a term used when referring to computer graphics and it describes a data structure compound of a rectangular grid of pixels. Every single pixel has exactly one color-value assigned to it. Bitmap-based formats (like BMP, GIF, JPEG/JFIF, PNG und TIFF) are best suited for displaying complex images like photos, which cannot be processed as detailed with vector graphics.

So basically, our real-life bitmap font needed a raster and objects to fill in the space describing the character. Some students used burgers, playing cards, candles, bottle caps or Lego. Everyone was really creative 🙂

My idea came to my mind really quickly and spontaneously: LOTTERY!

bitmap font homework

part one

bitmap font homework

part two

I have to confess, I didn’t fill in the crosses in every single box…Actually I just scanned one lottery ticket and 5 different crosses, saved and scaled each cross on a single layer and copied as many crosses as needed on a cropped box. This way I could try out different combinations and spare some lottery tickets (not that I would ever win anything) 🙂