Tax Collector

December 16, 2008

TaxCollector

In school I was taught that as an artist, I should work an entire painting up at the same time… but I’m not an artist, I’m an illustrator, and I’m using a computer now and not the old squirrel hair, sticks and mud… so I paint the stuff in the back first and the stuff in the front last. It’s fast and simple. Here’s a small spot illustration I did that shows what I’m talking about.

You can see the YouTube video here.

The Comments

The “Ripleys” Guy

Dennis, I love to watch those but you should put a warning about the scary video at the end!

Dennis Jones

!!!WARNING!!! SCARY VIDEO ENDING ON THIS!!!

Bernard

Dennis, I agree… only Artists have to work up an entire painting at the same time. Just like only humans have to put on their underwear first! I’m a welder so I don’t even paint any underwear at all. Oh no…are we staying on topic here? Quick, Don and Doug get in here and change the topic before we seem like we’re all artists!!!!!!!

Doug Jones

You are amassing a bunch of these videos. I am considering doing one too… we’ll see… Hey, your approach makes the most sense to me. I have seen some painters (excellent oil painter types) that start in one spot and put on a finished stroke. Then they add the next correct stroke next to it and on and on till it is finished. I can’t imagine painting like that. (any hat tricks today?)

Dennis Jones

…no hat tricks today …how are you doing on your work? …are you going to be able to kick back and enjoy Christmas?

Doug Jones

got my major job done on Monday. I’m now sorting things out so I can hit the road on Friday.

Don Jones

That was a shocking ending. I’ve never seen credits roll like that.

Dennis Jones

…well, Don, in some circles I’m known as a pretty edgy film maker… well… crop circles…

Doug Jones

i’m still STUNNED myself…

Don Jones

The circles I run in are under my eyes.

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Photoshop Quirk

January 27, 2009

Grump2

I love to paint with Photoshop, but it has a quirk that is driving me crazy.

My process is to work with three layers. My line work is in the middle layer set to multiply mode. I have a normal layer under that to block color in with and a normal layer on top to add the finishing touches. Occasionally I like to throw a multiply layer on top of everything and add value and color with that. During the process of painting, I might do that half a gazillion times. I dont need a file with half a gazillion layers, so I need to be able to merge those top layers together. Unfortunately, when I do that, the multiply layer loses it’s effect and turns opaque.

There is no problem dropping a muliply layer onto a flattened image, but I need to keep my three layers loose to work through my picture.

Mark Behm was trying to troubleshoot this with me over the weekend, and this is the little picture I did in the process of trying to figure this Photoshop quirk out…

…by the way, I didn’t get it figured out, so if there are any Photoshop geniuses out there that have a suggestion on how I can drop a multiply layer onto a normal LAYER, (not a flattened image), I would love to hear it…

The Comments

Zaz

Sorry Den I can’t help you in that area with layers but from a guy looking in, this subject is great. The folds in the clothes, the beard, the leather like foot wear…just blows me away. 2 Question, how long does a Photoshop piece like this one take you from start to finish to do… and can we see your process of how sketches of this dude came about. You are very blessed Mr. Jones! Nice style my friend.

Dennis Jones

…how long? …good question… I piddled around with this off and on all weekend… maybe 2 hours give or take… I was doing a lot of experimenting trying to get that quirk figured out, so it was more of a 10 minutes here, ten minutes there sort of thing… I’ll dig around and see if I still have a pencil sketch on this guy I can post…

Dennis Jones

Don Jones

Obviously this guy just snaked in thirty foot putt for birdie.

Dennis Jones

…yes, Don, this is indeed my tribute to Tiger Woods!

Don Jones

Just like Tiger, this guy needs his right ACL fixed up.

Zaz

Hey Don, isn’t that one of those hickory shaft putters. Thanks Dennis, I really enjoy your style and seeing how your thoughts and work come together. It reminds me of the past and your Super Hero dude trapped in ice, a wolverine feel with blades coming from his hands and was Painted in Gouache then placed in Photoshop for those special effects. It’s great to watch that piece go from start to finish.

Dennis Jones

…Zaz, I like to keep the thinking part of my thought process to a bare minimum…

Dan Lietha

After a little Googling, I came up with this possible solution your multiply layer flatten problem: Give it a try.

Dan Lietha

OOPS! So much for my attention to the detail that you didn’t want the whole file flattened. Hopefully this will make up for it. I believe this actually does provide the answer to the Flatten (only a few layers) multiply layer problem. I tried it and it worked for me. The multiply layer and another layer kept the transparent quality, but became a normal layer: Basically what’s happening is blend modes don’t work when opaque pixels in the top layer try to blend with transparent pixels in the bottom layer. There’s no colored pixels to blend with, so it adopts the normal behavior. You can see this phenomenon in action by setting the blend mode of your brush and then paint over transparent and opaque areas of your layer. (The image below shows what happens when I tried to paint yellow-orange over blue with the multiply blend mode). As was suggested earlier, merging layers with a white or black layer, depending on what blend mode you are using, is a good solution provided your are mixing layers that have the same blend mode together. When I do use blend modes I never merge them because of the hassle. If I need to organize my Photoshop layers I’ll use folders or smart objects.

Dennis Jones

…hey, Dan… I Googled that same page up in my quest for an answer… unfortunately, the last comment on the page says, thanks but none of that works… which is the same conclusion I came to… my oldest son put the question to the art department where he works, and they couldn’t come up with a solution, either… thanks anyway for the Google!

Dennis Jones

…Dan, it looks like we were talking at the same time… the above comment goes with your top post… I’m not sure I understand your second post… what exactly did you do to retain the multiply effect?

Dan Lietha

Sorry about that. I need to slow down sometimes. I did go back and try the last part of the first solution, “Merge Visible should also accomplish the same results—just be careful to turn all the other layers off by clicking their eyeball icons. (Remember you can drag down through the eyeball icon column to turn off multiple layers.)” I did this and the effects of the multiply layer on the layer below stayed and the result became a normal layer. “Merge Visible” is found under the Layer pulldown in Photoshop. Is this what yer lookin fer?

Dennis Jones

…well …the issue I’m having (that I probably haven’t made very clear) is I need to collapse only the layers that are ON TOP of the linework.

…if I merge everything except the linework, that will work, but then the linework is sitting on top of the color. I dont want my finished product to be a bunch of color sitting underneath linework. I’m trying to get rid of the linework, so I need to collapse only the multiply and normal layers that are on top of the linework.

…when I merge ONLY the multiply and normal layers that are on top of my base layers, it doesn’t work…

…at this point, when I get a whole bunch of layers going, I just dump them into folders to keep things uncluttered.

Doug Jones

This is such a contrast to a blog I was reading yesterday. A guy who draws a syndicated comic strip went on and on and on and on about the pen points he uses. DIP PENS! Seems that certain points are becoming very RARE and are going for LOTS of money on E-Bay now. He bought one there but paid so much for it he is now afraid to use it. As more and more people turn to the dark side (read Photoshop) no one buys traditional materials and they go out of business. pity. hey… awesomeness dittos on that dude! I really like the fuzzy beard!

Dennis Jones

…hmmm …I still got some of those old exotic dip pens somewhere… sounds like it’s time for me to dig them out and get them listed on Ebay… now if I only knew how to list something on Ebay…

Don Jones

Next up in my liquidation sale is a Cambo 4×5 film camera. Now that will bring literally 2 or 3 dollars in bidding wars.

Doug Jones

“I can’t believe it’s not Weasel!”

gary Locke

hey. just do like i do……..never mind. i don’t know what i’m doing. Just DON’T do what i do. I haven’t touched a paint brush since mid october now. Still trying to figure out who i am in this new digital world. Keep posting brotha jones! gl

WeaselBoy

…Gary, did you go ahead and get a Cintiq?

Dennis Jones

…not sure why WeaselBoy asked you that instead of me… he’s always piping up at inappropriate times…

Dan Lietha

Dennis,Just learned of this FREE deal on a digital painting program I like to play around with and thought you might like it too: ArtRage- Give it a try. 🙂