Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Hatter Madigan

Again, it's Hannah. Fear not, I assure you Sarah shall be posting again! But for the moment, my fan art is piling up on the back order. And so it's a coin flip between the two that I did a whole bunch of stuff - hours of computer time - on. 

This is my best rendition of a legendarily epic fellow named Hatter Madigan. Seriously epic. Like, on the same level as Batman, Halt, and Pinkie Pie. You might not think that the last one's that awesome, but you just don't know Pinkie. 
Anyway, Hatter is a character created by Frank Beddor in the Looking Glass Wars series, which I would recommend to you if you like fantasy or sci-fi or period drama or awesome things or chocolate chip cookies. He was, in fact, so cool that he got his own spin-off graphic novel trilogy. Hatter is loosely based off of Lewis Carroll's Mad Hatter from Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and Through The Looking Glass, except with several big differences - Hatter is a very somber, very sane bodyguard; a skilled fighter known as a Milliner.

I based his appearance rather strongly on another character from the Looking Glass Wars, Homburg Molly

Hatter began as a sketch: 

So I put it into Photoshop and quickly realized I'd need to stretch him out considerably to keep him from looking short and plump.

So I took the original and added several virtual pounds of paint. When I was reading a book on writing by Gail Carson Levine, she stressed the importance of making several copies of my documents (she often had several hundred files at the end of a book, I believe) so that if you change your mind about deleting something, you don't have to recreate it by memory, you can just go back to an older draft. Since then I've done the same with my word documents and my Photoshop documents.

This is what my Hatter M file looks like now that I'm finished. Something I like to do is page through all of the files and see how it got from beginning to finished product. However, these files get so large and numerous that I have to move it to my secondary drive to keep it from overloading my computer's memory, which did nearly happen with one of my last projects. See, I still prefer to use Windows XP instead of the more recent versions Vista, 7, 8, and whatever else have you, so my family bemoans my very sluggish computer (that's one of the reasons I keep it - no one else wants to use a computer that takes ten minutes to start up and five to open a browser, even when it's Google Chrome!)
In any case, I worked on the sketch for several days and it came out like this:

As you can see, not the same as the finished product. For example, he looks like a zombie, his overcoat is missing it's fancy-schmancy decor, he's short with a hint of a potbelly.

Okay, so he's taller and thinner...

...And now with the help of the Liquify tool, I've given him a chiropractic adjustment. I called this de-hipping, just 'cause I made it look like he wasn't being all feminine and sassy. But he still looks positively ghastly in the face, and that's because I tried to follow a "painting a photo-realistic face on Photoshop" tutorial on Pinterest. First of all, this picture's not supposed to be photo-realistic, second of all, the person who made the tutorial was working off of a real picture, not a fuzzy idea in their head, and thirdly, I stink at following tutorials without skipping around impatiently. So I just went back to the original sketch, made the drawing's skin a tad rosier than white, tossed on a handful of brass buttons and heart appliques, and voilà!  

So this wasn't exactly a Photoshop tutorial on how to fill in a sketch. I kept a whole lot hush-hush, mostly because it's way too boring to write down step-by-step. When I do it, I just sort of feel my way around, making faces at my computer screen and erasing stuff and covering it up and finding references on what metal actually looks like and stealing the designs from people's boots and consuming large amounts of salty snacks and getting advice from my siblings and playing around with colors and freaking out because I thought I ruined everything and making teeny-tiny recalibrations and adjustments and basically spending a long time acting like I know what I'm doing until it looks okay. If you really want to know something about Photoshop and how to edit stuff, go ahead and ask, but all I can really say is that it helps a ton to have a mother and older sister who have absorbed the program and it's capabilities so much that they can do all sorts of freaky photo adjustments without going "Oooh, I wonder what this button does!"

Lastly, as far as I can tell, Vance Kovacs was the concept artist who made the Homburg Molly picture, so apologies, sir, for filching designs. I only did it because yours were awesome. 

Is that everything? Good, good...

To God be the Glory,

No comments:

Post a Comment