Thought it might be interesting to show how my Mos Eisley piece breaks down in Photoshop! Despite technically being made up of a ton of layers (just for organization and ease of selection), the final piece breaks down into about five parts: inks, flats, shadows, bounce/atmosphere, and overlay.
Sketch I actually blocked out a small scene in Maya to help me compose this shot – Mos Eisley has a lot of domes and ellipses and, as much as I adore drawing in perspective, it definitely helped having a basic maquette for placing the camera. We had to get the sketch approved by Lucasfilm, so I did a quick value pass to hint at the time of day.
Final Sketch This is where I’m finalizing the composition before inking. This meant fine-tuning figure placement, environment details, and any text I had written on the walls. Luke was almost entirely central in the initial sketch, so I shifted him to the left to let the piece breathe a little more.
Inks The first stage of the final piece, and probably my favourite – I can just turn off my brain, zone out, and ink. Since Star Wars is a notoriously “used” universe, I went for a bit of Geof Darrow vibe and let the inks do a lot of the texture work for me. The inking is actually done over some twelve-odd layers (sandtrooper, Luke, foreground moisture vaporator, etc), but that was just to organize my file and facilitate expedient flatting later on. The final inks are a dark green-blue, with a bit of variation in the distance to reinforce the atmospheric perspective.
Flats This aaaalways takes longer than I expect. This stage changes depending on my process, but I went with pretty basic local colors this time around. Nothing fancy.
Shadows (multiply layer) The shadows are all on 1-2 multiply layers, pretty basic. This was a deceptively simple lighting setup, so I wanted to make sure any edges that were catching light read really clearly. I added the warm rim of subsurface scattering to break up the edges a bit.
Bounce Light and Atmospheric Perspective (screen layers) A couple separate layers, but they serve similar purposes. This stage added bounce light from the sky and sand, as well as layers of atmospheric perspective to separate out the foreground, midground and background.
Final (overlay layers) The final piece! I used a subtle overlay layer to marry the colors, as well as some film grain and light watercolor texture to break up the swaths of flat digital color.
So that’s my jam! I’m changing up and improving my process constantly, but this is definitely one way to get things done. :)
oh man, almost forgot to post my finished piece for the Star Wars: A Saga Revisited show at @gallerynucleus this past weekend! My piece sold, but I’m pretty sure they’re going to have prints available at some point in the near future.
I adored the Tales from Mos Eisley Cantina/Jabba’s Palacebooks as a kid, so I wanted to capture some of that same day-to-day vibe - the hustle and bustle of a typical Mos Eisley morning, when you don’t have scoundrels storming in and mussing up the place.
Day 2 of Fictional Band February 3: The Bikini Bottom Super Band!
Ok, football fans! Put your hands together for the Bikini Bottom Super Band! What could be more appropriate on Super Bowl Sunday then these arena rockers?
From the ‘Band Geek’s episode of SpongeBob SquarePants, the Bikini Bottom Super Band started out downright terrible. Their drummer, Patrick Star didn’t even know if mayonnaise was an instrument! And there was also the obstacle of big meaty claws to overcome! But just as bandleader Squidward Tentacles was about to give up hope - the band showed up and brought down the house.
Squidward Tentacles - Bandleader!
SpongeBob Squarepants - Lead singer!
Plankton - Piano!
Sandy - Electric guitar!
Mrs. Puff - Rhythm/Bass guitar!
Mr. Krabs - Keytar!
Patrick Star - Drums!
And a host of other Bikini Bottom residents on Trumpet!
Fun fact: SpongeBob’s singing voice here is not performed by Tom Kenny, but by Miko Mendoza???? Today’s song ‘Sweet Victory’ was written by David Glen Eisley, of the bands Giuffria and Dirty White Boy.
I remember in elementary school, Band Geeks was consistently noted as one of - if not the - best SpongeBob Squarepants episode. I may be more partial to Idiot Box but I can’t deny this cheesy anthem is fantastic.
Fun fact 2: in 2007 ‘Sweet Victory’ was voted the #1 Nicktoon moment of all time! That’s a neat honor for a lil group that got everything together in less than four days!