I love your gouache paintings! They look so solid, and almost graphic like. Do you think you could do a tutorial on using gouache? It's a medium I really want to start using. Thanks!
First of all, thank you for the compliments!
I think my paintings look graphic because I mostly use flat colors and a limited palette I can play with.
I took advantage of the Summer break to do a small step-by-step of the gouache painting I did today for the last Character Design Challenge.
I have to warn you, I don’t really have a special technique and don’t use tools like drawing gum or tape to delimit the shapes of the drawing : for me, it’s mostly the amount of time I spend on the paintings that makes them look clean and “solid” like you said aha.
This is my setting :
That’s what the inside of my paint box looks like.
I made the colors myself, with some cheap Pebeo paint, mostly with the 3 primary colors (that’s why I have some fancy colors on the side, that are harder to make yourself, like Raw Umber, Raw Sienna, Ocher, Gold…)
I then do a light sketch, that I tape to my desk.
Sometimes, I do a rough pass on Photoshop first, to find the colors and composition I want.
I can finally start mixing my colors on the tear-off
I use a water spray bottle to humidify the dry paint inside the paint box.
Tips on how I manage to be “precise” : I
use the edges of the brush to keep a straight line (and A LOT of layers of
paint until I get the result I want aha!)
For this painting, I started with the blue color
because it was covering the bigger area but the wise thing to usually do is to
start with the lighter color aha! But that’s the great thing with gouache :
you can always cover a dark color with a lighter one if you’re willing to wait
for the painting to dry and do a few layers on top of it.
At this step, I finished covering all the blank spaces with
the colors I wanted : it’s mostly colouring at this point aha!
You can now spend some time getting a “clean look” : try to get the colors as evenly as possible by painting one or two new layers on top of the first pass, while at the same time getting the shapes and lines right and solid.
Finally, it’s time for the details! I use a small brush for this step and spend a lot of time correcting my mistakes (stains, strokes…) then adding the last details like patterns, face, hair. You can also use a Posca or even a colored pencil if the brush is not small enough.
When the painting is finished, be carefull while removing
the tape so it doesn’t get ripped off!
I usually scan it (but this time I had to photograh it) and then use Photoshop for the Levels and Color Balance to respect the orignal colors as much as possible.
This is the final result.
I hope this was useful enough, that’s my way of doing gouache, but it’s mostly about practice. Find your own way! :)