A rather long two weeks. Watched Kemono Friends (fabulous), Gabriel DropOut (barely not worth the time), played more Automata, partly to get screencaps and a second look for the review, partly for the DLC (it’s poop), and then basically a week of Total Shogun 2 to celebrate a friend’s graduation. It was nice. Not so nice for progress in drawing, but oh well. Such a cluster of things isn’t gonna happen again anytime soon.
Digital though had two unplanned uptake breakthroughs:
- I watched an old Ilya Kuvshinov I had and it completely changed my understanding on how to line. My understanding was /ic/’s, which was CtrlPaint’s: draw a line quick, starting before your intended initial point and ending after your final point, then erase the ends afterwards. Ilya seems to emphasize doing fewer lines, using pressure to control weight inbetween. In the end this appears to be a faster process. My interpretation of what I saw changed lining time of a face from ~1hr to ~5min. Marginally less clean results, but pretty great for a magnitude of increase in speed.
- Taping paper on top of the tablet. The problem wasn’t so much that the tablet was too smooth, it was that it was smooth for the stylus and not smooth for my arm. Oil or something had built up and couldn’t be cleaned off, and oil caused the material to change into something with very high friction, resulting in lack of control any time movement wasn’t from the wrist. Making paper the contact surface solved this and added a comfortable and familiar stabilization. There’s still some hand-eye coordination problems, but everything feels much better now.
Also finally saw the true advantage of digital: not Ctrl+Z, but Ctrl+H.
Need to be careful using it though, some really beautiful things aren’t supposed to work when flipped (e.g. hair parted left vs hair parted right).
Last time I had decided to try and put hands into everything, but it became obvious quickly that my understanding of hands was limiting enough that there weren’t many positions where I could expand much at all past a stick figure. So I explored hands a bit more.
But I learned some things I’d been wondering about for a while in a pretty short timeframe, so I guess it was okay.
Long timelapse more because I was playing a weeklong session of Total Shogun with a friend.
Hair shape language/constraints don’t entirely make sense. Doing too few drapery folds.
It wasn’t fun. I didn’t learn much either.
Watching an Ilya Kuvshinov video on his drawing process revealed to me that /ic/’s fawning over CtrlPaint had led me to believe the wrong thing: quick lines are NOT the holy grail, clean lines are NOT done by “temp layers”, drawing through, erasing, and they sure as hell aren’t done via vector or shape tools.
Difficult to control decline in pressure level across a stroke.
Not shown: tracing over a few hairstyles to get a better idea for shape language/constraints.
Also not shown: D 17_04_28_1, where I tried to draw something from reference and it went horribly wrong. When looking at reference my hand-eye coordination is on autopilot, and I really needed to calibrate it with a few faces first, faces being the best choice for calibration because they have the tightest natural tolerances.
Right before the first referenced hair, I decided to tape paper on top of my tablet.
Absolutely the best decision.
Tried out blobbing out values in the bottom right just to fill out the page. Interesting feeling, at least while adding. Not sure how to go about subtracting, or how to add lines to it.
More faces. Feels fine now. Last one was way outside my skill range; animu faces with realistic proportions are wildly different from actual realistic faces in ways I haven’t bothered to understand.
I’m also not entirely sure when which lines should have more weight. I can figure it out if I stop and think about it, but I don’t really want to stop and think about it. They don’t feel sloppy or messy anymore, which is more important.