Friday, January 25, 2008

Window Glow

This is a comic-book style Self-Portrait that I'm using to kick off this blog and my re-dedicated forums at

Purpose of this blog
gaining and sharing artistic insight.

I'm finding that getting better at creating art depends on how many techniques you've discovered, how many observations you've made/remember, and how often you practice these things. So the same way a writer might increase their skill by increasing their vocabulary or studying sentence structure, I'd like to increase my artistic skill by keeping track of the discoveries I've made, as I make them.

So, starting with the image above, I'm going to start taking notes on what I've learned or discovered. This way I can refresh myself on various things in the future as well as share it with anyone who might find it useful.

So let's get to it.

Window Glow, Photoshop Technique:
The area outside the windows is on a separate layer with a few colored brush strokes. I then masked out the shape of the windows and the head from that layer. Simple enough, now everything on that layer appears outside the bus (even though the layer is pretty high up on the stack). Then I realized that I intended to blur the background, so I hit the motion blur filter. And not only did it blur my colored lines, but it also blurred the mask. So now the color from the windows bleeds out and lightly effected the window frame and the hair.
I experimented with it and found that I got the best results (ie more control) when I unchained the mask from the layer and blurred the window color, and then blurred the mask separately.

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