►Start Zoomed-Out and fill in the general forms first; details are done later
►Block in your color; avoid sketching as much as possible
►Flip the canvas! Do this every 5-10 mins until you get used to doing it often on your own. It gives you a fresh eye and helps you see what areas are off.
►Do not color pick from the reference! Learn how to make those colors yourself and why they work in the image.
►Try not to rely on the use of layers, merge down layers when you can. 1-3 layers is enough.
►Paint over mistakes instead of using the eraser.
►At the 1 hour mark STOP and ask for a critique if you are able to. This is where live study buddies are very valuable. Apply any advice you received to the second half of the study.
►Zoom in only for final details, but remember to zoom back out to compare to the reference.
General beginner advice
►Speedpaint studies are for practice! They are for learning, and are not meant to be fully-polished finished works of art. Take your time! Yes you have a time limit for studies but that doesn't mean you have to rush. Also the time limit is just so you don't go too far into the work to polish it; it’s a study and it’s meant to quickly practice an area you are having difficult with.
►When learning it’s helpful to find a study buddy ( Ideally in a similar time zone and work/school schedule ) who is willing to do these studies with you via Skype, Google Hangout or in a Livestream. Don’t be afraid to ask around!
►Don’t take criticism personally! Critiques aren’t always glamorous and it takes practice both to receive and give good crits.
►Remember to comment on your own studies, and take time to reflect on it; even the bad ones. It’s critical to evaluate your own work and find focus on those areas of improvement for your next study.
►Remember, in each study you do you learn something! So don’t be afraid to do the hard ones, or even the studies that don't interest you. Just do it! Actually, those are the most important studies to do. These studies are meant to push you and break you out of your comfort zones. If you don't feel broken or you find that these are too easy, find more challenging studies to do!
►Take breaks in-between studies and apply what you learn into your own work. It’s easy to fall into the reference study loop and not end up doing any personal work. You have to apply what you learn so that knowledge isn’t lost. It takes time but eventually your visual memory will recall what you learned from doing these studies and eventually all areas of your work will improve.
►Remember, no one is above anyone else. We all learn and study at different levels, but we are all here for the same thing: to learn, practice, and grow as digital painters.
Just found the group through you and I was wondering if you'd recommend speed painting to beginners of digital art or if it's something for more seasoned artists? I'm very new to digital art, and very slow, so I thought this might help me with that and also getting more used to digital, but obviously as I'm new I'm not very good Anyway, it's a wonderful group
Definitely this is for anyone! Whether you consider yourself beginner or seasoned, making a good habit of doing studies your whole life will help any artist improve. I know many professional artists who think they are actually above doing studies that they get trapped into doing one kind of art and never grow, which is very dangerous. You dont ever want to hit that brick wall so many fall victim to. So I say you are actually in the best position you can be to build good habits from the start. ^^ ( and not be like me who had to break a ton of bad habits which was frustrating. )
We all started someplace, we all have our flaws and mountains to climb. Remember with each drawing you do you improve! Spend time reflecting on your work, Critiquing is your best friend!
I didn't think about it like that, I know what you mean about a lot of artists getting stuck doing the same thing. I'd like to be able to get out of my comfort zone and eventually draw more than I can now, so I'm definitely going to give it a go!
Ohhh "Creator"! LOL! Love the post, the site and the intention behind it all. You did fine, as usual. You both are helping me so much and I truly appreciate it. A little suggestion would be to live stream you process, it really helps. And oh how I miss Tuesday night menus...sigh....
thanks! Well reason why sketching for speed painting isn't really recommended is for one, its a huge time saver. Its better to look at the image and block out the shapes with paint like how traditional painters do it. Now I'll block in guides for how tall/wide points of reference will be first just to get my proportions straight, but I try my best not to sketch anymore. I had to break away from my Disney up bringing because I was addicted to line art so, not sketching was a huge big deal for me. Once I broke free of that concept things started clicking and my work looked less flat and graphic designed and more realistic. It just looked more compelling and more interesting.
Now sketching is not bad for longer projects that require more precise thought. I still do, but I notice I do so much more loosely these days. Also if you were to ever work towards a concept art job where you have to get an idea out quick, you dont have time to sit there and sketch. Ultimately that's the primary reason why I was told.