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Thread: Fenn's artwork: now with 100% more manga!

  1. #1
    Fenn
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    Fenn's artwork: now with 100% more manga!

    "Fenn actually makes art?"

    Yes, yes I do. I just recently downloaded PAINT.net, and with help from tutorials by Greg Martin (posted by Rio) I am determined to start working on spacescapes. I'll update as I produce new works.

    6/1/11: My first solo attempt at a starfield


    6/2/11: attempt #2 at a star field + dust-like figure


    6/2/11: Had a chance to try a planet and starscape:



    Thanks for all the crits so far. I've really tried to implement some of the suggestions.
    Any other crits or advice from experienced spacescape creators would be appreciated.
    Last edited by Fenn; 09-20-2011 at 06:44 PM. Reason: added 2nd image

  2. #2
    Senior Member nisaren's Avatar
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    I'm not an experienced spacescape creator but I think adding some color would make this look a lot more interesting.

    I would suggest maybe having three layers that you work on. The top layer you have your brightest/largest stars, the middle layer you have medium brightness stars, and finally the bottom layer will be the dimmest layer. Then between the middle and bottom layers put another layer and put some soft colors that are fairly desaturated. Between the top two layers you can do other similar colors that are more saturated.

    I'm not sure how Paint.net works, if you can have textured brushes or anything, but a textured brush would be awesome for adding random color gradations into the piece to make it look kind of like nebulae.

    At any rate, not sure if this helps, but that's how I would approach one of these paintings if I was to try it. ^^;

  3. #3
    Zeta Members ram's Avatar
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    I'm not a experienced spacescape creator so you shouldn't take my advise if you don't want to...

    i don't know how paint.net works but the hardness of the brush is too much and those points looks like square when zoomed..
    in photoshop there is a pencil and a brush tool... if it's the same for paint.net then i suggest you use brush with zero hardness... that happens when you use pencil..

    and if you use photoshop you could use layer style...
    which you can use drop shadow and inner shadow and outer glow..

    hope this helps.. i'm a newbie in criticism and a newbie in mt so if this doesn't help please don't reply so much harsh things to me.. =_=

  4. #4
    Fenn
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    Quote Originally Posted by nisaren View Post
    I'm not an experienced spacescape creator but I think adding some color would make this look a lot more interesting.

    I would suggest maybe having three layers that you work on. The top layer you have your brightest/largest stars, the middle layer you have medium brightness stars, and finally the bottom layer will be the dimmest layer. Then between the middle and bottom layers put another layer and put some soft colors that are fairly desaturated. Between the top two layers you can do other similar colors that are more saturated.

    I'm not sure how Paint.net works, if you can have textured brushes or anything, but a textured brush would be awesome for adding random color gradations into the piece to make it look kind of like nebulae.

    At any rate, not sure if this helps, but that's how I would approach one of these paintings if I was to try it. ^^;
    Great suggestions. Three layers is a good idea; the tutorial only had two and as a newbie I wasn't going to deviate on the first try. I did attempt to add color, but it was very weak and I used purple (bad idea).


    I'm using paint.net without any plugins, which means I don't have texture brushes or any of the fancy photoshop stuff, which limits me, but I think some creativity will help me work around it.

    Quote Originally Posted by ramiel View Post
    I'm not a experienced spacescape creator so you shouldn't take my advise if you don't want to...

    i don't know how paint.net works but the hardness of the brush is too much and those points looks like square when zoomed..
    in photoshop there is a pencil and a brush tool... if it's the same for paint.net then i suggest you use brush with zero hardness... that happens when you use pencil..

    and if you use photoshop you could use layer style...
    which you can use drop shadow and inner shadow and outer glow..

    hope this helps.. i'm a newbie in criticism and a newbie in mt so if this doesn't help please don't reply so much harsh things to me.. =_=
    I didn't use a brush at all for this actually. I copied the star layer, blurred it, and colorized it, then blended it onto the star layer. You are right about the large stars; a slight blur might help.

    Edit: added second image
    Last edited by Fenn; 06-02-2011 at 12:40 PM.

  5. #5
    Senior Member nisaren's Avatar
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    As far as the second picture goes, that's a good start. What I would do to make it look better in photoshop would be to first copy the color layer a couple times. On the lowest copied layer I would apply a pretty strong gaussian blur and reduce the opacity to about 20-30%. Then I would take the second layer and apply another gaussian blur but not as strongly and leave it at the same opacity as the other, this way you're building up the colors more. The last layer I would blur just a bit and then leave it at a 50% opacity. Note: This is all guess work, I would fiddle around with this until I got it to look closer to what I want.

    After this you may want to add more texture. To do this you can take an eraser and erase a little here and there on various layers. After doing that, you may have unnaturally hard edges, so you can blur those a little either by using an eraser with a softer edge or lasso a couple areas and apply blur to the selected areas taking care not to select all the hard edges to give a mixture of soft and hard edges.

    Obviously repeat or change things how you see fit, but maybe this will help you a little. Once again I don't know exactly what you can do in Paint.net. Hope this isn't too confusing to read through. D:

  6. #6
    Fenn
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    Added a third image. I can see a little improvement but I still have a long way to go!

    Quote Originally Posted by nisaren View Post
    As far as the second picture goes, that's a good start. What I would do to make it look better in photoshop would be to first copy the color layer a couple times. On the lowest copied layer I would apply a pretty strong gaussian blur and reduce the opacity to about 20-30%. Then I would take the second layer and apply another gaussian blur but not as strongly and leave it at the same opacity as the other, this way you're building up the colors more. The last layer I would blur just a bit and then leave it at a 50% opacity. Note: This is all guess work, I would fiddle around with this until I got it to look closer to what I want.

    After this you may want to add more texture. To do this you can take an eraser and erase a little here and there on various layers. After doing that, you may have unnaturally hard edges, so you can blur those a little either by using an eraser with a softer edge or lasso a couple areas and apply blur to the selected areas taking care not to select all the hard edges to give a mixture of soft and hard edges.

    Obviously repeat or change things how you see fit, but maybe this will help you a little. Once again I don't know exactly what you can do in Paint.net. Hope this isn't too confusing to read through. D:
    That does help. I wish Paint.net had edges on brushes and erasers, but I can still work with the suggestions you gave me. Thanks!

    Edit 6/3/11: practice with nebulae (thanks nisaren!)





    Last edited by Fenn; 06-03-2011 at 10:02 PM.

  7. #7
    Your Friendly Ban Hammer-er Rio's Avatar
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    Nice progress! It's good to see some starscapes from ya. What's Paint.NET like? Is it similar to Paint except with more options and capabilities?

  8. #8
    Fenn
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    caution: large image size

    Quote Originally Posted by Rio View Post
    Nice progress! It's good to see some starscapes from ya. What's Paint.NET like? Is it similar to Paint except with more options and capabilities?
    It might be because it's the first software I've got experience with outside of paint, but it's amazing. I don't own photoshop, but I have played around with it, and I'd say the scale is something like this:

    |-------------------------------|----------------|
    Paint___________________Paint.net_______Photoshop

    It's way more powerful than paint; you have effects, infinite color options (A color wheel plus Hues, Saturation, Alpha value, etc.), gradient, lasso, magic wand tools, and effects like blurs and distortions. However, it lacks the convenience of Photoshop; lots of effects that you can perform in one touch with Photoshop require creative workarounds and improvisation in Paint.net (the glow around planets is an example). There are plugins available free online that add extra functionality, but I haven't tried any yet (one called shape 3D creates a far more effective sphere effect than the default bulge effect I'm using). Overall it's perfect for what I wanted to do.

    Also, I finally decided to put everything I've been practicing together:
    Last edited by Fenn; 06-05-2011 at 11:22 AM.

  9. #9
    Senior Member nisaren's Avatar
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    Very nice on the last one. I definitely think it's your best so far. My only suggestion now is to try looking at images of celestial objects and try to see if you can mimic them. It really helps to have a reference to work with.

  10. #10
    Fenn
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    Quote Originally Posted by nisaren View Post
    Very nice on the last one. I definitely think it's your best so far. My only suggestion now is to try looking at images of celestial objects and try to see if you can mimic them. It really helps to have a reference to work with.
    Thanks! And thanks for your help and advice.

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