Monday, July 7, 2014

The "Modern" Stone Age

I tried my hand at one of those backgrounds from The Man Called Flintstone.  I chose the one featuring "Bedrock Hospital."  I likes the color scheme... I like all that orange... I liked the contrast, and overall I like the composition.  Very sedate but at the same time it grabs your attention.

Here's my attempt:
I didn't bother with the brontosaurus wearing a whiskey keg a la a St. Bernard that you see in the original.  I think the melodramatic background featuring those bleak mountains is interesting enough.

This was all painted with Cel-Vinyl but, as with most digital artwork, it was built up in layers.  Thus the process was: draw an element, paint, scan, clean up, place in a layer.

I went a little nuts with some things, especially that tree to the right.  I didn't paint it that dark and grey, I painted it with actual colors but then I added shading and I think I overdid it.

I spent all Saturday morning trying to capture the chiseled look of the lettering to the words Bedrock Hospital and Emergency Entrance but I couldn't get it.  Finally I settled for what you see; this lettering was done digitally and a "shadow" put to it.  Meh.  I think if I tried it again I could get it right.

Once all the elements were painted and fitted together I put a tiny bit of lens blur to it in Photoshop and highlighted the orange overall coloring.  The color contrast is nice: orange accented by bright green.  And orange and purple mountains against a light green sky.

As for the Cel-Vinyl, I got it to behave with the addition of a little Blick's Matte Acrylic Extender.  Now it behaves more like a controllable medium rather than drying virtually the instant you put it on paper.  When I called Cartoon Color the other day looking for some of their transparent base, I was told it was out of stock and they wouldn't be getting any more.

I asked if they could recommend something and someone told me polyurethane should work.  Well, the problem with polyurethane is the overpowering smell.  I got a little can but between the smell and the glossing agent (even though I got the "satin" finish) I didn't like it.

I much prefer the extender.  Now it feels like real paint and, similar to what I had read, it behaves similarly to gouache.  Dollar for dollar Cel-Vinyl is actually cheaper than quality gouache so that's something to think about.  I got their "sampler" ... 11 colors and black and white... in the 8 oz squeeze bottles.  Trust me, that's a lot of paint.

Since I have a ton of gouache, though, I think that'll be the medium for the next project.  Stay tuned.

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