Friday, October 15, 2010

Portraits of Gomez Addams and Julie Newmar

So my wife and I recently moved in to a new apartment and we decided to spruce the place up with a few cool vintage pictures to give it more of an artsy kinda feel. Then I thought, why not do my own pictures and paint them in ArtRage? :D  I quickly collected some reference photos and began. Here are the first two I have done so far.

Gomez Addams: I love the Addams Family. The TV series and the movies. When it came to decide which one I would paint, I had to go with the John Astin Gomez. I do like the Raul Julia version but I feel the original is more iconic and fun. I mean come on, look at the crazy face.

I couldn't find any one picture I was really happy with, so I based the painting on two pictures.

I love the crazy face he makes in the first episode and in the opening credits of the TV series, so I went with that face and the body of a pic I found online of him holding a cigar.

I had a lot of fun painting him in my own style while trying to stay true to the images. One problem I did have was the greys I was working with tended to sometimes mix into a light blue. This problem was easily remedied by just importing the painting in to Photoshop and bringing the saturation to 0.

Speaking of Photoshop, I did cheat a little at times, importing the painting into Photoshop and adjusting things I couldn't seem to correct in ArtRage. For example his nose was really a pain to get right.  I took the painting into PS and messed with it using the "smudge" tool. Then I took it back into ArtRage and touched it up. If things didn't look right, I just switched back and forth from Photoshop to ArtRage until I liked the way it looked.

However this might have caused some problems because after a while, ArtRage claimed that the file was "corrupted or didn't exist." Luckily all I had to do was "save as" one of the Photoshop files, and then ArtRage was able to recognize it. WHEW! Freaked out a couple of times when that happened.

And for the 2nd painting...

Julie Newmar as Catwoman: I ran across a few vintage pics of Julie Newmar as Catwoman and I had to paint one.

I love the picture I decided to use but I wanted to make a little bit more vintage looking, so I added a red tone in Photoshop and ended up with the pic below.

Then I just picked up the colors with the "eyedropper" tool and started in ArtRage.

This painting was a lot harder than the first. Julie Newmar has very sharp, distinct features and when I couldn't get them even close, she ended up looking very very strange.

Her forehead was another problem I had. Each time I painted and tried to fix it, her forehead always seemed way too large. So I just took into Photoshop and re-sized it.

Her hair is something else that came out way too large. I had intentionally exaggerated it to capture the hairstyle as a focal point. But I had made it way too big. So I, again, imported it into Photoshop, selected it with the "lasso" tool, copied and pasted, and shrunk it down a bit.

I did try to create the sparkles on her suit by actually creating tiny dots...yeah, that didn't work. I just went  over them with the "Palette knife" tool in ArtRage" and smoothed them out.

The one thing I would change in my process is doing the backgrounds on separate layers. The texture transferred over to the main images and kind of hid the cool paint textures I made on those.

It was a lot of fun doing these paintings and I even used them as a warm up before starting the day on other projects. I'm really looking forward to doing more, so be on the look out for some updates.