When you are creating, do you find moments when everything comes together and it just feels right? Your know your piece is finished. When you are new to a medium, it’s not as easy. You may not take something far enough or you may go too far, ruining something good. As you learn and progress, I think it’s easier to know when something is “done.” It’s part of the learning process, and our own style, to develop that feeling of done.
In mobile/digital art, I’ve learned that the name of the game is blending. Using multiple apps and blending them together, until it feels “done.” I had already started on this path, as I created some of my earlier pieces like Rain Painting and Winter Flowers. I had only touched the tip of the iceberg of what is possible with blending in those, however. I’m going crazy now. Today as I share one of this week’s pieces for Paint Party Friday I thought I would also give you a taste of the kind of blending I’m doing now, and how I created this one, called Under the Surface.
Here’s the starting image, taken with the ProCamera app. I love it! You can easily separate exposure and focus, and switch between aspect ratios within the app, going from square to rectangular.
Then the fun started. I’ve created this little matrix of images to walk through the process of creation, but it doesn’t even cover all of the steps. To be honest, I get so many layers going I don’t even remember the exact steps but I’m trying to recreate them to share.
From left to right, top to bottom:
- The first step was into Snapseed, to shift the color a bit. This also added some texture and vignetting.
- Next I pulled that image into Distressed FX to add textures. The next three are the image with various textures added. You can’t add more than one texture within the app, so I save an image of each texture I like on the photo. Distressed FX also will do color filters in addition to textures, but I often turn that off and just use the textures. It’s become my go-to app for textures lately.
- From there, I start to blend. The center image is a blend of the different texture images I saved out of Distressed FX. I’ve starting using the Image Blender app for blending, because it is easier to use and has more blending options than Iris Photo Suite. When blending, I just play with the blending modes and percentages until it looks good to me. There is no logical sequence I’ve got for this step.
- Once I had a nice blend, I started to use the painting apps. I take the blended photo into the apps and play around with different effects to get some I like. Middle right is the “Aquarell” painting filter from Autopainter HD (a recent favorite) and bottom left is from Glaze.
- From there I started blending again, with the textured image and the painted images. Bottom middle is the new blend.
- I was starting to lose the colors, so I took that blend back through Distressed FX and added a filter or two.
From there, I did more blending with previously created layers to get the final result.
There were more steps and layers than these I shared, but it gives you the basic idea of how the final piece was created. There is a depth of color and texture in the final painting that is built through blending layers which won’t exist when you use a single app. It’s really the creative part of the process, and where the unique touch of each person will come in. I’ve started to learn the apps, what works on different images and how to achieve a certain look, as I play. Eventually I might develop a “style” but right now it’s all about play and exploration. Lots of fun!