View Full Version : AlPuppy :: Learning Flowers

05 May 2006, 08:17 PM
I've been drawing flowers recently, and feel that I have alot of room for improvement, so this thread is just for flowers and foliage in general and for you guys to let me know what i can do or do differently to improve

(these were both mother's day cards)

05 May 2006, 12:14 AM
I think some different brushes might help you out a bit. The organic nature of foliage is rougher than a default round brush in general. Depending on your software, try loading in some scratchier brushes and see if it helps to improve your results.

Also look at some reference if you haven't already - flowers have alot more details than we remember. . .

05 May 2006, 12:17 AM
Thanks The Snow
With both of these I sketched them out of a book my friend had onto paper, and then scanned them like 2 weeks later to go over in PS. So needless to say not only had I forgot what they looked like, but my pencil renderings weren't very detailed.
Do you have any suggestions for brushes to use?

05 May 2006, 01:08 AM
how sweet of you to make something (assuming it was for your mum not someone else's!)...anyway more than i did -_-

i'm assuming you want a more realistic look for these, as right now the flowers are looking rather 2-d -- they are lacking contrast. I made this small run-through to show you what i mean:

Got my reference photo from google as always:

it's nice...a bit pink. Notice the depth of colour in the flower, as the inner petals receive less light.

1-4 were made using the PS round/hard/opacity jitter brush, after that i used custom brushes. I've posted it at 100% res which i was working at.

First I outlined the shape of the flower:

Lacking something...

step 2 - i;ve added the general progression towards red/orange in the centre, and placed some highlights. I've included the palette as i go so you can see the colours that are necessary to fully render the flower. There are quite a lot, even at this stage.

PS don't use the colour picker - not good practice!

3 - here there are further hues. I've tried to divide the range into cooler/desaturated (outer petals receiving sunlight and in shade) and warmer/saturated (inner petals and reflected light/translucency between the petals). Just observe the shapes of the petals. The highlights especially are crucial; notice the triangular tips give it a characteristic rose-shape.

4 - a lot of colours!! They each serve a purpose. Again, the left palette is outer petals/highlights/desaturated shadows and the right saturated inner petals/reflected light.

5 - upped res to begin blending. I used a low opacity soft brush with a little texture, but any soft brush will do. You don't have to blend either. Keep using the hard brush and you get a great oil-paint effect!

6 - final, I added a soft light layer and textured the flower a bit, to get away from the clinical photo-quality thing. I also warmed up the whole picture by painting washes of red/orange, and repainted the intense shadows to a redder hue as they were looking nasty. Then added some soft strokes of the airbrush to the highlights to create a little luminesence -- artistic license!


Hope that helped to show you what I mean by creating contrast. It's really important and can be seen just by grabbing the nearest photo. The range of colours can be seen hopefully from the swatches I left on the painting. Notice also how there is a definite distinction between saturated and desaturated colours. Although the actual value range isn't that great, you can still create a sense of contrast through saturation. To create more realism it helps to think about reflected light, too. Watch for where is occurs and its lightening/intensifying effect.

Finally, this can all be done with one standard brush - just my preference to mess it up a bit at the end :D Basically, what i'm trying to say is; light and shade are the things which create realism and structure.

05 May 2006, 03:00 AM
That was awesome, thank you very much audit.
That's gonna help me alot, I'll post up my next one soon hopefully

05 May 2006, 03:13 AM
very nice tutorial, very clear and defind approch to the lighting of a flower, should be lock an loaded somewhere. stil aldog had the idea in his head perhaps all he needs was a push

j mac

05 May 2006, 02:12 PM
Well I doubt I could be as helpful as audit, but I'll try anyway. The first thing that came to my mind when i saw your flower was that there could have been more petals and the petals could have been a little more crisp. Also the way they are shaded they look quite thick, that could also be the reason my eyes are interpreting that as not being crisp. Also I'm not sure if you are going for a realistic looking flower, by realistic i mean something even like what audit did. Don't know if I'm making sense here, hope that helps anyway.

But then again all I said here will probably not be necessary if you just look off a photo.

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