DMP Tome of Knowledge


Hio All,

While cleaning up the forum, I found many threads have similar subjects and links. My aim in this thread, is to gather all of the disparate pieces of information from ages past and from many years of posting from the community into one single thread.

Please post here any links you may find that is inspirational to digital matte painting whether it be about history, great artists, visual effects studios, applications in movies/television/games/web mediums or tutorials and support links such as texture websites. I will then edit this original top post and add it to the collective. Below are all of the links that I have merged together for this thread thus far. Happy sharing everyone!
All Links should be working, please report if they are not

Books for Reference:

The Invisible Art: The Legacy of Movie Matte Painting
d’artiste: Matte Painting Volume 1 (featuring Dylan Cole, Chris Stoski, and Alp Altiner)
d’artiste: Matte Painting Volume 2 (featuring Chris Thunig, Max Dennison, and Yusei Uesegi)
d’artiste: Matte Painting Volume 3 – out now!! – (David Luong, Milan Schere, and Damien Mace)
Special Effects: The History and Techniques
The Digital Matte Painting Handbook by David Mattingly

Reference Textures/Photos: (upcoming) (cutout of people for silhouettes) (Photos gathered/by Reid Southen) (200+ skies by Benjamin Nazon) (Swiss Alps photos)
The Met and 400k+ Hi Res Photos of Art

Online Education:

CGWorkshop: Photoreal Matte Painting Part 1 with David Luong
Advanced Matte Painting Tutorial by Milan Schere
Intro to Environment Design for Games and Film with Simon Scales
Environmental Texturing with Leigh Van der Byl
3D Environment Creation with Paul McWilliams
Gnomon Workshop Matte Painting DVD’s
Matte Painting by David Mattingly on
Garrett Fry on how to fit DMP in a VFX Pipeline
MP4 “Matte Painting for Filmmakers” Resource
Defeating the Texture Monster, Hudson River Style by Chris Oatley - under “free section” Levi Peterffy’s DMP Tutorial

Tutorial Links:

Digital Matte Painting Resource -
Maya Camera Projection -
Nodal Maya Camera Projection -
Panorama Noda Maya Cam Projection -
Composition with Philip Straub -
‘The Lost World: Temple of Nature’ by Tiberis Viris -
Fantasy matte painting by Sarel Theron -
Creating Matte Paintings in PS -
MP Techniques by Stas Lobachev -
CGTantra MP Tutorial by Szabolcs Menyhei -
Creating a Period MP by Tim Nargi -
ImagineFX Workshops -
Photoshop Keyboard Shortcuts -
Free Perspective Generator from Epic Games -
Steve Messing and his use of C4D for DMP work

Matte Painting History:
Traditional Matte Painting Club on Facebook
Legacy Matte Painter Links by Galeon
Matte Painting Timeline from
British VFX Matte Painting Timeline
Tribute to Peter Ellenshaw Traditional Matte Paintings

Professional DMP Artist’s (past and present):

Jaime Jasso - (forum leader)
David Luong - (forum leader) (d’artiste: Matte Painting Vol. 3 Co-Author)
Milan Schere - (forum leader) (d’artiste: Matte Painting Vol. 3 Co-Author)
Damien Mace - (d’artiste: Matte Painting Vol. 3 Co-Author)
Chris Thunig - (d’artiste: Matte Painting Vol. 2 Co-Author)
Max Dennison - (d’artiste: Matte Painting Vol. 2 Co-Author)
Yusei Uesugi - (d’artiste: Matte Painting Vol. 2 Co-Author)
Dylan Cole - (d’artiste: Matte Painting Vol. 1 Co-Author)
Alp Altiner - (d’artiste: Matte Painting Vol. 1 Co-Author)
Chris Stoski - (d’artiste: Matte Painting Vol. 1 Co-Author)
Michael Pangrazio -
Frank Ordaz -
Maciej Kuciara -
Levente “Levi” Peterffy -
Fabio Baretta Zungrone -
Anthony Eftekhari -
Mathias Verhasselt -
Graven Tung -
Devon Fay -
Thomas Esmeralda -
Jonathan Berube -
Brian LaFrance -
Alex Murtaza -
David Edwards -
Tiberius Viris -
Christopher Leith Evans -
Yannick Dusseault -
Craig Mullins -
Raphael Lacoste -
Syd Mead -
Mathieu Raynault -
Peter Ellenshaw -
Richard Bluff -
Roger Kupelian -
Mark Sullivan -
Christian Lorenz Scheurer -
Tim Warnock -
Seung Ho Henrik Holmberg -
Brenton Cottman -
Christian Haley -
Paul Lasaine -
Kev Jenkins -
Neil Miller -
Ludovic Iochem -
Lizzie Bently -
Nick Marshall -
Seema Schere -
Szabolcs Menyhei -
Nick Giasullo -
Gavriil Afanasyev Klimov -
David Mattingly -
Roberto Oleotto -
Jonas De Ro -
Alex Nice -
Garrett Fry -
Jason Horley -
Eric Dima-ala -
Pavel Cucka -
Simone De Salvatore -
Marco Iozzi -
Carl Edlund -

Professional Demo Reels:

Jaime Jasso’s Demo Reel 2012
Milan Schere’s Demo Reel 2013
Damien Mace’s Demo Reel 2013
David Luong’s Demo Reel 2012
Nick Giassullo’s Demo Reel 2013
Alex Nice’s Demo Reel 2013
Fabio Barretta Zungrone’s Demo Reel 2013
Pavel Cucka’s Demo Reel 2013
Carl Edlund’s Demo Reel 2014
Anthony Eftekhari’s Demo Reel 2014

DMP Studio Websites:

Whiskeytree -
Hatch -
Illusion Arts -
Matte World Digital -

Other Inspiring Matte Painting links:

Digital Brush Tumblr Collection
Oblivion Art by Andree Wallin
Vimeo Matte Painting Group
LinkedIN - Adobe Photoshop User Group
LinkedIN - Digital Matte Painters ROCK User Group
LinkedIN - Matte Painters User Group
Traditional Matte Painting at
FX Guide Matte Painting Part 1: Painting it BIG (Arman Matin)
FX Guide Matte Painting Part 2: The Tools (Gerhard Mozsi)
FX Guide Matte Painting Part 3: The Art (Wayne Hagg)
FX Guide Matte Painting Part 4: The Future of Matte Painting (Alp Atiner)
FX Guide “The Way Back” breakdown
One Man Army: Attila the Hun Trailer & Visual Effects Breakdowns
John Adams Visual FX (HBO)
Movie Magic Episode 8 - Matte Paintings
Ghibli Studio Painted Backgrounds
How to get creatively inspired by The Oatmeal
TED Talk with Don Levy: A Cinematic Journey through VFX
The Top 50 Greatest Matte Paintings in Film by Peter Cook
Michael Pangrazio Gypsylife Interview
Harrison Ellenshaw Interview by
5 Fundamental Skills Every Artist Should Master by Bobby Myers
SpinVFX “The Borgias” CG Replacements and DMP Reel
SpinVFX “After Earth” Background Replacements Reel
Lone Ranger VFX and Digimattes by ILM Mr. X Breakdown of Vikings S.2

Old Matte Painting Image Links:

Spartacus by Peter Ellenshaw -
Mike Pangrazio ‘Raiders of the Lost Ark’ warehouse set extension
Lighting reference
Doug Ferris ‘Seven Years in Tibet’ village telescope POV pan
Ralph McQuarrie ‘Star Wars’ reactor shaft
and information on the first projected matte

Museum Exhibits with Hudson River School Paintings:

Thanks, and please continue to post more information below as well as reporting bad links!!


Really useful. Thank you so much for posting!



Thanks Marcel, np! If you know any other great links, please let me know!


Nice guys.
i’m glad we are having some activity here, as well as in in the last weeks.

I will post some of my amateur paintings soon.

all the best,



For those of you interested in the backbone of DMP, there is a Traditional Matte Painting forum at:

However, the entire forum seems to have gotten an upgrade resulting in all the old threads disappearing. The owners still have the original content offline but unfortunately it won’t be restored anytime soon without the proper interest. If you are keen about Matte Painting I encourage you to voice your opinion and support the request to restore the Traditional Matte Painting Tomb of Knowledge.

It contains important and unique content from well respected industry professionals. The documentation and information shared was one of a kind behind the scenes data, significant for the history of Matte Painting. Matte Painting is the original visual effect and actually older than the movie camera itself. Losing the type of discussions this section contained would be a blow to film-making itself.

Members range from Matte Painting enthusiasts all the way to such legends as Craig Barron or Rocco Gioffre. Some of the information included:
as well as making the community aware of new interviews:

Another benefit was finding out about Matte Paintings on display at art shows and galleries, such as:
The Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) is presenting an exceptional exhibit dedicated to the legendary director, Stanley Kubrick. This extensive 13,000 square foot retrospective features scripts, personal letters, set models, costumes, cameras, lenses, photographs, props and more. Included in the collection, and for the first time in public exhibition, is the spectacular Rome establishing shot matte painting by Peter Ellenshaw for the film Spartacus (1960).

The greatest treasure of this Matte Painting section however is the image library. You’ll find amazing things like:
Mike Pangrazio ‘Raiders of the Lost Ark’ warehouse set extension
Lighting reference
Doug Ferris ‘Seven Years in Tibet’ village telescope POV pan
Ralph McQuarrie ‘Star Wars’ reactor shaft
and information on the first projected matte

Furthermore, this doesn’t have to be limited to old movie mattes but there’s also an appreciation for today’s Translite Matte Paintings that are still being utilized by some directors on set! On some productions nowadays, the director might request real translite backdrops for a number of shots, which are physically placed behind the actors during the shoot. DMP artists paint these digitally at a high resolution with Adobe Photoshop, which then gets printed out as large boards that are used on set.
Not quite the same as oil on glass but extremely fascinating in my point of view. Especially, considering today’s industry. So, I wanted to let you guys know that the spirit lives on.

In the end digital Matte Painting serves the same purpose as traditional Matte Painting did, and there are numerous examples of the same techniques being masterfully applied in the digital realm:
Wayne Haag ‘Fellowship of the Ring’ fellowship leaving from Rivendell

There are some other very successful DMPs that in my opinion display the same qualities as the old masters.
Some examples:
Dimitri Delacovias ‘The Golden Army’ chamber of the Golden Army
David Gibbons ‘Golden Compass’ fields approaching London
Lino Khay ‘Matrix ReLoaded’ revealing tilt shot of Zion
Mathieu Raynault ‘Airbender’ northern air temple fly-over
Yanick Dusseault ‘Attack of the Clones’ Coruscant landing environment with Theed Palace
Peter Baustaedter ‘Avatar’ haleluja mountains floating rocks of Pandora
Wei Zheng ‘Girl with the Dragon Tattoo’ snow environment


That’s an awesome plethora of matte painting information Milan, thanks so much!! There’s just so much history to preserve and learn from to apply to VFX work today. I’ll be adding this to the collective today.


Hi matte painters,

This is a breakdown with before and after comparisons of some of the
matte shots we did on Borgias:

…As well as a matte shot I worked on from After Earth.

Thank-you for taking a look,



This is a breakdown with before and after comparisons of some of the
matte shots we did on Borgias:

Here is another breakdown of a matte shot from After Earth:


Thanks Ken, I’ll add this, and deleted your other post for you, welcome as well!! Those are awesome CG replacements and matte paintings for SpinVFX ^_^b


That’s great Ken. Thank you for sharing. Make sure to also include any Matte Painting related videos in our Vimeo group at


I think the MP Tome of Knowledge should be like an ongoing collection of inspiring Matte Painting work. Members of the community should post their work that they are proud of as well as any Matte Painting related stuff that inspires them.
Just like Ken did for that matter. Awesome job, Ken. Nice Matte Painting breakdowns! Hope to see your new reel soon.


That’s exactly what this thread was created for Milan :slight_smile: Keep up the posts everyone, it will be consolidated up above :slight_smile: So easy and fun to use!


Here is a good article on Hudson River School paintings in context of Digital Painting techniques by Disney character designer Chris Oatley.


Wow his website is an amazing resource, and love his work. Also that post is amazing as well as the tutorials he has. Thanks for posting! Added.


You guys might enjoy hearing that they started restoring the traditional Matte Painting archives at

It is not complete but already gives access to some great previous posts.
Check it out sometime if you’re a fan of real paint; and especially Mike Pangrazio.


Michael Pangrazio…legend! Yes that’s a great forum as Milan introduced that to me earlier. Also Fabio Barretta Zungrone’s new demo reel is up, take a look here:


Thanks for this David! A lot of very cool stuff in one place! Awesome!

I have suggestion that also might be useful for reference/textures and that is deviantArt. With little bit of searching under photography a lot of nice images is possible to find. Also if in the keywords is included “stock” a lot of free stuff pops out or at price of author’s credit and link to his dA profile, so definitely worth checking out in my opinion.

Also there is livestream channel of one of my favorite artists - Levente “Levi” Peterffy. He has there quite a bit of recorded live sessions so definitely something to check out even though it’s not exactly matte painting but those skills are still absolute necessary so…Not to mention that what he recorded there is super beautiful stuff and + for free on top of that.

While i’m at live streams there is this one awesome page a recently found out -->
It shows when someone is online and painting live. The best part is that when someone is online and you like what is he/she painting there you can join in the chat and ask questions about it, discuss things between users online and the artist and all that there live.
If you click on that button “Show Complete List…” you see there a LOT of streams!

So far, for any beginner like myself, i highly recommend two guys there to check out and keep an eye if they are online. Cool thing about those guys is that unlike others they have microphone and they talk about art and their experience and not type in chat something short. Super interesting when you catch them online live!
Espen ->
JohnSilva ->

This might not be directly DMP stuff but still it is useful when learning painting. I know it is for me since i am also in the middle of learning DMP techniques.:wink:



Thanks Klaudio, great stuff! Will check it out and add to tome :slight_smile:


WHOAH Some awesome links there! Thanks for the share!


Yar np! And please feel free to add any new or relevant info here Eric. Also added your info the list of artists :slight_smile: