Strange Behavior (Illustration) Entry: Juan Pablo Monroy


Have you ever had the urge to listen to some old tango tunes while wearing a weird skull costume and wrecking havoc on everything in your vicinity? Apparently this pour soul did

I think we’ve all felt this same urge in the past few months – Don’t try to hide, ‘cause I know you know you’ve felt it!!! Haha - I knew it! This urge to destroy
.to demolish
. to act violently
to tear down
to kill? Yes, I can tell you exactly when you’ll behave like this – The next time you sit down in your studio/desk/whatever and are prepared to create a masterpiece pay close attention to your behavior. Creatively focused, hand gliding through the piece, colors mixed to perfection - yet unexpectedly you realize that the wonderfully foreshortened “Da Vinci-esque” hand that you envisioned is looking more like sharpened sausage pencils lit from the inside - Suddenly it all hits you. The rage, the anger! The creative juices stop flowing and are replaced by adrenaline – savage adrenaline. You grab the red paint and delicately start stabbing at the painting with all you’ve got and eventually realize that you’ve wasted 5 hours of your life. Angrily, you kick the canvas around while bouncing off the walls, and eventually you see a lovely costume you bought years ago and realize that it fits your current personality. And guess what? Old Tango music doesn’t sound bad either! So there it is, what to expect on your next venture into painting your ultimate vision.

Ok, so I guess we behave strangely when our creativeness isn’t up to our own standards. Some of us do the whole tango music thing, while others kill – As in “dude, you killed it!” – As in “wow, that is a total masterpiece!” People like Zara (Nemesix), Neville (nwiz25), Mathias (guterrez), Y.Soner(ashiataka), Fernando (Ferx), Gabriel (Steviewoo), Kamal (Hiun), Ralph (Korendo), Alon (AlonChou), Blaz (Ninjaa55n), Yusuf (Jeff Paradox) Axel (AxelAlonso) who are total weirdoes because they never pull out the costume or go for the red paint - instead they continue to work their piece into masterpiece status, and not only that, but they help others when they start thinking of going into this state. So thank you guys for all the helpful comments and tips, not only on my thread but also in general, because it helped everybody a lot! I can’t tell you how much I learned from watching your threads, so in a sick way this is dedicated to you guys (of course, I don’t know how crazy you guys might be). Congratulations on the finished pieces, they look amazing!


Used Photoshop for most of the piece – used a lot of filters and special effects to achieve all the decorative detail. Painter was used mainly for the paintings so that I could get that old-school painting style. In general, I was working backwards - as in detail first, composition and lighting last. With all the layers and blending modes it was 100 times easier than painting directly “traditional” style. Traditionally, this piece would’ve taken me a few months to finish.

Final image: 3636x1854 – “Death of a Painting” 2007 - Juan Pablo Monroy


harr, very cool story; indeed its less a story and more a semantic visualisation or a metaphoric view to the abstract mechanisms of the artists soul ( hell this sounds so super smart, Ill write it down and tell it someone in the Uni next week^^)
great work man, especially in this short time period
the coloring is perfect for me, the right side with the door and the grammophon and all the little details is my favorite part here
the copies of the old paintings are awesome done, very cool style and the design of the character fits perfect to the scene
my only minor crit is that the shadows on the chars back could be a bit stronger, would give him more volume I think
great job man, best wishes for the contest


Woooo, I had to pull out the dictionary on that one! haha. I’ll try and add that extra 3D-ness to the character’s back early tomorrow… thats one of the problems with procrastination! thanks for the crit man!


The weirdo in me says THANK YOU! :slight_smile: For all and for this wonderful piece and story, I really really like what you did here and the interesting and original style you used. Thanks the weirdo in you smiles made you to work in it until it reach its precious and disturbing perfection.

The closeups are great and the idea of blood and paint/oil is very sugerent, lots of details! Well done and congratulations once again for a fantastic piece Thumbs up Best of the lucks!!! Waves ¡Buena suerte! Una pieza genial, mi más sincera enhorabuena. ¡Me encanta!


[left]Hi JuanPablo[/left]
[left]love your work very much, some classic style there,[/left]
[left]and whole is beautiful,[/left]
[left] [/left]
[left]good luck[/left]
[left] [/left]


I don’t know what to say… your piece turned out to be nothing less han incredible!!! You know… of everything you have done on this painting, I have to say that personally the most favorite part in your image is the figure. You did an amazing job on the figure’s pose and expression. The figure is like a dancer, care free child, in another world mentally, and just downright odd!! BEAUTIFUL!!

An idea is a beautiful thing, and the idea behind your piece is indeed beautiful. It is great that your piece came from somewhere deep within, that makes is forever!! SUPERB my friend!!
I wish you all the Best!!!


Wheu! finally its over. All that hard work… all those hours in front of a monitor… all the passionate artists. Its great to have reached the end along with you guys!

Eventhough most of us will not come out with a prize, I think we all come out winners because of the countless amount of artistic knowhow that’s spread all over the forum. But most of all, we got to know others just like us who view things in similar ways and who were willing to help develop our artistic vocabulary and conceptual thought to the next level. It was a very inspiring, educational and humbling esperience! thanks guys.

Zara - the weirdo in me definitely kept me going! thanks for the positive comments - I’m glad you liked it and your feedback never seized to push me to work harder. And again, I’m proud to have your comments in my thread and to have shared this experience with such a great artist and person. GrACIAS! and just for the record, I was wearing the costume when I wrote this!bwahahaha!..

Alon - I’m gonna say it again… Your piece took this challenge to an entirely new level. Thanks for the comment!

Kamal - Very inspirational comment! I wish you the best too homie, and also a big thanks for all the work along the community. That takes a lot of work! and of course, a beutiful piece on your side too!

Mathias - yours is a very inspirational comment also! I really tryed to go for the fix, but couldnt find the time to do it… Now that I see it, it stands out like a sore thumb!haha. But anyways, glad you enjoyed it. And now comes the mushy part: thanks again for the helpful comments and the great piece that you’ve treated our eyes too. Very inspirational thread and lovely WIPs all the way to the final piece. Awsome work homie!


GrACIAS! and just for the record, I was wearing the costume when I wrote this!bwahahaha!..

Hahahahaha I didn’t expect anything less! The author of an strange picture, representing an strange behaviour has to remain in the same odd line, just as his public -wink- So the picture is a mirror :smiley: hehe. Thank to you as well, thanks for your gentle comments and support, and of course for this awesome piece, you’re great!


I gotta say this turned out awesome. The lighting and mood is just top notch. Good luck with the judging and I hope to see you on future competitions as well.


Hi Juan Plablo,
This is chocolate with strawberry for my eyes (I love those 2)! Love the details and the history that each element plays so well explained in here, no less than a very intelligent composition; I had to read it twice haha;) Thanks so much for the support, it’s been great to have experienced this challenge with the company of beautiful works like this one, I wish the best result, :thumbsup: and hope to keep seen you Juan! Congratulations!


hey Juan Pablo, your scene works perfect wihout this “fix”; at least this wont have fixed anything, just changed a bit after looking longer on your picture I think the lightning on the character makes it even more dreamy, ghost like...kind of astral if you like so cant wait to see you future works, your style ROCKS man!!!


hey bro! there’s just one word for all this … O U T S T A N D I N G … :eek: one of the most creative and sinfully delicious works of art i’ve seen! me imagining that your mind resembles a painting in itself … free flowing, carefree, insanely vivid! and best of all … true to itself! it was a pleasure my friend! reading your story and gorging on ur work :eek: :stuck_out_tongue: :love: its fascinating! i knew i was forgetting to add someone in my list :cry: you, nemesix and more :eek: but i know for one thing, you’ll always be ‘the painter’ who will be forever! god bless you bro! i wish you the best of the best! :thumbsup: cheers! :beer:


Thanks for the comments guys! I apprecite it.

ZARA - Thanks again! The painting is definitely a mirror at times, but dont worry, Im not crazy haha. You rock girl!

Raccoon-Dog: yeah, good luck to you as well. Thanks for the comment!

AxelAlonso: Who doesn’t love chocolate strawberries?! thanks also for the support and comments and yours was a piece I also kept going back to for inspiration. Nice job man!

Mathias: mmm… maybe, but still. yeah man, hope to see yours too. Oh, and CONGRATS - I saw your piece on CG Choice! wooo, wooo, woo!

Neville: Hey man, thanks for all the wonderful adjectives and the enthusiasm! couldnt ask for more than that. and yeah, Maybe I am kinda like the painting - just a bit crazy - hahaha. Awesome piece on your side too! love the rendering, love the lighting, love celine!

thanks guys, best of luck!


Pablo buddy, I’m so sorry I couldn’t post until now, these days have been carazy here, and internet isn’t helping either.

Well your picture is great, I feel like going on a killing spree everytime my stylus acts funny, but I guess that’s not exactly the same, or is it? :smiley:
I think you did great! I have a feeling for masked characters like that, and the broom/brush makes me shudder, cool!
And then is your question. well, let me get it right, i was going to explain the process now but I’m not very good at it so the result was quite hard to understand, Once I put this mess in order and clear I will post it for you, hopefully tomorrow, with a couple pictures to make it easier (for me) :smiley:

Have nice post-challenge days, beeing sure you rocked!!:thumbsup::thumbsup::thumbsup:


Hey no problem homie! It just intrigued me how you did that jackedt thread - But no hurry or preassure man, we all got stuff to do beyond posting, right:) Seriously, your piece really stood out from the first sketches so I just wanna thank you for the inspiration - I definitely got more questions in my arsenal but I’ll condence them into one short 10 word thing.haha! thanks man


HI Juan!HEy congratz on finishing a great pic man.Love it and love the strange factor you brought in there!Wish you all the best and hope to see nex time around again!Cheers!


Thanks man. yeah definitely! We’re all waiting for the anouncement of the next topic right!


Here I am to Finally answer your question about the fabric texture, I’m really sorry it took me this long, but here it comes…

First let me tell you I didn’t do it manually, it is a scanned texture, but it wasn’t either a filter or a layer effect, these always tend to flatten your painted work instead of boosting it, so I went for the do-it-yourself, and it fits better…

I had to work four different layers since the texture takes many directions, if you’ll add the effect to the pants of your character maybe one layer for every leg will do. this is how they were distributed:

If I used the same piece of texture to cover all the front arm I would have to twist the texture too much and it would have lost all of its sharpness so it was better to separate the two segments.
BTW the texture I had it from a project long ago that demanded lots and lots of texture maps scanned, I keep em’ ever since, I think it is the scan of a piece of doormat (I don’t remember well, and I had the great idea of naming all those files progressive numbers instead of what the texture was, and since they are filtered and grayscaled, it’s hard to tell now), but scaling it down it looks like the thick knit fabric effect I was looking for, who’d know!:cool:

Now here is a little step by step:

1,the texture layers I used are set in OVERLAY mode at some 30% opacity, I take here a piece of the texture and free transform it to whatever the size I want the texture to appear, this part is all up to your taste, then I take the square and place it in the general direction of that area, AND BEFORE confirming your transformation…

2,… Go up to the option bar and switch to WARP mode, this was new to me just a while ago, mostly because I didn’t notice the damn icon next to the ‘check’ one, but now I use it all the time!:smiley: it’s much better than Liquify in that it doesn’t smudge the deformed section all that much, and the method is a bit more precise too. Once you give the texture sample a little volume and flow you can hit enter and apply the transformation, I suggest you to do it until now because this way you keep the corner nodes right at the corners of your sample, otherwise it turns harder to manipulate the warp mode.

3, Now that you have it warped you can trim the texture to the shape of your area, if you have it in a separate layer this will take a second.
4, You can distort it a bit more in liquify, like I did in the big fold at bottom right, don’t use too much strokes or the texture won’t survive the process.
You can even notice how in that zone the texture blurred a bit, but it was worth it to get it more in the shape of the sleeve, anyway, you can add some sharpen tool pass afterwards to fix it a bit. (if you notice something different from the previous steps it is because this is the actual layer used, the others were a quick remaking of the process, so nevermind ).

5, Once adjusting your layer settings this will be the result. As always that overlay effect is a bit messy and can alter the original values of your painted work depending on the black-white amounts of the sampled texture, so it’s always good to re adjust them having the texture on top, so it will look as close as the original painted work. you can also use a soft eraser to dim the texture in some zones or darken it in others, that helps tho make it feel more natural.

Well this is it, I hope it’s clear enough, and if it’s not, just let me know, As I said before I’m not very good at explaining things, still, feel completely free to ask anything, It was a pleasure to lend some help.:beer:

Greetings Homie! and best Luck in the coming days! … Damn, when do they plan to announce the winners??:curious:


superb painting. and I love your sketches a lot. great work :applause:


Thanks Gabriel! thats awsome, thanks for the very thorough and helpful tutorial.

Thanks Henry! do you have a Strange Behavior post also?