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water tricks?

Discussion in 'Artwork help and showcase for newbies' started by ammovet, Sep 4, 2020.


  1. ammovet

    ammovet Young Tutorling

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    Hey all,

    I've got a question about painting water. I'm new here so go easy on me but, I've been wanting to attempt still water with flames reflecting in water. I've looked all over you tub and the web for advice to no avail. Looked here too. I've included a pic link of something similar. I'm not new to painting just an airbrush. Any tips and tricks or points in right direction would be greatly appreciated.


    [​IMG]
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  2. Ronald art

    Ronald art Air-Valve Autobot! Very Likeable!

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    first thing that came to mind when I saw that ref photo was : paint what you see but I dont think that answer will help you so let me try to explain
    lets take the photo you posted and have a good look at all the colors you see next thing you look at are all the shapes as the reflection is nothing more than just shapes and colors
    the "easy" way to paint this is to trace the photo to your substrate in all its details and if your substrate is black you use white paint to paint all the shapes
    you can do this as a monochrome were you keep an eye on the shades or as a solid white and free hand the colors you see
    you will find that painting fire is hard to get it right if you paint what you think you know but it gets easier if you really paint what you see and the same goes for reflections
    I hope this helps a bit
  3. DaveG

    DaveG Airbush Analyst Very Likeable!

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    If you have accurate reference, it will help - the photo above is quite good. If you don't, spend some time looking at other references to get a good feel for how the colors and shapes behave. Maybe even do a few quick pencil sketches to map out what you will be doing once you get into applying color.

    Next thing - turn off your brain. You are not painting a reflection on water - you are painting colors and shapes. Just the same as if you were painting stripes on a tiger, spots on a leopard, or the pattern on a butterflies wings, the "reflections of the flames on water" are nothing more than colors and shapes. It is the rest of the image that will give them context. Loose paper masks, or hand held shields may be of use in getting the colors applied in the shapes you require.
    Last edited: Sep 4, 2020
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  4. Ronald art

    Ronald art Air-Valve Autobot! Very Likeable!

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    I am with Dave when it comes to turning of your brain but I forgot to add 1 real important thing : your paint need to be real transparent in order to get the transitions and blending just right and keep it soft
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  5. Squishy

    Squishy Queen Clown Slayer Very Likeable!

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    Yes to what everyone else has said lol.

    Def trans paints, and layers is the key. If you are using waterbased on a black background, then lay down your first layer in opaque white to map it all out first. Then come in with the trans colours.
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