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1 The idea for the main volume is quickly applied onto a gradient background. Starting with a full background gives a mid-tone which can be darkened and lightened gradually, giving more control. A couple of quick masks are used for glass and grille areas.
3 Some more volumes are added to the front and a colour overlay is added with pale yellow and blue. It is often useful to render your design as back-lit because this will produce strong highlights and reflections on the sillhouette of the vehicle.
4 Taking a flat, textured custom brush more defenition is added. A more solid shadow grounds the vehicle and helps decide on the direction of the primary light source. Black airbrush is applied on an overlay layer in the areas that will be dark from now on.
5 Having decided that this proposal needs even more attitude, some aggressive graphics are put in which will also contain the headlamps. Some more appropriately scaled wheels and arches are roughed in.
6 Using tonal variations of the background a textured brush is used to form the rear of the truck cab. Since the light source has been decided some is cast onto the ground and onto the wheel detail.
7 With a coarse hair brush the edges are softened by merging the background tones with the tones of the vehicle. This is a technique of portrait artists such as John Singer Sargant who observed that often there is no sharp line where foreground objects meet the background but more of a seamless blend. This is what gives much of the softness to the final image.
8 More dramatic lighting is added at this stage along with some grille features and headlamps. The general form of the bodywork is sharpened up a little and the wheel is reworked to a dished directional design. An orange glow is shown reflected in the far edge. Showing light hitting the edges of the form enhances it. You may have found this to be true for photography or computer rendering also.
9 Further sharpening, tyre detail, a badge and some refinement of the edges is done at this stage. A gradient overlay is applied left to right to add depth to the background and more overall contrast to the image. Although it's placement is clear, the rear wheel is left as a suggestion to enhance the feeling of sharp focus at the front and soft focus at the rear. This is another way of adding depth.
10 A door shutline and an extra bodyside feature is added which forms a rearward fin which, incidentally, works aerodynamically together with the adjustable "ears" to optimise airflow over the trailer and also function as airbrakes (inspired by the Fastech 360 bullet train).
2 Sharp reflections on the bodyside, which are slightly at odds with the feel of the sketch, are softened and blended to make the surfaces easier to read. Some light is thrown onto details around the grille and a suggestion of a driver and dashboard is added using a dark colour on an overlay layer. The headlamp pods are toned down and given a top surface and highlights are applied to the bodywork. The last thing added is another overlaid airbrushing of bronze colour to the bottom half of the vehicle. This creates the impression of earth tones being reflected in the bodywork which blend into the blue tones of the sky. Click on the image to the left for an enlargement.

 

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