don't stop imaging

Video Game Self Portrait

Today I started my art final. We haven’t exactly been given the assignment yet, but because I know exactly what I want to do (and that it will take me a long while to do it), I put in three hours tonight. Dr. Beidler approved the project on the condition that I make a process log. So here I go.

It’s amazing to take art history and drawing at the same time. Oddly, I enjoy Romantic literature and music, so it shouldn’t have been surprising that when we started the genre today I would feel inspired. My two favorite pieces that we covered so far will definitely influence the layout of this piece.

Thomas Cole: Dream of Arcadia

Caspar David Friedrich: Wanderer Above the Sea of Fog

They look epic enough to be in a game, right?

To do this self portrait, I am using a picture, a wacom tablet, and Photoshop CS5. The tablet plugs into my Mac which allows me to draw straight into my computer. The photo that I’ve decided to work off is from my recent trip to Williamsburg, Virginia:

Posing with Thomas Jefferson

I imported this picture into Photoshop, then started laying out the core features of my and TJ’s body. I think I’m going to make TJ a giant.

Basic form

Layout without background image

I next started to turn this into a line drawing. This was the most challenging part thus far, because I was making up clothes for myself and how they would fit me. I pulled inspiration from my favorite game, Dragon Age: Origins.


I zoomed in up to 300% to make sure that everything connected (essential for color, which I will add later) and that there weren’t any extra lines. I mixed the opacity of the original figure drawing and photo to make the final product its own. I removed my glasses because when I imagine myself I don’t see myself wearing them.

Using the figural drawing.

I’m finished with the line drawing of myself as a hero right now… and I’m pretty pleased with how it looks. There is a lot to go with this image though!

I am a hero.


Comments on: "Video Game Self Portrait" (3)

  1. Ha ha! This is fantastic! I love the second painting, and what you’ve done so far.

    Oh, and love that photo you’re working with. My compliments to the photographer : )

  2. And ‘poof!’, she’s an action figure! Looks great. I loved reading about the process.

  3. I used this drawing as a study in the use of line…There is no shading in the drawing but notice that just the lines alone can convey the three-dimensional quality of the shoes. ….Joe Pass Jazz guitarist 1929-1994 All of these drawings were done confidently and quickly which accounts for their expressive-ness……..Notice the very few lines used to capture the likeness and the expression of legendary guitarist Django Reinhardt.The irony is that simplicity like this is difficult to do until you have practised using . Here I have captured the essence of the portrait by drawing only the most important lines and leaving out the rest.It is an important first step that you reduce your subject to its basic essence.

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