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Tiger's tail

Discussion in 'Airbrush References!' started by beginner-James, Jul 7, 2018.


  1. beginner-James

    beginner-James Mac-Valve Maestro! Very Likeable!

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    I'm nearly ready to start painting. my very first airbrush art.
    I really can't believe I've not rushed in and started painting but I'm really still researching painting how to reproduce realistic hair well research will only get me so far so it's time to start however I do have a question.

    my background in my reference is snow.
    How do I go about reproducing the snow as my background do I treat the majority of it a clouds.
    anyway hear is the image tiger in snow 5x7.jpg
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  2. Malky

    Malky Pencil Pushing Protagonist Very Likeable!

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    This is way too complicated a piece for a complete newbie to make a start with, no one no matter how skilled or talented is going to be able to guide you through this in a single post, I regret to say that without the usual practice routines and studying the rest us have to start with you are doomed to failure.

    However as far as the snow goes, the easiest and usual way to deal with this is to completely forget that it is snow, if you paint, it won't be snow, it will be series of of shapes and textures that when positioned correctly will have the appearance of something resembling snow, it is common practice to for each of us to study an image and find all these shapes and textures and subsequently place them in their correct positions, when done like that the snow will appear on it's own, this rule applies you everything you try to paint including the fur on your tiger, to show you what I mean, cut a square about an inch wide/high in the middle of a piece of A4 paper, place this paper over any part of your tiger's fur, instead of seeing fur all you will see is an arrangement of lines in various colours and shades, this is why practicing dots, lines and dagger strokes is so important, every successful painting is merely a composition of dots, lines, daggers, shapes, micro shapes, textures, colours and shades of all colours present, all these these placed in such a way that they closely represent the image you are trying emulate.

    Unfortunately, and I don't mean to be rude but you are trying to run before you can crawl, while I could talk you through the whole process of both the snow and the tiger, until you reach a level where you can understand what you're being taught I would be wasting my time as would anyone else, if yiu are determined to proceed without the necrssary practice that was advised before taking on such a piece, the SBS section of the forum is your best bet.

    In a nutshell, there are a multitude of things you need to know and learn before tackling a painting, the rest us including the pros will choose a subject or reference and study it in order to make a plan of attack, and even before we do that we learn all about our equipment, paints and reductions, compressors, substrates and other tools so the we know how it all works together, unless you are a born natural, these are things you should be studying in your first few months si tgat yiu at least have the muscle memory to tackleca painting.

    When Jackie suggested that you should do a painting if you, I know for sure she did not mean you should forget about practice altogether and do something as intricate as your tiger, she really meant do your practice and do some doodling with skulls and such like we all did just break the monotony while you learn the basics.

    I hope none of this offends you but there isn't a single one of us who bought an airbrush, took it out the box and produced a piece if work identicle to your photo above.
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  3. markjthomson

    markjthomson AKA QuickDraw and very happy #nobrushleftbehind Staff Member Mod

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    What @Malky said.

    Another approach would be to find a couple of things in the image you like (say the eye...) and do that. Trust me, it will be challenge enough. Then perhaps pick some fur, and do that.

    There is heaps of youtube on fur, that is a good reference as well! Check out Mick Neil https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCzko8i2gmmsJa41PWEKIp_Q

    And of course airbrushtutor has useful stuff on his channel!
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  4. huskystafford

    huskystafford Needle chucking Ninja

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    I was waiting for someone to reply to this thread :D

    Picture is phenomenal, I know there are bunch of guys here who could do this picture, but they are usually the ones who are competing in the picture of the month topics :D I didn't wont to write first in this thread, but when I seen your post and picture I was like: Damn this guy must be pro. We got another pro on forum -.-

    Malky explained very nicely everything. I would love to do piece like that one day, but I get it I am very far from this kinda work. I needed to up my game, cause my basics are bad, so I did. I make 2 pictures per day as a practise. Not like this one off course. Simple ones, the ones where I can practise dagger strokes,blends and so on. And I am noticing I am getting better and faster.

    I would assume your basics are good if you wanna try picture like that. But just in case you need to work on your basics *I went to check your introduction* lol
    here is a guy which I like:

    link will get you to his how to basics stuff playlist. There are plenty of good videos on you tube including few of our members have them.

    hm link to playlist doesn't work, but you will end up on his channel.... Check his tutorials for starters.
    Last edited: Jul 8, 2018
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  5. JackEb

    JackEb The Dragon Hunter Staff Member Admin

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    @Malky. I love you, you know that but I’m going to play devils advocate here, because I’m in that sort of a mood lol

    I agree that James needs to attain a certain amount of knowledge so that he will understand what we are trying to teach him:
    Is he going to attain that by doing dots and daggers for a few weeks and doodling the odd skull? He may better understand about paint flow and psi, but is he going to understand when someone starts discussing erasing/scratching - probably not.

    I could go on for a few pages BUT when I said to James that maybe jumping in headfirst and doing a picture could work for him I mean exactly that. Was I thinking of something like a tiger, no. But maybe tigers are what James loves so he will put more effort into doing it.


    James, as long as you are not expecting the Airbrush to paint the tiger for you and that you don’t have expectations of it being a photo realistic replic of your reference then go for it. It will show you how much you do know and how much more you need to learn.

    Use Malky’s suggestion above of cutting a window in a piece of paper in order to isolate what you see. Because if you paint what you see, not what you think you see you will be on your way.

    The only thing I would suggest to you is that you pick a piece of your reference and do that rather than the whole thing, which can be a little daunting!

    Maybe something like this —
    At the size you are considering doing this will give A LOT of dots and daggers progress lol

    5DBCD496-CA00-44C7-A253-7A0E618C8916.jpeg
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  6. Jurien72

    Jurien72 Have Airbrush - Will Travel!

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    Im gonna jump in with Jackie here and say go for it dude!!! :thumbsup: The important concept here is that you are aware of what you are up against. In other words, can you handle it if it ends up looking nothing like a tiger? You might just surprise yourself...
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  7. beginner-James

    beginner-James Mac-Valve Maestro! Very Likeable!

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    I totally agree with malky and yes this is a big big ask for me BUT inch by inch it's not that bad and maybe that is what is holding all beginners back they look at the hole image and panic to start with. why can't I first enjoy the journey of learning while I'm painting. I'm under no elusion it's a hard first image but if it's taken inch by inch layer by layer it's with in all our reach I'm not expecting to come pleat this tiger in a week or to it's a 6 month plus project im sure.

    example first stage is a very light shading of burnt Sienna so that's my first set of practice, work on that until I'm happy with it, then apply it to my painting. Im not expecting a photo realistic painting but some where close to a painting of a tiger.

    Malky thank you for your brut force comments and Jackie thank you for the encouragement I'm determined to show you both how wrong and right you are lol
    Beginner-James
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  8. markjthomson

    markjthomson AKA QuickDraw and very happy #nobrushleftbehind Staff Member Mod

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    lol... and of course there are plenty of us here who dive right in and learn! Both Malky and Jackie will be the first to say enjoy yourself!
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  9. JackEb

    JackEb The Dragon Hunter Staff Member Admin

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    Oh yeah .....

    First rule of this forum “Have fun”
    Right alongside ‘spread the love’
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  10. beginner-James

    beginner-James Mac-Valve Maestro! Very Likeable!

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    Having fun is all i know.
    I have spent more time researching airbrushing than watching TV
    I have more than most beginner in the way of knowledge i used to be a repo manager for a printting company ive worked with colour all my life art at school was one of my best subjects O'level and then my Sister pinched it for her coursework (like her style lol)
    I've got all the info on technique i think i need two good air brushes coming in the post.
    The only hurdle i can see is ME not putting in the practice needed for the stage I'm at i have a colour wheel coming a paint chart for the Golden high flow paint, a paint mixing book plus a pantone swatch book. Cups and bottles to mix in rubber, knives fibreglass to scratch with lights to light up my painting area lots o papper to practice on by the way this was the first item I invested in. Over three days of videos down loaded for viewing more pencils you can throw at a cat you co3ever need ( not that i have anything against cats lol) but the most important thing is time and patience. But most importantly a forum to help and guide me

    Beginner-James
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  11. markjthomson

    markjthomson AKA QuickDraw and very happy #nobrushleftbehind Staff Member Mod

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    Golden has some good off the shelf colors for that one. For the black... add some transparent blue to the shading grey (1:5 is good) and don't use carbon black.
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  12. Jurien72

    Jurien72 Have Airbrush - Will Travel!

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    I have this idea that you are really going to amaze us... or you're just bat-poop crazy lol. Yup just have fun with it and don't get discouraged!
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  13. Malky

    Malky Pencil Pushing Protagonist Very Likeable!

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    It's not a hard first task if you know what your doing, clearly from your last two posts you've done a bit more investigating than you led us to believe, so you have more of a chance than I first thought, practice of all the techniques you will need to employ with this is essential, the point of all the dots, lines and daggers is to teach you how to control your airbrush and build muscle memory it will also let you know what your brush can and can't do so that you can proceed with your work without having to think about any of it, I wish you luck with it, but have you noticed that as yet no one has told you how to do the snow which was in fact your original question in this thread?

    It is definitely all about having fun but I know first hand what a piece the size James wants to attempt can do to the soul, I've suffered the mental fatigue it causes when jumping in with both feet and eyes shut, with so much going wrong week after week, I did a tiger on a canvas 4 feet by 3 feet in my first year at this with little knowledge, I completed the painting in 6 weeks and was a wreck at the end of it, I didn't lift my equipment again for a further 3 months after that, and that is the very thing I was hoping to avert here, bitter disappointment is no fun at all, I've learned that lesson more times than I care to divulge.

    James, on this forum those of us with a little experience of any kind like to try to prevent beginners suffer the pitfalls we did, any advice you get is generally based on our own personal experiences so that you don't have to suffer the same disappointments we did, how that advice is used (or not used) is up to the individual.
    Last edited: Jul 8, 2018
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  14. Jurien72

    Jurien72 Have Airbrush - Will Travel!

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    Thats basically what I was trying to say... You have to understand the risks and be willing to accept defeat. Some people just can't handle it and they give up thinking that it's impossible. I tend to have good luck diving in head first because I don't see it as failure- I look at the knowledge I gained as a positive experience. Who gives a crap about the finished product? Thats not the point at this stage of the game. But not everyone feels that way. A friend of mine actually asked me why I dont quit airbrushing cuz I suck so bad? Im like how is quitting going to help me get better? So yeah its all about your outlook and attitude!
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  15. basepaint

    basepaint Air-Valve Autobot! Very Likeable!

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    About all I would add is get some terrislate paper as it will help in the scratching and erasing as the stuff is tuff
    And will take some of the trouble out of doing fur also if you mess up you can wash off the paint and try again!
  16. Malky

    Malky Pencil Pushing Protagonist Very Likeable!

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    How easy is it to find teraslate paper 4 feet x 4 feet?, that's how big he plans to do this.
  17. beginner-James

    beginner-James Mac-Valve Maestro! Very Likeable!

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    malky I hardly think 20"x 30" is 4x4 feet B2 is the size I think lol
    on holiday so internet is a bit dodgy
    Beginner-James
  18. Malky

    Malky Pencil Pushing Protagonist Very Likeable!

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    Even so I believe teraslate paper is only available in A4 size, I've looked around for it and can't find it any bigger.
  19. beginner-James

    beginner-James Mac-Valve Maestro! Very Likeable!

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    that's right Malky I can't find it any bigger than A4.
    for this project I am using illustration board as that was what was recommended but in the next image I'm going to make clayboad with MDF if I do Malky would you like a board producing for you at the same time just postage will be required

    Beginner-James
  20. twood

    twood Elite Member! Elite Member! Very Likeable!

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    I would like to try different substrates at some point and after reading this about Terraslate, I started to search the interweb and is the paper you are talking about?...or are there alot of different types?
    https://terraslatepaper.com/collections/all
    I used to print on something like this but under another name.
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