Tag Archives: background layout


Great Forest thumbnails


Thumbnails are integral to my design process. I like to explore the possibilities before I start. References play a huge role in my thumbnail explorations. I look at color, texture, values and composition in photo references and distill my thumbnails down to the basic essence of what I see.

Composition Study


Some analysis for a recent composition I worked on. When constructing a background environment it’s really important to provide depth, contrast, narrative, and a focal point. Have a look at the example below for my analysis.

Two for One


I created these yesterday. My background layouts are influenced by the talented Maurice Noble and old Warner Bros. cartoons.

Art Process: Abandoned Home


Another lighting study using an initial digital pencil sketch to work out the layout, focal point and overall composition. Below is the final image. Black and white contrast check was up to snuff so I’m pleased overall with how this turned out. -Krishna

Art: Bridge to Nowhere


This was another background design exercise using Photoshop and the lasso tool. It took me about 30 minutes to create the finished piece. And in the process, I developed a much better grasp of Photoshop’s mask tool. Experimentation is the key to learning! Monochrome version: Final version: -Krishna

Process: On the Prairie


Color has a tendency to fool the eye into thinking that the contrast levels are okay. The best method I’ve found to insure that there is sufficient contrast is to take an existing image and convert to grayscale. By looking at the tonal values alone, without the distraction of color, I can see if the range of dark to light shades provide sufficient contrast. A poor tonal range will yield grayscale values that are very close to one another. A good tonal range will have areas of high and low contrast to balance the composition’s midtone grayscale values. Below is […]

Process: Another Egyptian Interior: Color Flats and Final


I wrapped up another ancient Egyptian background this evening. I debated as to whether or not to leave the broken pot from the pencils (below) in the final piece. In the end, I decided against it because it would draw too much attention from the eerie mood I am trying to establish. Is an illustration ever “complete”? For me, it is. Onward to the next adventure!