You have to register before you can post on our site.



Latest Threads
A guild games (for real this time)
Last Post: Zlinka
05-20-2020 06:34 PM
» Replies: 1
» Views: 3399
Alliance-Horde pet exchange
Last Post: Zlinka
05-16-2020 07:11 AM
» Replies: 3
» Views: 2800
Last Post: Zlinka
05-14-2020 02:51 PM
» Replies: 1
» Views: 2599
Last Post: Zlinka
05-07-2020 05:13 PM
» Replies: 1
» Views: 2805
Last Post: Zlinka
04-22-2020 07:17 AM
» Replies: 3
» Views: 3809

Who's Online
There are currently no members online.

Creating Art
(OOC) I've seen some very creative work here on the ironsong site and I was wondering how I might make a picture myself. If any of you artists could tell me of a good program and how I would get it I would be very appreciative and if I ever come up with something good I'd be sure to share it.
((There are a couple variables - what you want to do, what you're starting with, and what you have access to/what you're willing to spend.

Photoshop is pretty much the standard, as far as most people are concerned. Just about any type of flat art (that is, 'art not incorporating 3D modeling and rendering techniques,' not 'art that appears flat or two-dimensional') - from photo manipulation to vector drawing to simple coloring of scanned documents - can be done with Photoshop. Of course, if you want to do only one of those things, there are other options that may be better or less expensive for that particular thing. If, however, you find that you may wish to work with an array of media, or simply want the option open to you, then a version of Photoshop would be what I reccommend.

There are lighter versions available for casual users... something likePhotoshop Elements, which is (relatively) cheap. It is more geared toward ordinary photo manipulation and document cleanup than line art, but can certainly be made to do many of the basic things a line artist would like to do. If you are interested in using photoshop to, say, clean up already-drawn pictures or painting, this would be the way to go.

If you wish for power, the current version of Photoshop is Photoshop CS2. The very-slightly older Photoshop CS is still very good, and does almost everything the current version does. I would caution you that they are both very expensive, if all you want to do is this. If you like art and feel you would use it, then it's a worthwhile investment (I looooove Photoshop), but it's just that, an investment.

I know there are a lot of other programs out there, but Photoshop is pretty much what I use. Recently, I've been emphasizing line art - like the picture of Zema - which hasn't required any digital tinkering to get to that stage. If you want to do that sort of thing, then you would likely be better investing in a how-to-draw book or three, some good pens and a scanner. Depending on your level or sophistication and desired style, you'll want different how-to books. The How-To-Draw Manga series (and related books) is quite useful. The Bodies and Anatomy, Occult and Horror, and Costume Encylopedias are great for WoW-type art (and although I don't have this one, I think the book on lllustrating Battles would fit in quite well with the genre). If you want something more realistic or in-depth as far as artistic thought and technique goes, you might want something more along the lines of Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain.

Er.... that lengthy tangent over: photoshop is good for lots of manipulation, but it helps to know what you want to do.

*laughs* I'm as verbose as Cora is.

-SWC Coranda))
(( Coranda gave some excellent information! It really does come down to how much you are willing to spend and what type of art you enjoy.

Aside from the programs you need, you must also consider the mechanics of how to draw/paint using the computer. The most inexpensive way is of course with the mouse. Unfortunately, this is nearly impossible for many people when doing detailed work like hair, etc. So, you will probably need a drawing tablet which lets you draw directly into the machine. The best and most widely used brand is Wacom.

A large size tablet is not as important as it might seem, and you will wonder how you lived without one when you get used to it! You might consider shopping used on Ebay too. Be careful, though. With my tablet, I've managed to put a very tiny nick into it, and it causes problems each time I pass over it. So, personally, I'd be scared to buy used, but I know others who have been very happy with their purchase.

As Coranda mentioned, you can use 3D art or 2D (drawing/painting) for your images. There are good and bad points to each. Here are some things I've discovered.

3D Art

-Programs are moderately to extremely expensive.

-They take massive amounts of system resources and are non-intuitive to learn.

-3D has inherant problems which will ruin your images unless you do post work in Photoshop or a similar program. For instance, joints are almost never right the first time. You'll see the tell-tale 3D joint bend which just puts my teeth on edge when I see it. ::chuckles::

-However, 3D can provide you with very decent, realistic images if you are new to art.

-Post work might possibly be done with a mouse, so a tablet is not entirely necessary (but it will make your life easier).

2D Art

- A tablet is pretty much mandatory for drawing in 2D. I've seen one artist who did amazing work with a mouse, but she is definitely not the norm! Big Grin

-A scanner is helpful when working with 2D. It is extremely difficult to draw directly into the computer and keep the lines clean and sharp. This is especially true if you are working with large, high resolution images. Most people I've noticed will do a traditional sketch, scan it in, then color it in Photoshop or some other program.

-With 2D art, you are not as limited as with 3D. If you enjoy sketching, this may be the way to go for you.

Art Programs

Here are some links to programs and resources which might help you. For the programs, I'll list them from least expensive to ...um...very!
Big Grin


Daz Studio 3D (Available with a free version I think. They still get ya with all the addons you will need, though.)

Poser 6 Fairly expensive after all the addons you will need. Also, buggy and difficult to use. I've used it for awhile and have a love/hate (mostly hate) relationship with it.

You can also google more professional programs which will cost several thousand each. Some names to look for are

3DS Max


Corel Paint Shop Pro A decent little program for only $99.00. I've seen some very fine work produced with this. It doesn't have the bells and whistles of Photoshop, though.

Corel Painter 9 On sale for $329. An amazing program geared toward the traditional artist. Personally, I found it difficult as many of the tools/keys/brushes were very different from Photoshop, so I was constantly frowning and hunting for what I wanted. But, for someone used to traditional art, they give you pastels, oils, acrylics, inks, pencil, even crayon, and more. The settings allow for wet/dry/medium paint on the brushes etc. Really, really great program if you have the patience to work with it. Big Grin It is the closest thing you can have to traditional art on your computer.

Photoshop This is pretty much the standard in digital art/photography, but the newest version is expensive. I use CS2 and adore it. I have upgraded over the years, but I know lots of people who are producing professional work with older versions. Many still use Photoshop 7. If you decide to buy an older version used, be aware that many of the cool brushes people are making for the program might not work on your older version. That said, many of the brushes people make aren't really necessary, so an older version might be the way to get started on a budget.


There are many great artist communities out there. Some are more supportive than others. The best I know of is Norraths Studio. These are people who play EQ (and WoW and other games) and are artists. Some are professional and some aren't, but they all give very valuable insight to works posted on the board. It's a great place to learn (there is an extensive library) and get feedback on your work.

I hope this helps, and I really didn't mean it to be so long! ))
((Thanks for the information. It looks like I should of thought about this before Christmas. I think I'll probably buy a scanner since drawing and paper is what I'm use to. Do you know of any free programs that I can use to do the colouring? Oh and how much would a scanner cost if your looking for the cheapest thing that will actually work?
For scanners, I'm just not sure. I really like the Epson scanners, but they can get expensive.

The most important thing is to be sure that whatever you pick scans in at a minimum of 300dpi. More is better. I bought my first scanner "new" off ebay for 25 dollars. :roll: It was a pain, but it worked until I could afford something better. So that might be an option...shopping auctions.

As for free coloring programs, I'm not sure there are any. You could check out the shareware sites, but I would worry about spyware. You might be able to get an inexpensive older copy of Photoshop off Amazon or Ebay, though.
((okay sounds good even though it will probably be a while before I buy something after Christmas))

Forum Jump:

Users browsing this thread: 1 Guest(s)
This forum uses Lukasz Tkacz MyBB addons.