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8 posts from June 2009

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

The Artists' Specials Series

ArtistSpecial2

When I find something educational and entertaining, I'll be the first to share it with you here.  After yesterday's post, I had several readers ask about a Winslow Homer movie after a reply I had made to my friend Beth in the comments.  We have a set of movies called The Artists' Specials Series that we have enjoyed time and time again.  Whenever I want inspiration, I pull out one or two of the movies.  I originally saw these specials on HBO about 4 years ago and immediately went online to purchase the movies.  They were that good.  Here are the movies that are in the Artists' Specials Series ... 



MonetShadowandLight

Monet, Light & Shadow; 

The story of Claude Monet starts at the very beginning of the Impressionist movement, in 1869. In a small town on the banks of the Seine outside Paris, Monet is experimenting with his revolutionary new painting style. He is passionate about color, light, and nature, and he and his friend Pierre-Auguste Renoir spend long days perfecting their canvasses as shimmering reflections of the local landscapes.

Monet has little success selling his works, but he remains an optimist. He is also very proud and extremely committed to his art, so much so that his rich father cuts him off from his only source of income, a family allowance.   Luckily Monet has a friend in an aspiring young artist Daniel, who is the son of his landlady.   Daniel also has mixed feelings about his own father, who he believes has run off to Avignon to paint.  Monet gradually becomes both a mentor and father-figure in the boy's life, as Daniel will even skip school to accompany Monet on his painting excursions.  This greatly dismays the boy's mother, who has just evicted Monet from the inn with great fanfare, but when Daniel finally learns the truth—that his father has abandoned him—Monet is the only one who can reach through to him.  Though they both feel like giving up, together they see through these difficult times and in doing so they teach each other the importance of holding on to goals and dreams.

54 minutes, Color



MaryCassattAmericanImpressionist

Mary Cassatt American Impressionist; 

This story is of American painter Mary Cassatt during her time in Paris in the last century.  She was one of the first female Impressionists and an American.  She became a close friend of the great artist Edgar Degas and this movie tells a tale of how they might have met in Paris.

 

Cassatt is an intelligent, charming and fiercely independent artist with an orderly life in Paris, until her brother and his wife arrive unexpectedly with their three unruly children. Though at first dreading the presence of the children, Cassatt soon finds herself inspired by them and even uses them as models. Her teenage niece Katherine, who believes that getting married is essential to positioning oneself in society, plays matchmaker between Cassatt and Edgar Degas. Though the match is not meant to be, Cassatt's feminist ideals greatly influence Katherine and change her life forever and for the better. Likewise, the influence of the children softens Cassatt and inspires her to renew stronger contact with her family back home in America


Many of her paintings were influenced by her nieces and nephews and children though she had none of her own.

56 minutes, Color



DegasandtheDancer

Degas and the Dancer; 

The story finds the great painter Edgar Degas in a time of crisis following the death of his father.  Saddled with debt and struggling to survive, he derives unexpected inspiration from an aspiring young ballerina named Marie.

 

Degas helps Marie tap into the incredible talent she doesn't believe she has, especially when compared to her beautiful and confident sister Pauline, who is also a ballerina.  At the same time, Marie convinces Degas to persevere in the face of relentless criticism from the Parisian art establishment.  In the hours they spend together as artist and model, they become friends and confidantes, finding in each other what they most need to move forward and follow their dreams.


I absolutely love this movie, and this one is probably my favorite of them all.

55 minutes, Color



GoyaAwakenedinaDream

Goya Awakened in a Dream; 

The story opens with young Rosarita helping her mother, Leocadia, find a new home where she can work as a housekeeper. A run-in with the artist Francisco de Goya at the local church turns out to be a blessing. Enchanted by Rosarita's artistic talent, Goya agrees to hire Leocadia.

 

When Goya turns gravely ill, it is Rosarita who has the most faith. Just when it seems that the great artist no longer has the strength to continue, she convinces him to keep fighting. Recovered and with new found inspiration, Goya begins an ambitious work directly on the walls of his dining room, a series of fourteen works collectively known as The Black Paintings.

55 minutes, Color



WinslowHomerAnAmericanOriginal

Winslow Homer an American Original;

The film is set in 1874, by which time Winslow Homer had seen and recorded enough of the horrors of the Civil War. Leaving the battlefield and his post as illustrator for Harpers' Weekly behind, he is at Houghton Farm to be alone, refocus, and paint. Breathing in the fresh air, he sets up his easel at the nearby river, but he is soon discovered by two young children. The children are fascinated with Homer and his art and he has no choice but to show them his studio, reluctantly.  Homer asks them to be his models. The two youngsters together with Homer eventually share the truth about their lives and what the war has done to their families, and to themselves. Through their ability to share their feelings, and to escape the fear and shadows of the Civil War, all three of them discover that the present has more to offer than the ghosts of their past.


49 minutes, Color




Rembrandt

Rembrandt Fathers and Sons.  

The film is set in 1614, when Rembrandt is the portrait painter of choice for Amsterdam's bourgeoisie, thanks in part to his well-connected and beautiful young wife Saskia. However, he soon finds himself caught up in the trials of his young neighbor Samuel, who is locked in a fierce adolescent rebellion against his father, the respected Rabbi Menasseh Ben Israel. Samuel refuses to become a scholar like his father, so as a compromise, Rembrandt and the pregnant Saskia, propose that Samuel become a studio apprentice. The arrangement brings an unexpected surprise when Rembrandt learns that the boy's true talent lies in the art of printing.   Through his friendship with Rembrandt, Samuel has found his future vocation and the courage to accept his family heritage. Samuel's struggle reveals to Rembrandt just how much he feels constrained by artistic conventions and leads him to follow his heart and alter the history of painting with his magnificent works.

53 minutes, Color

All of these movies were created for the benefit of children that they might witness the genius that came before them, and inspire them to be great in their lifetime.  Although these movies were created with children in mind, each story depicts how a child influenced the greatness of each master based on what we know of each of the masters, and each movie is a joy to watch as a family.

I fell in love with Degas and laughed out loud at his grappling with a ballet dancer and his assistant.  I was moved by Mary Cassatt's strength and determination to be recognized as a serious impressionist.  I was surprised by the darkness of Goya's work, and I laughed at Monet's attempts to sidestep his landlord so he could paint. 

We even have the movies of the Inventors' Specials and the children love watching them with me too. 



TheArtistsSpecials

I recommend that anyone who loves the masters, homeschools their children, or just wants some wonderful family movies that also offer a great educational benefit, to get this new box DVD set that is available through Amazon.  Just click on the image above.

You'll enjoy every moment.  Promise.

 

SusansButterflySignature 

Monday, June 29, 2009

Summertime and Edward Potthast

Potthast1IntheSummertime

I don't know what it is about summertime, but every summer, I get all wrapped up in the paintings of Edward Henry Potthast.  I love his work.  I can't stop looking at it and studying his brushstrokes.  My own work has been greatly influenced by this artist.  His paintings make me happy.  There is a brightness and joy that can be felt from his paintings. Although my favorite artists were the impressionists - Renoir, Monet, Manet, Cassatt, Degas - it is the work of this American Impressionist, Edward Potthast, that I believe has had one of the greatest impacts on my own body of work.  And so, I would like to tell you a bit about this artist whom I love ...



Potthast2AttheBeach

Edward Henry Potthast is best known for his sunny beach scenes, filled with sparkling surf and high-keyed subjects such as balloons, hats, flowing clothing, children at play, and umbrellas. He was born to a family of artisans in Cincinnati, Ohio, on June 10, 1857.  At the tender age of 12, he began studying art at Cincinnati's new McMicken School of Design and continued his studies there off and on for over a decade.



Potthast3LongBeach1922

Potthast went overseas in 1881 and studied at the Royal Academy in Munich.  There, he studied with the American-born instructor Carl Marr (von Marr, after 1909), who was known for his adroit handling of light and shadow in realistically rendered works. Potthast completed his European tour with a visit to Paris, where he studied at the Academie Julian for about a month before returning to Cincinnati in 1885 where he began to earn a living as a lithographer. 



Potthast4LittleSeaBather

As an artist myself, I understand how one can become influenced by our teachers, and master artists whom we admire.  We tend to gravitate to a certain style of work and attempt to emmulate the great masters of the past.  At this time in his life, Potthast was influenced by the Munich School, which was, in turn, influenced by the painting tradition of the Dutch.  He painted landscapes and interiors, displaying sound draftsmanship and composition, solid unbroken brushstrokes, and a use of dark tones, something that would change in his later years.



Potthast5MakingFriends

He must have become bored with Cincinnati, because he returned to Paris in 1886 where he studied with Fernand Cormon and, possibly, with Jules-Joseph Lefebvre. In 1889, he met American Robert Vonnoh and Irishman Roderic O' Conor, both of whom were landscape painters working at Grcz.  It was their work, and the work of others at the Grcz colony that would have the strongest impact on Potthast and his palette.  It was these artist's cool-toned, Impressionist paintings with scumbled surfaces that would ultimately dictate the work that we recognize as his finest body of work.  



Potthast6RingAroundtheRosie

Potthast did return to Cincinnati, but with him he carried canvases filled with light and cool bright colors. He had discovered himself through Impressionism. One of the paintings he brought back with him was Sunshine, 1889 (Cincinnati Art Museum), a painting of a girl in an outdoor setting which had been exhibited in the Paris Salon of 1889. When the exhibition entitled "Light Pictures" opened in 1894 at the Cincinnati Art Museum, Potthast was the only American artist included in the show, and of course, that was because Impressionism had its beginnings in Paris in the 1860s and most of the work in this exhibit would have its roots from there.



Potthast7AfternoonFun

Even though he enjoyed modest success in his Ohio hometown, Potthast made the decision to leave Cincinnati in 1895 and settle in New York City. He set up a studio for himself and began to earn a living fulfilling illustration commissions for publications such as Scribner's, Harper's, and Century.  He continued to paint in watercolors and oils and exhibited his work at the Art Institute of Chicago in 1896, and at the National Academy of Design in 1897. He won the National Academy's Thomas B. Clarke award for best figure painting in 1899, and in that same year he was elected as an Associate of the academy. Potthast was made a full academician in 1906.



Potthast8TheSwan

It was after he settled in New York that Potthast painted scenes of people enjoying leisurely holidays, summers, and weekends at the beach with their families and children.  



Potthast15Confidences

Potthast spent the summer months in any one of a number of seaside art colonies, including Gloucester, Rockport, Cape Cod in Massachusetts, Ogunquit and Monhegan Islands, and the shores of Maine. He loved the beach so much that although he resided in New York, he would journey out on fair days to Coney Island or Far Rockaway with his easel, paintbox, and a few panels.



Potthast9TheWhiteSails

An extremely private person, Potthast never married.  He was close to his nephew and namesake, Edward Henry Potthast II (1880-1941), who also became an artist. Potthast died alone in his New York studio on March 9, 1927.



Potthast10AJulyDay

The paintings of Edward Henry Potthast are represented in public collections across the United States, including the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; Brooklyn Museum of Art, New York; Butler Institute of American Art, Youngstown, Ohio; Art Institute of Chicago; Cincinnati Art Museum; Georgia Museum of Art, Athens; Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; and Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Philadelphia.



Potthast11AttheSeaside

I love Potthast's beach scenes of children and their families. Through his artwork, he captured the essence  of children at play. Although he never had children of his own, and was a somewhat private person, he clearly enjoyed the company of children and their families and depicting them in his artwork.  What I enjoy most about his paintings, is that he was a true impressionist. 



Potthast12Bathers

He placed notes of color on his canvas to indicate light and shadow so that you can almost feel the heat from the sun.  He doesn't place much emphasis on faces or details, but rather, creates an indication of the subjects in his paintings enough that we understand the scene and we are drawn into the painting.  I could stare at a Potthast painting for hours and never tire of it.



Potthast14Canoeing

Potthast is one of the most recognized beach scene painters by any American artist today and if you want one of his wonderful works you'll have to have deep pockets.  For now, I'll have to settle for a book gallery of his paintings to satisfy my summertime Potthast desires.

 

SusansButterflySignature 

Saturday, June 20, 2009

"Rusting Away" 11x14 Oil on Canvas

VFANewArtworkBannerRustingAway_11x14OonC_900x687

"Rusting Away" 11x14 Oil on Canvas.

$320.00 (unframed)

I took a little more time on this little fella and I enjoyed working on the detail.  I also mixed my own greens rather than use them right out of the tube.  I mixed Ivory Black with Lemon Yellow in different variations to achieve the different green hues.  I think in this painting, the dulled-out greens look more natural in this barn setting. 



RustingAwaycloseup

Here is a closeup of the Rusty truck sitting in the tall grass.

As I've said before, I love painting barns in landscapes and objects like this rusty truck.  I love painting horses and cows and people going about their day.   I really enjoyed working on this painting and I hope you like it too.



RustingAway_11x14OonC_900x687

If you are interested in "Rusting Away" you can click the image above or HERE.

More paintings to come!

 

SusansButterflySignature 

Thursday, June 18, 2009

A Peek Into My Studio

Studio7637

I did not paint today.  I did not do laundry today either (although I probably should have).  I didn't take a nap either (and I usually do that!).  Instead, I cleaned and organized my studio, cleaned my brushes, and looked through my reference material to prepare for my next painting. 

After I finished, I thought I would give you a tour of my studio.  It's nothing fancy.  This would normally be the living room of our home, but we believe that each room should be useful.  No "pretty" rooms in our house.  We use them all, and fortunately, our home has the space we need for all of our activities.



Studio7624

In the back of my studio I have some wire drawers to hold all my "stuff" and I have my European Easel set up to complete my son's portrait.  I also put some of my children's artwork on the walls. 



Studio7625

Here is the painting I am working on now.  See my reference?  I have a color reference and a grayscale reference.  This helps me to determine values while I paint.  I like to push colors in my paintings (if you hadn't noticed) in other words, I make them more vibrant.  That's just the way I paint, and I like it that way.



Studio7626

This is my maul stick.  Ever heard of a maul stick?  Well, many artists purchase the maul sticks with leather wrapped around one end.  Naaah.  I use my mother's old cane and it works perfectly.  I use it to steady my hand when I need to be precise.  I love my mother's cane. 



Studio7638

Also, see the color of  our walls?  When we had our home painted last year, I intentionally wanted this room to have a neutral tan color.  It is a perfect backdrop for me, especially when I am working on a large painting as it does not reflect some strange reflective light onto my painting.  If I had a bright yellow wall, all my colors would look warmer than they really are.  If I had a blue room, all my colors would look cooler.  By having a neutral tan color, it neutralizes the reflective light coming into the room and I get more true colors in my paintings - even if I decide to paint in high key!



Studio7627

Instead of holding a palette in my left arm and painting with my right hand, I prefer to have a palette table so I can sit comfortably while I paint.  See the wood frame holding my brushes?  My Big Bear made that for me about 10 years ago.  I also had a thick pane of glass cut to size to use as a palette.  I didn't want it to have any sharp edges.  It makes clean up easy. 



Studio7629

I keep my brushes in old canisters.  I have a canister for large brushes, one for medium size brushes, and one for small, detail brushes.  See that sketchbook in the background?  Sarah was sketching today.  She likes to draw faces and is learning how to draw eyes. 



Studio7632

I wish I had more natural light in my studio, but if I start working early, there's enough light for painting.  As for this bookcase, I'm just waiting for it to collapse. 



Studio7633

Here is another painting that I need to finish.  If you only knew how many unfinished projects I have surrounding me.  Let's just say "lots."  I think I'll finish this painting next after I get some little paintings done for the Festival coming up in September.  (Whatever "next" means).



Studio7634

I love this old dresser.  Believe it or not, my mother and father purchased this dresser as a part of a bedroom set for my oldest brother, Mike.  Mike is now 61, so that is probably how old this dresser is.  The bottom drawers don't open easily, but fortunately, the bottom drawers are filled with quilting scraps - and a few more sewing and quilting projects that I have put on the back burner.  I've really got to do something about that.  Oh, and here is another easel.  I've got a number of easels.  I put paintings on them to dry, or to paint, or to sketch - all in various stages of completion.  At least I don't get bored.  Pay no attention to the potty pads in the picture.  They're for Hannah.  She can't decide whether to go outside or inside, so we keep the potty pads in the studio just in case she can't wait.



Studio7635

I also have a very nice sketch desk - that one on the left with the sailboats.  I use it for my pastel paintings, or should I say "unfinished pastel paintings?"



Studio7636

Raise your hand if you love IKEA?  I love IKEA.  When they opened an IKEA near to our home here in North Carolina, I was thrilled.  See these 2 tall chest of drawers?  I've had them for about 11 years.  We got them at IKEA in Maryland and they have served many purposes in those 11 years.  From homeschooling supplies to sewing supplies to art supplies, they are sturdy, spacious, and functional, and they still look like new.  As a matter of fact, I also got my 2 tables in my studio that hold my palette and my brushes (next to my easel) at IKEA.  Love 'em.



Studio7640

Ready to collapse.  I am an avid reader and a perpetual student, and this bookshelf holds an incredible education - from Art History to Art Instruction.  I've kept Northlight books and Barnes & Noble in business.

So there you go, a short stroll thru my studio.  Nothing to write home about, but it was somethin' for me to write about today.  It is my personal space at home where I like to go, turn on my iPod, and get into my creative "zone."  It's nice to have a place to call my own.  Do you have one?

 

SusansButterflySignature 

Sunday, June 14, 2009

"Cow in Field" 8x16 Oil on Panel

VFANewArtworkBanner

CowinField8x16OilonPanel-1

Today's new artwork:

"Cow in Field" 8x16 Oil on Panel.

$250.00 (unframed)

Here is a close up of our friendly cow ...

CowinField8x16OilonPanel-3cropped

Isn't he a cutie? 

After stepping away for a few hours, I went back to my friendly cow and used a palette knife to texturize the fields in the background.  I think it gives it a little more character.I love painting with a palette knife.

CowinField8x16OilonPanel-1

If you are interested in our friendly cow in the field, click HERE or click the image above.

Back to the easel - I'm now doing another painting of a barn with an old car in front of it.

I have a lot of paintings to get done for this September's Matthews Alive Arts Festival.  I also have several competitions that I am entering - but those paintings are a bit more complicated and will take me far longer to do than just one afternoon.  I'll be sure and share those with you too!

 

SusansButterflySignature 

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Church Steeples in Oil - A Tutorial

PortraitPaintingStoryboard

I enjoy painting different subjects.  Still, I have some favorites - Barns, landscapes, horses, cityscapes, and churches.  There is something about these subjects that draw me into the painting process.  Today, I decided to paint at least 1 small oil painting, and thought it would be a good opportunity to teach those of you who are interested, how I go about preparing a canvas from sketch to completed painting.  In this case, it was a very small painting - 5x7 inches, and it took me 2 hours from start to finish. Well, almost finished anyway.



Church7437

I start with a reference image.  Most of my paintings are completed in the studio rather than on site (Plein Air).  In this case, I referenced an image by professional photographer Patrick Schneider.  He is an outstanding Charlotte photographer and has provided me with some wonderful reference material for paintings.  I cannot always get out of the house to take pictures for reference, so I depend on professionals to provide me with some excellent material.  Of course, I pay them a commission when a painting sells and I always reference the photographer for anyone who wants to know.  It sure makes my life easier in the studio! 

So, let's take a look at this reference.  I made 3 copies so that I have 1 for graphing, 1 for my painting reference (that I can get paint on if I want to) and 1 for my files.



Church7438

Graphing.  I love my Quickline ruler.  You can get one at any sewing store.  Being able to see through the ruler makes creating the graph easier and more precise.  I use it for making quilt pieces too when I am sewing. 



Church7439

I measure the reference image, horizontally and vertically.



Church7441

Next, I place a horizontal and vertical line with a #2 pencil through the center of each measurement, cutting the image in half in both directions.



Church7443

I now want to convert those 1/2 measurements to 1/4 measurements.



Church7444

Since the steeple of the church is the area of the image that has the most detail, I want to create a smaller and more detailed graph around the area of the image that is the most detailed, thus, cutting the boxes of the graph in 1/2 more and more around the detailed area of the image.



Church7448

I gotta tell ya, it is not easy taking a photograph with my left hand, while drawing with my right hand - with a right-handed camera. 

Okay, back to the graphing - After you complete the graphing of the image reference, take your canvas and do the same steps, making sure to measure both horizontally and vertically cutting the canvas in 1/2 each time until the graph looks the same on the canvas as it does on your image reference.



Church7449

Note: the dimensions of your image reference and your canvas do not have to be the same.  As long as the dimensions are in a similar presentation (Portrait or Landscape) and they are similar, that is good.  Your painting can be any size.  It just so happens that I made a painting that was nearly the same size as my reference image. 

Before you start sketching, number the horizontal blocks and alphabetize the vertical blocks.  It makes it easier when you are sketching.



Church7450

Start sketching.  I like to work from top left to bottom right when sketching, that way my right hand does not start rubbing off the sketch as I work.



Church7451

Detail is not important.  I like to put sketch reference of values at times (value is the lightness or darkness of a shape as in the areas that are in light or shadow).  I do this for my own benefit.  I like to see the shadows when I sketch, but I ignore the detail because it will just be covered over with paint shortly.



Church7452

I continue to sketch my image on the canvas until I'm satisfied with the results.



Church7456

Next, take your rubber eraser (you can get this at any art supply or craft store) and erase the graphing lines.  You don't have to do this, I just prefer to do it so that they don't distract me when I am painting.  Your erasing doesn't have to be perfect either.  Just lighten the lines and get them out of your distraction area.



Church7458

Now, grab some hairspray.  Huh?  You know, hairspray.  I LOVE this brand - S.G. Salon Grafix Professional Freezing Hair Spray (Mega Hold).  Why?  Because it smells so good and I like to do my hair when I sketch.  Not.  Actually, I buy this solely for my studio and when I sketch, whether in pencil or charcoal, I spray the completed sketch with hairspray to set the sketch.  I don't like smearing.



Church7459

If I hold my canvas in the sunlight I will be able to see that the hairspray has covered the entire canvas. I give it about 30 minutes to dry.  If I'm in a hurry, just grab your hairdryer and dry the hairspray that way.  It will take just a few minutes and will set your sketch so that the pencil sketch or charcoal sketch doesn't rub off on your hands or smear with your paint.  That's nasty.



Church7461

Now I want to prepare my paints - and my hands.  I use one or the other of these products.  They protect my hands while I paint, preventing the oil paint from getting on my skin (well sorta).  It isn't healthy to get oil paint on your skin because it gets into your blood stream and is toxic.  Not a good idea.  Better yet, just put on gloves.  But, I'm going to be bad and not wear gloves because the painting is small.  Thank goodness for Artguard and Udderly Smooth Udder Cream.



Church7462

After you have set out your paints, start mixing your colors. 



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I paint differently than I sketch.  I work from background to foreground (what is in back to what is in front) and from thin to fat (thin paint first as in an underpainting, to a thicker more interesting texture to the paint).



Church7465

More mixing.  When you mix your paints, do not use your paint brushes. If you do, it will break down the bristles and ultimately ruin them.  I use a palette knife to mix my oil paints.



Church7467

When you paint, not only work from back to front, but from large shapes to smaller shapes.



Church7469

Also, when I paint, I put down the most obvious color and value first, in a thin layer of paint.  Then I add the details like shadows and other details.



Church7470

I'm not real picky about my detail or painting style.  I paint loosly and I also like to use a palette knife on larger areas.  In this case, I used a palette knife to thicken and texturize the paint on the sky.



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And here is the (almost) finished painting.  It is no Monet, but I'm not trying to win any awards with this one anyway.  It was just a fun little painting to do on a Saturday afternoon. 



PortraitPaintingStoryboard

"Church Bell in Old Salem" Winston-Salem, NC.  5x7 Oil on Canvas.

Just so you know, this painting is not finished.  I have a few tweaks till I'm really happy with it.  So, once the paint dries a bit on the steeple and the church and I've had a day to get a fresh look at it (like the crooked steeple for instance) I'm going to make some corrections until I'm satisfied with it.  That is the advantage of oil paint - you've got time to change your mind, make corrections, or scrape the whole thing off the canvas and start over if you're really brave.  If you only knew how many times I've scraped the whole thing off the canvas.  I'm not gonna tell.

Hope you had fun!  Now, get yourself some art supplies and paints and start having some fun in your own studio!

 

SusansButterflySignature 

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Remember Me

RememberMe2

This video was created by a 15 year old girl - Lizzie Palmer.  It is absolutely beautiful and I had to share it with my readers.  Enjoy...





 

SusansButterflySignature 

Friday, June 05, 2009

Storyboards & Photoshop CS4

Cooking_with_Beth

I've been wanting to learn how to create storyboards in Photoshop for some time now, but today, I actually took the time to figure it out and it's really easy and fun too!

Before I learned how to do this myself, though, I picked up a few actions and storyboards that were free online and have been using them. 



StoryboardFlowers

Now I can create them myself, and I had so much fun doing it I wanted to share them with you.  And, just as soon as I can figure out how to share them I will, so that you can enjoy the storyboards that I have created while you are creating your own! 



BigBearStoryboard

Storyboards can be great for displaying your images.  It gives them a feeling of having a matting around them.  Your storyboards can be any color - Personally, though, I like white.  And you can add designs and other things to them too - like text. 

For now, though, I am going to show you how to do the easy part.  Then you can play with your designs and get as fancy as you want.



StoryboardFileNew

Step 1.  File - New. Open up a new File. 



StoryboardBlankBackgroundStep2

Step 2.  Name - Width - Height - Resolution - Background Color.  Choose the size of your storyboard, (preferably in inches) choose your background color (I like white), and give it a name.  Click "OK"



StoryboardStep3Rulers

Step 3. View - Rulers.  Your new file will open up in Photoshop.  So that you can easily design your storyboard, you will want to have your rulers visible (in inches preferably.  It is just easier that way). 



StoryboardStep4Rulerinches

Step 4. Right Click Ruler - Inches. When your new file is visible with the ruler, right-click on your ruler and highlight "inches."



StoryboardStep5Blank

Step 5. Blank Storyboard.  You'll have a nice clean slate to work with.



StoryboardNewGuide

Step 6. View - New Guide.  Click on "View" and "New Guide."



StoryboardHorizVert

Step 7.  Horizontal / Vertical - Position. The "New Guide" window will pop up and you need to choose either Horizontal or Vertical and where you want to place your blue line.  These guides will pop up as blue lines on your blank canvas.  Don't worry if you don't like where you put the line.  As a matter of fact, you can just leave the position at 0 and click "OK" and then use your "Move Tool" to move the line where you want it on your blank canvas.



StoryboardHVLinesComplete

Step 8. Repeat Steps 6 and 7.  Repeat Steps 6-7 until you have placed your horizontal and vertical lines where you want them to create your storyboard.  As you can see from the storyboard that I am creating here, I am going to display 6 images on my storyboard in a landscape format.



StoryboardRectangularMarqTool



StoryboardRectangularToolSelect

Step 9. Rectangular Marquee Tool.  Now, Click on the Rectangular Marquee Tool and choose the first space where you will be placing your images.



StoryboardMagicEraserTool



StoryboardMagicEraserRtClick

Step 10.  Magic Eraser Tool.  Click on the Magic Eraser Tool.  Right click the area within the highlighted area from Step 9.  Click again and everything should disappear in that space.  This is the space where I will place my first image.



StoryboardSpaces

Step 11. Repeat Steps 9 and 10.  Repeat these steps until you have erased the spaces where you want to place your images.  Lookin' Good!  I'm so happy with my storyboard and I can't wait to insert my images.  But first, I want to save this blank storyboard as a .psd file.  So go ahead and do that so that you have a completed template you can use time and time again.  We're almost done!



Storyboardwithsomepictures

Step 12.  Add your Images!  This is the best part!  Open your images in Photoshop that you want to add to your storyboard.  Resize them to fit or sorta fit in the spaces you've created.  It doesn't have to be perfect, just as long as the images fill the spaces.  You might want to crop and then resize your images.  That's what I do.



Storyboardlayers

Note: When you are placing your images in your storyboard, make sure that the image layer is beneath the storyboard layer.



Cooking_with_Beth

Enjoy what you have created!  I'm having a lot of fun.  I am using the storyboards in some of my Category Archives.  In other words, when you click on a Category, in addition to seeing the name of the category and the listing of the posts within that Category, you will see an image at the top related to that Category.  I have a lot of work to do to get all the images in place, but in the meantime, I got 2 done today - in "Cooking with Beth" category (Home & Garden) and "Big Bear" category (My Opus).  Only 537 more image storyboards to create.

Oh, be sure to save your completed storyboard as a .jpg.  That will flatten the image.

That's what I've been busy doing today.  Hope you enjoy creating some storyboards of your own.  This sure has helped me to keep my mind off of all the other mess around here - you know, problem adult children, unemployed husband, cranky dogs, loads of laundry ... ya da ya da ya da. 

Email me if you have any questions about this tutorial, or leave a comment and I'll answer your question there!

 

SusansButterflySignature 


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