Taken from my post Violet Anna says : Love seeing how you colour your work. I always wondered how you did it. I always hated painting on top of a beautiful drawing ( I love the simplicity of a pencil/ pen drawing ). This definitely seems like a good way to get the best of both worlds. What tools in Photoshop do you tend to use? pen tool/ paths, paint brush etc.
The linework in my Illustration is the most important part, so when colouring in Photoshop it is important to me that the linework remains visible 90% of the time. There are a few tools that are my favourites and I use them for almost every illustration I do. It's important that you experiment in Photoshop and see what works for you, but these are the ones I have on high rotation.
1. The Heal Tool
When I start each illustration I always use the heal tool to tidy up any smudges or marks that happened while drawing. The heal tool samples from other areas of the illustration, copies that area and then duplicates over the smudge. To use the heal tool hold down "alt" until you see a little sampling icon, with "alt" still compressed mouse click on a clean area that you wish to sample from. Take your finger off "alt" and then move your mouse over any blemishes you wish to remove. Resample as you move around so that you are always copying from areas you want.
2. Layer Adjustments - Curves
I usually find that scans can look a little flat, so after cleaning up I head straight to my Curves to boost my tones, make my blacks black and my whites bright. As a general rule I make two points on the Curve graph, pull the blacks down and the whites up.
3. Layers with Masks
Whenever I colour I choose to use layers with masks attached so that my colouring is always easy to edit at any stage. The layer button looks like a little page, ( see diagram), first I click that and then I add a mask by clicking the little rectangle button with a circle in it. I then click on my layer (see mine is orange) and then I fill it with the colour I want (edit - fill or shift F5). If your mask is white your full page will fill with your colour, but if you fill your mask with black (click on it - edit - fill - black) then you won't see any colour on your page...hope that makes sense.
If your mask is white your page will be completely covered with block colour, we don't want that as we still want to see our line work, so if you head above your layers and change your layer mode to multiply ( see diagram) you will then be able to see your line work underneath.
If you select your mask and then choose a brush you like you can then paint your colour visible or invisible where you want it on your picture. As a rule, any black areas on your mask will block your layer colour, any white areas on your mask will make the layer colour visible. So paint with white paint and your colour will show, but paint with black to remove it.
4. Paint Brushes - I never use pen tools really, I basically only ever use paint brushes, with the Airbrush tool being a long time favourite:)
Those are probably my four most regularly used things. Hope that answers your question Anna!
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Other than a few that have been gifted to friends with large smiles and fluttering lashes I have nearly all of my original artworks. Up until now they were kept wrapped in tissue in an unused photographic darkroom in my old house, but now having moved in to a new space I find my drawers weighted and overloaded, I am running out of space! In various states of age I personally enjoy watching how the colours have changed, it almost seems relevant considering a lot of my models are no longer the new faces of the day, and is in stark contrast to my Giclee prints that stay perky and bright in excess of our life span. Due to my work pile increasing faster than my studio I have decided to offer my originals for sale - I have nearly all of my originals and am happy to send photographs to interested people, so get in touch, make me a (reasonable) offer and we can talk about it. Flick me an email hello(at)kellythompson.co.nz .
I found a collection of abandoned holiday slides at a vintage store and decided to buy them. Even when holding them up to the neon store lights I could tell they would be riddled with scratches and the colours would be faded with creamy whites and tertiary skies. There is something quite strange about looking at the holiday snaps of a stranger, scenarios are imagined and in a moment you find yourself living vicariously through their captured imagery. A similar experience happened when viewing Greta Van Der Star's Miracle Hill, it was that same pastel palette that initially captured my eye, and then my imagination involved itself making stories based on an arrangement of chairs waiting to be put to use by visitors that would never come, dreams of success never realised. Shot on film the prints are even more captivating up close, so be sure to visit the Simon James Concept Store Auckland to take a look.
All images Greta Van Der Star available at Simon James Concept Store
Late Friday afternoon I dropped in to visit the lovely gals at Ruby, every time I am in NZ I always make an effort to go and say hi, we go way back and it is always fun to relax for a Friday catch up with them. Winter is Ruby's strongest season and I always stock up on their cute knits and a coat each winter - their wool coats are well priced under $500NZ and I always wear them for multiple seasons remixing with old and new items. I don't know if it is just my taste changing, but when did coats become so expensive? It's a relief to know that you can still find something affordable in wool. My pick of their coats this winter is the Liam Smart Coat in Ice, how delicious is that sorbet blue, that's winter wardrobe refreshment right there.
Leaving Auckland city on Saturday to head to tranquil Titirangi was something I have never done before, and after dropping my bag at a secluded BnB surrounded by native bush I 100% understood the desire to live there. The cicadas removed any requirement for music and with a view of the ocean I could have almost tucked up with a book and hid away from the party...almost, but not quite. The humidity found a comfortable place and with a reunion of great pals I danced the night away without the requirement for any extra layers, the perfect summer gathering. The following day was (supposed to be at the polo, eek sorry), but ended up under a tree with loved ones in the sun, I've decided that Titirangi is my new favourite Auckland spot!
On the way back in to the city I dropped in to the Simon James Concept Store in Herne Bay which is one of my favourite home design stores, It's one of those stores that is immaculately curated, and if you had the budget you could easily just take it all as every single item looks so good. I was particularly interested in Greta Van Der Star's Miracle Hill photographic exhibition - shot entirely on film it has a very still eerie aesthetic and the colours are basically my dream photo colours (yes I have those, I'm all about the colour). I'll do a full post dedicated to this show soon.
My talented friend and photographer of the most breathtaking polaroids Adam Custins asked if he could take my portrait on Monday, if you have seen his works in print you would completely understand why this is such an honour. Adams pieces are timeless, and I don't use the term lightly, his subjects are fashion free, simply groomed and to some extent simplified so that the photo somehow manages to speak more of the subject than even the subject knew about themselves, they are raw and simply breathtaking. The experience of being photographed by him was unlike any "sitting" I have ever done, it was precise, I felt kinda nervous and somehow my face managed to say more about me than anything I was trying to convey (smeyes failed me). I cant wait to see the final result, which I will share with you soon.
Deadly Ponies MR Mini Chainmail Bag / Titirangi Treetops / Ruby Moonrise Jumper / Liam Ice Smart Coat available March 21st from Ruby / Ruby Nailpolishes / Mission Bay pastel buildings / Simon James Concept Store / Greta Van Der Star's Miracle Hill / Ultratec Thermal Radar the cat / Adam Custins / Mission Bay
Those of you who read my blog from overseas may like to hear about some of the people, stores and products I love from New Zealand. I took a trip to Auckland over the weekend and decided to take a few snaps along the way to share with you over two blog posts.
Like a child the complimentary ice-cream on my Qantas flight cheered me up a treat after watching the in flight screening of The Butler - a good movie, don't get me wrong, but I found myself wishing I was sitting window so I had somewhere to look as I fought my third wave of tears. Note to self: skip the drama when in a plane with strangers. As usual I was unsure what to pack after being caught out numerous times with the indecisive Auckland weather, and as I left the airport and was hit with muggy air I once again counted the numerous items that I obviously wouldn't be needing for this trip - I am yet to become the ultimate lightweight all weather prepared shopper.
The purpose of my trip was to visit a friend for his birthday in Titirangi, but I decided to make the most of it and fly on Thursday night so I could visit friends and some showrooms while I was there. Every time I go to Auckland I always get in trouble for not staying long enough, and still could have easily stayed longer as it is impossible to squeeze everything in with only four days, two of which were weekend days. I started my Friday by heading to the Karen Walker Showroom in Ponsonby with my friend Amanda - the girls were very kind to show me the new Benah bags as I was going to be leaving town before their release and quite obsessively wanted to view them. This visit timed perfectly with the arrival of next seasons Benah bag samples from the very recent Karen Walker NYFW show, and I found myself a little too eagerly planning purchases seasons in advance. The appeal of these bags is that they are are timeless shapes, obviously great quality, and in comparison to many designer bags they are quite competitively priced - they launched today and somehow despite my planning I do believe I have missed out on my favourites already, as per usual KW knows her market and nails it. Always one to be distracted by the slightly impractical I also couldn't help but become infatuated by the small KW animal purses releasing in March, how cute are they!
Unfortunately for me, but fortunately for my wallet there was nothing in my size available when I later strolled down to the KW Ponsonby store, (oh to be one of the lucky ones who can order in advance) so I instead added a very sweet charm bracelet to my collection - I am always happy that Karen and I share the same initial in our first name and her bracelets are regularly adorned with "K"...for Kelly of course!
Whenever I head to AKL I always find it's so easy to get super dehydrated (damn humidity, damn accidental alcohol consumption) and also end up running around so much I don't get a chance to eat properly. My dear friend photographer Adam Custins luckily introduced me to Little Bird Unbakery on Summer Street in Ponsonby and it is my absolute #1 spot if I feel in need of some healthy nourishing food. I always make an effort to head there whenever I can and love their "Bird Bowl" which is a combination of kale, beetroot, seeds, kimchi and avocado, I know it sounds bland, but they have some kind of magic I don't have, and healthy tastes amazing. As someone who likes to eat as close to nature intended as possible I find it quite tricky to find organic and fresh food without that slightly dirty "hippy" vibe, Little Bird has the perfect balance and it all comes packaged with a welcoming bright interior. Please open in Melbourne!
A couple of days prior to my visit Kathryn Wilson (NZ's shoe darling) opened a brand new store in Herne Bay. Amanda needed to drop in so I went along and had a little try on. The shop is very cute, whitewashed with walls stacked with colourful shoes, and was very busy with new customers, friends, and the neighbour trying to show Kathryn a selection of rugs to decorate the store, quite a chaotic little scene! I picked up a cute pair of Miss Wilson white brogues with gold caps (always the magpie) and have been wearing them ever since. If you are currently loving flats as much as I am you will find much joy in these little shoes, I'd recommend ordering down a size if you purchase them online.
Karen Walker One Worship Lavender sunglasses arriving March, animal purse arriving March / Benah for Karen Walker bags available here now (quick!) / Little Bird Unbakery Summer Street / Kathryn Wilson brogues available here
Nail art, parrots, it's so exciting to see the Escada project come to life, and thanks to social media I am able to keep up with all the visuals from all over the world, if you see a Bird of Paradise display somewhere I would love to see it! I was waiting for a higher resolution video to share, but unfortunately I am unable to get hold of it, so just don't watch full screen and hopefully it will look ok:)
Never in my life have I been even slightly inspired by or interested in wearing T-shirts - T-shirts were for the gym, or sick days or tomboys and I never really got it. Since living in Australia something has happened to me, maybe I've become lazy, maybe I just got sick of having skirts and dresses and nothing casual - I'm not entirely sure, but for some reason suddenly all I want to do is throw on a crisp tee and be done with it. Perhaps it is nothing to do with any of the negatives above, and maybe entirely to do with all of the fun tees around at the moment, tees that are made for girls, not boys tees in girls sizing, not in any way daggy, but fashion tees for girls like me. At the moment I am playing around with a few tee designs of my own, but in the meantime here are some on my shopping list below.
Above Etre Cecile Tee from Green With Envy Boutique
No matter how commercialised it gets, it's still nice to have a day to celebrate love. Here's a little romance for you all, happy Valentines Day xoxox
Steven Meisel / Casey Brooks / Photographer unknown / Photographer unknown / Photographer unknown / Andreas Ohlund / Mario Testino / Lachlan Bailey / Will Davidson / Peter Lindbergh / Will Davidson / Emilio Tini / Mario Testino / Photographer unknown / Bruce Weber / Mert & Marcus / Andreas Ohlund
You never really know when inspiration will strike and I never expected Instagram would be one of those places, but recently while browsing Instagram (most likely procrastinating) I stumbled across a stunning violet coloured dress as part of Ellery Pre-fall 2014 collection. Isn't it a spectacular colour!? How could I resist I had to sit down and draw it, and so after work I sat down and out came this glamorous lady preparing for a big night out wearing her new Ellery dress. See a little video below showing all of my colour layers, excuse the quality I am far from video pro!
Colouring in Photoshop -Violet - Kelly Thompson from Kelly Thompson on Vimeo.
Mrs Mills sure puts my Sunday to shame as she steps out in her latest column wearing Valentino. After weeks of pastel and pretty sass got stepped up and she is ready to take on the town, what a fun one to draw.