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I have been trying to create some atmosphere in a concept art piece of two towers rising up out of the mist in a valley filled with lush vegetation. I used Affinity Photo to create it, painting much of it with the free 'Atmosphere' and 'Nature' brushes I uploaded on the Affinity Forum (plus some other brushes) to create it (links below).

I am fascinated by the matte painting technique used by digital artists for all the main film studios to create a visualisation of important scenes that will go into the finished film. Films and series like Vikings, Alien, Dune, Mary Poppins, Ghostbusters, Titanic, Raiders of the Lost Ark, King Kong, the Jurassic Park series of films... and the new 'Rendezvous with Rama' that is (hopefully) in production. All of 'em, really... 

This is from Wikipedia: "A matte painting is a painted representation of a landscape, set, or distant location that allows filmmakers to create the illusion of an environment that is not present at the filming location." 

If you are interested in matte painting or concept art check out the following links. There are lots of tutorials too:



Introduction to Matte Painting

Free 'Nature' brushes link (also includes a Word document on how to create your own brushes):

Free 'Atmosphere' brushes link:


Towers in the Mist.jpg

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  • 3 weeks later...

I'm still fascinated with the amazing brushes you can create in Affinity Photo...

I like to try and capture lost forests and rocky ravines, the moody, mist-laden forests of the movie 'Avatar' which surely must have been inspired by the Sci-Fi book 'Hothouse' by Brian Aldiss - one of my favourite Sci-Fi & Fantasy novels of the 1960s and 70s. I cannot believe no one has filmed it yet! Same for 'Stranger in a Strange Land' by Robert A. Heinlein. Why has no one filmed this yet?

The works by famous and unknown (to some) Sci-Fi and Fantasy writers of the 1930s, 1940s, 1950s, 1960s and 1970s are astonishing!

Check them out if you are into Sci-Fi and Fantasy writings. Writers like Frederik Pohl, Frank Herbert ('Dune'}, Ray Bradbury ('Something Wicked This Way Comes', 'Dandelion Wine'}, Isaac Azimov, Anne McCaffrey, Aldous Huxley, Philip K. Dick, Arthur C. Clarke ('Rendezvous with Rama'), Ursula K. Le Guin, Anthony Burgess, Robert A. Heinlein ('Stranger in a Strange Land' - David Bowie wanted to play Smith, but the film never got made; he made 'The Man Who Fell to Earth' instead), Stanislaw Lem ('The Cyberiad' - so funny!!!!), Larry Niven, Kurt Vonnegut Jr., John  Wyndham ('The Midwich Cuckoos', 'Chocky', 'The Day of the Triffids'), Roger Zelazny, Thomas M. Disch ('Camp Concentration'), Philip José Farmer, Michael Moorcock, Andre Norton, Piers Anthony, Samuel R. Delany, Brian Aldiss ('Hothouse'), 

And book cover artists like Boris Vallejo and Frank Frazetta (who did the artwork for 'Conan' and many book cover designs for sci-fi and fantasy novels in the 1970s. My favourite being 'Egyptian Queen')...

But this is my monolith rising up out of a mist-laden valley being struck by lightning. All made by brush strokes created from snippets of images that I turned into brushes. I did it in Affinity Photo...



Lightning Strike.jpg

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  • 2 months later...

Free 'Nature' and 'Atmosphere' brushes for Affinity Photo (in one place). Even though I uploaded them, I still have trouble finding them on the forum so I thought I'd put them in one place...

I am attaching the 'step-by-step' guide on how I created my 'Nature' image brushes in Affinity Photo. Its a MS Word document and explains how to create a 'Butterfly' brush in Affinity Photo using multiple images. The process is the same for any image(s) whether butterfly, rock, stones, tree, shrub, moss, lichen. At the end of the tutorial I explain another process to create a 'moss' image brush which uses simple selections that you export individually. There may be other and easier ways to do this, but this is the way I have done it because it is a method I use to create them in Corel Painter. I am not so experienced in Affinity Photo, so I don't yet know where one saves seamless textures that you create to re-use; in Corel Painter, you save them in the 'Patterns' Library. 

The 'step-by-step' tutorial explains...

1.    How to Create a Brush Category
2.    How to Remove the Background from an Image
3.    How to Save the Butterfly as a .PNG (Transparent Background) Image
4.    How to Create a ‘Butterfly’ Brush (Multiple Butterfly Images)
5.    How to Duplicate a Brush
6.    How to Rename a Brush
7.    How to Create a ‘Moss’ Brush using Multiple PNGs

...which are the steps you must take to create your first image brush. You can create an image brush just by selecting a single layer, but you need to convert it to a Pixel layer first. I wanted to explain how to create one by selecting it and extracting it from its background. More complicated, but once you have done it once, you can use the same process to create any image brush. I would advise you to experiment and test out all the different brush settings.

To load the brush category in Affinity Photo 

Save the DelN's Free Brushes.afbrushes file
Locate the location where you saved the file
Open Affinity Photo
Double-click the DelN's Free Brushes.afbrushes file.
An 'Import Brushes' message will be displayed
'Brushes Imported Successfully'
Click OK
Click 'Brushes' tab
Locate new DelN's Free Brushes
Start using the brushes

I also attach several images of the brush strokes and their brush names in my DelN's Free Brushes.afbrushes.













1026765230_DelsBrushes_Examples01.thumb.png.a417365392177e041275c434f6ed06c7 (1).png

1670255023_DelsBrushes_Examples02.thumb.png.a139490c9b3d8bd7aaac08ce58c1a83e (1).png

810935173_DelsBrushes_Examples03.thumb.png.8b81a56afe82dcfa325ad3be1beddfc7 (2).png

2099397636_DelsBrushes_Examples04.thumb.png.711e1be42125d602e0da335607ceb3d7 (1).png

747717616_DelsBrushes_Examples05.thumb.png.c90ad13faae2becc3c33219921e26546 (1).png

1327996259_DelsBrushes_Examples06.thumb.png.95d775165666fa4ed4ce3260d4bf8114 (1).png






DelN's Free Brushes Pt1.afbrushes DelN's Free Brushes Pt2.afbrushes DelN's Free Brushes Pt3_Atmosphere Dust & Smoke Brushes.afbrushes DelN's Free Brushes Pt4_Atmosphere Dust & Smoke Brushes.afbrushes How to Create a Butterfly Brush_Multiple Butterfly Images.docx

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