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Guitar Illustration - First Image Post


Ldina
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I'm relatively new to illustration and Affinity and this is my first image upload (1500x2000 px jpg image). I used Designer v2 to create this illustration of my custom-built classical guitar and thought it came out fairly well, given my very limited experience and familiarity with the program. I still have a tremendous amount to learn about illustration and Designer, but I'm having fun doing it. I'm a long-time photographer and photo editor, but illustration is a whole new ballgame, as I am discovering. As a photographer, I paid attention to lighting, highlights, shadows, reflections, etc, but those elements were already pre-existing in a photo and I could easily enhance them, as desired. In illustration, I have to create these elements myself, which I have found forces me to pay much more attention to highlights, shadows and reflections. It makes me appreciate how important these elements are to form, depth and realism. It's quite an education, and will no doubt make me a better photographer and photo editor too. 

I'm very open to any suggestions and constructive criticisms. I want to get better at illustration. So, if you have any suggestions, please let me know. Thanks.

Lou

Guitar v2.jpg

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Thank you all for the kind comments and encouragement. I'm still learning and very slow with the program, so it takes me longer than it probably should...but projects like this are a great way to learn. I'm getting there gradually. I am truly over-awed by some of the creations people share here, and also in the inspirational spotlight. Absolutely incredible stuff. 

dannyg9...Some classical guitars do have mother of pearl or other inlays on the fretboard, but surprisingly, many do not, even some very expensive, high end, custom built guitars made by famous luthiers. Mine is a very good one, but mid price range, nowhere near the high end. 

Rodi...Hahaha...it IS definitely "kinda classical!" 🙂

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A great first Designer illustration, Lou—I am impressed! If you do an update of this project I recommend you try to give some variation to the grain pattern in the guitar top. I don't think this would be easy, as adding noise to a photo is an easy way to present irregularity, but adding variable spacing between grain lines, some non linearity to the lines, and some variability to grain darkness would really make that spruce top stand out.

Congratulations on your first Designer project and best wishes for many more,

—Solly

Solly

JFSJ

N3MKH

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@Ldina  Beautiful!  Couldn’t have created this if my life depended upon it.  That said, is it just me, or is the shadow of the fingerboard from the opposite light source than those behind the strings?


24" iMAC Apple M1 chip, 8-core CPU, 8-core GPU, 16 GB unified memory, 1 TB SSD storage, Big Sur v. 11.7.2.  Photo, Publisher, Designer 1.10.5;  Photo, Publisher, Designer 2.0.3
MacBook Pro 13" 2020, Apple M1 chip, 16GB unified memory, 256GB  SSD storage
,  Big Sur v. 11.7.   Publisher, Photo, Designer 1.10.5  
21.5 iMAC Retina 4K display MacOS High Sierra v. 10.13.6.  Memory 8 GB, 1TB Fusion Drive: Publisher, Photo, Designer 1.8.4
 iPad Pro 12.9 2020 (4th Gen. IOS 15.6); Apple pencil.  Wired and bluetooth mice and keyboards.9_9

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Thank you, Solly...I agree on finding a way to introduce more irregularity and color variation into the grain of the cedar soundboard of the guitar. I'll experiment and see if I can find a way to do that, other than doing them one at a time. The posted image used the new Warp tool to introduce a slight waviness to the grain so it wouldn't be totally straight, but that is less than convincing. I appreciate your suggestion.

jmwellborn....you caught me! Yes, I noticed (afterwards) that I had the string shadows being cast in a direction contrary to the light. Busted! Hahaha...I'll fix that if I reedit this image, which I probably will. Thanks.

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Thanks for the feedback. Here is RevA of my guitar illustration, with some changes based on comments and suggestions.

First, I corrected the string shadows so they are consistent with light direction!

I also played with enhancing the wood grain in a number of ways, not sure this is the best way, but it's what came to mind. The grain was previously a bunch of parallel lines created using power duplicate and a slight warp, then blurred slightly to blend with the color of the cedar top color. First, I reduced the blur so they would stand out more. Second, I I removed the warp and selected some lines sporadically, darkened, thickened, and changed the line pressure to vary the line thickness. This left most grain lines thin, but a smaller number thicker and darker, which is more like the real wood grain. Finally, I created some long, low opacity rectangles that are slightly darker than the top, applied a gaussian blur and reduced the opacity so it was subtle. I copied this rectangle and placed a few on the top, at various widths, to show some variation on color here and there. Finally, I added a slight light-sheen on the guitar top the right side of the guitar, where the light is strongest.

One final minor tweak. The sides of the guitar show slightly below the waist of the guitar body. before, they were too dark, so I brightened them up a bit. 

I think these all helped, but I'm sure there is more I can do to make it more believable. It's been a great learning experience for me, and I thank everyone for the suggestions. 😀

Lou

Guitar v2-RevA.jpg

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Kudos! That does look better for the soundboard. You may proceed to your next project now. 😉

PS: You mentioned cedar soundboard, which was new to me (I have always chosen spruce, but they are not classical guitars.) I spent an enjoyable time reading about spruce vs. cedar soundboards.

So, thank you for sharing your Designer project and how you did it as well as getting me to check out some new, to me, information about guitar construction and wood choices. It made for a delightful day. 😁

 

—Solly

Solly

JFSJ

N3MKH

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Solly, top quality spruce tops can be difficult to find these day. Cedar has a different sound, perhaps a bit more "nasal", but that word doesn't really capture it. I actually began building a flamenco guitar decades ago with a spruce top, Spanish cypress sides and back, ebony fretboard, mahogany neck, etc, and was about halfway through, when I slipped and accidentally ran a chisel through the side of the guitar, while trying to remove a glob of dried glue from the mold (which I also built). The neck, spruce top and sides were already assembled, the sides were steamed and bent into shape, etc. I was probably about 60% complete at that point. I was so disgusted and deflated after that, I abandoned the project. It was actually coming out nicely before that bonehead play. Haha...so it goes. 😖

Glad you liked the changes to the "cedar" top. It made a nice difference and I appreciate the suggestion. 

Lou

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Great drawing skill in spite of little experience. The textured sound board looks much better; there hardly ever are plain colours in realistic images, always some sort of gradient al least. I guess being a photographer helped to see details that most artists would easily miss.

Home: https://vectorwhiz.com  : : : :  Portfolio blog: https://communicats.blogspot.com

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