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2.4 Color Zones

In this lesson, we will discuss the color zones of the human head/face. We will begin to add the color zones into the face of our illustration as well as adding more texture to the painting.

2.4 Color Zones

In this portion of the lesson, we're gonna talk about color, and how color is implemented naturally into the skin. We're gonna break down the color zones briefly, and then we're gonna go ahead and add color to our painting. We're gonna cheat a little bit, and we're gonna bring a specific color in to give us a little bit more of a flesh tone so our paint won't look so flat. All right, let's go ahead and get back into the lesson. All right, let's discuss the color zones of the face. So if you look at the top of the head, you'll see that there's a yellow-whitish brow area. And then the cheek area, the nose area, which we all know is a red cheeks/nose area, also where we would add the eye color, where we'd have blood zones. And in the bottom part of the chin is usually bluish gray. So, we don't actually go and put those specific colors in, but we want to implement those colors in, and that's what we're gonna do. We're just gonna slowly implement them in and mix them with the colors we already have. So this way, we're completing the color zones while we're adding color to our painting and keeping it natural, and it's going to visually make sense. That's ultimately the goal. So let's go ahead and get started with that part. All right, so we're just going to continue with the texture brush, which can start to put a little bit of red, a dark brown, red into those areas to give us the line work we need. Now, I don't want this to be too obvious. I almost want to just hint at it, and build up and build up and build up. And the more time you spend, usually, the better results you get. So you don't want to rush through it and feel like, oh, I have to make it happen, I just have to get it done. Because usually, you can tell the lines you're using really hard and really heavy as opposed to a nice natural crease or build up in whatever style you do. It's one of those things where you wanna loose brush and you wanna just work your way into a crease area. So, let's go down here and just add a little bit of this dark red. Let's see, up here in the ear, too. Just want to bring it here. And notice that I'm still pulling out, pulling back in, moving around, touching different areas. I want to make sure they keep balance in my painting. What I don't want to do is just focus on one ear and then focus on one half of the face and then have to duplicate that later on, usually, you lose the steam. You're not able to carry it across as well, and you can tell. So I want to make sure that I'm spreading myself out, make sure that I'm hitting every area a little bit here, a little bit there. And it's good for your morale while you're working. You feel like you're accomplishing something, and you can take a snapshot and see if something's going right overall. And you don't have to worry about this, what steps I take to get here because I can't duplicate the results. That actually happens. You may try something new and it may work, and you may forget one of the steps is something new. Well, if you do it to everything, you're gonna be okay. So what I'm doing here is just doing a nice gauze and blur again, and just softening up the colors, so it looks more natural and looks like the skin is reflecting the shadow instead of just having a line drawn, and it creates a natural gradient. So let's go ahead and put a little bit of that yellow here, that's good. And I'm gonna go ahead and get an airbrush. And a little bit bigger, and let's make a new layer. And, of course, you can name your layer whatever you want. I just want to put yellow here, all right. And a new layer here also. We're gonna name that blue. So that'll be for the chin area. Here we go blue gray, somewhere in between. You'll know as you're working on your your project, what color fits. I turned my opacity down quite a bit, and I'm just gonna get a little bit of that blue into the area, just enough for you to see it, but not see it, and recognize. So, right away we can see, oh, wow, that's pretty prominent, right? Then, I can turn the layer down. I can also go and Gaussian blur too to make it a little softer. So there are a couple of things we can do. Some artists like to work with the opacity of their brush really, really low. So they may work with, I don't know, somewhere around 6% and just really, really build up. For what we're doing, I don't have as much time as that. So I really have to focus, and it's easier to put it on a layer and turn the layer down. Now, once I start to work this out, you'll start to see the color turn a little bit purple, and so it'll give me bounce light which is what I want. And it gives the skin a little bit more of a reflection on the skin light. And with her complexion, this works out just fine, because her skin's absorbing the environment and is pushing it back out. And if her skin was darker, the highlights would be even harsher, right. The color balance would be even harsher, be even harder. But her skin isn't very dark, so we can get away with just implementing the colors here. And so, you notice I'm bouncing around, putting that purple, gray, blue in the areas here. And you can see the purple starting to show up as the colors mix. And I just want to very gently, very gently bring it in and go back. I like this area here. This is really gonna give me some good bounce light. So I want to build up and take it down the neck. Now, the dangerous part is to get overzealous and to really pour it in. Now, some artists are comfortable with that. Well, they'll take this up to 25 and just lay the color down. With me, I like to build up and see what's happening. This way, if I realize something isn't working the way I want to work, I can go away from it. I can just take a couple steps back, I can turn the layer down. Let's go ahead and do the yellow zones here. I'm gonna just bring this right in this area here. Give a little bit more of a shiny skin bounce light to this area. And we're using an airbrush technique so that it flows nicely and it covers everything. So I have a pretty nice sized brush, and I'm just going through and just making sure that it spreads evenly for the most part, nice and subtle. And looking at a area where I can kind of make sure that it blends so you don't see the color zone literally. And the red is already there for the most part. So, I'm just gonna create a little bit of a blend here. And I'll just bring a little more yellow in here. And that's where right above the eye sockets the light would bounce and have a nice hard light there, bring this yellow in. So we've got all our zones in. The red was already there. We brought the bluish-gray in. We got the yellow in. The yellow is working. Make sure that I spread it around. Take a second to look and see if it looks natural. And the yellow is pretty hard. So at some point, I may go in and just turn that layer down a bit, but I'm getting the results I'm looking for. I can certainly see where the light's gonna hit. Now, I'm gonna ignore that hat because I probably would have a nice shadow from that, that would cut off a lot of it. I'm gonna go ahead and try to fix that. And let's get a good color pick, nice peach, right between to help build this highlight. And once again, I like to gradually build. Don't want to rush it, I want to show the height of the skin. And I can be ultra aggressive, like I said earlier, and just go in and put it in, that's certainly okay. But, for what we're doing here, I wanna take every single step so that, visually, we understand what it is we're doing and how you should build. We can get a lot faster by being more aggressive, but you're also more likely to make a mistake or to do something too harshly or too hard. And then, you have to throw the layer away, undo, and sometimes, you may not realize it until maybe 30, 20 minutes into a painting or into a project. So, sometimes, it may be the next day. You come back and visually you'll see, oh, this doesn't look very good. So I'm just making a highlight layer, and I want to get a little more aggressive. So, I'm gonna press a little harder with my pen while I'm using my Wacom Cintiq screen. So it's pressure-sensitive, and now, I'm just bringing, zoom in a little bit, so you can see. Now, I want to bring in those folds and where the light's going to hit. Make my brush a little smaller, so I can have even more control. There we go. There we go. Now I'm starting to create nice natural folds, and I have the light running around the skin. So the good part about this too is as we build the highlights, you'll notice it naturally makes its own crease. Now I can go in and implement a darker color, darker red brown, of course, I will. But you can see just by adding the highlight, a lot of the work is done for us. And it reminds us, oh, yeah, I need to go in and make that a little darker, or I like the way that looks, I wanna leave it like that for now. So we can make those choices. Now, I'm thinking about how the eyelid works and how it folds, and those wrinkles are there. And within those wrinkles, how the light would twist and turn, and I just wanna quickly implement that with my brush, finding those areas and pushing them very quickly. Let's work on the other side. Remember, we wanna stay balanced. I don't wanna get too carried away on one and lose myself, so let's go over here. Just keeping enough of the other eye visible that I can work on both. Find a medium ground and to make sure that I'm connected and that one eye doesn't look too different from the other eye. They will be individual eyes, of course. Otherwise, we just copy, paste, flip over. Now, I want to bring a little bit of this green and violet, depending on the skin color. And I want to start to bring those highlights in. Let's go ahead and I'm gonna set my brush up and turn my scatter on, so I don't get this uniform look. And let's bring some of that in here, and there we go. And this is going to help show my blood flow. It's in the eyes. And you can really get detailed here, and have some fun. Okay, you can go in and start to add veins, and then blur him out, and build on top of him. Depending on how much time you have, you can kind of just go crazy. If you're gonna take two weeks or maybe a month, depending on how fast you are, and really dig into this, and you can go crazy. If you don't have that much time, you're working on a project, the client needs it quickly. Obviously, you want to do mask techniques versus micro techniques in the little details. This is a way to get that color in quickly and go ahead and make this a little smaller. It's taking up too much space. There we go. There we go. And so, now it looks like it's a lot. It looks really heavy. So let's go to the layers, and let's just turn that layer down. And I like the layer technique because it gives me the option of going in, putting the color down, and then turning the layer down. So I just switch my layer from the normal to color. You can also try a couple other those options and see how does just look. But make sure you stay close to home. Make sure you stay close to what the goal was when you first put the color down. Sometimes, if we see something that looks cool, we might want to add it. But does it add to the painting? That becomes a real question. So, let's go ahead and grab our texture brush again. Grab a different one, see if I can get a different pattern, and I'll start building. Here we go, right in the areas here, zoom in a little bit. And just bring that color and turn the scattering on again, and then pen pressure, so as I push, it'll scatter more. If I do it lightly, it won't. There we go. That was a little too dark in that area. I wanna bring some highlights back. Oh, that's nice. That's working out pretty well. I like the direction that this is going. And so, I just continue to work the eyelid. And I have to jump to the other side pretty soon, but let's go ahead and get those folds there. There we go. There we go. Nice smooth strokes. And so, this texture brush, now that's not the official name, but it's a really nice brush for creating texture if you just did and undo, if you use a scattering effect. So my scatter was pretty big, I need to bring it down some. As a matter of fact, I'm gonna switch brushes, yeah. Bring it up some, and make the brush smaller, and go a little more light here. There we go. Now, it's okay to experiment with a brush, too. So as I move, I'll hit the bracket sheet or the bracket button. I'll go bracket right to make it bigger, bracket left to make it smaller, and as I paint, I'll go in between. And I keep my brush on the screen, especially when I'm teaching, because I want you to see how many changes I make just throughout these fluid strokes. Very quickly, I go through a couple of different things. So you just see the brush getting bigger, that means I'm hitting my bracket and making it bigger. And so, I think the eyes are starting to look really good. I like the direction that it's going. When we come back, we're gonna work on the lips, just start to add the color there and let the face start to come together. So we come back, we're gonna start to add the lips and make sure that we use techniques to make them look wet and not flat. I will go from there. All right, see you in the next lesson.

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