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Observe the Naming Conventions when naming your files.

Place completed work online in Hand_In folder of Digi Paint course in the ADM Digital Animation folder.

Expectations of this course

The expectations of this course are:

  1. That you have demonstrated technical competence in all key aspects of Photoshop practice. See Key Technical Skills for a brief outline of these skills.
  2. That your file is organised according to the DT2012 'house style'. See Naming Conventions for details.
  3. That all your research and reference material are presented in an orderly and consistant manner.
  4. That necessary assignments have been completed.
  5. That you have demonstrated competence in keys aspects of pictorial skills. See this microsite for an introduction of what these might be. Clearly, given the nature of the topic, these are to an extent negotiable, according to the particular aims of your creative output.
  6. That your creative output is original and engaging.
  7. That you have demonstrated engagement with the course. This might be through asking questions in class, the seeking of consultations or suchlike.


01_Basic.psd Make a PS file with the following attributes:
  • At least 1 clipped layer.
  • At least 1 adjustment layer.
  • At least the following blend modes: Multiply, Screen, Overlay, Color Dodge and one other.
  • At least one Masked layer.

The subject matter should be something unexpected. Consider: transformation, the hybrid, juxtaposition, fantasy etc.

At least: Key Items, Blend Modes, and the blend_modes.psd, simple_file.psd and skull_small.psd in Assets.
02_Photo_Reference.psd Using reference photos taken from life, make a composite. This is the assignment where we used a model in the life room. Students who joined after this point may use their own source photos. Things to remember:
  • Should you take your own source photos, you can take the photo in natural light or artificial, but the light should be soft. Harsh lighting is difficult to use in a line drawing.
  • Do not stand too close to the model.
  • Take more than one photo of each pose. Be snap-happy.

This assignment address the importance of using well taken source photos, and also composition.

Taking a Photo

[Norman Rockwell and his photo reference (see the difference between his sources and his paintings]

[A page on photo reference. Some good examples, but lousy discussion]

03_Maya_PaintEffects.psd Render out from Maya Paint Effects an image. Integrate this into a digital painting or composite.
  1. Ensure that the Menu Bar view is set to Render.
  2. From the Create / Polygon Primitives menu a new piece of geometry, e.g. a plane.
  3. Select the geometry and from the Paint Effects menu choose Make Paintable.
  4. From the Paint Effects menu then select Get brush. This will open the Visor.
  5. From the Visor choose your brush.
  6. Paint! Edit its values in the Attribute Editor. Full manual of items is [here]. The most important values in this very large set are:
    • Global Scale (change its size)
    • Shadow Effects (add or remove shadows)
    • Tubes (edit the visual properties of the Paint Effect)
  7. To make the plane invisible to a render go to Render Stats in the Properties Panel of the plane and switch off Primary Visibility.
  8. To render, go to: Window / Rendering Editors / Render View. Press the Render Button.
  9. The size of the render may be changed in the Common table of the Render Settings.


[Paint effects manual here].

04_Piranesi.psd [Piranesi] was a master of romantic perspectival space. Using one of his drawings as reference, go crazy. Things to remember:
  • Everything I have shown you on perspective. Especially: where is your eye-level?
  • Take liberties with the source material, don't just copy.
Check out the notes on my perspective and landscape talks in the Assets section.
  • Do anything. Do it brilliantly. Exceptions are: no fan art (i.e. paintings of a an existing character from a game, animation, film or anime).
  • I must see a substantial start on this by the first week after the Sem break (Thursday 14th).
  • Failure to have done so will constitute a major failing of this course.
  • Full attendance required on Thursday 14th
Keep in good contact with me.