Only music matters - Original Character (with process)

in #art3 years ago (edited)


Hey, everyone :)

I completed this new piece just yesterday!
This drawing sure took me quite some time to finish. I took some unexpected decisions while making it and I will explain it all while sharing the progress of the drawing. The general idea I had when I started drawing it was to try and picture a girl, who is in her own bubble and doesn't pay attention to anything else apart from her music XD (by the way this is not a healthy behavior and in no shape, way or form am I promoting it xd!!)

Initially I wanted to draw the whole painting with only watercolors, but due to my poor choice in paper (being lightweight 200 gsm), I could not overdo it with the water and in the end had to finish it with pencils.

Step by step process:

I will give brief explanation for each step, what I did exactly. Hopefully it will help out someone struggling and trying to improve their art :)

Step 1: Lineart

Step 2: Skin
Before starting to color with watercolor I always lighten my sketch almost completely gone with kneaded eraser, just so the sketch will not show in the finished piece, due to the fact that watercolors are quite transparent. When painting with watercolors you always have to start with the lightest colors and moving to the darkest. In my case the lightest being my character's skin, so that is what I started with. I always use the wet-on-wet technique. You can see that I applied color only where the shadows fall, because we will go with second layer after this one dries.


Step 3: Skin Shadows and Highlights
After the paint has dried we can re-wet the surface with water and deepen our shadows.


Step 4: Hair - Flat color
After thinking some time on what color to make my OC's hair I settled for making it pinkish xd
So again using wet-on-wet I laid my flat pastel pink base color. Also here you can see that my poor choice in paper finally is visible :( My paper buckled only after one wash of paint.


Step 5: Outfit + Eyes + Music Notes Flat Color
Same as the hair I laid the flat colors for the rest of the painting, being careful to let all the colors dry in between, so they will not bleed into each other.


Step 6: Background
Aaaaand here is where my struggle started. As dumb as it sounds, at the beginning I didn't put much thought in the background, but after coloring in the music notes I didn't want to leave the background white, because it will just make the picture dull and the colors won't stand out. So I took the very dramatic decision to make my background black... YES, BLACK! By now it could go both ways - It would either be the worst decision I took or it will turn out great and how I imagined it. I will share one thing with you people - watercolor black is never fully black, it can never turn out like ink, because it is transparent and always the paper will show a bit underneath. So this is how it turned out at this stage and I thought I ruined my whole painting... but I continued none the less, because I am stubborn :P only the struggle to lay a flat color to match almost all over was such a hassle, took me almost 1h.


Step 7: Adding glow to the music notes
At this point I didn't want to work on the character if I could not fix my background, so I tried to add a glowing effect to the music notes and see if I can salvage it. I did this by mixing some white gouache paint with some watercolor for hue. It turned so-so and gave me hope to push on.


Step 8: Adding details to the skin
So here is where I started adding details with the pencils, because I didn't want to damage anymore the paper with water. I started with the skin.


Step 9: Adding details to the hair
Again with pencils adding details to the hair and outlining the strands.


Step 10: Adding details to the outfit


Step 11: Deepening the shadows of the hair and the outfit


Step 12: Finalizing the image digitally
Due to the fact that always the scanner washes out the image's colors, I had to readjust the contrasts and hues accordingly. In the end I made the dark background black, accentuated the glow of the music notes and added reflection onto the character.


Animated Process:

There you go, a drawing of my original character’s rocking out to music! This post sure turned out long, but I hope you liked it and found it informative :)
Until next time!

If you like my art, please support me by upvoting and following me not to miss out on future content :) Comments are always welcomed and I do accept constructive criticism!


I love this sweet lady. and the dark background has made the drawing standout. Wondering what music she listen right now. She seems happy and enjoyed very much.

Thank you for the detail explanation on how to color with water color ie from lightest to darkest. Water color need patience because you need to wait for it dried before apply another layer.

It took you how long to complete this beautiful lady?

Thank you for the sweet comment, @oliviackl :)
Yes, the choice of background made me sweat a bit, but I think the end result worked out :3

Happy to hear that you found the explanations helpful! There are a lot of things to keep in mind when painting with water colors and what I wrote just scratches the surface, but hope it will help encourage more people to try out this medium :)

In total with the drying time I would say it took me around 7-8h from start to finish.

I did water color in my high school day. I almost forget how to paint with water color. After read your post, it brought back the memory eg must wet the paper in the base first in order for the water color disperse evenly and mix of different color.
Although your is basic, but it really helpful. With the basic knowledge, we can deepen our skill slowly.

Yes, if you want to have a smooth paint coverage without edges, you always need to use wet on wet technique :)
For the future I will continue to share watercolor tips

yay happy to hear that @hentikage. I need more tips to continue my watercolor drawing.

I guess your drawing reflects your character as well?
Its very nice and beautiful like you!

You've done a great job in your painting.
Congratulations and the @curie upvote!

Keep it up!
Have a great day girl!

Thank you so much ^_^

You're very much welcome!

By the way, I 'd seen your profile. You're known as ZeeneyArt.
What does it mean?
I'm just curious about it.

Well there is no specific meaning to it :P
Just my name starts with Z and I wanted to have a nickname that starts with the same letter as well, so I sat down and was brainstorming ideas and I liked how this one sounds Xd

Oh I see.
That nickname is beautiful indeed, kinda futuristic name I guess.
Thanks for the explanation and reply on my comments spending your precious time and make me appreciate much.

Hi hentikage,

This post has been upvoted by the Curie community curation project and associated vote trail as exceptional content (human curated and reviewed). Have a great day :)

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I like the flow of this artwork and all the colours that you used to paint this one. You did a great job explaining your creation process as well :).
Congratulations for your curie vote! ^_^

Thank you, scrawly. :))
Yes, I decided to try and make more step-by-step and explaining my thoughts and process.

This post was shared in the Curation Collective Discord community for curators, and upvoted and resteemed by the @c-squared community account after manual review.
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Sooooo pretty

Posted using Partiko Android

Thank you, Tia :)

Sooooo pretty

Posted using Partiko Android

To get an upvote from @artzone the post needs to have at least two links(pictures or website link) in the post and at least 108 characters.

Wow. I loved the finished image at first sight but after going through the process of it's making, I now adore it much more. I love the passion, the zeal and the attention you gave to the work.
The animated process makes each step even more obvious. It shows an expertly done job. Good one @hentikage

Thank you so much for the lovely comment, @tolustx.
Glad you found the explanation of the art process entertaining. I will stick to making more posts as step-by-step and explaining my technique and thoughts behind it. :)

Very nice drawing, @hentikage :D Cool original chara ! I love her design, specially her pink hair ! Very pretty~

Nice step by step, also <3 <3 <3

Thank you so much, spidey <3
Glad you like it

Thank you for such cute painting, great composition, girl with headset and you were able to transmit the atmosphere of music that she hears.
Love the way, you explained you painting, how you build it up and especially the colors what to do first and how to build up further layers to make the painting colorful. You are absolutely right saying that color should be dry before you starting putting next and of course you need to wet it again to avoid sharp edges. Your post is a good tutorial for other people who starting watercolor painting.

Thank you, @stef1 :)
Yes, there are a lot of techniques when it comes to watercolor, which unfortunately I could not cover in detail here, since it would have made the post very long.
Maybe sometime in the future I could make one purely only introductory for watercolors :)

What a cute girl! It's like I would see my younger sister. Yes, it is so unhealthy to have the headset always on your head and music in your ears 24/7 but she wouldn't listen. At least her hair isn't pink :) I like the pink hair on your character though. It fits her perfectly.

Even though you struggled with the background I think that the final result is very nice. The contrast with the notes and colorful girl is great and all of these are popping out of the image. It was a great decision to use black in my opinion! :)

I have just realized that I really like her face. She looks adorable and her big blue eyes are mesmerizing. I'm sure she would be the most popular girl at school :)

Thank you for sharing!

Thank you for the lovely comment, @delishtreats!
Yes, nowadays you can see people walking everywhere with their headphones on, which in some cases could be potentially dangerous.

Glad that you like the final result of the drawing! It sure was a gamble, which paid out in the end :)

What are you listening to? It looks like a lot of fun.

I liked your drawing half watercolor and half pencils, maybe having a very light paper to use watercolor ended up becoming a mixed technique and that gives added value.

I love how you worked the tonalities with its lights and shadows, as well as the musical notes and the background that had to be black, another excellent decision to give more spatiality to the drawing.

I love the lighting you created with the musical notes, it seems neon. real worth the paper.

excellent work very clean, thank you for sharing.

greetings, peace and love

Thank you for the nice comment @arrozymangophoto :)

Yes, it is a very popular technique to mix watercolors and then go over with pencils to sharpen the details (if that is what you aim for).
I added the neon reflections on her in the end in Photoshop :P Because unfortunately i do not have gel pens or metallic/neon paints/ink to get that effect traditionally.

Glad that you like it :)

I like the simplicity of the process and this medium. There's not much art posts around here the feature quality water color painting. Congratulations on the curie @hentikage. You deserve the honor :D

If you need a community of artists to interact with, you can check out @artisteem community. It's a platform meant to support artists like you on the blockchain. :D

Thank you for the nice comment, @adamada :))
I joined artisteem yesterday ^_^ so will be seeing everyone more often over there.

Well this post is not only fully about watercolors, but it is the basis :) Maybe in the future I can make a more detailed post about how to achieve certain looks or maybe comparison with certain paints/mediums, because watercolors are very fun to work with :)

I love this! She looks so cute, adorable and a bit hot. Lol!

who is in her own bubble and doesn't pay attention to anything else apart from her music XD

This is so like me most of the time, but it definitely isn't the best. Lol! Just like you, i am bot promoting it but i am guilty of it (sometimes) lol.

I think the black wasn't too bad at first, however, I thought it would be even great if you picture her walking down a busy street or walking in nature, yet totally immersed in her own world (yeah, that would have been extra work and may have totally ruined your paper. Lol) but I think after adding the glow to the notes and then scanning it, it got even better. Your painting is beautiful, I love it!

Oh, her hair! Its such a perfect compliment, i love the color you chose...

Thank you for the lovely comment, @audreybits! :)

For the future I do plan to make more drawing revolving around this character, so maybe I can create something more elaborate :)

Glad that you like the final result, some of the choices were a gamble, but a worthy one :)

So you are not done with her yet? That is cool, I will love to see how you do more work on this character...

Hehehehe! Well, sometimes the gamble is worth it, like this one!😀

This drawing brought back memories of my time at the music school, I wish I had it as a cover in my notebook. I liked the way you shaded the musical notes of the pentagram, and the figure of the girl looked great with the black background that highlighted the other colors. Congratulations for the vote you received, you deserve it.

Thank you :)

It was a great idea to put the black in the background, you gave more life to the drawing, the watercolor part is great, it is a technique that I would love to learn, but now I am developing my techniques with ink pens.

Sometimes it happens to me that while I'm drawing I do not feel good about how it's going to be, but when I see the final result I feel my face light up and I realize that I've done a great job, I suppose you have the same thing.

Normante doubts while one draws are normal, the important thing is not to stop and finish what is started .. You never know how good it can be for other people.

Your drawing is a great piece of art, step by step and the way you explained it to me I liked it very much, congratulations for your curie vote.

Thank you for the comment, @naideth :)
Yes, it is important not to leave a piece unfinished, because I do not want to do damage due to being frustrated :) Sometimes it is good to leave it alone for awhile and come back to it at a later time when I feel inspired again and on fresh head :D

Love this post and I found it very informative. I haven't done much with water colors so I guess I never considered you should start with the lighter colors first. That does make a lot of sense though hahaha I guess you wouldn't be able to see the lighter colors on top of the darker ones.

It's funny to be how artists critique there own work. I do the same thing all the time with my photography. I'll take a picture, edit it and get ready to publish it and then hate what I did or think I ruined it somehow. I didn't think you ruined anything, not even in the slightest, until you said so. I am constantly amazed at what people are able to do with water colors. It's really incredible to me.

I love your persistence with it. Don't ever stop! You're doing really well and I loved the final product you created. Thanks so much for sharing!

It is true that a person is their own biggest critic and this is something that I am trying to work on. There are enough people out there to critique you, so you should be your biggest fan :)

And thank you so much for the lovely comment :) I will surely continue to make more in-depth process post and share my knowledge

For real though hahaha I'm the worst at it so I know how it is. Even now I'm digging through folders of my photos trying to find one to write about. Hate em all hahaha I mean not really I'm just over critical and over thoughtful of what I post or what I write about. So I know the struggle. The struggle is real for sure.

The best advice I've ever heard is to just do it no matter what and let other people say or think what they want. Half the time they'll have opinions like I did of your artwork: it's fantastic and you should keep at it.

Steem on!