The quest to make fan art

I’m going to admit something right now: I can’t draw. As in it’s a miracle if I can even get stick figures to look proper. So as you’ve seen a couple times in the past, I like to play around with Photoshop instead. Blending and bendings photos is not much of a problem for me. After all, as a web designer, I use the program on a semi-regular basis, and sometimes I do it just for fun.

So when the Wurm Online Fan Art Contest was first announced, I didn’t think much of it. Not being able to draw can cause some problems when making art like that. 😛 I did go back on occasion to check out what cool pictures people were posting. Some of them were from excellent artists, but there were also those who were just having some fun with doodles or MS Paint. They didn’t care how they turned out, they were just having a good time. Somehow I found myself swept up by their mood.

Also repeated over and over again in the thread was the fact that the art could be in any form: hand drawn, digital, etc. (Someone even suggested banana art and I’m kind of disappointed that no one made any Wurm banana art; that would have been amazing.) Now I could certainly do digital. At least, I supposed so. I had never tried anything like this before. Photoshop techniques are easy enough for me (or anyone else) to learn. It’s a matter of being able to use them together to make a cohesive and recognizable image.

So there was one point that I decided that I was going to give it a shot. You never really know if you can do something until you try it, right?

I won’t go into all of the details but after probably 10 hours of work, my lady adventurer was ready:

Lady Adventurer
It took a lot long than I thought, and it would both tougher and easier than I assumed it would be. Starting was difficult because I didn’t really know what I was doing. But once I got into the rhythm of things, it went along much quicker. And I learned a lot about light and shadow. There was even one point when I had to redo all of the highlights/shadows because I realized I had been imagining the light source on the wrong side of her body. Fun times.

But other than a few hiccups, it was fun. Between enjoying it, the new techniques I learned, and the fact that I succeeded in making something made every second worth it.

I’m proud of my lady adventurer. In the future, I know that I can do better, but this is a damn fine start in my opinion. If there’s one thing I’ve learned over the years of coding and web design is that I’m always getting better. There are always new things to learn and to try. And I love it!

I entered this fan art in the contest a few days ago. Tomorrow they will be announcing the winner. Winning the contest and getting the prize, while cool, would only be icing on the cake for me. The most important part of this exercise is that I’ve proved to myself that I don’t have to be good at drawing to make art. That I can make something like this with just some time and effort.

The confidence and knowledge gained here is worth so much more than any prize.

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