View Full Version : First Attempt with ArtRage

02-25-2014, 02:38 PM
I bought ArtRage about a week ago, as it looked like fun and I figured it was a bargain for fifty bucks. It is.

I'm retired military, having been disabled in the line of duty, so I have a lot of time on my hands. I thought I'd try learning something about art as a new hobby. I bought ArtRage and messed around with the brushes and things for a week or so, then decided today to try producing something painting-like. So here it is.


That's a painting of me executing a low level bombing run on a North Vietnamese runway. Please bear in mind that it's my first effort at creating anything art-like with ArtRage. I feel that I captured some of the motion and energy of the event. I do hope to get better at this as time goes on. But I'm having fun, and that was sort of the main point when I jumped in.

Thanks for looking.

02-25-2014, 03:19 PM
Wow, welcome to you! What a great angle for your painting, and so well done. Enjoy Art Rage, it is totally time consuming, entrancing and addictive, and perfect for someone filling in their days productively.

Looking forward to seeing more. :cool:

02-25-2014, 03:24 PM
Welcome Oubaas,
Firstly, thank you for your service....
And I've got to say...Outstanding first attempt, you nailed the motion and energy!
You did a Great job on the SLUF....
Keep painting and have fun with it!
Take care,

Check out StratoArt, great flight painter as well.

02-25-2014, 03:31 PM
Welcome to the forum....your decision to invest in ARtrage was wise. Your experience in the military and investigating in art related to the military should give you a firm foundation for future artworks. Have fun in your new endeavors with this incredibly creative medium. Need any help just holler, we are here to help and encourage.................TJ

02-25-2014, 06:07 PM
A very well executed painting of the A-7(?). You were the pilot? Very impressive - both your flying skills and the painting. :) I look forward to seeing more (of your paintings). Welcome aboard!

02-25-2014, 08:55 PM
Fantastic painting with confident brushstrokes! You'd better check the engine because exhaust gases are quite smokey ... LOL;) Welcome!

02-26-2014, 12:56 AM
Thats a brilliant startm welcome to th forums:)

02-26-2014, 01:05 AM
To produce a dramatic first painting like this is to be applauded. The subject is a real challenge in perspective and depth of field which has been done well. I do like the broad brush strokes which give a great sense of movement. Looking forward to your next one.

02-26-2014, 09:54 AM
Thank you all very much for the warm welcome. I guess if Steve recognized it as a SLUF, I'm headed in the right direction.

For those of you who are not familiar with the almost obsessive use of acronyms, official and unofficial, in the U. S. armed forces, "SLUF" is an unofficial acronym, the polite version of which is, "Short Little Ugly Fellow". It's one of the nicknames for the LTV/Vought A-7 Corsair II.

As for HarlequiNQB's question, yes and no. That picture was done from a reference picture from a simulator run. So yes, I was the pilot, but no, it does not depict an actual event from real life. My first real life squadron flew the A-7A and eventually transitioned to the A-7E, which was a totally new platform with a different, more powerful engine and updated avionics. So I'm rather fond of the SLUF.

As for the pursuit of digital art, I'm working with a number of books meant for non-digital artists, and learning quite a few things. I bought a Wacom Intuos Pro tablet (large) that I'm learning about, and also picked up the airbrush accessory for the tablet. Right now I'm reading and practicing from a book originally published in 1947, "Creative Illustration" by Andrew Loomis. Waiting in the wings I have "The Artist's Complete Guide to Drawing the Head" by William L. Maughan, "Color and Light; A Guide for the Realist Painter" by James Gurney, "The Art of Airbrushing" by Giorgio Uccellini, and "Airbrushing Techniques Step-by-step" by Roland Kuck. I also have a number of drawing and painting books, and a couple of art history books that I've collected over the years that I hope to eventually, finally work through in an effort to learn more. The art history books are already very well thumbed, but I'm hoping to finally work on trying to produce similar results to some of the works.

While obviously the techniques from a paint and canvas book don't translate directly to digital art in many cases, I have found that if I use a little imagination I can make the transition and produce something quite like in most cases. I find that simply playing around with brushes and tools in my various art software makes me much more aware of how to translate techniques.

While I have a number of different art programs on my computer, the one to which I keep returning is Art Rage. There's something very compelling about this particular software that feels comfortable and welcoming. It feels much more intuitive than the other programs and I seem to find what I want with greater ease. And I like the results better than anything else as well.

Thanks again for the welcome.

02-26-2014, 12:18 PM
Welcome, and a great start :)

02-26-2014, 08:06 PM
SLUF seems a bit harsh - I've always though they were very interesting looking planes. Sometimes the "Ugly" ones are those with the most character (This is what I tell myself at least, better to have character than nothing), and in this case it makes it memorable.

When you say Simulator, do you mean at home or and actual full size unit (I'm curious, I know a guy who works on simulators)?

Anyway, even if both the flight and the paint are simulations, the results are legitimately good :)

Marilyn Anne
02-27-2014, 03:00 AM
Truly a nice work. It is absorbing and has helped me immeasurably .

02-27-2014, 07:41 AM
Looks like you catch on very quickly.....:cool::cool::cool: A much better attempt with ArtRage than mine...

D Akey
02-27-2014, 05:54 PM
I think taking your own Art education in hand is perfect. Your investigation into art techniques through how-to books is a great idea because you can look at what they're showing in finished pieces and then how to get there. So you can go after what grabs you based on the end result. This way you'll be sure ahead of time that's where you want to go. This is where taking live classes often falls short, because unless you know very well what the teacher is going to teach you, and the level and interest/dedication of your fellow classmates, it could be an expensive disappointment. There are a number of reasons why the wrong classes could frustrate. I've experienced way too many like that. And I recall one guy who blew my mind by telling the school the classes he wanted to take and that was all. They let him and he became a great painter. So stick to your vision and find who teaches what you want to learn, in books, in tutorials, in actual classes if you're lucky enough to find the right teacher. (Oddly enough he was also from Arkansas, heh)

When I went to art school, a lot of classes were in directions I did not want to learn and it drove me nuts. Later after you nail what you like, then you can look at other styles and so forth. Right now, it's a student's dream, with the world of skilled artists and endless catalogs of existing art to choose from. You'll resonate with the right stuff when you see it. Then go after specifically that.

The how-to then gives you a solid understanding of what makes a picture work (That Loomis Creative Illustration one is a gem). And I'm sure the other ones that you named have lots of good info as well. And let's not forget looking at other great paintings.

The key that you'll find over time is that the computer does certain things more efficiently and playfully. Experimentation and letting your creative side run occasionally is a real joy - finding new ways to represent your vision sometimes comes through just messing around. Depends on one's personality and tastes. As to realism, there's nothing to match digital for tight mechanical realism if you're into rendering aircraft and so on. It sounds like you already have experience enough with computers and art to have acquired a taste for deeper and deeper dives into the possibilities.

One of the greatest inventions that the computer offers is the [Zoom] function for viewing what you're doing, and the other is the [Undo] command/buttons. They're the command features of the gods. I love saving versions so as to be able to try multiple things out when you hit a crossroads and choose the one that worked best. And do that a number of times and pretty soon you'll have a go-to bag-of-tricks. And then you can work out from that well known foundation. And it all just gets better and more efficient. . . or better and fresher, depending on your end point you're aiming for.

If you can figure out how to use a flight simulator you ought to be able to follow techniques crossing over picture making concepts and methods to digital. Different programs have different interfaces, but if you know how to make a picture, you can dive in and find the tool(s) within most programs that get you to that end point. The real trick is to not get tangled up in the mechanics of the programs too much. It's a mixed bag and a fine line between old school techniques and discovering what the computer does differently and often times better.

Welcome and have a blast. ArtRage is amazing.