First Strokes

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Bruce Banner Studies (with Captain Obvious). 2006.
Acryla Gouache and gouache on bristol board, 8.3 x 6.8".

When I switched from oil paint to gouache and Acryla Gouache in 2006, I did several studies in order to familiarize myself with its properties. I've shown the page at the bottom of the post previously, but these were done even prior to that. As you can see, I was being fairly careless about the finish (and draftsmanship, in some cases)—I just wanted to see what the paint could do. Even though I planned on coloring Mythos: Hulk in the computer, I wanted to see what kind of "color" I could achieve using just grayscale. The warm and cool tones were created in two distinct ways: mass tone (cool) vs. undertone (warm) and manufactured gray (warm) vs. mixed gray (cool). By modulating those variables, you can attain a relatively broad range of hue.

Hulk Studies. 2006. Acryla Gouache and gouache
on bristol board, 8.3 x 6.8".

Mythos: Hulk Studies with Grayscale. 2006.
Acryla Gouache and gouache on bristol board, 8 x 10".


  1. Thunderbolt Ross! Great Paolo! Congrats!

  2. I really like these studies, how the hulk "pops" out of the painting with just a few simple strokes

    It's been a while since I've seen Captain Obvious too!

  3. Very interesting.

    Did you find any difficulties, used any tricks to add hue shifts and saturation to it?

    Do you just overlay it on a layer or actually opaque digital paint some? (I'm guessing this would ruin the texture of the real stuff)

    I thought hulk mythos was really well achieved, most people probably noticed zip. It actually seems to have some detail that isn't there on the oil mythoses (being harder to control).

    Painting over gray can very easily become mono-chromatically tedious, so this is very interestingly well done.

    Any impression on picking color on photoshop off the color wheel? Or did you use a palette? Did you color study for it just like regular color mixing?

    Did you use dirty, noise having brushes to break off the computer plastic feel to it?

    What about the values, did doing them separately taught you something about the value of value (hihihi), as the previous commenter said, the hulks just pops real good just with value alone, great stuff.

    I remember Craig Mullins once saying that he never used even the lowest of the light side on the shadow side, that really brings the illusion home.

    Ok - that's already too many questions :)

  4. Thanks, guys!

    Ultron, thanks for all the questions. I may have to turn my response into a post of its own, hopefully in the next couple weeks! I'll say this in the meantime, Craig Mullins is a master and you should listen to everything he has to say.

  5. really cool- I guess Acryla gouache is more of a heavy body paint? I'm working my way around gouache at the moment- but I always want more transparency so tend towards watercolour.

  6. JP — Acryla Gouache is definitely thicker, though I tend to water it down quite a bit, depending on the intended effect. Essentially, it's acrylic paint that dries to an even, matte finish. I should also note that my current technique leans more heavily on gouache, including some instances where I mix the two paints together, white being the most frequent. This is the subject of another post that is long overdue.

  7. These are really fantastic!!

    I was just at and saw your painting of Wolverine posted in a blog entry, with no credit I might add.

  8. Thanks, Sketchguy! And yes, I saw that today. I would've appreciated a link, but oh well...

  9. is it okay if i used the one below as a art study?


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