Bringing Life to Afterlife (Part 2)

by Staff on December 5, 2013


Warrick Baines process cover

Afterlife is a sci fi/western hearkening back to the days when serials like Buck Rogers or the Phantom ruled. It is a journey set in a post-apocalyptic future where life has become little more than a struggle for survival.

To bring life to the words, John Blaszczyk is now providing some stunning illustrations. You should definitely check out his webpage to see some of his other work. The style and mood of his pieces really fit the story and made him the logical choice to help bring a visual component to this story.  He has an interest in the post-apocalyptic science fiction genre, which works perfectly, since that’s the genre Afterlife fits into.

Warrick Baines process

Here’s a little peek into how I made Warrick Baines:

A: After reading the first chapter of Afterlife, I had a pretty good idea of how I wanted Warrick to look. This sketch is what guided me through the rest of the painting. You can also see my initial idea for the pose, which I stuck with throughout.

B: Here’s the first sketch for the actual painting along with the face I did earlier to use as a guide. For the pose, I used a mix between two reference photos I shot, one each of myself and my wife wearing trenchcoats and tophats and pointing a Beretta 92 at the camera. We like to keep a lot of weird clothing items around just in case, plus my wife used to work as seamstress with a theater company.

C: Here’s where I lay down the first colors. I put these behind the sketch layer and start working up the face. I like to combine the color and sketch layers and sort of blend the lines into the painting.

D: I fix his expression a little. I make the mouth curve more naturally to fit the perspective of the shot and finish painting the face. I also decide to enact the Rule of Cool and have his coat flapping in the wind, which also serves to break up the composition and make it flow a little better.

E. Finish rendering up the hands and the gun. After this step, I add some glow and bloom effects on his eyes and the sun, and also add some laser charge lights to the gun and play with the shape a little bit.

That’s it! This was a pretty straightforward piece, and a lot of fun to work on.

Expect to see more of Warrick Baines next week as Afterlife continues with Chapter 5.

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