GIMPing a car out of thin air

In a second attempt to make more use of my Wacom tablet, and learn a little bit more about using the Gimp in the process, I sat down tonight and decided to attempt a little more sketching. I always liked doodling cars in my youth, so I did a quick sketch in the Gimp and one thing led to another and I ended up with this about two hours later (click it to get a slightly larger version):

There are a lot of problems with it if you look too closely (doing anything remotely attractive with the wheels is still completely above me) but it’s a starting point anyhow.

I got all inspired today at lunch after checking out stuff like David Boyle’s awesome portfolio, that has wonderful things like this.

So tonight I finally got familiar with using Gimp layers but I realized one thing:  I really need to study up on Gimp shortcut keys. I’m quite comfortable with keyboarding in Inkscape, but in the Gimp I’m pretty much hunt and click at this point.

If anybody does sketching like this with the Gimp and can give me any pointers, please grace the comment section with your wisdom. :)

3 thoughts on “GIMPing a car out of thin air

  1. Hey Richard, excellent first effort. Much better then I could do.

    I followed your link and spent some time looking at David Boyle’s portfolio. Wow, I can’t even imagine what it must be like to have that type of talent and skill.

    Looking forward to seeing more of you efforts with Gimp and Watcom tablet

  2. Tires are REALLY difficult. At work, we edit a lot of vehicle pictures–it’s difficult just to cut the background from around a car’s tires without making it look really bizarre.

  3. If you are aiming for that marker look, turn the opacity on for brush dynamics but keep the size constant with a slight bit of possible jitter. It will pull it more into the real world organics while keeping the sense of a fixed tip.

    You can also accomplish some remarkable stuff in Inkscape using the calligraphy tool. To make it closer to an ink pen, adjust thinning with a tad of tremor. Set the opacity to a varying level and you should be well on your way to finding another interesting stylistic choice.

    XSetWacom is your most valuable binary when using that tablet. Use it to customize those panel buttons and slider strip. I have presets for Blender and Inkscape that I load using a simple shell script. Pretty simple once you get the hang of it and deadly useful. This allows you to have custom setups for each application. For example, Inkscape’s default behaviour is irritating when sketching using the calligraphy tool as changing the colour changes the _last_ stroke, which is generally not wanted as most folks want to change the next stroke. Adding the deselect command to a hotkey allows you to strip focus from the last object and enable you to select colour without fuddling the last stroke.

    http://linuxwacom.sourceforge.net/index.php/howto/xsetwacom

    Phew. Sorry for the long comment.

    Great stuff Rich. One word – more.

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