The Importance of Warming Up

I have heard people say, “Before you run or workout, make sure to warm yourself up first.” It will not only prevent injuries, but you will perform much better as a result. The advice is good, but beginners often see “warming up” as tedious and a waste of time. So they don’t really take it to heart until later down the road. And speaking of warming up, I believe it can apply to art as well. Let me explain…

Last year I had the opportunity to conduct my drawing experiment in Krita. I noticed that I have produced a lot of nice rough before bed, but then upon waking up the next day, I noticed that my drawing and roughing out the form wasn’t that great when compared to the ones done in the previous day / night. I didn’t understand why at first. But noticed that it’s only 1 hour into my practicing session did I start to do well, and my hand and mind was flying freely. This whole thing on “warming up” didn’t cross my mind yet, until I read somewhere about an artist who wouldn’t even begin to start his actual painting until he spent the first 6 hours warming up, doing rough sketches, etc… That’s when I saw the connection. Most of my rough sketches looked great from evening and onward because I was warming up in the morning. And sometimes when I couldn’t get to it in the morning, I noticed that I was only flying around an hour into the session.

I would say this will be different for everyone, depending on your skill level and experiences. Those that do art for a living probably warm up much quicker than those like myself who are just doing it on and off.

A Casual Mindset

Whenever I’m not doing any art, my mind is always thinking about it. Theorizing and meditating on certain principles and theories; seeking for ways to explain difficult concepts or explain things in a way that beginners can understand and put it to use.

The first mindset that took me up one step in my journey is the [Casual Perspective] mindset. A lot of times we’re not building a spacecraft, so things don’t have to be dead accurate. We can guess, estimate and be casual about it. No need to take out your ruler to measure everything and to make sure that all lines are perfectly straight.

Then I thought to myself, what about creating the illusion of depth in drawing/painting? What about painting textures for 3d models? Eureka finally struck again. I hope to touch on this more later on when I finally sit down to test out these theories with examples.


Once in a blue moon I check on GIMP to see how the GUI is doing, and the latest version has some improvements. However, it’s still the most frustrating app to use. I want to incorporate GIMP into my workflow so I can make a complete switch to Linux, but GIMP is extremely unorthodox at the moment, in my opinion, if you’re coming from macOS or Windows using other softwares.

Blender used to be unorthodox but changed its way from 2.8 and onward. Blender is a lot more popular now as a result, and I hope that GIMP will one day do the same.

It’s not the Software

This was modeled 100% in Wings3D by an artist I know. This is one of his fan-art piece modeled straight out of a blueprint model sheet you can find online. Having seen some of his works, I would say he’s a Wings3D master. Blender has a lot of tools to speed up your modeling process, and as we all know, in Wings3D, things are done manually. What this goes to show is that it’s not really the software, but the artist.

Commenting isn’t working

Just realized that it’s not working. Will have to look into that when I have time.

EDIT: Got it to work now. WP security was tight.

EDIT2: If you don’t see your comment after posting, it’s because it’s waiting for its first approval. Afterward, it will automatically shows up.

I have used the internet for more than 10+ years and I know what it’s like to randomly come across a site you want to comment, but hate the hassle of signing up. So there’s no signing up. Even though it says name and email are required, it’s not. You can comment as anonymous. Also, for whatever reason, if you want your comment(s) removed, just drop me a mail with the link to it.

Alchemy’s Outline Mode

Krita should implement this feature. Different mind functions differently, and I find it easier drawing with outline instead of filling the shape automatically. This is a quick demonstration using a mouse. This tool can be very useful in the ideation phrase.

References and Learning from Others

There are two things that Christians are made fully aware of, the first is that: There’s nothing new under the sun:

Ecclesiastes 1:9-10 (KJV) The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done: and there is no new thing under the sun. Is there any thing whereof it may be said, See, this is new? it hath been already of old time, which was before us.

Christian artists can never run out of ideas because The Book they study daily is full of historical events. Take the story of Moses for example. God preserved him and sent him into Egypt, and then later used him to deliver the Israelites. Moses is a type, foreshadowing what Christ later would do when God sent his beloved Son into the world to save mankind. This is one event that gets repeated a lot in movies and stories in our modern days. Transformers and Superman are two examples that come to mind. Just one historical event can generate many movies and stories out of it (see this post:

Want to create a character concept based on a Script? You have the Bible, full of Scripts. Want to get into the habit of researching actual places, cultures and people for your concepts? Again, the Bible is full of it (look up biblical archaeology for example). Need ideas for a character? Samson, Moses, Elijah, Jezebel, anti-Christ, Ahab etc… Creating fantasy characters and environments? Hell, Heaven, Spirit, Soul, Angels and Demons… it’s all there in the Bible. The subject of the old Masters was either Biblical or based on it, take the Last Supper by Leonardo Da Vinci for example.

When it comes to art’s techniques and methods, there’s really nothing new under the sun as well. When ZBrush and digital Sculpting first came unto the scene, people were exploring and studying it. Now, these techniques and methods are out there. Which brings us to my second point.

Acts 8:26-31 (KJV) And the angel of the Lord spake unto Philip, saying, Arise, and go toward the south unto the way that goeth down from Jerusalem unto Gaza, which is desert. And he arose and went: and, behold, a man of Ethiopia, an eunuch of great authority under Candace queen of the Ethiopians, who had the charge of all her treasure, and had come to Jerusalem for to worship, Was returning, and sitting in his chariot read Esaias the prophet. Then the Spirit said unto Philip, Go near, and join thyself to this chariot. And Philip ran thither to him, and heard him read the prophet Esaias, and said, Understandest thou what thou readest? And he said, How can I, except some man should guide me? And he desired Philip that he would come up and sit with him.

The second thing that Christians are made fully aware of is: We are to learn from and be taught by others. It’s how babies learn and grow, and the same goes for us Artists as well. A lot of painters and sculpters of old learned and copied from each others. Spurgeon once said, “He who is his own guide is guided by a fool.” This is a good principle to live by.

When you look at creation, there is much to learn, and many have. When you look into the lives of other artists, there’s also much to learn, and many have. Whether it’s techniques, methods or ideas, it’s all there for those who will see themselves as “student.”

Do you need 2d skill to be good at 3d?

You might be asking this question if you’re interested in 3d, but are starting out late (age-wise). The short answer is no. You do not need to take life drawing lessons, nor do you have to read tons of books on anatomy or figure drawing! What you need is a good pair of eyes, and this can be trained through “Observational Drawing.” Here are two examples from an artist that I know. If you ask him to draw you a character from imagination, he wouldn’t be able to do it. Line of Action, Contrapposto, Gestalt, Notan etc…? He has no clue. Give him a reference, and he can bring it to life in 3d.

All these were modelled in Wings3D. You’ll see more and learn from him later on once his website is up. : Creating Compelling Character Concepts

I don’t know too much about 3DBuzz, but based on a quick search, Jason Busby, the man operating, died of cancer back in 2017. Out of their kindness, they have released all the contents for free. Someone has made a torrent out of it here:

Since my main focus here in this blog is concept and design, both 2d and 3d, I found a set that is relevant for this blog: Creating Compelling Character Concepts.

Creating Compelling Character Concepts

In this series, professional concept artist and illustrator Tyler Edlin will walk you through the workflow needed to create pro character designs like those used in AAA games and major films. Through the creation of a Fantasy Mage called Kari, Tyler will demonstrate a professional workflow, as well as covering all of the design considerations needed to create concepts from scratch, and why design is so important to artists in these fields. By the end of this course, you’ll be armed with all of the tools you need to design compelling, complex characters that make sense within the world they are created for. Tyler also includes his personal Photoshop brushes, as well as the final .psd file for you to deconstruct and review.

Alchemy on macOS

I finally got around to running al.chemy on macOS. If you’re a Mac user, you need Java SE 6 Runtime. Which can be download at: . This might sound strange, but it works: You need to download the Linux (not the Mac) version from the site. Run either “Alchemy” or “AlchemyOpenGL” after you unzipped the tar file.

I haven’t got my workstation setup yet, so in the meantime I’m just using the mouse for simple experiments.

Mouse, using

There’s a web version with limited features (

Mouse, using
Mouse, using (blur effect in Affinity)
Finger scribbling before church service starts

The mind is a pattern recognizing machine. As kids, most of us could just look into the sky and form images with the clouds using just our imagination. Alchemy can help with the ideation process. It can be random scribbling or intentional shapes and strokes. Sometimes when you don’t know what to concept, alchemy can step in and help generate ideas. Two people looking at the same random/noise/chaos alchemy can see two totally different things. One alchemy can bring forth many concepts.

Clip Studio Paint and DesignDoll

Lately I have been exploring “Clip Studio Paint” and it seems to be a lot faster than Krita on the Mac that I’m using. 10,000 x 10,000 @ 300dpi, with a rotated Canvas, and there’s no lag or jagged lines like you would experience in Krita. I also like the GUI (Interface) and its built-in 3d model to pose and draw on top.

DesignDoll is a program that is only for posing the mannequin. As of this writing, I have not tried it since I’m on Mac, but I would combine DesignDoll with Krita to get what CSP is providing (posable mannequin) if you prefer to stick with Krita.

But isn’t it cheating to use digital mannequin(s)? That depends on who you ask and what the objective is. This is a topic we can explore and talk more about later on.

CSP seems like a good alternative if you don’t like Krita. As for me, I’m sticking to Krita.

Switching to PC

I’m actually thinking of switching back to PC. A custom-built PC is a lot more powerful and costs a little less when compared to a Mac. I want to focus more on Sculpting and Drawing, and macOS is giving me a lot of headaches. For research and biblical studies, macOS serves me well, but not when it comes to 3D. There are a lot of cool apps that are only available on Windows, like DesignDoll for example, or Black Ink.

I’ll blog more and share a lot of things once I have everything setup.

I needed a program to make diagrams, but OmniGraffle is overkill (price). Came across a free alternative that has just what I need. Check it out if you haven’t heard of it. Web-based, but you can download desktop version and run it offline.

Toggle Assistant

A while back I blogged about things I would like to see in future versions of Krita. In that post I mentioned:

3) Hotkey to toggle on/off “Snap to Assistants”: This will definitely speed things up a bit when using perspective guides.

I’m not sure if Krita added that in with newer updates [or] it was there the whole time and I didn’t know about it. Someone emailed me a month ago pointing out that Krita has it: “Go To Configure -> Keyboard Shortcuts and look for “Toggle Assistant”,”


Another quick update

At this moment in time, I find it difficult to get back to Krita for two reasons:

  1. Krita messed up my keyboard customization when I updated it to a newer version. I can’t use Krita’s default. Re-customizing it would take some times, and I don’t know when I’ll be able to get to it.
  2. One of my siblings passed away recently (unexpectedly). The sad part is that he didn’t know Christ.

Art is still my passion, and Krita is still the best open source / free drawing app. I will get back to it again, somehow, God willing.

“A man’s heart deviseth his way: but the LORD directeth his steps.” (Proverbs 16:9)

Autodesk SketchBook is now free

It was SketchBook’s subscription model that turned me to Krita at first. And having tried Krita I’m now stuck with it—there’s no going back unless Krita doesn’t work on macOS. However, I’m saving up for an iPad Pro so I can do sketching/drawing on the go, and SketchBook seems to be the option since Krita is not on iOS. Both the desktop and mobile version of SketchBook are now free of charge (made free last year, but I just found out while browsing yesterday).

Concept Art is not Dead

I watched this video a few months back, titled, “Concept Art is Dead” and didn’t have a chance to make a post on it until now. Let me say that Concept Art is not dead. The traditional way of doing concept art might be dead to some, but it is not dead.

Technology is constantly evolving, and since a lot of artists are using computer software(s) to get their job done, what this means is that as technology evolves, so will their works if they choose to take advantage of it. I have seen it in programming, web design and now visual art. WordPress has evolved to the point now that it’s a waste of time to sit and code everything manually on the front-end side of things. There are game engines out there that can get the job done that it would be a waste of time to code from scratch.

Art is a bit different, but it’s not immuned from this evolution. As I think about this, there are three groups of people that come to mind. The first group of people are those that just like to do things the old fashioned way, I call them Purist. With ZBrush, Blender and Photoshop, you can create amazing artworks if you combine them together, yet there are artists out there who still enjoy doing things by pixel. And if I have the time to get back to 3d modeling, I would still do box modeling because it brings back the nostalgia. The second group of people are those always on a look out for shortcuts. If there’s a way to cheat, they will. They will use Poser and advanced renderer; they will use Terrain generator and whatever that is out there to help bring their vision to life. The third group of people are those who still do things the old way, but still make use of technology here and there or whenever they see fit.

The result of photobashing and paintover gives you a level of realism that is not possible to achieve if done by hand. The style is also different. And sometimes you don’t have a choice. If the company that is hiring you is looking for a particular style and realism that is only achievable via photobashing and paintover, then either you get with the program or you move on elsewhere.

The speaker in this video is not against doing things the old way. He brought up one main reason that I wholeheartedly agree with, and that is TIME. If you have all the time in the world, then you can study the whole Alphabet. But if you don’t have all the time in the world, then here are the X, Y and Z that you can study that will get you from here to there in a short amount of time.


If you’re a disciple of Christ who follows and obeys His teaching, then this is something you ought to think through.  I did some searching and there seems to be mixed opinions on this topic. The people (we’re talking about Christians here) that are into art or study art seem to understand the importance of studying the human body and so they are “for it.” On the other hand, the non-artists seem to be opposing it at all cost.  My suggestion is first read the articles that I’m about to link so you can get an overall perspective on this important topic and then examine your own heart and seek the Lord for understanding.

Fine Art will help you to grow as an artist and that involves the studying of  human anatomy, the naked body. So the question is: Is it a sin to look at nude model(s) or images  to better our understanding of it so that we can recreate it with realism? Let me start off by saying that as of this writing, I do not take a “for” or “against” position simply because it’s not black and white. Do you have a passion to grow as an artist or do you use Fine Art as an excuse to lust after the female body and to collect pornographic materials all in the name of “art”? Search your heart and be honest.

There are Christian colleges which allow drawing of the human figure clothed in bikinis or racing suits both of which resemble underwear and have well known advertising campaigns associated with them that exploit sex as the main point of their style. This practice seems inappropriate and more sensual by its suggestive commercial context and the unnecessary focus upon the covered area that it invites. To some, it appears more like going to the beach than to the classroom where serious academic study is underway. (Gordon College’s Policy on the use of Nude Models in Art)

The Greeks believed that man was the measure of all things; as such they sought to find the perfect human form and show it in their art. The resulting nudes are not pornographic; rather, they are the outworking of the Greek ideal. As Christians, we rightly reject their philosophy, but we should not make the mistake of mislabeling their art. (A Christian Perspective on Nudity in Art — Matthew Clark)

Photos and Unsplash

By now I’m sure a lot of you have heard about Unsplash. It’s a great site for free photos. I wouldn’t worry too much if it’s photos of animals or buildings, yet even with buildings (the building itself!) some are copyrighted. Becareful with using photos of actual people, even though you might not get into trouble, but you never know…

Here are some food for thought.