Sunday, March 25, 2007

ImagineFX

ImagineFX: Linda Bergkvist, Thierry Doizon, Brom, Linda Tso, Chris Foss, Gary Tonge
There are two major divisions of digital art. The most prominent and popular in terms of resources, both on the web and in print, is 3-D CGI — the creation of images in software that allows for the modeling, manipulation and rendering of “3-D” objects. This is the technology behind the kind of images in 3-D animation, as in The Incredibles and Monsters, Inc.

The other, less popularized area of digital art, and the one of most interest to me, is digital painting, the use of graphics software like Corel Painter, Adobe Photoshop, Autodesk SketchBook Pro and Ambient Design’s wonderfully inexpensive ArtRage, combined with a drawing stylus and pressure sensitive tablet, like those from Wacom, to draw and paint on the computer in a way analogous to drawing and painting with traditional art materials.

ImagineFX is a UK magazine devoted to digital art, specifically for the fantasy and science fiction genres and the related field of concept art for movies and games, that has a refreshing emphasis on digital painting.

You can often find the print version of the magazine here in the U.S. in college bookstores, specialty magazine or comics shops and the larger chain bookstores.

Both the print magazine and the online version offer many of the same features, including step-by-step Workshops in digital art techniques (sometimes offered as downloadable PDF files).

Many of the workshops are by digital artists I’ve featured here on lines and colors, like Linda BergKvist, Phillip Straub, Aly Fell, Robert Chang, Tim Warnock, Jonny Duddle, Melanie Delon, Daryl Mandryk, Frazer Irving and Ryan Church.

In addition there are interviews with some of them as well as other artists I’ve featured on lines and and colors, such as Brom, The Bothers Hildebrandt, BARoNTiERi (Thierry Doizon) and Robert Chang.

There are also forums, blogs and reviews of computer graphics software, related hardware, DVDs and books; and “Reader FXPosé“, a gallery for readers to display their own work.

Unfortunately, the experience of reading the online version is marred by overly-kinetic house banner ads, that I can only presume are meant to somehow annoy you into subscribing to the print version; but actually only serve to make you click away from the site more quickly than you might otherwise. (Sometimes you can tuck up the edges of your browser window to hide the bouncing ads long enough to read an article.)

That taken into account, ImagineFX is a good resource, in both the print and web versions, for anyone interested in digital painting as it applies to fantasy and science fiction illustration and concept art.

(Image above, top row: Linda Bergkvist, Thierry Doizon, Brom; second row: Linda Tso, Chris Foss, Gary Tonge.)

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