Leopold. A character from my books.
Leopold was born in France, july 14 1795.
His parents moved to Amsterdam when he was only 8 years old so he never saw much of France in it's turbulent Napoleonic times.
Being a wealthy aristocratic family they bought a beautifull house in Amsterdam (near where they build the Rijksmuseum about 77 years later)
Leopold's parents died relativily young, when Leopold was 22. (They were murdered for ploitical reasons that I will not go into now)
So he inhereted this beautifull house. He was quite the clever boy, he loved to read and he started collecting books when he was about ten years old, and collecting books wasn't all that easy back then. He never stopped and when he became an adult he knew he was to dedicate his life to collecting knowledge and literature. He studied History and Ancient Languages on the Athaneum Illustre and he remained connected to this predessessor of the University of Amsterdam. It is here that his life becomes intertwined with that of Alexander.
Alexander also worked on the Athaneum teaching the art of rethorica. He was very interested in Leopold's library and the soon become very close friends. Leopold made an impression on Alexander, something he wasn't used to, he being immortal many people looked quite the same in his eyes but Leopold was different, his ideas were fresh and not of this time, he was not impressed with Alexander's authority. Whenever Alexander entered a room people looked up and feel his presence like he has an aura that commands you to be impressed. Leopold just saw Alexander as a normal person and being treated like a normal person was something Alexander somehow needed.
There was a Platonic love between them and they even lived together in the same house for some time, but nothing can last. After a while strange things happened in the city and they had to work hard to retain their friendship and their library.
art, character and story © Ysa
Step by Step how did I make this?
1. First drew this character with pencils on a very normal A4 paper.
2. Scanned the drawing.(300 dpi: pic is: 2463x1925 pixels
3. Opened Photoshop.
4. Created a new layer for the lineart.
5. Drew over the pencil lines in this new layer by using a Wacom tablet.
6. After that I merged the layer with the background.
7. I ctrl-clicked the RGB layer in the tab 'channels'
8. I added a new layer
9. I added a masked on the new layer using the mask-button (in the button line below the layers)
10. CLicked ctrl-i to invert the layer
11. Then filles the empty mask layer with black using the fill tool.
12. Then I did something I don't normally do: added the background first. For inspiration on that I looked at the paintings of Albert Cuyp.As tool for colouring the background I used the 'chalck' brush (you can find it easily in the brush list) with opacity on 50%
13. I erased all the pieces of the background covering the image.
14. I started colouring with the hard round brush opacity 100%. I started on the cape first. I coloured very neatly between the lines.
15. I selected the layer by ctrl-clicking on it in the layer list.
16. Created a new layer
17. Added light effects (yellow) with the hard round brush (opacity 50%)
18. added some blue in yet another new layer, same brush
19. Used the chalck brush opacity 80% to make the purple shadow
20. used the same brush to make the darker purple shadow all in new layers!
21. Repeated the process on the rest of the drawing.
22. Selected the hard round brush to colour the lineart. Select the empty layer on your masked layer (step 6-11) Now you can just colour the lineart with ease, you will see that you don't have to be precise, only the lines will be coloured.
23. Finished the drawing.
24. Opened IrfanViewer and made the pic smaller (1000x782 pixels) And saved is as a PNG file.