Thursday, April 11, 2013

The Pursuer, Final Artwork

Artwork Title : The Pursuer 
Art Movement :  Relational Art
Reference Artist : Brad Troemel
Theme : Social Media Issues

Artist statement  :
The original idea of this artwork is to portray keyboard warriors as a social media issue. Keyboard warriors are basically people who wage war on the Internet. I do believe that our society has become reckless at times when using social media due to the anonymity that we obtain from the Internet. Therefore, I was inspired to come out with this final artwork based on the idea of keyboard warriors.

I included 'Vendetta' as part of this artwork because of the symbolism of this character. To put it simply, I quote Alan Moore, writer for V for Vendetta - "Behind this mask there is more than just flesh. Beneath this mask there is an idea... and ideas are bulletproof." 

Artwork by : Tang Ruxyn
Student ID : B1002820

I used this as the underdrawing for this design project.

First of all, I painted the shirt, hands and ipad. I created different layers when painting so that it will be easy for me to do any editing later on.

Then I painted the cup (reference below) and table and also Vendetta's face. I pay a lot of attention in adjusting the settings for the brush in order to get the correct tones for the colours in this part.

Next, I re-painted the shirt to get the results that I want. Then painted a chair and also the social media icons using some reference (listed at the end of this blogpost). I started to refine the details like adding a lightbulb behind Vendetta, choosing the correct colours for the icons and adding the 'smoke' effect by using brush and smudge tool.

Now is the probably one of the tricky parts in completing this design project. I had to constantly adjust the opacity for the layers I've created especially for the ipad in order to create a realistic effect to show that Vendetta is actually appearing as a reflection. Finally, I did the final touch-ups and it's done!

The Pursuer


Cup - 
Facebook -
Instagram -
Twitter -

Please refer to the following posts to see in detail how I've come to finish this artwork :
Research on theme and issue (link)
First Sketch (link)
Second Sketch (link)
Crafting (Part 1) (link)
Crafting (Part 2) (link)

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Crafting (Part 2)

So, from my last post, you know that I've coloured the hands, shirt and ipad. 

Next, using my favourite magnetic lasso tool again, I made the selection and coloured Vendetta's hair. I chose brown because it signifies that this person was just like any other ordinary person. I also try to make the hands look better. 

Now, going into the fine details of colouring Vendetta's face, I zoomed in and chose the right brush opacity, hardness and flow in order to make the correct face impact.

Here's after I finished colouring the face and giving details like nose, moustache, eyebrows.

So the next part, I used this picture (link) as a reference to colour and draw my cup because in my sketch, I felt like the cup lack some elements of depth and perspective. So I open the image I found in photoshop as a layer in the same document, then, creating a another layer to paint the cup and also the shadow.

The cup was really difficult to colour! Spent a lot of times adjusting the brush settings to get the result that I want. The next part, I started to colour the table, as seen in the screenshot above.

After that, I fixed the shadow. Earlier, the shadow was too dark, it look like spilled coffee to me. Haha. I also added a white background layer at this point. After looking at my colouring, I decided to change Vendetta's hair colour to purple. Initially, I felt like portraying this person as ordinary so I used brown but I feel more happy when I coloured the hair to purple. Why purple? Because I feel that this person, craves for attention and he or she daring enough to do things differently.

Now, I coloured the Instagram, Facebook and Twitter logo. I used the images I found online (here, here and here) as reference to select the correct colour. I did this by pasting the images in the same document as layers, then using the eyedropper tool, I picked the right colour.

Next, I added the 'smoke effect' from the cup using brush once again and also smudge tool. I also painted a chair this time. As you can see from the screenshot above, I also painted a lightbulb on the ipad (behind Vendetta's head). This is to show the reflection from the light above and behind this person.

I don't know what struck me but suddenly I feel like colouring green for the background (wall). :/ Don't seem right though. But notice I made some adjustments on the shirt. I repainted it.

Unsatisfied with the chair and background, I deleted the chair layer and created a new layer to re-colour a new chair, with a different style. I also deleted the green background layer.

In order to create the 'reflection', first, I changed the blending options for the background in the ipad. I changed the blend mode to 'difference' and fill opacity to 94 percent.

Next, I created a new layer (Layer 21 - I didn't name this layer), used polygonal lasso tool and used a brush to colour it black on top of the ipad.

I adjusted the master opacity of Layer 21 to 83 percent, so that it it looks more like a reflection. 

In order to make things even more realistic, I tried to add rays of light reflection on the ipad with 50 percent opacity.

I added 'i'm watching' using the text tool with 'chalkduster' font set with 15 percent opacity to add more impact to the artwork. I've decided to leave the background wall to be white colour.

And it's finished! 


Cup - 
Facebook -
Instagram -
Twitter -

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Visitation to Central Market

I missed the class trip because I had back-to-back classes. So I went instead with my friend, Vivian because I had a 3-hour break time. The trip was refreshing (although I was actually sweating due to the heat) because it's been a very long time since I last took public transport to anywhere.

Here's some of the pictures I took on that day when I went to Central Market:

Exactly 125 years! Wow

Saw some scouts outside. 


This is an elevator! Super cute design.

Tourist, tourist, tourist everywhere.

Visited the Annexe Gallery section in Central Market, didn't take much picture there cause mostly the owners didn't allow. There were a lot to see, and all are for sale. Sadly, I don't think I could afford to buy any of them at the moment.

It's been years since I last went to Central Market and I'm surprised with the things that they sell here. The things here are considerably cheap, I was expecting them to be expensive since it's a tourist hotspot.

One thing I realized from visiting Central Market is that tourists (mostly Westerners) seems to appreciate art more than us. They want to learn more about our culture. Honestly, how often do we find ourselves in art galleries, let alone admiring art in Kuala Lumpur? There's a lot of things around us that we don't pay attention to. But these little details are the ones that make life wonderful. : ) Imagine yourself in a world without colours and details, it will all become dull.

Also, graffiti is usually frowned-upon and seen as a form of vandalism. But as I looked at Pasar Seni LRT station, I find that it's a form of expression that everyone yearns. It's good that graffiti artists can have a canvas to work on here, legally. It's also a good sign that Malaysia is learning to embrace art even more. I'm happy. : )

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Crafting (Part 1)

After my sketch was approved, I used the sketch as an underdrawing for the rest of the project.

I began by colouring the (sleeve of the) shirt. I chose to use red colour because red colour symbolizes passion, energy, confidence and courage. I used the magnetic lasso tool and brush when colouring the shirt.

Next, I started to colour the hands, also added outline to the hands. In order to draw the details properly, I zoomed in most of the time and referred to the underdrawing.

After I finished colouring the hands, I moved on to colour the ipad. Also giving details like adding the button below. The free transform tool is really handy in adjusting the button to the correct angle. Notice that I also have made some improvements to the shirt at this point. The magnetic lasso tool and polygonal lasso tool has been very useful so far. 

... To be continued :)

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Sketch 2

My sketch has been approved! Sorry it's not very clear here. 

The idea of this sketch is to portray how a keyboard warriors could be among us, in our normal environment. Keyboard warriors are just like any other ordinary people. Don't be surprised if you see a person just sipping his or her favourite coffee at a corner... and find out that he or she is actually a keyboard warrior!

The social media icons seems to emerge from the coffee symbolizes the consumption of the different social media by keyboard warriors, giving the person energy and excitement (similar effect to drinking coffee).

Why the Vendetta mask? Because Vendetta could be both - a hero or a villain. It's up for you to decide. So, it's the same for keyboard warriors. To some, they are 'heroes'. To some, they are 'villains'.

Happy that I can now proceed to crafting ; ) 

Friday, March 15, 2013

First Sketch

Sorry the scan is not very clear but it's my first sketch. The idea is a keyboard warrior. The soldier (representing the modern warrior) is holding a keyboard as the weapon. At this person's core is the different social media that he uses, which means that the social media is 'heart' that keeps this person going and living.

Feedback from lecturer is that the idea of the sketch is not very original. True. So I'm sketching another soon.

Need to squeeze more brain juices!

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Research on theme and issue

"Social Media Issues". That was the theme given to us by our design lecturer. There's just too many issues that come out of social media. Well, while I was searching on the theme and issue for this design project, I remembered about an article I read on newspapers about a year ago. You can read it online (here).

Yes, keyboard warriors. 

Of course, there are a lot of extremes and degrees but I believed that we have succumbed to being a keyboard warrior at least once? Why do I say so?

Haven't we find ourselves become so comfortable typing behind our keyboard sometimes? Remember those times when you were gossiping about someone else with another friend? Or simply leaving a nasty comment and trying to remain anonymous?


So, I've decided that this is indeed a social media issue and I'd like to explore more on this and use this idea for my design project.

So long for now!