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The Race

Aiden Ethereal Guard by Rene Arreola
Aiden Ethereal Guard. Artwork by Rene Arreola
"The Race" work in progress - fantasy art
“The Race” fantasy art, blocking in the figure by Rene Arreola.

Procreate is my go-to for creating full-color fantasy art on the iPad Pro.

“The Race” is a sketch inspired by a concept I have about a falcon and a “human” challenging each other to a race. This race would be by flight, of course.

Winged creatures are a common theme in some of my paintings and drawings. Add to this my interest in figure drawing, and I have a new art concept to explore.

As of this post, these characters are unnamed. A more precise story will develop as I continue working on this drawing into a full-color painting.

The Race - fantasy art sketch
“The Race” preliminary sketch by Rene Arreola.

Below is a time-lapse art video of the early sketching phase for “The Race.”

Blocking in Half Tones in Grayscale (Value Study Phase)

UPDATE (August 17, 2022) Working in grayscale allows me to get a good sense of how much I can get my image to “pop.”

One of the highlights of these two characters, the man and the falcon, will be the lighter areas seen in the study below. My plan is to really highlight their wings.

Stay tuned for more updates on this piece.

"The Race" fantasy art value study
“The Race” grayscale value study by Rene Arreola

Color Composition

"The Race" fantasy art color composition study thumbnail
“The Race” fantasy art color composition study thumbnail by Rene Arreola

UPDATE (September 14, 2022) 

The color composition phase for this piece is definitely leaning in the direction I originally envisioned: warm.

I want to take a somewhat abstract approach to laying out the color. The grayscale painting gives a map for values, but adding in the colors starts to make things really fun now.

I will definitely need to get back to details when I start tightening up the drawing. But for now, it’s fun to start adding in color at this stage.

Blocking in the Figure

"The Race" work in progress - fantasy art
“The Race” fantasy art, blocking in the figure by Rene Arreola.

UPDATE (November 8, 2022) 

A partial figure block-in, working in mostly the head and parts of the upper body. I like to work the figures almost in the nude first, then come back and add in any clothing or costume elements.

In this case, the figure is central to the piece, and so he gets the most attention to begin with. After blocking in the figure, I’ll start blocking in the foreground and background elements. Establishing edges and overlaps of all the elements in the painting will be critical in the steps to follow.


Final Painting

The final painting reveals a new Metaterran: Aiden. Imbued with Ethereal energies, he is granted the gift of flight. In this depiction, Aiden is squaring off against and Ethereal Falcon. Soon, they will be off to a race!

Aiden and the falcon race
“The Race” final fantasy art illustration by Rene Arreola.
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