Alrighty. Second process works. Contrary to popular belief, for past 212 (over 300 if including my scraps) posts I've made on Deviantart actually contains little to no fanarts. It is only when I decided to do One-A-Days I needed quick subjects for me to blaze through. Then I realized I could just do fanarts instead of thinking up something wasting precious seconds.
Enough talk. I'll keep it concise and simple as much as possible here as well.
Every work begins with a simple sketch. This is no exception here. I knew I was going to do a Peach fanart and the summer was just beginning when I started this piece. Summer, beach, bikini and peach. Doesn't get simpler than this. Sketch was done within minutes allowing me to move on to the next step.
Popping up a multiply layer, I painted in the background. It wasn't going to be necessary to paint background where Peach stands so I disregarded those parts.
Quickly realizing I would need to paint the skin part as well on a separate layer, I put the lineart layer on multiply mode and had that layer moved to the top.
Here I just popped another layer (normal) underneath the line layer and painted in the skin color. I already have a swatch of favorable skin colors I have collected over the years so I just used that. (Whenever I paint my stuff and I get the color I like, I save them for later use.)
Cast shadow was a key element in this piece.
On this stage, I just copy and pasted the character color layer and put it on multiply mode. And then I erased the parts with soft airbrush where I wanted it lighter while keeping the rest a bit darker. I basically wanted a stronger contrast.
And then I tried to express the 'transparency' of the parasol endpiece. It didn't come through to well from the reactions I read on my post back on DA. Also I added orange-ish color between the borders where shadow is cast to give the impression of light-burn effect.
And here's my lovely overlay layer making everything tad bit more brighter. It's awesome. But at the same time I'm not too happy with my dependency on layer effects and post-image processing effects. I mostly avoid filters and textures for the same reason.
Here's one of the most useful techniques one can employ: flip image once a while. Your brain sees things differently depending on how things are oriented. You may think your character is standing straight, and it'll only take flipping that image to know your character is actually on a tilt. Sometimes alignment or perspective can become wonky and flipping your image will allow you to see some of those mistakes.
Of course, a good, seasoned artist won't really need such techniques as they have become used to those subtleties. I've mostly got this under control but I still need to flip once in a while.
As with last process works I did, once you go over that 'threshold' you need only to work on more details. This was such moment for me the planning process could not progress any further and the only thing that was needed of me to detail more.
And here I highlight object volumes underneath the shadow.
And the image is flipped back for final stages. Funny enough, you may spot even more mistakes when you flip the image back to its original position.
-Like this eye location I just moved.
Here I continue that volumatic approach I made with Peach's upper body and I continue and incorporate the same approach to her hair.
Trivial details are added as one of the final steps. Earrings and the tiara is her trade-mark, character defining prop. Might as well have it added.
I had and still do have a bad habit of drawing hands the last. Hands are one of the reason I went on a hiatus to practice. This really should have been done when the sketch was done, but was too lazy to do so. It's a bad habit to leave that to the last stage. Don't do that.
And here I made the piece darker overall as I felt it was too bright without adjustment. It's better to have the color and the tones correctly the first time.
Finishing touch is added as a final step. (The pic above is 50% of original. Click to view) Minor stuff like better sized bikini top, and inside-joke shroom is added as well as my signature.
For the duration of entire piece, I mostly had one thing in mind: thumbnail. I wanted the thumbnail to be recognizable and it was an instance success. To this date this piece has collected more than 4k favs on deviantart. This piece however does not receive my love: I only did this in 2 hours or less.
Alright. Another process works over. I'll see you next time.