Making Of 'Hellboy' by Kerem Beyit

Sketching

Before starting with the actual drawing, I first of all decided on the composition by creating a simple sketch (Fig.01).

Fig.01

Drawing

Once I was happy with the pose, I started drawing. In order to dress the figure correctly, I defined the structure of his muscles very loosely (Fig.02).

Fig.02

Drawing the Costume

I created a new layer and, keeping the layer with the figure underneath, I drew the costume on the new layer (Fig.03).

Fig.03

Finished Line Art

After completing the costume, I erased the parts of the figure that it covered. I merged the layers and did a very basic hatching in order to add dimension to the drawing. This process was going to be helpful in the rendering stage later (Fig.04).

Fig.04

Creating the Background

I started on the background with one of my texture brushes (Fig.05).

Fig.05

After finishing blocking in the background, I lit up the parts where the figure was going to be placed, and used a soft round brush to create a stone wall (Fig.06 and Fig.07).

Fig.06

Fig.07

To make the background more interesting, I drew a wooden framework with a couple of wheels connected to it (Fig.08).

Fig.08

Texturing the Background

To keep the background from becoming boring, I applied a texture to the background using my texture brushes. I applied texture effects on a different layer as well, so that if it turned out to be more than I wanted I could knock it down a touch (Fig.09).

Fig.09

Lighting the Background

To add more movement to the background, and to make my figure "pop out" from the scene more, I lit up the background with a natural, ambient light coming in from the top left corner.  I also created an artificial light source at the bottom of the image. I rendered my background objects according to these lighting conditions (Fig.10 and Fig.11).

Fig.10

Fig.11

Colouring the Figure

At this point, I started colouring the character with base colours. In order to see my figure more clearly, I reduced the opacity of the background (Fig.12).

Fig.12

Basic Shading

I continue to shade my figure, keeping the directions of my light sources in mind all the while (Fig.13).

Fig.13

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Basic Lighting

I lit up the figure based on the light sources. Lastly, I blended the figure with the background with a little colour correction (Fig.14).

Fig.14

First Texturing

Using load selection, I selected the layer that the figure was on and I applied texture on a different layer (Fig.15).

Fig.15

Soft Lighting

On a different layer, I defined the figure's outlines with soft lights. With this process I separated the figure from the background and defined it more (Fig.16 and Fig.17).

Fig.16

Fig.16

Smoke

In order to make the figure stand out better against the background, I opened up a new layer on the background and applied a fog effect. I did this simply by applying a Gaussian blur on the shapes that I created, using a flame texture brush (Fig.18 and Fig.19).

Fig.18

Fig.19

Dodging & More Texturing

To make the figure look more concordant with the environment's lighting, I re-painted it on Overlay mode with a big soft round brush. After this, I applied the second texture with the same texture brushes, and lastly I used the dodge tool to light up the parts of the image that I wanted to look lighter (Fig.20).

Fig.20

Colour Correction & Still More Texturing

At this stage, I did some colour correction on the figure in order to reach a tone that I was much happier with. I then enlarged Hellboy's right hand of doom. Lastly, I applied the final texture on his coat (Fig.21).

Fig.21

Highlights & Adjusting the Background

I applied highlights on the figure by using soft round (in general) and sharp hard round (where the light was too concentrated) brushes. I wanted the figure's head to "pop-out" more, so I reduced the amount of lighting on some of the parts in the background that were possibly distracting the viewer, and I applied more smoke behind the figure. I then added the details, like the tail and the badge (Fig.22).

Fig.22

Final Touches

Finally, I defined the figure's face with more light and, since it's a comic book character, I saw no problem with making the head a bit smaller to give the figure a bulkier look. I made little changes on the face with the liquify filter, and I applied a crosshatching filter on the whole picture, which gave it a more painterly look. I finished off by making some general colour corrections and playing with the brightness and contrast adjustments to complete the piece (Fig.23).

Fig.23