Making Of 'Hot House'

This scene portrays the last day on earth in a far-off future, as the sun is over expanding and going nova. Global warming has reached its final stage and has overrun the earth, transforming its surface to a completely different terrain. This new environment has created trees several kilometers high with flora nearly reaching into the stratosphere. An aggressive genus of ivy now climbs over all the other large plants.  Airborne social and sentient plant life have replaced flocks of birds with broods of floating flora. Their floating bodies are mobilized by the lighter than air gas within them.  A circulation system of tree sap flows over the terrain from tree to tree, creating a biologically interconnected forest. This sap has replaced water and where there were once waterfalls, now exist running falls of sap.

When I was drawing this, The Last Day on Earth is what I had in mind. Until now there have been many portrayals of The Last Day on Earth but I wanted to do something in which Earth was covered by huge plants. I wanted to create a sense of irony in which the future of earth looks how it was when it was first conceived.  As I imagined the Earth would have extremely humid and heavy air, forested with huge ancient plants, looking quite like the Earth hundreds of millions of years ago. I hope this painting conveys the image of a far and distant future.

First I sketched out an image of what I had in mind. I imagined a place with big trees, an enormous sun and surface covered by ivy, plants and other greens. Keeping perspective and color concept in mind I created the image. (Fig.01)

Fig. 01_base_painting

Fig. 01_base_painting

I usually start from the background as I feel that it is more efficient working out from the background. I usually use default Photoshop brushes. Keeping composition in mind, I worked to portray the trees as being huge and massive. (Fig.02)

Fig. 02_adding_background_details

Fig. 02_adding_background_details

I continued this process, and started work on the foreground. As I work I am not afraid to make compositional changes if necessary. Using photo references, I rendered and gave details to the foreground. (Fig.03)

Fig. 03_foliage

Fig. 03_foliage

With repeatedly slight changes and tweaks I added more details. I wanted to make the bottom look dense and the sky empty, so I reduced the volume of leaves on the trees near the top. (Fig.04)

Fig. 04_tree_details

Fig. 04_tree_details

I have 15 layers now. I merged the layers according to their depth, adjusted the brightness and added some fog. It is important to keep the layers clean. By keeping the layers clean, it makes further progress easier, by doing this it will be easier to make changes if you need to. (Fig.05)

Fig. 05_layerd_effects

Fig. 05_layerd_effects

In this final stage, I make slight changes to it as a whole, as well as add more details. Using a photo of the galaxy I created an enormous sun. Using the orange flare from the sun, I added tints of orange hue to the foreground to harmonize the image. (Fig.06)

Fig. 06_details

Fig. 06_details

I placed significance on how the eyes would move about the image. I created a zigzag pattern for the eyes to move from the foreground to the background in this image. To do this I adjusted the brightness contrast according to depth perspective. The brightness and contrast is very important in creating a convincing image. (Fig.07)

Fig. 07_eyemovement

Fig. 07_eyemovement

I finally added a gradient and noise layer to it. Here I put a focus on the actual distance between the objects in the image. For example, a distance of 200 pixels in the image may amount to a few kilometers in the dimension of the world I have created. It is of extreme importance to keep in mind the image has its own dimensions and scale and is not just a random 2D image. (Fig.08)

Fig. 08_finsihing_touches

Fig. 08_finsihing_touches

Using layers like these, I adjusted the contrast, hue and saturation respectively. (Fig.09- Fig.12)

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