During the creation of my final piece, my artwork underwent several variations and changes. I created a GIF to showcase the development and progression of my piece, alongside the decisions made to alter and change some bits along the way.
As shown in the GIF, I started with a blank canvas (double the size of the print I needed) and drew a horizon line and two vanishing points. I then drew two roads branching off the vanishing points, ensuring that they crossed near the middle of where the front cover would be.
I then drew in my buildings, colour-coding them so that the lines and perspectives were easier to keep track of, before merging the layers and making them black.
From there I began adding in my details – patterns on buildings, street lamps, lines on the roads, floating buildings, the lines for the red velvet rope, amongst many other things.
After that, I blocked in colours on the ground, on the road, and added a gouache painting to fill the sky. I also blocked in the colours of the buildings and the streetlamps, altering them as I went to give the impression of close buildings being more saturated, and other buildings becoming less saturated and lighter as they grew further away.
Following that, I painted in zebra crossing lines, the staircase, the red velvet rope, the light from the street lamps, and some neon lights to a few buildings. I also corrected some of my colours in the piece to make it appear more put-together, and to fix some of the lighting. I followed the colour correction by adding gradients to the buildings, the ground, and the Globe to give them some more perspective.
[Not Pictured] At this point I attempted to add in a crowd of people around the Globe, and draw in some flying cars in the sky. However, I felt like this really overcrowded the piece and decided against including any people in the final. My main goal of the project was to create the landscape that Cline was describing in Ready Player One, so I left any trace of living people, NPC’s and Cars out of the scene. It is entirely the buildings, the roads, the night sky and the lights.
As I began colouring the piece I decided I wanted to leave it line-art free, however, having so many dark colours together in one place made the piece look extremely muddled. After a few rough experiments, I decided to completely recreate the line art over the top of the colour in a light purple to break apart the dark shapes and add some more definition. I set this line art layer to the Hard Light setting and lowered the opacity so that it did not appear too harsh.
From there I added more details to my buildings; adding more neon lights and windows and small details to add more interest to the piece. I also added a glow around each neon light so that the piece didn’t look so flat – I wanted it to look more dimensional. I adjusted gradients, colours, and shapes until I was happy with the final product.
When I finished my piece I added some final touches – some rays of light, some floating dots of light (both white and in colour), some extra darkened areas and lightened areas, and some patches of additional colour.