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Phoenix Girl Digital Illustration Tutorial Part 1

By silent-rage
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This is the first part of my tutorial, which will cover how I created 2 of my latest illustrations titled "Awakening" and "Phoenix Rising"

Paraphrasing the brief, I'm asked to paint "a woman with wings made of fire."

Here are the finished paintings. I've made them available for free download at 8x10 inches 300 DPI, you can make your own prints! :)

You can download the PSD of these paintings and see the layers, adjustments, progress, and all that fun stuff.
It'll be perfect if you want to follow along the tutorials.

It's available here for free:…
Or you can buy it from DA to support me. ^^

In part 1 of the tutorial I will discuss how to research and gather reference, and how to create interesting thumbnails. 
I will also include lots of samples, step by step, and any brushes and plugins used in the process as downloadable content.

In this part the only downloadable is the Thumbnail/Ideation brush available here:…

This is my first tutorial, so if you have any thoughts and suggestions, please comment, it will help me and everyone who enjoys these tutorials.

Stay tuned for the Part 2: Color palette, light and form, and concept design! 
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© 2014 - 2021 silent-rage
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LucyMacrae's avatar
You should do Youtube videos or tutorial in Youtube! It will be amazing, I love your art
silent-rage's avatar
Thanks! I plan to! But work and life and procrastination, blah blah, please keep nudging me to do it, it will help motivate me. :D
LucyMacrae's avatar
Believe me, I will continue reminding youMangle icon f2u 
silent-rage's avatar
MadeleineInk's avatar
Wow, thank for sharing this. I know it takes time to put all these resources together and I really appreciate it!
silent-rage's avatar
Thank! Yeah it takes a bit of time but I'm really happy if I could benefit other artists.
ProfessorFortune's avatar
I love you ;_; your too kind
silent-rage's avatar
Thanks! I'm ok. :p
rotsentu's avatar
thanks for this, buddy!
Nosidda's avatar
this is great, just found you, gonna be studying those psds for a good bit tomorrow  : ) any chance Part 2 is gonna come out?  Would love to see the process on those wings, glorious work. Also, what was the brief? just wondering what the prompt was. Thanks! :)
silent-rage's avatar
Hey, thanks a lot! I hope you can benefit from this. I do plan to make part 2 but with full time work and a side project it won't be any time soon, but I will try.
The brief was something like "A girl has turned into a pheonix with firey wings."
DominicHautmann's avatar
this is so great, thx a lot!
silent-rage's avatar
No prob, glad you enjoy it!
oO-Monkey-Oo's avatar
Awesome thank you for this.
Videos are always good because you see every single step but laid out with images like this is really nice too because you keep saying to keep it loose, and the less detail we pay attention to (like in a video) then the more free we are to stay loose with practice :)

silent-rage's avatar
good point! thanks for the feedback! 
AlNiCo-ism's avatar
Great tutorial~!

I was wondering how big each of the thumbnails are?
silent-rage's avatar
Thank you!

Around 720 x 960 I believe.
I would paint them larger if I planned to directly enlarge a thumbnail into the next stage, but in this case I didn't, so they could've been smaller.
eluketron's avatar
Thanks, man, this is really helpful.  Some of this I've been doing  recently, but it is good to hear someone else say it....helps me confirm I'm on the right track.  Looking forward to the rest of the tutorial.
silent-rage's avatar
No prob dude, and thanks for your feedback.  I'm happy to hear that this is helpful to other people. ^^
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