The-Chronothaur's avatar

Oasis cover

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By The-Chronothaur   |   
Published:
© 2016 - 2020 The-Chronothaur
After my fan cover for "A Necessary Truth", I thought it'd be fun to make another one for Halo: Fractures. Specifically "Oasis", since I had this very specific imagery in mind.

Related:

A Necessary Truth cover by The-Chronothaur 
Image size
1100x1700px 2.4 MB
Comments25
anonymous's avatar
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TGMProductions's avatar
TGMProductionsHobbyist General Artist
Holy DAMN what is THIS??
The-Chronothaur's avatar
The-ChronothaurStudent Digital Artist
Halo
TGMProductions's avatar
TGMProductionsHobbyist General Artist
I know. Halo is my favorite game series. That's why I love this so much.
What I meant was, is this a fan series, a story, what is this?
The-Chronothaur's avatar
The-ChronothaurStudent Digital Artist
Lol ok, the comment was just kind of vague so I had no idea what to reply. It's a canon story from the anthology book Halo: Fractures, written by the same guy who wrote the book Halo: The Cole Protocol.
TGMProductions's avatar
TGMProductionsHobbyist General Artist
Oh. I'd read it, but I tried reading Halo books but for some reason I just can't get into it.
The-Chronothaur's avatar
The-ChronothaurStudent Digital Artist
The books are a mixed bag, especially of late, but there are some really good ones in there as well.
TGMProductions's avatar
TGMProductionsHobbyist General Artist
Aight.
The-Chronothaur's avatar
The-ChronothaurStudent Digital Artist
Thanks :)
toafreak's avatar
For some reason I imaged Jat with red armor when reading this story. Dahlia looks perfect, just as I imagined her!
The-Chronothaur's avatar
The-ChronothaurStudent Digital Artist
I actually did consider that he might be higher ranked than a Minor given that he seemed reasonably experienced, but I felt the blue worked best for visual reasons -- I was going for a gritty and grounded look, hence I didn't even add the usual lights on Jat's armor.
SpinosaurusDinosaur's avatar
SpinosaurusDinosaurHobbyist Digital Artist
Ooo~
This looks excellent! :D

Very handsome Sangheili :happybounce:
The-Chronothaur's avatar
The-ChronothaurStudent Digital Artist
Thanks! And I'm glad that you like him.
AncientEchidna's avatar
AncientEchidnaHobbyist General Artist
This looks amazing, excellent cover art. =D
The-Chronothaur's avatar
The-ChronothaurStudent Digital Artist
Thank you!
AncientEchidna's avatar
AncientEchidnaHobbyist General Artist
No problem. =)
Dragunalb's avatar
DragunalbStudent Traditional Artist
I still have to read Fractures yet but this cover you've made makes me eager to read it =)
Regarding a technical question: I noticed most of the linearts here are made with short "messy" strokes, yet the ones on the Sangheili's armor and beam rifle look very long and clean. How did you do those? I'm asking since I myself use "messy" short strokes for linearts a lot but I really struggle to create sleek looks like your your armor here with it, since I still need to figure out how to do "clean" linearts.
The-Chronothaur's avatar
The-ChronothaurStudent Digital Artist
Thank you :) As for Fractures I have a feeling you'll like this one in particular.

An interesting question. And a surprisingly hard one to answer, because I don't really think of it as a difference in technique myself. I guess part of it is that I pay more attention to individual strokes when I want clean lines, whereas with the rougher parts (like the fabric) I just run on intuition. All of my strokes are made almost as fast, however - I've found the speed is important or the line will come out looking stiff and unnatural. Besides that, I tend to make the longer strokes when zoomed a bit further out.

However, it's also important to note that I don't often get the longer strokes right on the first try, and it's pretty common that I undo a stroke a few times before I get the result I want (I think this happened with the Sangheili's back armor, for instance). On some cases I might even create a new layer just for the new stroke and then only merge it with the main lineart layer after I've made the lines fit together properly (hotkeys are very useful for this kind of work).

There are also cases where the lines aren't as seamless as they look and I've actually used multiple strokes and an eraser to get that effect, though IIRC most of the major lines should be single strokes.

Besides constantly zooming in and out, I also rotate the canvas accordingly almost every time I want a clean major line (like the Sangheili's back here). I naturally have hotkeys mapped for zooming in and out as well as canvas rotation, which really speeds up the process.

That's just the stuff on my end, however. I don't know what program you're using, but Photoshop is notoriously not very good for clean lineart. I have some help in the form of an input processing tool called Lazy Nezumi Pro. It's a plug-in that offers a lot of tools for controlling how your brush strokes will look. I regularly use only a small amount of the tweaks available (my PC can't even run some of the heavier ones) and I still consider it well worth the price. There's a 30-day trial (I should note it took me a few months to start tapping into the tool's full potential, though that's just because I was lazy about reading the instructions properly). It won't fix all your problems but it's useful for getting around some of the annoying technical barriers inherent to graphics software and tablets and just letting you focus on the drawing itself.

I hope that helps! Clean lineart is something I've struggled with myself, especially with traditional drawing (there's a reason all of the work I've posted so far is digital :P). But I've come to embrace the certain level of roughness as part of my style and often leave some pieces intentionally "messy" since I feel the quick and sketchy lineart can make a piece feel more "alive" than fully clean lines. (that and laziness, lel)
Dragunalb's avatar
DragunalbStudent Traditional Artist
I manged to read the first three short stories today whilst riding the train and so far I like it. Hopefully there will be more awesome Sangheili characters such as Kasha 'Hilot. I really liked her =)

Damn, that's a really long and elaborate answer. Thanks a lot! And sorry for my somewhat late answer. I had lots of preparations to do for my Bachelor project :P

I work with photoshop but I do not want to use the illustrator tool for linearts, since they often look very sterile and lifeless to me compared to handdrawn linearts. I was fine polishing linearts till they shine with the eraser tool but it takes up too much time, so I try to find a technique that still looks somewhat good and fluent but doesn't take too much time. So far the experiments I made with comic style drawings look more like messy illustrator than anything else. I'm not sure if I draw too slowly and therefor add too much pressure or if my brush needs to be bigger. Zooming out seems like a good idea, since I tend to zoom in to no end and the ending up with disproportionate results.
For some reason my traditional lines look was better than digital ones when I do comics for example or linear drawings. Guess I just need to dig deeper into photoshop's magic. Or maybe I need to force myself to only take a few minutes for linearts and then stop no matter what as an exercise. It's just more a time thing that really bothers me. Also since I want to do my comic so, the question of lineart style is a big one too, since I can't possible take 10h for the linearts of a single panel XD

Anyways, thanks a lot for the input so far! I may come back to it again later on, depending on how good my tests go.
PeterRoss1016's avatar
PeterRoss1016Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Woah this is a story, i gotta read this
The-Chronothaur's avatar
The-ChronothaurStudent Digital Artist
It's from an anthology called "Halo: Fractures" that released a while back :)
The-Chronothaur's avatar
The-ChronothaurStudent Digital Artist
I'm glad you do! Thanks.
elMengu's avatar
Great artwork. I haven't got to Oasis yet but your work sparked my interest, hope the story is as good as your cover.
anonymous's avatar
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