Smoothing Out the Rough Spots

The whole image needs some blending to smooth out some of the rougher spots. The best brush for the task, or at least one of my favorite blending brushes, is the Grainy Water 30 variant from the Blenders category. Not only does this brush blend well, but it also interacts with paper textures. Blending leaves some texture behind. It is actually quite a nice combination.

1. Pick the Grainy Water 30 variant from the Blenders brush category.

2. Lower the Opacity setting of the brush to around 20%. Lowering the Opacity setting gives a more subtle blend.

3. Blend a little bit over the entire image. You do not want to obliterate the underlying colors but blend enough to give the impression that you are looking through a soft focus photograph filter (Figure 5.15).

Soft Focus Watercolor Techniques

k Figure 5.15 Blending the image to achieve a soft focus appearance

The painting is pretty well set at this point. The color is working, the composition has improved, and a story is even starting to evolve. The finishing touches are not far off.

But the edges of the sleepwalker are pretty rough, so let's clean them up.

1. Pick the Variable Chalk brush.

2. Lower the Opacity setting of the brush to about 25%.

3. Using the brush at a small size and with a dark color picked from one of the corners in the painting, carefully clean up and add an outline to the character.

4. When you are finished, add an outline to the floorboards and possibly some cracks running through them (Figure 5.16).

Figure 5.16 The edges of the figure are cleaned up, and an outline is added to both the sleepwalker and the floorboards.

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