Artist Spotlight featuring...

Posted by Lady Heromorph on 2016/12/5 11:27:31


Heromorph's Artist Spotlight featuring...


Ariel B (ReddEra)

Ariel B., AKA ReddEra

Occupation: Illustrator, Colorist
Heromorph Profile: ReddEra

I have been told I am funny, friendly, abrasive, a "Big personality", I am terrible about talking about myself though.
I spend most of my time painting/researching, I travel often and have friends all over the country.
I'm a bit obsessed with research and details.






pijon: You've been busy making quite a name for yourself in the recent times with commissions, your own website, deviantArt Gallery, and work for Tae'vern Tees (www.taverentees.com).
Congrats on doing officially licensed illustration work for Robert Jordan's Wheel of Time!
Beautiful stuff you're doing there!
Why don't you tell us what other great stuff you've been up to?


Ariel B (ReddEra): I want to add to the list of credits youíve got that I did two book covers (ďDamselle in DistressĒ by Kiley Kellermeyer and ďWandering Stars : Book one of the Elfwatcher seriesĒ by J. H. Moore), was published with Tor books (WoT Companion) and worked on a fantasy TV pilot called Dorkcore (http://dawnrunner.com/dorkcore/).
I also got to do Commercial Storyboarding for Dawnrunner Productions.
Those are my big credits right now.


pijon: I guess those are big credits! Congrats again! So how did you get started in the art scene anyway?

Ariel B (ReddEra): Well, I come from a family of artists. Iíve always been supported in my ventures towards art and Iíve always drawn obsessively.
As a weird nerdy artist with access to the internet I looked for places for me to share my art freely. I clung to places like DeviantArt and Heromorph, where I could grow and learn with other artists as well as make friends.
Eventually I started getting commission requests. I spent my extra time studying about how to be a professional artist, what to charge, what successful artists paint and how they market themselves.
Then I kept putting myself out there until companies started reaching out.
Itís an ever evolving process.


pijon: Your name has come up a few times since I'd last seen you here.
As you know, it's mostly photo manipers, 3D renderers and illustrators at heromorph so a good question I've heard from all 3 groups is "anyone know a good tutorial on painting hair?"
I always point to your tutorial on the subject!
I personally thank you as I learned a lot from it and have often pointed others to it as well as it's one of the best tutorials I've seen on the subject.
Had you written many prior to this?
It really seemed like you knew not just what you were talking about but how to teach it as well.


Ariel B (ReddEra): I have done a few tutorials here and there including video speed paints. I used to do private tutoring on the side.
Growing up surrounded by artists I learned to have patience, give and take a critique.
So thatís all it really took to learn to teach. Iíve been asked to start up teaching again, so Iíve added it to my Patreon rewards.
In the Five Dollar pack I do WIPS with notes, in the Twenty-Five Dollar pack I do tutorials, at the Fifty Dollar level I do video tutorials and at the Three Hundred Dollar level I do Private tutoring once a month with a feedback session at the end of the month.
Itís an experiment for me but I try to help out my fans as I can and make a living.


pijon: While often enough, I see people's work progress here over the years, I was seeing noticeable improvement in yours in just a few months! But over the years, it's stunning to look back now!
Can you talk a little about those early days?
I noticed you started out doing photomanips here.


Ariel B (ReddEra): Sure! Iíve always loved Photomanips /Composite art.
I find them just pure fun. As I grew I found that it was easier to make the photoís look like a painting then to try to make my painting look photographic.
In playing with that I learned how to become a more realistic painter without manipulation (starting as a drawing).
I have never had a big social life and spent a lot of time drawing and growing haha too much some would say.
I am trying that social life thing out now.
I deeply believe on always finding a way to improve, as a person and as an artist.
I have to remind myself to be kind to myself sometimes, constant improvement often means being too harsh on yourself. I think a lot of artists forget that.


pijon: Could you tell me a bit more about some of your favorite images posted at Heromorph?

Ariel B (ReddEra): Well I really liked the ďPhoenix FireĒ...

...that one was a manipulation that I painted over.
I of course love ďPrincess SerenityĒ.


Iíve got a new Sailor Moon piece up now, I think Iíll always paint Sailor Moon art.

ďSirens on the RocksĒ is also a Composite.
It is composed of 20 images that I got permission from the stock artists to use and then I painted over them.


It was for a final project for my Photoshop class in my freshmen year of college.
ďBatman V.S The JokerĒ is a painting I did for a friendís Office as a thank you for his help.
There are things I would fix about it now, such as Batmanís face, Iíve never liked it on that one.


His pose is off too but my main focus on this image was to get better at painting rain.
Which I am proud of the outcome of that as well as the Jokers face. I tend to have a strong love/hate relationship with my work.


pijon: What can you tell me about this next piece?

Ariel B (ReddEra): One of the things I do when Iím watching shows on my computer is take screen captures of scenes I find inspiring.
I have a folder full of them and when I want to practice painting but donít have any ideas Iíll pick something from that folder. Itís a good way to practice realism.
That painting came from that. I really like Daenerys, she and I are very similar, kind and strong, hardened by life, haha short and pretty.
I think weíre the same height.
So I really wanted to paint her showing her strength, as well as accurately showing her purple eyes which are not in the show but are in the books.
Iím a bit of a stickler when it comes to books and I love subtle symbolism, so I wanted to focus on the character represented by fire, standing in a blizzard on the Wall.
You know, ďFire and IceĒ thereís a scene where she is dreaming/prophesizing and there it was, Dany at the Wall.
So I took a picture and painted it later that day. Iíve painted her a few times.


pijon: Do you still do commissions?
How might interested parties contact you? Any other info in regards to commissions you'd like to share?



Ariel B (ReddEra): I do and I happen to be open for them right now.
The best way to contact me is at
.
Yes, I do portraits, fantasy scenes, original characters, book covers, album covers, interior book illustrations, convention posters, storyboards, character designs, pin-ups and more.
As you posted before my commission album at DA is a good representation of that.
My prices depend on the type and size of commissions.
They range from $100 for sketches up to $2000 for Storyboards.
My most popular requests are portraits and book illustrations, those tend to range from $300 - $500.
I tend to take a day to two weeks depending on the piece.
Iíve been craving to do some pin-up art.


pijon: You have a remarkable sense of light and color in your art.
Is that something you've specifically been working on or something you just kind of picked up along the way?


Ariel B (ReddEra): Itís a bit of both and also an obsession.
Itís what usually attracts me to something. Iím a lighting and color freak.
I feel like Iíve only scratched the surface.
The best advice I could give about any type of art is donít assume you know what something looks like, look at it and donít let yourself be lazy.
Remember in doing that to also focus on the emotion you want to convey.
For instance when Iím painting characters from books I make a composite of actors and stock photoís then I think about the characters personality.
Iíll draw from the image but add in quirks about the character, like a twinge to the smile or a sparkle of mischief in the eye.
So lighting and color works the same, it conveys mood and art for me is all about making the viewer feel something.
A bright and glowing painting will make you feel light and airy while a dark and ominous painting is powerful.
I tend to like the contrast, hope in the dark sort of thing.


pijon: So how are you creating the current stuff? Is it traditional painting, digital or a combination?

Ariel B (ReddEra): Everything I do right now is digital.
I often sketch on paper, especially for big projects.
To get composition down or play with an idea.
For the WoT calendar images I did three large thumbnails and then my final lines became sort of the best of three.
I tend to stick to digital though, I have a small space and it makes no mess.
Itís easy for me when Iím feeling inspired just to sit down and go instead of setting up like I would for traditional art.
But I learned traditionally, up until I was fifteen then moved primarily to digital when I was nineteen.
I would like to get back to painting traditionally though and try to incorporate digital on top.
I think that would be fun.


pijon: I see that you've got a couple of Wheel of Time galleries over there.
One being fan art and the other being Official art.
Did the first lead to the second?
Could you tell us a little about your art based on Robert Jordan's series and how it led to work for Ta'veren Tees and the official card series and other official licensed work for the series?


Ariel B (ReddEra): Yes! I started as a fan of The Wheel of Time and loved looking at fan art for it.
I felt that there just wasnít enough of it so I started making my own.
Eventually I was asked by a fan to make a personal card deck for him of characters, as I posted these as I painted and started getting a following.
Then came a Facebook page to get more fan help and eventually Taíveren Tees reached out to me about making an Official pack.
I finished the fan pack, sent that off, signed on with the Officials and moved on to the big deck of 54 cards 64 characters, I also went back over the old cards and fixed those up.
Iíve been making official Wheel of Time art since.
When I do WoT art it must be approved by Bandersnatchís three members and Taíveren Tees four members then I try to get a fan consensus and help. I canít thank them enough.
Additionally I go to JordanCon every year and sell prints, limited edition gallery art and do signings.
Itís a blast and Iím proud to call the WoT community my family.
I miss the JordanCon community all year long. Through it Iíve met all of my best friends and my partner.


pijon: You also recently started a Paetron campaign with a wide range of ways to support your work and some pretty cool awards for contributions.
I signed up myself recently.
That November pic that is my current desktop wallpaper... it's an awesome painting!
Could you talk a little toward the types of contributions, prizes awarded based on amount and where one might go to find out further info and sign up if interested?


Ariel B (ReddEra): Of course! Through my Patreon I try to provide all kinds of special rewards in any level.
On the lower levels I have Monthly Wallpapers, exclusive teasers and comics, special thanks and sketches, polls, WIPs and high resolution original art.
Mid-level Rewards include ALL of my Photoshop Brushes and Patterns, artwork Iím doing before it gets published, image progression tutorials, A personal sketch for one Patron a month.
Upper level Rewards are Video tutorials, a monthly google hangout a limited edition print (a 6 month interval), a personal quality sketch, 1 on 1 google chat, and private tutoring at the top level. *Each Patron gets access to every level below theirs.
For example the $5 dollar patrons get access to the 3$ and 1$ prizes too. Find out more and see what Iím up to here: www.patreon.com/arielburgess.


pijon: Do you have any con appearances coming up?

Ariel B (ReddEra): Yes, I will be at the 2017 JordanCon on April 23rd to the 25th in Atlanta Georgia.

My hope is that if my Patreon takes off I can make more conventions including making it to next yearís DragonCon, also in Atlanta Georgia.

pijon: Thank you for taking the time for this interview, Red. Keep up the great work and we all miss you at Heromorph! Stop back anytime!

Ariel B (ReddEra): Absolutely! Thank you for reaching out to me and wanting to know about my work.
It is really cool to share my experiences with a community that is so special to me. I hope I can help some more artists out there just like they help me. (Shout out to Jinky and her husband David, Iím very lucky to have gotten to stay in touch with them).
Of course, you all are often on my mind and Iíve been realizing I need to come back and post more art and be a part of the Heromorph community again.
You guys rock!







Be sure to tune in next time, folks, and I will have a new Spotlight on another talented Artist. See ya'll then!






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