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My First POST! Albatros DV
9DJI
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February 20, 2006 - 8:59 pm
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Wade sent me here!!!

This is my first post on an aviation art web site and e-hanger, currently it’s strictly just a hobby and has been off and on since I was about 12 (pushing 50 now!) and have probably only completed about 40 works in that entire time, as it’s purely a ‘hobby’ and a great way to relax after a day in the office, so I’m a bit slow!…… but that might chang

I’m strictly self taught but my aviation-art heros are Keith Ferris, Frank Wotton and John Young

The Albatros was painted using Acrylics and about 24″ X 36″

Yo may be interested to know that I use AutoCAD PC CAD software (which I use as part of my day time job) to help me master perspective, creating a simpe 3d wireframe model which I then plot out and then detail sketch up by hand before commiting to canvas

Attached is my first ever image for critque (on which I thrive) so just fire away!

Best regards

Paul Mason

Paul Mason

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Wade Meyers
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February 20, 2006 - 10:17 pm
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‘Bout time you got here! Welcome! 😀

Paul,

As a forum moderator I made a command decision and resized your submitted image in PhotoShop to 700 pixels wide and adjusted the levels and sharpness only. No color or other adjustments were made. This may come a little closer to your original artwork, as well as being easier to see for those who have smaller screens since the original was extremely large.

… Geez – my first reaction is that I really love your simple, subtle background supporting those beautiful kites!

Only nits I may have is that I’d like to see a stronger sense of the light source, which will give you some powerful shadows along the main plane. This is something to explore in a couple of pencil studies, though. Next, there are two main distinct “cloud outlines” shown, both with the same strength of line. One at lower left center and one at upper right center. I’d like to see one softer than the other to aid in ‘depth’, probably the one at upper right as it comes off the wing – to lessen “competition” with the wing.

The distant airplane is very nicely “back there”. Good illusion of depth.

If you want to see how all this is properly handled, especially on wood, wire and fabric, check out Russ Smith’s site. His images have “impact” – and this doesn’t necessarily mean “complexity”. I look forward to seeing Russ’ comments on this one.

http://russellsmithart.com/

Wade

Wade Meyers Studios

http://wademeyersstudios.com

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February 20, 2006 - 10:47 pm
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Paul,

Congrats for your first post ! that’s a impressive result for a week end painter (as I use to qualify myself 😉 )
I’m very impressed by the way you’re working the background. simple but VERY efficient !
And as mentionned by Wade, the plane in the distance IS in the distance. Not so easy to achieve.
My first impression is that the Albatros is in metal. Is that the case? The point mentionned by Wade about the aircraft material is confusing me. I’m an idiot in WWI airplanes matters 😕

Anyway, welcome on board sir 😉

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February 20, 2006 - 10:58 pm
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The Albratros may indeed be metal – heck, how should I know?? :doh If it’s got less than 1500 horses up front I know nothing about it! Another reason I deferred to Russ Smith on this one.

Vincent – I deleted your triple-posting … must have been cyber-gremlins!

Wade

Wade Meyers Studios

http://wademeyersstudios.com

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February 20, 2006 - 11:04 pm
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The Albratros may indeed be metal – heck, how should I know?? :doh If it’s got less than 1500 horses up front I know nothing about it! Another reason I deferred to Russ Smith on this one.

Vincent – I deleted your triple-posting … must have been cyber-gremlins!

Wade

Actually guys the fuselage is gloss varnished plywood.

Paul

Paul Mason

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Russell Smith
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February 22, 2006 - 12:55 pm
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Okay, I’m in…

First, Paul, let me say that you are obviously a man with well refined tastes when it comes to subject matter! The Albatros DV is, visually, my favorite aircraft! There are no bad angles from which to view a DV! congrats1

Next I have to say that overall this is a very well done piece. The very first thing I noticed is how well you handled the lozenge fabric. I’ve painted enough 4c & 5c lozenge from oblique angles to know how much of a headache it can be. Mixing into that the variations in light as it plays across the wing ribs can sometimes drive one to the verge of insanity. You’ve handled it very nicely.

Nice job on keeping the poor Harry Tate secondary in importance.

Your prop disks look good. Not overdone as some have the tendancy to do.

Your handling of color and your low-key background remind me very much of Roy Grinnell’s WW1 pieces hanging in the Museum of Flight in Seattle.

As far a criticisms, all I can really do here is nitpick. So here goes…

I agree with Wade on your lighting. Although you have handled your lighting well, the sun position that you have chosen leaves the entire Albatros in sunlight from the viewer’s point of view. A different lighting angle would cast stronger shadows which, in turn, would not only heighten the dramatic effect, but would also help to define the beautiful oval contours of the DV a little better.

I would like to see a little more reflected light along the top edge of the fueselage. Viusually that would push the top edge of the fuselage over and, again, add to the sense of contour.

Perhaps the biggest “small” gripe I have is that the DV’s fuselage and the tip of the top wing seem to compete for the same space. Visually the wingtip should seem closer but here it doesn’t. Part of the problem is that the black fuselage is inherently a heavier value that the 5c lozenge on the wing. You can play with this little bit – maybe bring some more reflected light into the fuselage to dilute that black a little bit. Also, although highlights should always be used sparingly, they should also be used strategically. A stronger highlight on the wingtip with a deeper value placed right next to it would bright the tip a little closer to the viewer.

Thats about it, Paul. again, very nicely handled. Got any more Albatrossen (or any other WW1 aircraft) for our visual enjoyment?

Russ

BTW, I’m embarrased that I can’t pinpoint the markings for this particular bird. Who is it?

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February 22, 2006 - 1:42 pm
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Just lovely!

Critiques? Well not much really, as it looks great! The top wing could be a bit darker maybe as it stands out a bit.

My aviation art @ http://www.skyraider3d.com
Prints available @ http://www.digitalaviationart.com

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February 22, 2006 - 5:14 pm
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One more thing, Paul – this one is technical. It looks like you’ve got lozenge pattern on your landing gear spreader bar. The only time I’ve ever seen it used there is in the case of the Fokker designs that actually had an airfoil covering the spreader bar. To the best of my knowledge the spreader bars on the Albatrossen were ususally left bare metal and wood.

Russ

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February 22, 2006 - 8:33 pm
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Hi Russ & Ronnie!

This forum is totally and utterly addictive! I have enjoyed so much getting your and other artists feedback and I firmly take all your very constructive points on board
As a ???weekender??™ I don??™t paint as much (aviation subjects) as I should but this forum and the feedback I??™m getting is definitely definitely encouraging me to get back to into it!

Russ

The Albatross DVa is featured as a Ray Rimmel colour profile on the back page of Windsock Data file No 3. The book states that it belongs to Jasta 78b during 1918 and was flown by Uffz Otto Sigman, The profile shows it with Balkenkrauz but there is a fairly grainy squadron line up picture of it where it definitely has the more attractive (for an Alb) Iron type crosses. The exact colours may be speculative of course and the data file does warn about this. There is another close up shot of a pilot (Sigman?) standing next to the fuselage where a few of the stars are clearly visible and the colour does look very dark but Otto might have been posted as the S was rather crudely scratched out in that picture. The line up shot shows another Alb in what appears to be an exact reverse scheme white(?) fuselage with dark stars! Quite a pair of colourful birds!

I do think though that the black tail partly throws the painting out of balance making the Dv look a bit tail heavy, but it was an irresistible scheme! And I did slightly chicken out with the lighting by trying to show Otto ???up sun??™ of the RE8 I link to think he would escape into the clouds though.

The albatross Dv is definitely a favourite! Lozenge was a personal challenge and yes it did drive me mad, but it was fun (that??™s what??™s it all about for me)

Do have a few detailed perspective sketches of a DVa from some different angles but
I don??™t have any more WW1 paintings as yet, but was very inspired by your site and I really do love that era and the challenge the WW1 subjects bring.

Ronnie

One again thanks for the feedback, I though as a digital artists you might be interested to know that I use AutoCAD as part of my ???real??™ job! but I also on some occasions use it to help me with my hobby by creating 3d wire frames which I then plot out at detail in by hand.

I have a copy of 3d max but I have to say I don??™t think full digital rendering is my thing??¦yet as it would be a bit of a ???busman??™s holiday??™ I paint to get away from all that computing stuff??¦.ugh!

Anyway here??™s a quick screen grab of the Albatross DVa wirframe showing how far I go before moving over to the Mk 1 pencil, the Lozenge was free hand!!!!

Love your stuff though Ronnie!

Paul Mason

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February 22, 2006 - 9:04 pm
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I wouldn’t worry too much about the crits about the lighting. IMHO, the angle you’ve chosen adds a dramatic edge to the whole scene itself. Too much aviation tends to use the ‘top down’ approach to lighting, but for an imagined viewing angle I’d say yours shows more imagination. The more painterly bacground also serves to heighten the details in the foreground.

Good stuff! 🙂

The Virtual Aircraft Website:

http://www.the-vaw.com

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February 22, 2006 - 10:57 pm
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Thanks Jerry

Yep I had to use my imagination on the lighting, I was trying depict the Alb turning on to the RE8 out of the sun, which put the sun behind my viewing point and the clouds and ground behind the RE8, giving a feeling of Altitude and tension (for the RE8?).

I think this is where digital modelling helps with making an artists consider slightly radical angles from the norm I have been considering using 3D Max to help out with rendering shadows, but to be honest I’m fighting the urge to go FULLY digital. I still like dirty fingers and the smell of linseed

Love your TSR-2 funny enough I have a TSR-2 modelled up in AutoCAD as one of my many ‘pendings’ I was considering doing a ‘what if ‘ in full 1970’s “Buccaneer” RAF camouflage etc etc etc

Here’s the AutoCAD wireframe, I modelled up the complex vortices the TSR2 always seemed to generate….one day it will make to canvas!

Best regards

Paul

Paul Mason

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February 22, 2006 - 11:09 pm
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IMHO, you can always try to figure out shadows by using a model of an aircraft and an angle-poise lamp. This can give you some basic ideas about which way shadow angles can work, at least. Of course, it never hurts to observe what sunlight does in reality also. Looking at in-flight photos of aircraft can also help.

Interesting TSR.2 🙂

The Virtual Aircraft Website:

http://www.the-vaw.com

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