Engraving test of the film maker David Lynch

When I was at university, I studies all forms of image creation: from charcoal to oils, and watercolors to engraving. Over the years I have tried to replicate some of those traditional techniques to the digital tools I use today. 

Engraving effect test portrait of Tom Hiddleston as Loki

There are countless plugins that claim to work magic at reproducing the look of traditional media but I have found throug my work, that is rarely the case. 

It takes a lot of effort, applied skills, and understanding of both the traditional and digital tools to really make it work well. 

Engraving test portrait of Robin Williams

These images are a few of my recent experiments at achieving such an effect for the classic engraving. They involve custom patterns and brushes in Adobe Illustrator and lots of layers within Photoshop as well as numerous channel operations to achieve a reasonable facsimile of an engraving. 

Social share image of Robin Williams portrait

You can see in the detail image above of Robin Williams, the variable lines building up a representation of the actor’s likeness. There is still much to be explored with this technique, but I believe experimentations like this are part of a continued growth as an artist. The successes teach us as much as the failures, if we are attuned to the lessons.

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