Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Slash Panther

Another card for the upcoming New Phyrexia set for Magic.
This piece gave me an opportunity to try to paint a number of visual effects. First, let me give credit where credit is due. It's fairly common knowledge that blurring can give the suggest motion in picture. I have to thank James Gurney, however, for clarifying two different types of blurs and how they work, and when to use them. You can find out about them here and here on his blog, as well as in his latest book Color and Light. I'm going to use his terms as well.

Imagine that my painting is actually a picture taken by an imaginary camera, and that camera moving along with the running panther. The great speed that both are traveling at is suggest by the blurring of the ground passing beneath. This is speed blur.
The panthers legs are moving relative to the rest of its body and the camera, and are therefore blurred. This is motion blur.
The third effect I employed is the refraction of light caused by heat. This wavy distortion can be seen on the rib cage of the panther.
It's done in oils on paper mounted to MDF. It's 11" x 14" I think.


  1. Wow man, you nailed those blurs. My favorite bit is the glow of his ribcage on the ground, I would never have thought of that.

  2. Thanks for the tips on all the effects you used. I've been using blurring effects for a while now but never thought about the rules in place for doing so. Now I know! Insane piece by the way.

  3. I second Chris' comment about the glow on the ground. Great detail. This is really awesome piece.

  4. Thanks guys!

    @Mike- I assume blurrng was blurring , and never really though about why and when to use them until reading Gurney's blog.

  5. Nice choice of colors and the sand being kicked up shows the speed as well while holding the composition together in a very pleasing way :)

  6. Something cool happens as a result of the placement of the two -- what?-- suns, I guess? Somehow that contributes to the speed effect in a way that I can't pinpoint, not being a painter. Intentional? A really cool piece, Matt.

  7. @ Chris- I was thinking about the suns in that way , I just felt I should show more than one since there are 5 in the world that this creature inhabits. Glad it works that way though.