Testing the lighting
The next step is to define the type of light that will be used in the composition, this step is very important because it creates the atmosphere of the whole illustration. In this case I wanted to create a sense of mystery, so I decided to make the lighting with just one light falling from above, generating a strong contrast of light and shadow on the character and leaving his face in shadow to reinforce his dark and mysterious character.
Adding in the lighting is very important because it defines the overall atmosphere of the illustration
The time to apply color
When I use color in an Illustration it is as important as the lighting to reinforce the story behind the concept. Adding strong or very saturated colors would be a wasted effort, because it contradicts the intent of mystery to be expressed in the illustration.
In this case, the color palette that I used was made of desaturated colors that reached almost gray tones. I added a few areas of color such as the number on the helmet and the eyes of the ape.
Color can make a picture better or worse, so it's good to take time to test them out on the entire image without working in the details yet.
I kept the majority of the colors desaturated into almost gray tones
Painting the project
Having decided on the colors and the light, it was then time to start painting. In this part it is important to use references or photographs to have a good guide when painting materials; in this case the suit is a kind of reflective material, which generates bright areas unlike the helmet, which is a matte material.
The base layer of the painting is important because I will add the texture details over it to give life to the suit. With the ape the process is the same, using reference images, I paint with the established lighting, trying to make it as realistic as possible. As the face of the ape is the main focus of the illustration, it is important to strike a resemblance to a real ape when painting, and always respecting the lighting scheme.
A strong base layer is important to build the texture details on top of