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London National History Museum Matte Painting Tutorial

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Date Added: 9th December 2009
Software used:

Still felt the need to "turn off more lights" (Fig.12). It was done with the replace color tool on selected areas (to avoid the color replacement for the back windows and ceiling) and color burn tool set on highlights with 20% opacity. More shadows were added. So the first stage is complete. Next is the set extension.

Fig. 12

Step 2 - Set Extension by at least 50%

After I establish the vanishing point, I started to extend the plate on the left side. First, I duplicated the top windows (Fig.13) and distorted them to match the perspective. Next I duplicated the ...... and started to put them in place to match the perspective. (Fig.14 - 16). Had to keep in mind that I had a 3 point perspective and also the.....became wider as approaching the viewer. I used the distort and warp tool to fit them into place.

Click on the images below to enlarge.

Fig. 13
Fig. 14

Fig. 15
Fig. 16

Next I had to refine the ground floor (Fig.17) by making some simple lines that matched the perspective and also I made some top adjustments, between windows. Next, moving on the right side to make an extension for the pillars (Fig.18 - 20): had to import new front pillars from references and make them match the perspective and also had to refine the base of the pillars by cloning and painting new base (Fig.21). At this point, had to remove all remaining lights from the left extension (Fig.22) by painting over with a basic soft round brush set to saturation.

Click on the images below to enlarge.

Fig. 17
Fig. 18

Fig. 19
Fig. 20

Fig. 21
Fig. 22

Now it is time to give it some atmosphere and depth (Fig.23). With a big round brush with 14% opacity I started to paint on the fog. This also helped to decrease the contrast for the background and to achieve some aerial perspective. Next, a little color correction just to take out the greens from the scene (Fig.24) with a colour balance adjustment layer.

Click on the images below to enlarge.

Fig. 23
Fig. 24

Next, some final tweaks for this step: I applied some noise on the sides of the set and also a 3 pixels gaussian blur (Fig.25) to make the main focus on the back of the image - the stairs, not on the front elements.

Fig. 25

To emphasize that I made a subtle vignette effect (Fig.26) by painting the margins of the set with the same basic soft round brush with 10% opacity. That's it for this step. Next step is the fun part.

Fig. 26

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Readers Comments (Newest on Top)
Ronaldo on Mon, 02 November 2015 11:24pm
Sorry my question but, the castle or cathedral of the background left, the light source on it isn´t it inverted?
Thedjthat on Fri, 22 February 2013 11:21pm
Hi, I know it was years ago. Do you have the original image for "London National History Museum Matte Painting Tutorial"
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