So with the barrel and crate completed I started work on the sword. After a couple of shaky starts I found the famed Tyson Murphy tutorial on creating a hand painted weapon and from there on out it was smoother sailing. Instead of recreating the weapon in the tutorial I opted to create my own design.
For this texture I used a lot less layers, opting to paint everything in a more traditional manner. I started with the blade first, painting a gradient on the main body. I used Tyson's handy tip of altering the hue slightly with each shade, which I think made the image a lot more interesting visually.
Once I was happy with the blade I started to paint in some details: cracks, chips, rust etc. These were painted on different layers so that any mistakes could be easily fixed without painting over the work I'd already done.
With the blade looking good I started work on the handle. I used purple as the base so that my sword would be more visually striking, but I kept to darker shades so they wouldn't detract from the blade itself.
Using what I'd learnt in creating the rest of the texture it was pretty easy to paint the hilt.
With the key parts complete I changed the colour and brightness values to make the image a little less dull. I then added in some extra details like some fake AO on the base of the sword and handle.
And with that the sword was complete! The Tyson Murphy was incredibly useful and just downright educational; it really helped me in tackling this prop. Through watching him work I got a better idea of how one should approach handpainted texturing and digital painting in general, and I think it had a positive effect on my workflow and on the end result itself.
I feel that there are some areas of the sword that are lacking in detail compared to others, but those are easily fixed (and indeed I may revisit this texture and fix them!) and are mainly the result of no-more-time. I think that is still one area where my painting needs improvement; time managment.
In the Weapon Tutorial Tyson mentions that he doesn't spend too much time painting in one specific area because he knows that if it doesn't turn out right he'll just have to paint over it. Even though I've kept my promise and have been painting with my canvas zoomed out to 100% I think I am still too focused on smaller forms and details.
But I think I've learnt that now, and I am definitely planning to work on my speed in the next prop exercises. I look forward to what I'll learn next.