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CGMA – The Art of Color And Light with Marco Bucci

CGMA – The Art of Color And Light with Marco BucciThe Art of Color And Light


The Art of Color And Light with Marco Bucci : An 8-week course developing an eye for color and studying fundamental color theory knowledge.

Use color and light to convey mood & story

The Art of Color and Light is an exploration in the properties of color and light under a variety of conditions. This is an essential stage in concept art that develops mood and communicates the narrative of the story by means of visual cues.


LECTURE TYPE: Pre-recorded

FEEDBACK: Individual recordings

DURATION: 8 weeks

MATERIALS: Photoshop (or equivalent), Wacom tablet or equivalent

SKILLS LEVEL: Intermediate

PREREQUISITES: Good drawing foundations and Digital Painting course


The more you know, the better.

Week 1 | The Importance of Values, Part 1: Designing a Picture

An in-depth look at how values can be arranged to form the DNA of a picture | Various methods of designing and composing within a frame | How to reduce any subject matter to simple, abstract shapes and patterns | What good shapes are, and how to evaluate and design them on your own

Week 2 | The Importance of Values, Part 2: Painting Form

The next step of value use: using it to indicate light and form | A thorough look at light and shadow and how they act in families | A simple system for reducing values into a usable system | The various properties of light hitting form: light, shadow, halftones, highlights, reflected light, & dark accents | How edges work and how to manipulate them | How light works on both the portrait and the landscape | A further breakdown of the power of simple shapes

Week 3 | Color Temperature

Nature’s color theory: warm vs. cool (the color theory that unifies every good painting) | An introduction to how color temperature works and how colors work in relation to each other | An in depth look into the concept of grays and subtle color modulations | How to achieve color harmony in any palette | The basic temperatures and properties of common light sources in nature

Week 4 | Color Keys

A look at commonly used palettes: how & why they are effective | How to design your own palette | A further look at warm vs. cool color temperatures working together | A breakdown of how atmospheric perspective works—and how to paint it | Introduction to color keys: what they are and why they are critical in the art production industry | How to approach painting light simply and directly in a color key | Studies of effective film color key art

Week 5 | Concept Art, Part 1: Planning

How to combine all the lessons so far into planning an effective image | Ranges of contrast: high contrast, low contrast, and a variety of value-accents | Different lighting effects used in cinema and photography to create mood and message | Various compositions and methods of visual storytelling through looking at modern production art

Week 6 | Concept Art, Part 2: Planning

Six painting demonstrations | Sketchbook study from life using watercolor & gouache | Watercolor plein air painting | Painting a conceptual landscape directly and solving problems as they arise | Executing a more planned illustration | Local color and how it factors into the light colors that influence it | Dealing with multiple light sources

Week 7 | Materials & Mark-Making

The effect of light on different materials (shiny, matte, translucent, hair, glass, subsurface scattering) | Comprehensive breakdown of materials used in master paintings | How materials can be indicated rather than rendered | How to use Photoshop’s toolsets for organic, traditional-looking, painterly effects | How to make your own custom brushes | A further look at edges and the wide variety of ways to create them | How to find your voice as an artist

Week 8 | Master Study (with a Twist)

Light falloff: how it affects both light and color | Getting even more out of your palette | Looking at a different way of studying from the masters | A method of using layers in Photoshop to produce tighter, more graphic paintings | How great paintings combine the painting fundamentals and an abstract sense of individualized expression

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