Jump to content
ARC Discussion Forums
  • advertisement_alt
  • advertisement_alt
  • advertisement_alt
Sign in to follow this  
Zactoman

Su-27 Flanker

Recommended Posts

Edit May 03, 2008- ZactoArt prints are now available!!!

Please visit my website and check them out!

www.Zactomodels.com

After dabbling with 'what-if' schemes I've decided to try my hand at some serious profile work.

I decided to do the Su-27 because it is one of my favorites. Maybe not the best choice for a beginner at profile art as it is a very complicated and difficult subject, but I had fun, learned a lot and I'm happy with the results.

Inspired by Geedubelyer's 1/32 build I chose to do 'red 51' first. I will be doing several other schemes in the near future...

Unlike the what-if profiles I've been playing with, I did this one from scratch. I drew the line art in Illustrator and painted it in Photoshop. I used a bunch of different drawings and photos as reference as well some really nice 1/32 kit parts :thumbsup:

Comments, constructive criticism and suggestions are welcome!

Flanker.jpg

Loaded for bear!

Su-27close1.jpg

Close-up of the cockpit area...

I made the painting big enough that I can print it either 24" or 36" wide without lacking any detail.

Su-27close2.jpg

The weapons and pylons are all on separate layers so I can do other versions not so heavily weaponized...

Su-27close3.jpg

The weathering depicted is unique to 'red 51'. I'll be varying it with each different scheme.

I am contemplating having prints made and selling them through my website.

Any advice on this would be very welcome!

Questions/concerns I have include:

Finding a good printer- High quality at a reasonable cost. I am checking into some of the 'local' printers but there's not much close to home.

Color management/quality- If I go with a distant printer. How is this usually controlled? This will be my first printing experience and I'm worried about getting the colors right!

Cost/Quantity- I don't have a lot of money to invest and I'm not sure how well stuff like this sells. I'm hoping to find a printer who can do small quantities or 'on-demand' printing for a reasonable cost. On-demand would be best as I'd like to offer the customer a choice of paint scheme and weapons load.

Background/Border- I'm contemplating schemes for a background. I'll probably do some light text under the plane and possibly squadron/manufacturer logos beside the text.

My questions/concerns are if I use a gradated background how well will it print? I'm thinking of using a very light, probably gray gradation along the bottom.

I'm also considering adding a light 'decorative' border around the edge of the print but am worried that this might complicate matting/framing the prints as the border would have to be proportioned to stock frame sizes...

Canvas or paper? The one printer in town just does canvas. The prints I've seen them do look very nice. I might have one done for myself to see how it looks.

I had been leaning towards paper to keep the cost down but this printer pointed out that with canvas there is no need for matting or glass...?

Your thoughts?

:huh: Chris

Edited by Zactoman

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, that looks simply beautiful! Very detailed too. The colours and the weathering effects are spot on.

Had I a modeling room I would probably buy one. Now that my "modeling room" is also our bedroom, the aviation art just doesn't mix with the style. Or at least my girlfriend would possobly think so...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That looks incredibly nice Chris! It's good to see a starboard profile among all those standard port side profiles, which made me thinking it would be the only correct way to do (as reading: starting left moving right) when I considered starting my own project.

Chris, one thing you might change is the (black) line along the outer-most edges of the aircraft profile, to faint them or erase them completely, because these give the otherwise outstanding profile a bit cartoonish look? But hey, just my 2 cents.

My personal experience is that getting any shades of gray (neutral or blueish or whatever) look right, like for e.g. the very light, probably gray gradation along the bottom you mentioned, can be a real nightmare. Once I wanted to have something with lots of grays printed, the hues were always way off and really hard to match the original data. However, that was a few years ago and printer technology improves steadily.

Anyway, I am in awe of your artistic skills! :woot.gif:

Edited by RedIndian

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

ABSOLUTELY GORGEOUS!! :wub:

Much better than the model that inspired it ;)

I can't recall seeing a better aircraft profile Zactoman. :crying2:

Oh, and thanks for the plug BTW. :worship:

:banana:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Isn't it nice to be encouraged and inspired.....Nice work Chris!
Yes it is! :thumbsup: Thank you for the nice remark, and thank the rest of you as well!

Thank you for the suggestions for improvements both in this thread and through e-mail.

I've taken your advice RedIndian and lightened the outlines on the plane, the pylons and the missiles. The difference is mostly subtle except on the missiles where I think it really improves the look.

I've also followed other suggestions and made various corrections and improvements throughout including adding some additional shadowing to the missiles.

Keep in mind that the close-ups I posted are probably much larger on your monitor than they will be on the prints. The close-ups posted would be roughly 5.6" on a 36" print or 3.75 on a 24". They are almost 9" on my 22" monitor!

Su-27close2b.jpg

The plane is mostly done and I'm working on a background now.

Still no answers on printers and cost...Recommendations are welcome!

:woo:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

:banana:

I'd love one of those Chris. Plain white background works perfect for me...would look great next to my F-22 prints :D

:cheers:

AW

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Chris,

You never cease to amaze me guy. First your modeling (no recent updates though, hint hint) now your profile art (which as with everything else is outstanding), I just gotta ask. Will the Zactoman t-shirts be ready for the IPMS Nats this summer???

I'd like to pre-order 2 in size large thank you. :thumbsup:

Edited by jeff briner

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
It has great depth

That's exactly what I was thinking too. The shading and fading of the colors really adds to the realism.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wow, you´re very talented. This is some seriously beautiful profile. In some place it looks even almost like some rendered image. Would be great if you get to make more of ´em. Why wouldn´t you have the right to sell a bunch of them on your site? I think many people appreciate it if it keeps you going.

And as to the shirts - if they have a fancy Zuperman-logo on them, make that one for me, too.

Which one´s gonna be next?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
And as to the shirts - if they have a fancy Zuperman-logo on them, make that one for me, too.
Shirts are available in pink, long sleeve, medium. The t-shirt vendor hasn't been able to keep up with demand and produce enough in other sizes. I'm hoping more will be available before the Nats...

Zactoman_b.jpg

Thanks for all the encouraging comments! :cheers:

Lots of back and forth in doing the shadows and highlights to achieve a depth I liked. I thought I was happy with it until last night when I tried this scheme with a dark radome.

DigitalSu-27.jpg

It looks a bit flat on the sides of the nose so I'll be fixing it up some... :D

My arms are too tired from breaking up ice on my driveway trying to get my SUV freed up to do anything on it tonight though. Winters in Idaho are a bit different than in L.A.! I'm glad it's almost over...

Which one´s gonna be next?
I haven't decided which to do next but I'm planning to do several. 'Red 04' perhaps? :P

I'm looking forward to doing a Ukrainian bird!

:cheers:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Color management/quality- If I go with a distant printer. How is this usually controlled? This will be my first printing experience and I'm worried about getting the colors right!

Firstly, that is some amazing work you made :worship:

as i know my way in Illustrator and Photoshop too, it is an incredible amount of work to draw al these lines and rivets, and more important the perfect shades of the shadow and clear parts :thumbsup:

For the color managemant: is the artwork in RGB or CMYK? in both cases it is important to have a profile chosen ( RGB, Adobe 1998 or CMYK EuroscaleV2 as an example) so your

print partner can use this as a reference, also important is the chosen material to print on, canvas glossy or matte paper or vinyl they all have different appeareances (glossy paper is much more brighter then canvas)

hope this will help you a bit

Cheers,

Wasserfall

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Chris,

In response:

Finding a good printer- High quality at a reasonable cost. I am checking into some of the 'local' printers but there's not much close to home.

High quality and reasonable cost do not go hand in hand. If you want good quality printing, you will pay. Offset and screen printing require too high of a printed volume to offset unit cost. You will do better to print on an individual basis. Find a company with a digital plotter.

Color management/quality- If I go with a distant printer. How is this usually controlled? This will be my first printing experience and I'm worried about getting the colors right!

The company will send you as many 'printed' proofs for color correction as you require for them to meet your needs. You review the proof, circle errors in red, (it is after all only a working drawing), and send back. Make copies of your comments for your records. The two of you must discuss each proof over the phone or in person. Computer screen color and printing color are two different color worlds. I'm not schooled in colors that are generated from light, such as the computer screen. Other than when mixed all colors make white light. My background is in reflected light. Colors one sees from pigments. Printing is a 4 color-process, so expect some tonal variations between your digital output and their output.

Cost/Quantity- I don't have a lot of money to invest and I'm not sure how well stuff like this sells. I'm hoping to find a printer who can do small quantities or 'on-demand' printing for a reasonable cost. On-demand would be best as I'd like to offer the customer a choice of paint scheme and weapons load.

Digital plotting is low volume work, relative to offset printing (newpaper, magazine printing, and the like), which is high-volume. Plotting can be done on-demand, but, the company will still need to schedule you in their production run and you will still need to color correct any proofs. You should not expect a one week turn-a-round unless you really want to pay. Find out what the normal production run-time would be for a product such as yours.

Background/Border- I'm contemplating schemes for a background. I'll probably do some light text under the plane and possibly squadron/manufacturer logos beside the text.

My questions/concerns are if I use a gradated background how well will it print? I'm thinking of using a very light, probably gray gradation along the bottom.

I'm also considering adding a light 'decorative' border around the edge of the print but am worried that this might complicate matting/framing the prints as the border would have to be proportioned to stock frame sizes...

There is a point of no return even with digital. The output is mechanical so you can only go so small until nothing prints even tho the pixels on your screen at 400% show that there is something there. You will need to have samples of the company's work to find out their degree of detail. Can they produce the screen you want in the detail you want? Can they print a 10% screen with 300 dots per inch? Or is their 10% screen 200 dots or 100 dots per inch?

Canvas or paper? The one printer in town just does canvas. The prints I've seen them do look very nice. I might have one done for myself to see how it looks.

Canvas is textural. You will lose your fine detail because the surface is not flat and the image will look smoother than on paper because light reflects off of canvas differently than paper. Edges will not be crisp. If you want something that will give you a truer reflection, use paper. Use a gloss paper. The image will jump off of the paper. Gloss paper affords the image more depth than matte paper.

How does his printing stand up to UV light? You can, and should, buy glass that has UV inhibitors. UV light is brutal and no image should be left in sunlight, even if the glass is UVI glass.

Just one man's opinion.

Sincerely,

Mark

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Chris,

In response:

Finding a good printer- High quality at a reasonable cost. I am checking into some of the 'local' printers but there's not much close to home.

High quality and reasonable cost do not go hand in hand. If you want good quality printing, you will pay. Offset and screen printing require too high of a printed volume to offset unit cost. You will do better to print on an individual basis. Find a company with a digital plotter.

Color management/quality- If I go with a distant printer. How is this usually controlled? This will be my first printing experience and I'm worried about getting the colors right!

The company will send you as many 'printed' proofs for color correction as you require for them to meet your needs. You review the proof, circle errors in red, (it is after all only a working drawing), and send back. Make copies of your comments for your records. The two of you must discuss each proof over the phone or in person. Computer screen color and printing color are two different color worlds. I'm not schooled in colors that are generated from light, such as the computer screen. Other than when mixed all colors make white light. My background is in reflected light. Colors one sees from pigments. Printing is a 4 color-process, so expect some tonal variations between your digital output and their output.

Cost/Quantity- I don't have a lot of money to invest and I'm not sure how well stuff like this sells. I'm hoping to find a printer who can do small quantities or 'on-demand' printing for a reasonable cost. On-demand would be best as I'd like to offer the customer a choice of paint scheme and weapons load.

Digital plotting is low volume work, relative to offset printing (newpaper, magazine printing, and the like), which is high-volume. Plotting can be done on-demand, but, the company will still need to schedule you in their production run and you will still need to color correct any proofs. You should not expect a one week turn-a-round unless you really want to pay. Find out what the normal production run-time would be for a product such as yours.

Background/Border- I'm contemplating schemes for a background. I'll probably do some light text under the plane and possibly squadron/manufacturer logos beside the text.

My questions/concerns are if I use a gradated background how well will it print? I'm thinking of using a very light, probably gray gradation along the bottom.

I'm also considering adding a light 'decorative' border around the edge of the print but am worried that this might complicate matting/framing the prints as the border would have to be proportioned to stock frame sizes...

There is a point of no return even with digital. The output is mechanical so you can only go so small until nothing prints even tho the pixels on your screen at 400% show that there is something there. You will need to have samples of the company's work to find out their degree of detail. Can they produce the screen you want in the detail you want? Can they print a 10% screen with 300 dots per inch? Or is their 10% screen 200 dots or 100 dots per inch?

Canvas or paper? The one printer in town just does canvas. The prints I've seen them do look very nice. I might have one done for myself to see how it looks.

Canvas is textural. You will lose your fine detail because the surface is not flat and the image will look smoother than on paper because light reflects off of canvas differently than paper. Edges will not be crisp. If you want something that will give you a truer reflection, use paper. Use a gloss paper. The image will jump off of the paper. Gloss paper affords the image more depth than matte paper.

How does his printing stand up to UV light? You can, and should, buy glass that has UV inhibitors. UV light is brutal and no image should be left in sunlight, even if the glass is UVI glass.

Just one man's opinion.

Sincerely,

Mark

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Beautiful work, Chris. Definitely worth doing prints. Check out this company: http://www.iprintfromhome.com . They do a great job, have very reasonable shipping charges and deliver very quickly. They can print just the quantity you need, so that you don't have money tied up in prints just sitting around waiting to be sold. You can get prints done on quality photo paper with archival inks and still be able to sell them at a reasonable price and profit.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wow, thanks for all the great info guys! :salute:

Welcome to ARC Mark! Two cheers for your double post!! :D B)

I checked my color settings and I'm already using the sRGB settings that the printing company Felixdk suggested. They have quite a bit of useful info there and their prices do seem reasonable. Unfortunately their max. size is 30" and I was hoping to offer 36".

I'm still going to do some looking for other printers that might suit my needs, including checking out some of my local printers not too far from home.

The printer in town I mentioned that only does canvas printing told me that I wouldn't lose any detail if they printed it on canvas. The canvas they showed me was pretty smooth with just a light texture.

They said that they print at 720 dpi but to make my file at 360 dpi and they could enlarge the file and the fine detail would still be printed. The iprintfromhome website and a few others I checked all had a 300 dpi max. suggested. I'm wondering if the printer in town has some better printing equipment than average. Their prices sure are higher than average...

Mark suggested Glossy photo paper. I had envisioned a satin/semi-gloss paper. The printer that Felixdk linked uses a paper called Somerset Velvet.?. Anybody know about this paper or have any other thoughts on what to use?

Thanks again for the input!

Here's the layout I came up with. I chose to keep it simple. Of course the Zactomodels watermark won't be there on the final print...

It's a 3:1 aspect so print sizes might be 36" X 12", 30" X 10" or 24" X 8". Do those sizes sound OK?

Flanker1.jpg

I'm hoping the gradated background will print out OK...It sure looks good coming out of my home printer!!!

:)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Chris,

Bear in mind that a matt and a frame will add maybe 6" or more to the final width of the print, so your 36" wide print will end up being more than 42" wide, which is a lot of wall space. You might get more interest at the 30" width or less. The detail stays very good even at 12 x 18 and 200dpi, which is what I've been using. The F-86 Sabre that I did in this thread http://www.arcforums.com/forums/air/index....=120500&hl= shows good detail on the rivets, panel lines and stencils at this size/resolution. At 300dpi you should have no problems, even at that much smaller size.

Mark's points are very good. I normally paint in acrylic on gessoed MDF board and wouldn't particularly want the extra, perhaps conflicting, texture that canvas would add. With digital work, I think that it might detract form the crispness of your lines. Photographic paper makes for a very nice print. I have been using the Lustre paper, which is semi-matt, but the gloss paper might give better depth of color. The prints are cheap enough that a trial print doesn't break the bank.

I use grayscale backgrounds in some of my work and the Sabre has a color cloudscape as a background. They print well, so I'm sure your gradient will translate to print very well.

The best way to find out what it will look like is to get a print or 2 and see what the results are. Personally, I didn't have good luck with local shops (unsatisfactory, expensive or too busy to care much about my small beans orders), but you might strike gold. Iprintfromhome is cheap enough that it might be worth a shot though.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Two cheers for your double post!!

You know, computers can be so finicky that way.

Chris,

In response:

They have quite a bit of useful info there and their prices do seem reasonable. Unfortunately their max. size is 30" and I was hoping to offer 36".

Printers buy their paper from paper distributors. Paper distributors buy their paper from different mills. Different mills produce paper in different sizes, textures, and weight. Find a paper distributor, talk to a representative, and feel, touch, and see the different types of paper they have to offer. They more than likely will have a sample with a printed image on it. If they don't the printer they supply the paper to, will. After you find the paper you like, especially size, as you are looking for a specific size, ask them to whom they deliver that paper, or who do they know who can accomodate you. They know the industry and who has what. A printer has to have the capability to hold a sheet of paper 36" long or a drum over 36" in diameter. That is a big bed.

Paper suppliers don't usually sell to folks, they sell to businesses. They sell volume. Hundreds and thousands of full sheets of paper. They won't break a ream of paper for you or me. After you find your paper sample, and you find a printer, ask the printer if they are supplied by the paper supplier from whom you have chosen the paper (some printers use multiple suppliers). If there is a match, great, if not, ask the printer if they can get paper from the supplier. They may or they may not. It becomes a match game. If they don't, and you like the printer, then you supply the paper. If they do, and you like the printer, no worries.

Outside of the box: There are companies that print on vinyl. They make banners and the like. Their printers can accomodate very large sheets. Their machines can, and do, print on paper. You can look into them and see what they have to offer.

The printer in town I mentioned that only does canvas printing told me that I wouldn't lose any detail if they printed it on canvas. The canvas they showed me was pretty smooth with just a light texture.

What kind of canvas is this? How many threads per inch? 300? 400? 500? Pretty smooth with just a light texture is not flat. Or is this paper 'linen'? Have them show you the same image printed on different textures of paper ranging from flat matte, semi, and gloss to their canvas. Compare and contrast qualities, and you be your own judge. Look for line crispness, and quality of detail. What you see will be what you will get. The camera does not lie.

They said that they print at 720 dpi but to make my file at 360 dpi and they could enlarge the file and the fine detail would still be printed. The iprintfromhome website and a few others I checked all had a 300 dpi max. suggested. I'm wondering if the printer in town has some better printing equipment than average. Their prices sure are higher than average...

Detail printing gets exponentially more expensive because the machinery to do the job gets exponentially much more expensive. There is a very big difference between 300 & 720. More than twice the difference in image output quality. Get a sample of each output. 300 dpi and 720 dpi. Although there is no comparison between the two, compare the two. Can you live with the difference? Is cost and value equal? Will I as the consumer absorb the cost? Can and will you absorb the upfront cost? Will I even know the difference between 300 or 720 dpi if I have nothing to compare? After all, I will not have seen the other sample. Will 300 dpi be satisfactory to you?

I have checked the iprintfromhome website. Have them send you a sample of their Fine Art Print, which is on Somerset Velvet paper. Then you'll have a sample of their paper and product. Get a sample of their canvas while you are at it. If you like the product, and are interested in the paper, do a Search Engine search. Find out who manufactures the paper, who it is distributed to, what producer (printer and the like) uses it and see if you can get some.

Mark suggested Glossy photo paper. I had envisioned a satin/semi-gloss paper. The printer that Felixdk linked uses a paper called Somerset Velvet.?. Anybody know about this paper or have any other thoughts on what to use?

Thanks again for the input!

I did not suggest gloss photo paper. I suggested gloss card stock. But, gloss fine art photography paper, whose family of papers includes Somerset Velvet, is more than satisfactory.

http://www.inkjetart.com/art_papers.html defines Somerset Velvet paper. Look at the HP printer on their main page. Earlier when I wrote 'plotter', this is also what I had in mind. Is this the type of item you have in mind as a production source?

Here's the layout I came up with. I chose to keep it simple. Of course the Zactomodels watermark won't be there on the final print...

It's a 3:1 aspect so print sizes might be 36" X 12", 30" X 10" or 24" X 8". Do those sizes sound OK?

The relationship is good. If you look at the edge of the aircraft silhouette only, and its relationship to the outer edge, you have an activated edge. Which is a good thing. You have a good figure/ground relationship.

Sizes will sound ok when you find the paper. You have a world of paper sizes to choose from. You can make this any size.

Hope this helps.

Sincerely,

Mark

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Chris,

{It's a 3:1 aspect so print sizes might be 36" X 12", 30" X 10" or 24" X 8". Do those sizes sound OK?}

300dpi will suit it well, if they can print it at 720dpi (interpolated) it's fine too

It's all about viewing distance, for example when you have your nose on the print you can see the difference between 360/720dpi,

but from several meters that isn't that important anymore, for example i show you this picture taken at the LLTM Ahaus Germany

The photo of the SU27UB was taken by me at Maks2005 and interpolated in Photoshop and than printed on Banner material (i'm an operator of a OCE6060 solvent printer, this can print up to 160 cm width

for in and outdoor printing at 720 dpi all weather, printing materials are paper, vinyl, canvas, banner, etc.)

pict0012pc5.jpg

The color of this picture does not represent the original (bad pic) mind that these two banners i printed are 350x130cm.

As for the paper, Semi gloss would be nice

Regards,

Wasserfall

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks again, even more for the education in printing guys!!! :coolio:

Very nice Sabre Don! That must have been a huge file to get that much detail!

Cool banner Wasserfall! Is that hanging in your shop now?

No real progress on printer research since my last post. I've been busy doing new molds and casting parts...

I'm going to be meeting with a local printer next week. Cross your fingers...

Playing around with another scheme. It's not quite finished...

Flanker2.jpg

More to follow.

Any particular paint schemes you'd like to see done?

Any help with close-up pics or references for Flanker markings would be appreciated...

I also added another Flanker to the 'what-if schemes' thread!

:cheers:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...