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Ciameth's Rock Tutorial by Ciameth Ciameth's Rock Tutorial by Ciameth
This is how I draw rocks and soil in both Corel Painter and traditional media (mostly oil, acrylic, watercolor or oil pastel). There are no special brushes, filters, tricks, etc specific to Painter. Though I've never used photoshop, I assume these techniques would work there too. They're not difficult and take little drawing skill--just a lot of tedious practice. This tutorial assumes you already know how to handle basic light and shadow on an object; if not, there are other tutorials on dA for that.

You can see more of my references here [link] but this is the first tutorial I've made and I would appreciate some feedback--is it useful, does the format work for you, is there some information you feel is missing?

Some examples of how I've used these techniques for rocks and soil in digital paintings:
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:iconthunderhawk547:
ThunderHawk547 Featured By Owner Mar 18, 2015
As someone who has always struggled with backgrounds, this was very helpful!
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:icondevibobas:
devibobas Featured By Owner Dec 30, 2014
great wokr !!!
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:iconquietpeople:
quietpeople Featured By Owner Oct 28, 2014  Student General Artist
ugh. always hated drawing rocks. Your tutorial encouraged me to keep practicing. Thanks!
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:iconamethystforge:
AmethystForge Featured By Owner Oct 6, 2014
Very nice; I like this a lot.
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:iconwordforger:
wordforger Featured By Owner Sep 8, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I absolutely love this tutorial.  You've inspired me not to be scared of landscapes and backgrounds.  YAY!  Now to draw 5,000 more rocks!
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:iconjimmyt1988:
jimmyt1988 Featured By Owner Aug 19, 2014
What is the license on this :) I would love to use them in a game I am creating. I do plan to sell the game? I would love to put your photoshop brush on the credits at the end!
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:iconciameth:
Ciameth Featured By Owner Aug 19, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
This has an attribution-noncommercial creative commons license. 
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:iconmarinaawin:
marinaawin Featured By Owner Edited Aug 13, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
I used your tutorial here (for the rocks and path): marinaawin.deviantart.com/art/…
Thank you.
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:iconwolf401:
wolf401 Featured By Owner Jul 20, 2014  Student General Artist
This was so helpful thank you so much!!
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:iconfireyuuki:
FireYuuki Featured By Owner Jul 13, 2014  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
great technique!
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:icontolkienandtea:
tolkienandtea Featured By Owner Jun 15, 2014  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
This tutorial is excellent! I like how you added the translucent layer on the rough rock! 
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:icontoolmon:
Toolmon Featured By Owner Apr 5, 2014  Professional Artisan Crafter
Thank you!
From a beginner's point of view...very helpful
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:iconrukaija:
Rukaija Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2014  Hobbyist
Thank you soooo much for this tutorial, it's great!!
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:iconlordfell:
Lordfell Featured By Owner Dec 31, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
Could you give me an example of a brush you might use to blend the dirt in your first tip? I tried using five or so and they all end up looking like fur. :laughing: Possibly it's my technique. What movements do you use?
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:iconciameth:
Ciameth Featured By Owner Jan 1, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
You might be using a brush that smudges things if it is turning out like fur.  A brush that simply blurs or softens things might work better.  In Painter, I usually use one called "just add water" in short circular motions.
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:iconlordfell:
Lordfell Featured By Owner Jan 1, 2014  Professional Digital Artist
Thank you! I'll try that.
Reply
:iconshinigami-shisan:
Shinigami-shisan Featured By Owner Dec 18, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
Water tutorial please ;)?
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:iconjane63:
Jane63 Featured By Owner Nov 26, 2013  Student Digital Artist
Thanks so much!!!
Reply
:iconscutterland:
Scutterland Featured By Owner Nov 25, 2013  Student Digital Artist
THIS IS AMAZING
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:iconsoftbluewind:
SoftBluewind Featured By Owner Nov 14, 2013  Student Digital Artist
Great tips! thanks a lot!
Reply
:iconhorseg27:
horseg27 Featured By Owner Nov 4, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
This was very useful! Thanks!
Reply
:iconkirstenrowe:
KirstenRowe Featured By Owner Nov 4, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
This is an excellent resource.  Thank you!
Reply
:iconpen-holder:
pen-holder Featured By Owner Aug 13, 2013
this is so great! thanks! it's really helpful
Reply
:iconlilypsiren:
lilypsiren Featured By Owner Aug 10, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
This is very useful and well drawn! Thanks for sharing!
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:iconwolfshire:
wolfshire Featured By Owner Jul 28, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Excellent tutorial. I found it one of the easiest to follow. Now to practice 10,000 more times.
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:icondrayuu:
Drayuu Featured By Owner Jul 21, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
Very nice! Thanks for sharing
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:iconimmy-is-thinking:
Immy-is-Thinking Featured By Owner Jul 20, 2013  Professional Traditional Artist
Pretty handy for traditional drawers too, thanks :)
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:iconalphalightbearer:
AlphaLightBearer Featured By Owner Jun 18, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
THIS ROCKS!!!!
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:iconkls-san:
KLS-san Featured By Owner Jun 10, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Thank you so much for your tips!
Reply
:iconsevenark:
Sevenark Featured By Owner May 31, 2013
Very complete tutorial ! Thanks ! :D
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:iconchocolatequill:
ChocolateQuill Featured By Owner Apr 30, 2013
So helpful! And your art is brilliant.
Reply
:iconfuyu-oleander:
fuyu-oleander Featured By Owner Apr 29, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Oh, this is really useful! Thank you for making and sharing it! :meow:
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:iconderojor:
DerOjor Featured By Owner Apr 8, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
I've never been able to paint rocks...this is really helpful! I'm doing a painting in photoshop, and everything should still basically apply with that. And the collection of rock references is just wonderful! Thanks so much!
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:icondrawlicios:
Drawlicios Featured By Owner Mar 16, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
This is very helpful, thanks! :la:
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:iconambhon101:
ambhon101 Featured By Owner Mar 11, 2013  Student General Artist
thanks for sharing!!
this is amazing!
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:iconartbygloriacolom:
ArtbyGloriaColom Featured By Owner Mar 6, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Just discovered your amazing tutorial! Thank you for sharing it!!!!! :)
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:iconapeman-ty:
Apeman-ty Featured By Owner Mar 5, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I usually find that tutorials are more inspiring than actually helpful, but this is fantastic. I did some practice rocks and then applied the techniques to a painting, and it actually works! It's obvious that a lot of skill goes into everything you do, but I love that these techniques can be grasped quickly!
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:iconciameth:
Ciameth Featured By Owner Mar 6, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Thank you!
Reply
:iconcjtrunk:
cjtrunk Featured By Owner Jan 23, 2013
Really cool tutorial.
Reply
:iconeclipsemind:
EclipseMind Featured By Owner Jan 19, 2013  Student General Artist
Wow, I'll be sure to use this when painting!
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:iconfrostwindl:
FrostwindL Featured By Owner Jan 14, 2013  Student General Artist
wow this is incredibly helpful!
thanks for sharing your technique!
Reply
:iconsascha-snowstorm:
Sascha-Snowstorm Featured By Owner Dec 30, 2012  Professional Digital Artist
awesome tutorial, thank you :la:

I will try the crosshatching, I think that will solve my flat looking rock terrain shading
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:iconrentoh:
rentoh Featured By Owner Dec 6, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
Thank you this really is helpful!
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:iconmidare-shinami:
Midare-Shinami Featured By Owner Dec 2, 2012  Student Digital Artist
This is BRILLIANT. Thank you so much!
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:icondeserti:
Deserti Featured By Owner Sep 16, 2012   Digital Artist
This should have received a DD.
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:iconthemadsinclair:
TheMadSinclair Featured By Owner Sep 6, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Thank you for posting this! I'm terrible with dirt, rock, and transparent water, so this is just really helpful for me! ^^; Also you are just... way to excellent at this sort of thing. It's lovely for just a tutorial.
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:iconakira789:
akira789 Featured By Owner Sep 1, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Thank you for this tutorial..... i love it !

You save my first rocks ( and my first background ) in digital <u<
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:iconholy-descendant:
holy-descendant Featured By Owner Aug 25, 2012
Thank you for your wonderful tutorial, it is easy to understand and extremely helpful!
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:iconaudrietta:
Audrietta Featured By Owner Aug 5, 2012
Thanks, very helpful! :)
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:iconlupana:
Lupana Featured By Owner Jul 31, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
This is so helpful. I plan on attempting some of these techniques for a piece I'm about to work on! :D Thank you thank you for doing this!! :hug: :heart:
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