Stone of Knowing – Part 2

Stone of Knowing in Pencil

Last week the pencil stage for Stone of Knowing was not quite finished. Since then I’ve completed the drawing, scanned it, pondered orientation and laid down the first layers of paint. Orientation? In this case I’m referring to positioning, location, position, situation, placement, alignment, etc. After scanning and opening the drawing in Photoshop I realized I could tell more of a story if I changed from a horizontal to vertical orientation.

Vertical   Vertical

Stone of Knowing WIP

The upper half of the canvas, the background, will become just as important as the foreground–remember the story from last week’s post.


An ancient relic, once lost, washes up on shore. Whomever holds it has the power to control anyone’s mind.

A little scary, huh? No wonder it went “missing.” There’s a story in there too, but my painting will focus on the discovery of the stone by two ravens. These will not be ordinary ravens. I hope their master is wise and decides to throw the stone back into the depths of the ocean.


It’s important to return to the idea/story behind the painting, to make sure I’m sticking to the plan and also that the plan makes sense. If I didn’t, then I’d just have a painting of two ravens and some odd looking trinket. But if I had a figure in the distance, walking along the misty shoreline, I add another layer to the image–I give it added depth and mystery. I’ll return to that idea later. My next step for the moment if blocking in colors for the main elements of the foreground.

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These first layers of paint are very basic and quickly painted. Next week I’ll share the progression from the base layers to the fully fleshed out ravens and stones, as well as more thoughts on the background.

Go to Part 3 –>

About Amanda Makepeace

Amanda Makepeace is an award winning illustrator inspired by nature, mythology, magical beings, and distant worlds. She is the co-founder of the Bird Whisperer Project, a monthly art challenge focused on spreading the the love of birds and art making for everyone. Her art has appeared in ENnie award-winning games and on the covers popular independant novels and anthologies. Her latest project is the cover art for the Long List Anthology Volume 4, a book featuring Hugo nominated stories. Amanda is a regular at Fantasy and SciFi conventions in the southeast, and an award winner at JordanCon, DragonCon, ChattaCon, and LibertyCon.
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