A step by step tutorial of concept design.

From an idea, to the paper, to the final creation!

For almost 4 years  followers of this blog, have accompanied me step after step,  to a personal, unique journey back in time , giving me great inspiration, strength, and the motivation  to continue experimenting with  forms of traditional musical instruments, and hybrid designs.

It's remarkable that even during my absence from the blog for more than 10 months, "Memories of the innocent age" were  accepting  approx. 100 visits per day, ...every day! 

The post with the most views by far, was my attempt back in Jan 2014 to  experiment the sound of my A/ I Stathopoulos bouzouki using different picks, followed the next month, by the beautiful interview with Mr Nikos Fronimopoulos and the construction of his Gkelis bouzouki replica. 

Highest levels of traffic had also been recorded at the separated page on the blog regarding information purchasing   the "Art Book " (http://memoriesoftheinnocentage.blogspot.com/p/art-book.html)

Hundreds of instrument designs later, I lately realized that I never wrote a step by step tutorial for the ones who want to experiment and create their own unique instruments on paper, and finalize their concept ideas using digital tools.

Taking a small break from my historical research regarding the Greek luthier's of  the past century, I thought it would be helpful to illustrate my personal workflow, and bring a little more light from the way I use to create my concept designs.

PS: The following design is a personal patent and has been created just to demonstrate a quick illustration tutorial, without taking in consideration necessary  proportions and measurements which need to be calculated during a musical  instrument creation.  

1. Ideas,  and inspiration come  in unexpected moments, so usually I sketch my thought quickly on a piece of paper with a pen. 

S.Dimis (c) 2015
2. After taking a photograph of my quick drawing,  I am importing it into my computer's  2D digital photo editing software.

3. Using the pen tool (path tool) I am defining  the outline of the shape 

4. I like to color this Shape layer in black ,  as it's intense contrast can help me understand better the proportions of my concept.

5. I also create a layer containing a thin line at the center ( middle) of my canvas.

6. All main elements on the soundboard,( as the sound-hole, neck etc) also will be designed in separated layers with a black color,  and a thin white stroke peripherally so they can be easily identified.

7. Decoration accents will be designed only for the half part of my instrument, and then they will be duplicated, inverted horizontally, and placed at correct position 

8. To create the outline binding strip and its decoration, I am usually duplicate the Shape layer, add an inside stroke effect, and turn the fill to 0% value

9. By selecting only the binding strip area, I create on a different layer the decoration design.

10. When I have finished with the main structural elements, I start applying  the materials, building my design always from ground up.

11. Finalizing your concept idea is just only the begging followed by a big wave of brainstorming, revisions, and different versions, until you are completely satisfied with your final outcome.


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