First of all, thanks for a cool class, especially for showing me the cool trick with using dissolve. Before this class, I honestly had no idea where dissolve can be handy.
I started this project without a sketch, that was a very bad idea. I knew I wanted Commodore64 (my first computer ever) as my subject matter, but I thought I will figure out layout later. I ended up stumbling in the dark, trying different approaches and themes, before finally settling on a 80s magazine ad style. I think if I had a good idea for a layout, I would have finished this class days ago. Anyway...
I first started with collecting my references. I knew I wanted the computer itself, but I also wanted some smaller c64 items. I was toying with peripherals like the tape deck or disk drive, but I thought it would make the piece a little to busy. Instead, I have chosen to go with the storage media that were available on a commodore64: a cassette, a floppy disk and a cartridge.
I found 3d model sites really handy for those, as things like the storage are ubiquitous enough to have multiple 3d models. Many of those sites allow you to rotate the object right there on the website, which is really handy when you want an object from a particular angle.
Once I got my references, I started painting the objects. I kept my tracing with the pen tool as shapes, in case I wanted to scale up the piece. I also used more then one layer for each "body" piece, just to give it a bit more depth with semi-transparent colors mixing.
The painting process was pretty enjoyable, so I didn't mind redrawing things. The big problem here was finding a layout that worked well. I spent days looking at 80s inspired art and 80s ads before settling. I am not 100% happy with the composition, but I honestly wanted to finish this piece. I am, however, very happy with this technique. I think I might make a series of simple "cards" with various 80s computers on a simple background. Fingers crossed. In the meantime, here's the finished piece: