Sorry for the obnoxious watermarks D:
I made copies of this as I was working, so you can see how I made this piece ^^
You can view the original below~ The character is named Mahel and belongs to *Cici88fav.me/d6ns561
Sooooo, my initial sketches are often ridiculously messy |D But that's ok, they're drawn over from there XD When I decide to paint a piece, I don't normally draw clean line art either...I only need to be able to see where everything is and their general shapes.
For colouring, sometimes I work straight in colour, but this time I went with a greyscale sketch. To colour that, I placed a solid blue layer (set on Colour mode) over top and then began adding more colours (purple, pink, light blue, peach) over top. I used various layer modes, with different colours (such as Colour, Overlay, Multiply, Soft Light) - sometimes I use others too, but these are the most common for me.
At step 4 I flattened the picture, duplicated it, then set it to screen to get step 5. It made it brighter, to match the atmosphere I was hoping to achieve
Not having the layers to make changes used to scare me, but now I just paint over top XP From steps 6-8, I adjusted the colours some more and added a few blobs of colour to indicate flowers.
Steps 9-14 are effectively just painting over top of what is already there. I continue placing large blobs of colour and then work in smaller ones, refining some shapes as I go. Most flowers are just 5 dots, drawn at various angles! XD If they're in the background, I won't worry about them so much, trying to focus on ones that would be near Mahel. I've also placed a few extra Soft Light layers, with blue towards the top.
Step 15 shows the final piece. To get to this point, I added a few glowing spots around using an airbrush on scatter, as well as a few tiny dot particles (using a small solid brush also set on scatter). I also blurred some areas of the painting so they wouldn't detract from the main focus of the picture XD Once that's done, I usually duplicate the entire picture, then set it to Soft Light or Overlay and reduce the opacity. This often makes the colours more vibrant and ups the contrast ^^ In this case, the colours were too vibrant, so I reduced the saturation of the copy, so it was nearly greyscaled. Then set that to soft light, so it kept the contrast, but without adjusting the colours too much.
And that's it? XD