Interview with artist: Carlo Molinari

Wed, 26 Sep 2018 05:31:20

With pleasure, we’re introducing you an experienced Italian painter, illustrator and Rebelle Featured Artist Carlo Molinari. This exceptional talent graduated with honors at the Academy of Fine Arts in Bari. Currently based in Santeramo, Italy he’s working as an illustrator, painter, photo editor and graphic. We caught up with him and he was kind enough to answer a few questions about his life and art.

Hello Carlo, after this brief introduction, can you share with us what are some of the projects you’ve done in the past you are most proud of?

I find it very hard to choose preferred jobs. I liked many of them, each one for a different reason. Just to name a few, I really enjoyed making images for JOHN HENRY and MARY WALKER books. It was a mix of digital pencil and watercolor with the vintage appeal. Another book where I challenged myself was about VIOLA DESMOND. I used there inks with interesting distressed textured background. In another completely different style I made some images for self promotion in modern vector mood, and so on…:)

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 You are very versatile artist. Is this how you’d describe your style?

As you can see my recent works are done solely digitally. I really like paintings rich in dynamic brushstrokes, color and thickness. In the illustration I like to experiment with different styles. So over the years I have created images in photographic, pictorial, 3D and vector styles and techniques. However, I also do love painting impressionist images with the use of watercolor, pastels, pencils and digital inks. So yes, I love to experiment with different media. :)

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You and Rebelle - how did it all begin? What did impress you the most about it?

I love digital experimentation and I’m always on a lookout for new software to try. In one of these researches I came across Rebelle, which totally amazed me for the rendering of watercolor and wet media. I was astounded by its ability to blend the pastels which still preserve the texture of the background paper.

It’s also very easy to learn, because you don’t have too much control panels to confuse you with, but the essentials are at hand! I think it’s ideal software for illustrators who are looking for a natural look of traditional media in their drawings and paintings. And the new video tutorials - well done!

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Your stunning portrait work with clearly distinguishable style immediately convinced us to name you Rebelle Featured Artist. Would you mind sharing some painting tips for fellow artists?

I really like the portrait genre, especially if it’s interpreted in a dynamic or stylized style. In pictorial and detailed images, the subject is usually only the protagonist. There is no dynamism given by the signs of pencil, brush, the heat or even some imperfection caused by spots of color that make the image more natural, live and warm. Personally I try to create images in which the subject and the painting technique are divided in the final result on a par. Meaning the images are made with 50% presence of subject and 50% presence of expression of strokes, stains, pencils signs - the pictorial calligraphy of the artist!

I believe that the “pictorial calligraphy” is what distinguishes artist’s work. I like it not to be lost in the finished image.

Any art websites or books that you really enjoy?

I often use Pinterest and Instagram to look for reference images, sources of inspiration and above all artists to enjoy and appreciate!

I am a passionate collector of art books and image. The artists that I like very much these days are: Tai Shan Schieremberg, David Downton, Daniel Egneus, Massimo Carnevale, Gigi Cavenago, Drew Struzan, Christian Hook, Alex Kanewsky, just to name a few. I’d definitely recommend checking the works of these art masters to every art lover.

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Carlo, for my final question: Can you tell us about your future projects or plans?

I currently have two personal websites with my works, but these are very old and outdated. You can visit it here at www.carlomolinari.it. So for me the upcoming project is clear – to update them in a timely manner. I would like to make a website where I can sell digital illustrations for home decor made with various styles and subjects. For this project I can’t wait to use a lot of Rebelle. :)

So fingers crossed! Thank you for your time, Carlo and take care! 


Visit Carlo Molinari’s recent works on his agent’s website: http://www.advocate-art.com/carlo-molinari

Join Carlo Molinari on Behance: https://www.behance.net/carlomolinari





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WASHI  - Live paper in Rebelle 3

Fri, 31 Aug 2018 10:03:50

In today’s blog we would like to introduce a group of the ultra realistic papers which are part of the latest Rebelle 3 release called WASHI. The word ‘washi’ comes from wa meaning ‘Japanese’ and shi meaning 'paper’. The principle of its production is very old. It was brought to Japan by Buddhist monks in the 6th century AD and since then the Japanese craftsmen have been honing its production to perfection. 

Washi is made from the inner bark of three unique plants: kozo bush, mitsumata shrub and gampi tree. Kozo has long, solid fibers, paper resembles a cloth with its toughness and represents the male principle. Mitsumata has a shorter, finer fiber. Its growth is slower and the fiber represents the female principle. Gampi is an ancient fine fiber which produces a smooth shiny surface. In addition to the bark, also neri is used - a mucilaginous material made from the roots of the hibiscus which causes uniform dispersion of the fibers in the water in order to form a sheet.

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Washi is not just a material for writing or painting. It embodies a deep respect for pure nature, formed into a paper surface. A sheet of paper is formed by a unique cessation of natural movement of water and scattered fibers on a special bamboo mat called suketa. When a craftsman picks up the fibers scattered in water on a mat, they move in the form of waves, they stratify and intertwine. Stopping the movement of fibers is always unique. No paper is the same. Each has a unique edge of wrinkling fibers. When hand movement and water form the sheets, the craftsman puts one on to the other, then presses and comb sheets with a special brush, then finally dries them.

We take the creation of Rebelle papers with the same level of seriousness. When creating papers, we look for a suitable light to capture the uniqueness of the fibers, then merge them in the compositing software, creating a unique shape every time. Papers are not a mechanical copy of the reality. They are new images created with respect to the original pattern and that’s why they behave like real papers while painting in the Rebelle - incredibly realistically.

Real paper always has a specific size, structure, typical characteristic. Paper in Rebelle is more flexible, you can have more variations - it can have different texture scale, different colors and can react rather differently to watercolor and ink. Each new document is divergent. Rebelle alters the paper edges, also the paper structure is not always exactly the same. User can choose whether they want paper with natural, deckle-edges or not.

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Rebelle papers from Washi series are diverse:
• The first set of Washi papers are papers with roughly processed Kozo fibers and coarse hemp fibers.

• The second set of Washi Fine papers includes finer processed Mitsumata, Gampi, and Kozo fibers.

• The third set of Washi Heavy combines coarse bundles and single fine fibers. This wonderful mix offers a lot of visual possibilities.

• The fourth set of Washi Long has been prepared to preserve as many long fibers as possible in order to enhance their natural beauty. 

Your paintings on Washi papers will come to life. After you apply the color inconspicuous paper reveals its hidden beauty.

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In Rebelle 3, you can also set the papers as needed:

Visual Settings
• Different canvas texture visibility
• Different influence of paper on the painting
• Different paper absorbency

Canvas Settings
• Various DPI, various size of canvas texture and paper edges
• Paper with or without deckled edges
• Set original (default) paper color or use custom color

Washi papers in Rebelle are labeled according to the material used:
WK – Washi Kozo
WM – Washi Mitsumata
WG – Washi Gampi

We are continuously preparing for you different exclusive papers and canvases. Get the latest Washi and other paper packages from our shop: https://www.escapemotions.com/products/rebelle/papers.php

We wish you a lot of joy during your paintings with Washi papers.
Your Escape Motions Team


Papers and canvases exclusively for Rebelle software are created by Ľubomír Zabadal, expert for traditional art media at university UKF, Slovakia.





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Rebelle 3.1 Summer Update Is Out

Fri, 10 Aug 2018 07:12:15

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Improvements to the existing features, bug fixes as well as new features are part of the latest Rebelle 3.1 version which is released on this hot summer day. Let’s get you all caught up on these small-yet-mighty updates.

What’s new in Rebelle 3.1:

✓ New HSLuv palette - Available from Color panel menu HSLuv palette allows you to define a color based on three dimensions – hue, saturation, and lightness – but contrary to a HSL color model based on RGB, this color model is based on CIELUV color space, so two colors with an identical lightness value will look equally bright, have better saturation and hue uniformity:

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Comparison of yellow, red and blue in HSL and HSLuv palette with the same lightness value:

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✓ Palettes divided into grids in Color panel - Now you can divide the palettes into grids. Go with mouse over the palette in Color panel and change the palette grid with scroll wheel or hold “Ctrl” (”Cmd” on macOS) + click the left mouse button on color palette square or hue circle. You can activate the grid also via Color panel menu. 

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“I LOVE the palette divisions. It’s neat because as a user, with reduced number of colors you’re able to better remember the colors you prefer.  It makes it easier to create a color scheme, and then nuanced adjustments can be made with post-processing. Awesome.” ~ Junkyard Sam, Rebelle Featured Artist

✓ Multiple keyboard shortcuts - We implemented the possibility to set more than one shortcut for each action in Keyboard Shortcuts Preferences. Are you used to zooming with “Ctrl + Space” from Photoshop? Now you can do so in Rebelle too!

✓ Reference image is now saved to *.reb file by default. Also the reference image can be moved and scaled using touch input.

✓ New icon indicators - Some of you reported that it is hard to catch some actions happening on canvas, especially those connected to Selection tools, so we implemented new icon indicators which appear in top left corner for actions: Invert Selection, Select All and Deselect All.

✓ Stencils created from a layer or from a selection are now placed on position where they were originally created.

✓ New Community menu has been added to top menu - You can now access Gallery, Forum or your Account easily directly from application. Moreover, you can publish your artworks from this menu.

Rebelle 3.1 includes many useful fixes of bugs which were reported by Rebelle’s dedicated users. For example, the appearance of color artifacts after re-opening a .REB file, touch and gesture issues with selections and much more.
For more information on what’s new see our changelog.

The Rebelle 3.1 update is available on our Download page or your Community account and is free for all Rebelle 3 users.

Happy painting!
Your Escape Motions Team





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