Speedpainting Tips and Tricks

This won’t be a full speedpainting tutorial, I’ll do one of those soon. This is just a collection of tips I’ve picked up over the years through trial and error.

First of all, record your video in a standard resolution, I record in 1280 x 720 px and I save the final video as 1280 x 720 px.
This reduces compression, ensures that the video doesn’t get squashed when viewed online and gets rid of (or reduces the size of) black bars which make your video appear smaller.

Secondly, don’t move about too much when you’re recording. My first speedpaint could have induced epileptic fits, I was zooming in and out the whole time and panning about quickly, you couldn’t really see ‘the bigger picture’. I’d recommend (as an artist as well as a speedpainter) to start painting zoomed out and laying in the basic shapes and then zoom in to render details.

And the best, I must confess, I have saved for the last. Iterative Saving. Record in 5 minute chunks or less, then save the video and save a copy of the image in a workable format (eg .psd or .xcf). This way, if the painting program or the recorder crashes, you can simply go back to a previous version without losing hours of work. This also allows you to have sections of the video play at different speeds eg if you repeat something a few times have the first one play at the normal speed then have the others go faster to prevent the viewer getting bored. You don’t have to worry about making too many mistakes either, if you make too many, you can just undo and start again from where you left off. I take a little break after every recording chunk to plan what to do next, it keeps the video short and productive and therefore more entertaining (I hope).

Let me know in the comments if there’s anything in particular you want to know about speedpainting or how I speedpaint.