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Daxiong is often asked how he approaches his artwork. Some of his pieces become extremely complex, so we asked him to give us a step-by-step tutorial.

The piece he chose was one he did for an exhibit of the French comics MuoWang. This piece is now on display and being used as a reference in the library of L. Senghor – a secondary school in Corbeil-Essonnes, France:

Artwork on display in France

Artwork on display in France

Daxiong: This drawing was the “longest” one in my life, with the draft starting in Hangzhou China, and the finished work in New York. It crossed the whole Pacific Ocean and North America. This piece took me a week with the art editor calling me on the long trip to tell me to hurry up. I had little money with me nor time. but I just wanted to begin the journey to the US, maybe just so I could breathe the free air.

This drawing is work for my art show in France. It is a backgrond on a large wall. It is really complicated, but I will show you step by step and maybe you will find it is not so hard.

The first drawing

The first drawing

This is beginning of the work, conception and composition. The topic is “The Last Samurai”, so i must show the movement of the horses.

The second drawing

The second drawing

Add more details to solidify the composition.

The third drawing

The third drawing

With more details in the composition, you will find the lines are fluent and strong.

The fourth drawing

The fourth drawing

After solidifying the draft , I begin to ink, taking care of the details.


The fifth drawing

This is the effect after finishing the inks.

The sixth drawing

The sixth drawing

The next step is to scan into the computer, adjust, and erase the useless lines. Keep the drawing clean.

The seventh drawing

The seventh drawing

Next, begin to color in Photoshop, first fill in pure colors to separate the different planes.

The 8th drawing

The 8th drawing

I have figured out the structure and start giving them some light and shadow.


The ninth drawing

Color the water. By the way, you’d better color from dark part first and then hit the highlights last– you will find the picture will be brighter and brighter.

The tenth drawing

The tenth drawing

Many more details on water added. This is the basic effect.

The background pt 1

The background pt 1

But along the way, each editor can pose their challenges to the artist. The editor told me I should give the picture a Chinese countryside background– I nearly fainted.

OK , I am about to get on the flight already, so I called my assitant to draw the background.


The background in color

This is the effect of the Chinese countryside after color.

The final image

The final image

Finally, I put the samurai on the background in Photoshop .

Done! The editor was satisfied and it was printed and delivered to the exhibition.

We hope you found this tutorial insightful. Stay tuned for more to come!


Daxiong and the Flag Team

5 Responses

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  1. Valery de Lame

    I love it; very instructive.

    I would love more details on the coloring process in photoshop. DO you use Multiply?

    Xie xie, ni hao hao jao gouzi ji

    April 7, 2010 at 8:44 am
  2. zoho

    enormous! love ur paintings!

    April 12, 2010 at 4:19 pm
  3. Thomas

    Hi Daxiong,

    This is great work!

    Can you share with me what hardware and software you used to finish this great work? i.e. Cintiq and/or Intuos, iMac and/or MacPro, Corel Painter, Photoshop….

    Much appreciated your response

    April 16, 2010 at 6:47 pm
  4. Ella

    Beautiful work! Amazing!

    May 1, 2010 at 11:01 am

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