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Author   Topic : "character paintings,, need critique on color/dimension/etc."
King Lono
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Joined: 27 Dec 2001
Posts: 49
Location: Dallas

PostPosted: Wed Jan 02, 2002 12:12 am     Reply with quote
first of all,, sorry for the large images.

here are a few paintings/character designs ive done. I really have not been painting for very long, so my technique and approach are very primative. i pretty much Add-subtract-add-subtract-add-subtract-and then add some more until i feel like the rendering is in a pleasable state.
the trouble with this is it takes way too long to complete a painting,,, the consistancy in style varies from piece to piece,, and i feel overall that im missing out on some fundamental framework/foundation due to poor approach. Basically,, i would like my paintings to strike a clearer, more powerful chord. Maby, something to do with dynamics. i dont know. im hoping someone here can help me out.. maby a little advice.. point me in a new direction..

maby if someone on this forum,, someone like,, maby,, Pro "wink wink nudge" were to tear one of these paintings appart and school my arse,, i would be most gracious..

Seriously though. If your out there Pro,, your posts have been highly educational to me,, and I would now like to call apon your powers to guide ME down the path of the RIGHTIOUS.. you know,,,if your not too busy..

i would love to hear crits from anyone else aswell.


The white rabbit is a design i did for American Mcgees Alice "hope EA does not mind". it was a promotional piece that never got used because Rogue went under before i could finish it. I am aware,, the watch looks stupid.
the last two paintings are just goofs that i did for fun.








i love monkeys.
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yeah bob
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Joined: 28 Nov 2001
Posts: 89
Location: my whole in Europe

PostPosted: Wed Jan 02, 2002 2:34 am     Reply with quote
great Shading!!bunny is Awesome!
i like, i like, i like, i like!!

Happy New Year all!
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Sukhoi
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Joined: 15 Jul 2001
Posts: 1074
Location: CPH / Denmark

PostPosted: Wed Jan 02, 2002 3:57 am     Reply with quote
I can appreciate your problems regarding approach but I do not feel I can help you.

But I couldn't resist on commenting on your absolutely wicked style!!!!

Very detailed and tasty, good job. I hope to see moore of this.....

Sukhoi
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Quasar
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Joined: 01 Oct 2001
Posts: 355

PostPosted: Wed Jan 02, 2002 7:01 am     Reply with quote
It all looks awsome man !!
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wigin
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Joined: 23 Sep 2000
Posts: 408
Location: Ottawa Ontario

PostPosted: Wed Jan 02, 2002 8:17 am     Reply with quote
AS much as Pro can expplain to you... I think he would mention to simplify and use the 4 edge rule ( which isnt applied in your paintings. Its alll crips. You have 1 or maybe 2 edges at the most. Firm edge Which make your paintings look somewhat flat. YOur technique will only come with practice and you will see what works for you. Just look at other digital paintings from other artists that you like and try to reproduce the same technique or same effect as they get. TRial and error dude...
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wigin
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Joined: 23 Sep 2000
Posts: 408
Location: Ottawa Ontario

PostPosted: Wed Jan 02, 2002 8:24 am     Reply with quote
hmmm your work could use some TEXTURE.. i mean if you look at all your paintings no matter what surface you painted it all looks the same plastic surface. For example if youlook at your warrior dude with the big shoulder armour, Correct me if im wrong but tht is metal right? WEll from the looks of it doesnt really like it. Soo doing a bit of research on how the type of metal looks like would help you to paint. If its shiny aluminun then you will have DARK RIGHT beside your lightess colour... creating a shiny surface anyways... research is an other important step before you paint....
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Makafui
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Joined: 22 Dec 2001
Posts: 32
Location: Uk

PostPosted: Wed Jan 02, 2002 1:23 pm     Reply with quote
woah thats amazing i soooo need practice!!
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Light
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Joined: 01 Dec 2000
Posts: 528
Location: NC, USA

PostPosted: Wed Jan 02, 2002 3:20 pm     Reply with quote
These pieces look nice.. but if you want a critical reply then..

You need to work on sketching more and rendering less. Try using more perspective (foreshortening) and adding backgrounds and extra poses. Also add cast shadows so the rabit doesnt float.

These are too simple and do not have a lot of artistic value in and of themselves.

So my advice is work on basics especially composition.

Rendering is a process of refinement. If you want to render faster then start with a better sketch and break down the image into a few simple colors -- then add more detail working from dark to light or vice versa.
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Tinusch
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Joined: 25 Dec 1999
Posts: 2757
Location: Rhode Island, USA

PostPosted: Wed Jan 02, 2002 4:33 pm     Reply with quote
Those are amazing. I don't know what there is to complain about except the lack of backgrounds, but these figures themselves are just amazing. You definitely have this down.
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Tinusch
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Joined: 25 Dec 1999
Posts: 2757
Location: Rhode Island, USA

PostPosted: Wed Jan 02, 2002 4:35 pm     Reply with quote
And I just want to disagree with the comments posted above me... Not trying to start an argument, but you can't tell me these have no artistic value... These are amazing. I really don't see how you can say he needs to go back to the basics after seeing these. It's obvious he's been there and he has it all down pat. I think these are all very well done.
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Queezy
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Joined: 15 Dec 2001
Posts: 56
Location: Chicago, IL, USA

PostPosted: Wed Jan 02, 2002 4:37 pm     Reply with quote
Love the rabbit (kill for a poster of that) and the armor, but I can't say that I'm in love with that meat blob thing. It just seems like random flesh with nothing really to draw my attention.
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-HoodZ-
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Joined: 28 Apr 2000
Posts: 905
Location: Jersey City, NJ, USA

PostPosted: Wed Jan 02, 2002 5:16 pm     Reply with quote
i agree with Tinusch.....your aproach maybe different but the results are very detailed, i espcecially like the muscle tone on the legs of the rabbit...were these done on painter?
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Highfive
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Joined: 08 Oct 2001
Posts: 640
Location: Brisbane, AU

PostPosted: Wed Jan 02, 2002 6:14 pm     Reply with quote
They all look awesome! The rabbit looks very cool with all the muscles bulging under the cute white fur and those white eyes look so freaky. I love your brush stroking style on the other two as well, where the streaks help define the form.

Only crit is on the second picture of the alien head. Some of the hilites indicate light is coming a different direction to other hilites. For instance, the bulge at the very bottom of the neck as a hilite coming from the top right, but the horns have hilites coming from the top left.

I've done a paint-over to try and show how it could be fixed, but it still looks a little wrong.

And fuck EA!
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Ian Jones
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Joined: 01 Oct 2001
Posts: 1114
Location: Brisbane, QLD, Australia.

PostPosted: Wed Jan 02, 2002 8:17 pm     Reply with quote
Hi,

I agree with some of what has been said already, but not the part about "No artistic value". These are really good. I love your drawings and your rendering style.

I'll try and answer a few of your questions, and highlight some of the things I think you need to consider working on.

"Add-subtract-add-subtract-add-subtract"

There is no problem with doing it that way. It may be time consuming but if it works for you then it should be ok. However if you want to speed up a bit, then more practice will help... it may also have something to do with your overall process. I think it may be a problem in the way that you render. Has anyone ever said to you

"Work from the broad to the specific" ?

I am only geussing here, but I think that you are having to add-subtract-add-subract, because you are rendering indivdual areas to an almost complete stage, then realising that they dont fit in with another part of the form, and therefore you are having to correct areas over and over again.

So how does this fit on with the broad to specific idea? Well.. broad to specific is a way of symplifying the rendering process. You start with the broad things. Working with large brushes, you define the form with the simplest planes of light and shadow. Then work to the specific by using progressively smaller brushes until you finish final detailing. This should ensure that you dont have to go back and add-subract-add-subract nearly as much, because you will already have simplifed the form and done it right the first time. So you need to look at the large things, and get them down first. This will help you define the form better, and inject some of that dynamism, or dynamic lighting that you want. At the moment your paintings have lighting that is a bit too diffuse, which means it is fairly evenly lit all over the form. The light source is confusing too. We want to get something more dynamic, so think about the lighting a little more carefully.

I have done a bit of a paintover sorta thingy. It is very crude and full of mistakes but I hope it will get a few points across.

I chose a single light source from upper right and I disregarded any bounce light. My light source is simple, obvious and clearly shows form. Your painting as I said before was a bit diffuse, and the light source is not very obvious. This makes it harder to read the form. Therefore diffuse light is best used in low light situations, in fog (the form is not very obvious and thus dissolves into the mist)… etc.

Generally you should work on the shadows first, so I started by working from dark to light. Notice that I have visible banding of my values (my values are very dodgy!)… I have done this purposely to simplify the form and stress the point about working the overall form of the rabbit, before diving into indivual areas. I painted ALL the dark shadows first, before moving onto another lighter value. This should prevent you having to rework areas later, because you will have gotten the main values down in the first place. Notice also the cast shadow (your painting missed a few). Of course I have made some big mistakes in this pic, the biggest being I forgot to consider the differences in value between the fir and the shiny leahter jacket. OOPS! I’ll fix that in the next pic.



So I set out to fix that problem of the values a little. Now it is more obvious that the jacket and fur are different values. I have moved on to some more shading with light values. Once again completing ALL areas of that value.



Antoher point I considered was the differences i texture. As ppl have said, your paintings lack texture. Area's of fur and leahter should be noticably different in their rendering. Observation is the key to working out how to render texture. Fluffy fur should need small and frequent brush strokes, and some blurring around the edges. Leather should have contrast. Simple rendering, with smooth edges and no ragged edges like fur has.

You may be able to see the differences of texture in my painting. See the straight smooth edged rendering of the top hat and jacket. In contrast to the jagged edges in the furry regions. I know, I know... my exmaple doesn't really stress that enough.

Well I hope that helps a bit. My examples are dodgy but they should get some points across.
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Light
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Joined: 01 Dec 2000
Posts: 528
Location: NC, USA

PostPosted: Wed Jan 02, 2002 8:30 pm     Reply with quote
I might should explain what I meant when I said these have little artistic value.

Artistic value -- what I will now call painterly value or classical value should not be confused with the quality of a work.

A piece can have a high commercial art value and be of high quality or perphaps be cool as a decorative art. However, I will generally only refer to the classical art value.

As an example, some great painted textures for a game or low polygon objects may have a high commercial art value but no classical art value.

Classical art value is the value a painting has in and of itself. Many things influence what type of classical art value a piece might have including anatomy (if applicable), shading quality, composition, emotion, and interest level.

I think these pieces are nicely rendered but when viewed as paintings have a low value.

This should not be confused with their dectorative, commercial, or other values.
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King Lono
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Joined: 27 Dec 2001
Posts: 49
Location: Dallas

PostPosted: Wed Jan 02, 2002 10:16 pm     Reply with quote
hoooowee! thanks for all of the feedback guys.. i love to hear it all, weather it be praise or criticism.. im a big boy, i can take it.

ummmmm

Wigin: thanks for the help.. i think you may be wrong about the "edge" count on the rabbit though. i looked and found all four of them. but then again,, i may me misunderstanding "the rule". and even if i do have the presence of "the mighty four edges" in my painting,, it doesnt mean that i used them correctly.
I do agree that the stuff is a bit flat in places. Yes, and the texture could really vary a bit more. i rarely change brushes mid painting."bad habbit". but then again i wasnt really going for realism. kinda stylized really. thanks for the tips.

Light: from where "i believe" you are coming from, i completely agree with you,, but these paintings were primarily created for conceptual design purposes only. not as much fine art, or even comercial art. just extra flash for design purposes. this is why there are no backgrounds, drop shadows, foreshortening or any kind of world orientation for that matter. although, the rabbit "was" going to be a comercial piece, and i was going to work up a background but the PS2 project got canned before i could finish, so i just wraped up what i had. plus it was just a paint over of my origional sketch/design which was used to create the game model. it needed to be simple and clear. I do agree with your opinion of Classical quality in art. i havnt really pressed myself in that direction in a while.
i do believe the time has come to lay it down! thanks btw.

Queezy: yah,, the meat blob is pretty much random fat and flesh.. i was just goofin off and it turned into somethin. it wasnt engaging enough for me to finish it though.

-Hoodz-: Yes,, Painter.. i was pretty pleased with the legs too.

Highfive: Thanks for the help man.. DAMN! i had soooo much trouble around the back of his head. the whole thing was lookin flat and i felt his funkey ass DOME was responsible. i gave up on it. didnt feel it was worthy of the time it would take to fix it. your paint over deffinately helps the problem.

Ian Jones: Awwwwwwww,, thanks for taking the time to put that stuff together. thats the kind of help i was really looking for! you have opened my eyes to a many things.
you are right on about the add-subtract issue. i always run into consistancy issues because i fully render out one area at a time.(I blame my A.D.D.) heh. if i cant start making things look good really fast i loose interest. so, basically i need more self discipline and more efficient method..
your tutorial will help very much in the efficiency area.
"Work from broad to specific" hmm,, ive never been told that,, but the concept "has" been in the back of my mind for some time. guess i never really acknowledged the severe importance of that rule. the cast shadows really help. im always affraid to throw those in there because i will have flushed out a part and then realize that i have to paint over it. i need to learn to sacrifice.
yep,, theres not much in the texture to really suggest that the legs are furry. something ive always noticed but never fixed because i love the way the muscles look and im damn lazy. i did want his fur to look really greazzy, and i think the slickness works in that area. but its still decieving. thanks again for the help man. that was a real eye opener.

thanks everyone,

id love to see and hear more, if you guys gots da time.

Hey Light.. heres some very low-rez "Fine art" i did for a portrait texture in ALICE. Haha! enjoy.

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Ian Jones
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Joined: 01 Oct 2001
Posts: 1114
Location: Brisbane, QLD, Australia.

PostPosted: Wed Jan 02, 2002 10:20 pm     Reply with quote
I still tend to disagree with you Light.

They may not be of 'high tradional value', but I think you are still underrating them. You can't honestly believe that 'classical' values are all righteuos. Sure I understand your point, but I still think you are under rating them.

Put them into context for a minute. They are about the characters not the whole form of the painting, and so there is no background due to this (although a bg would be nice too). He is also new to painting...

I think they are cool.
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Ian Jones
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Joined: 01 Oct 2001
Posts: 1114
Location: Brisbane, QLD, Australia.

PostPosted: Wed Jan 02, 2002 10:28 pm     Reply with quote
Glad I could help. I had an inkling that rendering one area too completely was what you were doing. yay, I was right! :P

Keep in mind, as you know, that if you render one area completely you often forget various things, and unbalance the whole form and values. Glad I could get that point across through my dodgy examples.
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