Newest finished piece ? UPDATE!
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    Newest finished piece ? UPDATE!

    update on bottom-thanx

    ...or is it?

    This piece was started for one of the challenges, "Soul collector" but since I had so much work at the time I was unable to finish it. Well I eventually was able to finish it, but Im wonderng if I can improve it.I think it would make a good piece for my portfolio soo... Honest-to-harsh C+C is welcomed here!

    Thanks for looking, but say something please.

    -JL



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    Last edited by JL.Alfaro; September 12th, 2007 at 05:48 PM.
    J.L. ALFARO


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    Some problems I see:

    - background seems to lack depth, it's also a very 'loud' background that wants to compete with the figure. The fact it's so warm also makes it want to come forward.
    - costume design is a bit inconsistent. More angular, almost 'babylonian' design for the top headpiece, with ghost gears, and a swooshing, curvy waist piece of a different colour.... it just doesn't seem to jive.
    - the lighting of the soul has less dramatic effect since there's so much ambient light in the scene already.

    overall: possibly more consistent and dramatic lighting, some more consistent design, maybe tone down the white in the souls a bit. Hope it helps

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    thanks man, preciate that

    J.L. ALFARO


    "Be who you are and say what you feel,because those that mind don't matter and those that matter don't mind."
    -Dr. Seuss


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    I like the idea, and the neutral color choices.

    I dig the chains, but I kind of feel like they just kind of dissapear into the skirt.

    I think you might have a minor case of Moobs, esp: his left pectoral in relation to the arm.

    My eye's zeroing in on the sad-face-mask facing us, and I'm not sure if that's where you want it to be going. In part my eye is going there just because it's a face, but you could probably drop it back into the background more if you made it darker.

    But overall, good job.

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    I like your overall design and style of this piece. What I would suggest is include more of the warm orange into the character to make it fit better together. Also, this will apply to the highlights, especially of the cane he is holding. Like by being surrounded by such scene, the character should show some of those colors as well (hopefully make sense).

    Also, I see that the bottles kinda standout because they are completely outlined. Some outlines can be seen around the character, so they can be reduced unless if you intent them to have some visual focus.

    Just minor stuff, hope this is helpful somewhat

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    I think Rhineville put it very well.
    Anything to add, would be that I find the backround texture somewhat noisy/disturbing me. In some way it doesnt go well with the somewhat less textured figure..This is just a personal opinion however.I like both the backround, and the figure... but in many ways, i feel they belong to two different images.I would also put the backround darker, to make the figure come out more, and building up the atmosphere for the blue light.Like Rhineville said, also... I think its abit unfortunate that the figure is in a cold color tones, and the backround warm... it collides alittle, and makes it more flat.

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    armaldon said to include the warm orange in the character more... my advice: dont, you will let your character fall into the background more, that is the least you want. rhineville had good points.. and if you want to change something in colours... id go for making the background colder

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    I don't understand the concept of him breaking jars to capture souls that he then puts in jars. Is it just me?

    Nice design though!

    - Current project <- Crit away!
    - The Whyatt Sketchbook Any tips appreciated

    Quote Originally Posted by Venger
    sometimes your first thought is always right
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    Thank you guys, I will implement some of your crits and repost it. I might fade out the background a bit(or alot) since the bg is not to be the center of attention. Thanks again.

    Whyatt - The concept was to have a quote on the top left corner reading "if you love something set it free...etc" So he had already captured the souls, he just broke one jar to see if it returned.

    J.L. ALFARO


    "Be who you are and say what you feel,because those that mind don't matter and those that matter don't mind."
    -Dr. Seuss


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    Then it's rather sweet! Nice!

    - Current project <- Crit away!
    - The Whyatt Sketchbook Any tips appreciated

    Quote Originally Posted by Venger
    sometimes your first thought is always right
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    Interesting concept and design, and I agree with most of the crits above.

    I would add that the white markings on the abdomen seem a bit detached from the contour... they look a little like overlaid brushstrokes at first. Also, the connection between the spirit and the broken jar is difficult to make because the jar is a very tiny, remotely-located element in the piece, and therefore easy to overlook. The spirit's trail really doesn't lead the viewer's eye to it, as the main focus is on the character. Scrolling down, I stop when I notice the robe beginning to fade, and never even see the jar itself.

    It may be a bit late in the piece for this kind of revision, but as a thought, instead of broken, the character could have the empty jar in the right hand, staff propped against its shoulder, with the spirit perched on the left, the trail becoming shorter and more visible.

    Love a lot of the detail in the piece, especially the knuckle designs. Many of the tweaks already mentioned will help take this to the next level.

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    que tal JLALFARO..

    I'm going to give you a crit, and a "paintover" your image, to give you suggestions on how your piece can get better, according to my humble opinion. First of all, i think that your image should have a bit more contrast, at least in colors: everything looks too yellowish greenish (maybe it's my personal taste, but I think the colors should be darker overall, a bit more saturated in the main character, and bit more desaturated in the background) In my paintover i made the background cooler, but not as much so the apocalyptic background can maintain it's firey status.; and also, it's too "lit up", if you get my suggestion. it's nice to have some areas with lots of light, (like the main characters head, and the souls in the bottle: but some areas could use some darkening. I like the background, but maybe I don't like the fact that some buildings are sloppily painted. Some are even curved buildings.. I think you should try to make them have the straightest angles, possible, even if the borders are blurred because of their distance in relation with the main character. Now my view on the actual elements of the illustration: i think the broken glass is unnecessary, I think the concept of "soul stealer" goes very well with the little soul on the character's finger, and the others bottled up, and nothing else. I also think you should "complete" the robes trailing behind him, even if they "exit" the illustration, and enlargen the chains (thicker, more noticeable). I think that's about it! Now here comes my "paintover"... i don't have my wacom tablet here, but once I get home I'll try to correct some anatomy (it's very well done all around, so it's going to be hard to crit that!)

    be talking with you later bro..

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    The top cylindrical part of his head looks like its perspective may be off.

    The Gears look a bit random

    The jars look unfinished compared to the character's body and face.

    The middle finger on the hand by his face looks a bit odd

    His cape looks unfinished

    The background takes a lot away from your piece. Should have much more depth and detail or should be removed entirely.

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    gringo- thanks man I appreciate that immensely, I will get to work on this as soon as I can and will update- I'll post it back here and drop you a line.

    Rhineville- thank you brother, your comments are also appreciated deeply

    Zilant- your crits are taken, and will be implemented -thanks

    armaldon- thanks man, will work on those suggestions, I will get rid of those outlines in the bottles.

    Eponine - diddo , thanks man

    Whyatt- thanks man

    imagus- thank you for the kind critique, youre right about the soul being detached from the bottle, I might leave the bottle out altogether as my mentor gringolcoco put it. The hand idea is a really good one too, that would havemade sense as well, but Im afraid its beyond that stage- thank anyways bro

    PlasmaViper- straight to the point man, I like that! and you made perfect sense as well, will work on all those things except for the gears crit...cause thats the best they're a gonna get!! haha, not very good with mechanics..

    -thanks all will post the update as soon as I get it done.

    -JL

    J.L. ALFARO


    "Be who you are and say what you feel,because those that mind don't matter and those that matter don't mind."
    -Dr. Seuss


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    Hello, I'm new to this community & I'm at awe at what I see,this pic is really good I think that the clock thing on his head isn't needed.but brava!

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    thank you ray fett, and welcome to CA!

    J.L. ALFARO


    "Be who you are and say what you feel,because those that mind don't matter and those that matter don't mind."
    -Dr. Seuss


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    Glad you found it useful.

    I just noticed that the spacing between the masks differs between the back/middle and the middle/front

    Gears: I don't have any problem with the way they are drawn per say, I was wondering what there function was. They look like they were added as an after thought. Most of the head and neck area looks very methodical and planned but when i see the gears, they seem a bit random.

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    Heres some of those critiques put to good use. I say, I like how this is turning out so please dont stop being nit-picky about details.

    Plasmaviper- are you talking about the gears in between the faces or the decorative ones on the top? The top ones are supposed to be somekind of light-crown, the ones on the head are working gears-let me know man.
    The gear crown was somekind of symbolic thing I threw inthere, something about time running out. tic-toc...



    J.L. ALFARO


    "Be who you are and say what you feel,because those that mind don't matter and those that matter don't mind."
    -Dr. Seuss


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    Much nicer!
    I really feel the mood of it now.

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    Thumbs up

    ok now that the gear on his head represents a crown now I think it works!

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    1. yeah I was talking about the yellow light-crown ones. As far as a design element I think they work as a crown, but perhaps there is a better color choice for them. By it being one of the brightest parts of your piece it is going to draw a fair amount of the viewers eye quickly; which takes their eyes off of some of the better detailed areas. If you want to stay with the bright yellow, think about adding yellow to other parts of your piece to balance it out.

    2. Moving the mask helped, but the new shadow it's casting looks very unnatural for the shape of the object.

    it's Improving nicely, keep it up.

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    Wow... whole other feel with the new background colors - much more on the "odd" side, which is great for this piece.

    Regarding the mask on the side, since it's moved part way around the cylinder, its angle needs to change slightly as well, as it appears to be raised and tilting towards the back of the head. And, as PV mentioned, the shadow needs to be adjusted as well.

    With the focus more squarely on the character, I'm not 100% on the character's chest area... the left pectoral seems to flare out a bit, and the positioning of the cape clasp and angle of the chest in general don't seem to mesh with the torso. The chest appears to be angled a little bit more towards the viewer than the torso, but the torso isn't showing any twist. As such, the two areas look a bit disconnected.

    Overall, A lot of good improvement. I especially like the way the light from the gears and the spirit are more emphasized due to the newly tweaked background. Excellent work, and keep at it!

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    Nice change of coloring man! I like the new mood of your piece, but I think you should have more contrast between the character and the background. Stuff in the foreground tends to be more saturated (colorwise) and have stronger shadows than stuff in the background. Keep that in mind. Here's my paintover. I basically added more contrast, desaturated the background a bit, and eliminated some parts that I finally think don't contribute to the composition (basically the cloth behind him, as well as the warm background that surrounded him: i removed it so it won't "mix" with the character). I also added more shadows to the body parts (abdomen white tatoo's area, arm and hands), made some highlights on the body (his chest and abdomen), less noticeable and more glow to the souls and "crown" he has. hope it helps bro!

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    OK, thanks again man!

    Im having a problem with my monitor contrast when Im at home, my image looks pretty dark, when Im at work it looks like it lost all its contrast....wtf which one is messed up?

    J.L. ALFARO


    "Be who you are and say what you feel,because those that mind don't matter and those that matter don't mind."
    -Dr. Seuss


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    Quote Originally Posted by GriNGoLoCo View Post
    I basically added more contrast, desaturated the background a bit, and eliminated some parts that I finally think don't contribute to the composition (basically the cloth behind him, as well as the warm background that surrounded him: i removed it so it won't "mix" with the character). I also added more shadows to the body parts (abdomen white tatoo's area, arm and hands)
    Okay... if you're going to remove those elements and add in the shadows as indicated, you'll have to crop the image, as there is now a LOT of dark, empty space to the left of the character, and it pulls the viewer's attention away from the subject matter. Basically, there's a lot of space to traverse to get to the subject of the piece.

    Personally, I didn't really have a problem with the level of contrast in the most recent update, and I feel that the suggested extra shadows and removal of elements actually pull it a bit to far and begin to detract from the piece as a whole. If you want to heighten the contrast further, then I'd try a few minor tweaks. However, I'm not sure the piece needs to be extremely shadowy and ominous, especially considering the subject matter - the character has set something free, after all, and the focus is on the character design (CHOW).

    That said, one aspect I did like about the suggested revision was the use of spotlight to highlight the broken bottle... it does make it a bit more visible. Also, receding the background even further may be a good idea. I just wouldn't tamper with the character design too much.

    Entirely up to you, of course, but I think where you were in the last update is pretty close to where the piece should be, and there are just minor tweaks and adjustments that need to be done to pull it together and finish it.

    Just my two cents... great to see the piece improving. Keep at it!

    Last edited by Imagus; September 14th, 2007 at 11:22 AM.
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    Maybe if you see the image at night, it looks less contrasty, in the day, it looks pretty dark. Maybe the truest way to see how a piece looks like is too print it out, and tweak accordingly. At my home, where i have a PC with Windows on it, my paintover looks contrasty, but not as much as in the mac I have at work. Yes and at the end my friend, it all depends on what you see and feel is correct!

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    Woo, much better. Really like how the lights are showing through. I say both new versions have their charm. Gringo's, though lacking in depth, has a nice graphic feel to it. I'd say it's down to personal choice on this one

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    Alright guys, I think I am at the point where I feel comfortable to stop, but thats just me so let me know if theres any other crits...I might post this in the FF area...might, I feel a little nervous posting anything there. Last time I did, Elwell tore me a new one...which was a good thing cause now I really work hard to get my stuff looking good.

    let me know guys


    J.L. ALFARO


    "Be who you are and say what you feel,because those that mind don't matter and those that matter don't mind."
    -Dr. Seuss


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    I'd say it's FF. But I'm no expert...

    - Current project <- Crit away!
    - The Whyatt Sketchbook Any tips appreciated

    Quote Originally Posted by Venger
    sometimes your first thought is always right
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    Quote Originally Posted by Whyatt Thrash View Post
    I'd say it's FF. But I'm no expert...
    FF = Finally Finished? (sorry... unfamiliar with the acronym...)

    J.L. - Nice! I think I agree that you've gotten the piece to a point where you can call it done. The only element that I can say I would tweak is the angle of the sad mask... it still seems to be tilted towards the back a bit. But, barring that, I think you've pulled everything together. You've found a good balance of light and dark, and the addition of light to the broken jar and extra light trail to the freed spirit better pulls the two elements together. On a side note, the glowing sig in that area is a cool idea as well.

    Not 100&#37; on the use of words... I always prefer to let a piece speak for itself (unless it's comic/storyboard art, of course). Basically, you've already got a thousand words... why do you need to add another handfull? It's kind of cool to let others bring their own interpretations into the pic when viewing it.

    However, that's entirely up to you... I know it was originally for that theme, so feel free to leave it in if that's what you want. On a side note, what's the name of the font you used, and where did you find it? Very nice.

    Look forward to seeing this in the "completed works" section. Congratulations!

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