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Thanks guys .
Bit of a moon girl update. Messing about with her fashions is a lot of fun, but when it came to adding colour nothing seemed looked right- the typical scene colour scheme is pretty easy to identify- neons and the such- but after playing about ( which i wish id saved, i kinda tweaked it all to hell and back) things werent really working as well as id liked. I wasnt really feeling it with the hair either- Its lost something in translation.
Hair change -and a quick colour test. Colour versions tend to weed out the weak stuff- i liked this costume, but seeing it in colour, its way too much.
Gonna approach this from a different angle render wise because im still not feeling the design yet, and i cant tell if thats because its godawful or if im just being picky.
I like the parasite monster. The problem I had with your earlier creatures is that they were mostly hybrids of existing animals, sort of like the platypus. It's nice to see you create something totally out of this world. Also, I'm not really feeling your last drawing. I don't think it gives an accurate representation of what you're capable of. It reminds me of David Firth/Salad fingers though, if that was what you're going for.
TBH the earlier creatures were pretty much that, looking back at them i shake my head a little, theyre not much more than slightly polished doodles TBH- but given the tremendous art fatigue i had at the time i understand why i approached them in such a lazy manner.
I agree with you on these last ones, thanks for saying it. They look like something id have done 5 years ago- which is more than a little frustrating.
Original sketches attached. Theyre not all that tight- i was knackered when i did them, which is a crummy excuse- but they seem to have a little more life than the photoshop versions.
I may give up on this idea, if not just for tonight- though i do feel i owe myself to stick with a project that doesnt have a deadline date for once.
Colour tests. I dont like this version of the character, the legs in particular have not so nice shape to them, theyre a little too 'ragdoll' and take emphasis away from her head. I tried to make her a little chunkier - a better 'role model' as it were, but its taken something away from the original.
Anatomically the legs are pretty shameful, which im not proud of even if they are 'just cartoons'- the arms and head can be as blocky as they want to be, the legs need to have at least some form else the whole character looks too weird.
Todays progress. She has had a bit of a makeover since yesterday- her long legs are back and her hair has more shape. She is also a little less flat. I've included a version with the lines turned off since i may do away with them myself and make her more for a 3D game/animation context.
She is also starting to look a little too young in the face area, which isnt so good- its ok for her to be cute, but her expression should be a little more streetwise. The fact her eyes are still flat is possibly a factor there though- i dont want to touch those til the end.
EDIT: oh snap, i just saw what i did there. 'make her more for a 3D game/animation context.'. Yes, wow, wrong approach from the start there- i keep thinking of everything from a graphics point of view.
Last edited by ALH; February 13th, 2009 at 07:09 PM.
i like the rendered version best ;-)
CD marker + printer paper = oh god my head was in outer space when i was doing these. I think ill stick to non solvent pens next time .
Im trying to avoid spending too much time in photoshop, at least for this early development stuff - though TBH it will be quicker to develop my fave silhouettes on from here into thumbnails using photoshop than it will redrawing the same ones over and over..so i've shot my digital-free plan in the foot there before ive even started :p.
Anyways, these are thumbnails for some builder/handyman enemies/obstacles/inhabitants of the world of 'moon girl'. Im not sure about how they will fit together visually yet - i've approached them more from the angle of making them distinctive and 'quirky' than going for a specific 'market' like with moon girl herself.
Whether they will be human or not is another factor im not sure of yet, though either way they will be exceedingly bizarre looking humans.
Refined silhouettes, a bunch of head versions, couple of clothing variations.
Big problem here is that by the time i got to the last few heads of the last head shape i was more in tune with what i wanted out of the character, so the first variations here are poor by comparison. this happens anyways when im exploring head shape variations- though it still feels a little embarrassing to show the weaker ones.
The phrase 'this is stuff anyone could do' keeps ringing through my mind when i do work like this. Of course, these are churned out roughies ( and boy does photoshop help speed things up, even if the end result isnt as rich ) but its still food for thought.
I dont know if its a style thing that i need to bring to my work to make it 'WOW' or if its a technique thing, possibly a bit of both. I do know i need to go back and do some still life study at some point though, especially in the context of colour and light- just to refresh myself a bit.
Less progress today- i'm having a bout of wonderful monthly wisdom tooth pain, only this time its at the ' lets try and push through the gum line yey!' stage instead of the ' little bit of pressure' stage, so i can barely open my mouth, and the inside is *really* tender.
Im having some issues (which id rather not go into in a public forum) which are absolutely pwning my confidence levels too, so i cant even tell if these are good enough even as thumbnails. Huzzah.
Another round of detail to be added to 3 of these. Id say a pinup/turnaround after, but i may move directly into environment.
Detailing, colour tests. Emphasis on retro.
I havent a clue which of these i'd pick incidentally, im leaning towards the 'NES' coloured scheme tracksuit mainly because i can remember people wearing similar in the 80s/90s. While i doubt the target audience of kids born after then would get that side of things, 'retro cool' certainly means the NES colours are well known to the hipsters.
Spent a couple of hours tweaking the parasite. (the one on the left is how far i got )
It really shouldn't have taken that long, theres not THAT much of a change, so its bugging me a little that i seem to be rather slow. I guess theres a difference between starting something fresh and tweaking something that you may have changed motives on, or dont want to 'ruin'..either way i need to step back and see this again in the morning- theres things here and there which need changing.
Grabbed a trial of painter 11 to see what the changes are- my PC seems to like it better in terms of brush lag (or lack thereof) ..but im having a really bad problem with streaking- circled in green here. It seems to happen more when im doing super fast lines than anything else. Its been a problem for me since painter X- but never this bad.
The blue lines were done at the same speed in photoshop, and have no streaking- i dont recall it ever happening there in the past few months of me using photoshop pretty much exclusively, so i know its not a problem with my tablet. Grr.
I also noticed when doodling here that i do frigging everything from a side plan view, and that its probably making my portfolio a little flatter than it should be, and not helping me much. Its not like i find rotating images difficult, i just default to a 2D diagram approach 'for the sake of accuracy'- getting used to the character etc which is often a little more obscure from an angle.. in other words its a terrible habit, and quite probably the thing thats making me find environments impossible to thumbnail...
Some actual dinobirds, doodled while on the train on tuesday, and a little imagination exercise with markers and pencil.
I've not been drawing much the past week- been down for an interview (testing position, nothing big art wise) the past 2 days, and spent a lot of last week sorting out travel etc- so rather than plunge back into a project i thought unwinding with some creatures would be a good idea. Basic exercise- i did some large scribbles with a warm grey tria ( markers never seem to scan nicely so i avoid using them most of the time ) then interpereted them as creatures.
I dont really know what to think here, im not happy with the collection of creatures because really..i know they were just quick sketches, i can do better, but at the same time, mabes that kind of thing is good to add to my portfolio.
I guess i need to do some browsing of the galleries here etc, because im feeling a little lost again. I know people like my pencil work, but im not always sure how to present that. I know what i like in other peoples work but when judging my own i hit walls here and there and i cant see past the end of my own nose- its bloody irritating.
The bird head colour version is a ditto, i dont know if im just 'off' today or what, but im just not feeling any of it. *So* frustrating.
Futuristic vehicle sketches. I did some paid work last week and used the cash to get myself a cheap laptop- the specs are about twice what my PC has, and it has a nice chunk of RAM so hopefully i'll be a bit more productive digitally from now on. I can certainly stop complaining about lag every time i try to do an environment now... which is always good.
A lot of the problems i have when it comes to doing environment work revolve around getting a little too paranoid about composition- most of my environment work looks the same as the next because my knowledge of composition isnt as deep as i think it is. Its one thing going out there with a camera and moving it til the image in the viewfinder looks right- its an entirely different and infinitely more frustrating one to think it all up in your head and rotate it.
Today i scraped away a little more of the stubbourn cockyness which has stuck around on me from a bygone age and did some study...and it was fun! These are far from presentable, and are by no means accurate. My aim was more on getting the gist of the compositions, especially light/dark contrasts and trying to keep it loose rather than overworking parts. Worrying about neat speedpainting is something for another day.
Photo source- 'The Great LIFE Photographers'. Awesome book to use for studies.
Not updated this for quite a while- my Photoshop painting/speedpainting has come leaps and bounds since the last update though!
I've been working on a twitter based web game named 'tweetlord' for the past 6 weeks (www.tweetlord.com ). Its been fun, stressful, rewarding and frustrating. I wasnt paid for it either, which either makes me a sucker or a saint, but either way its done my portfolio the world of good. Well, kinda, since im not allowed to post any of it online, so the only way to see all of the art is to play the game ( a lot of the art has been hue changed - not by me- which means right now theres no way to see the hi-res untouched originals unless you're seeing my email/physical portfolio!).
The doodle here i did to let off a little steam, its frustrating not being able to keep online galleries like here and at DA up to date!
augh. sorry to mods if my deleted post bumped this, i hit reply instead of manage attachments.
I've had a headcold for the past couple of days - im particularity susceptible to the slightest cough going round, but stomach bugs never get me, nomatter how undercooked my meat is the worst i ever get is toilet consistency changes. But someone comes into the house sneezing? Thats me buggered. I'm well screwed if swine flu gets here.
So i gave myself time away from tweetlord to give some attention to my own study/portfolio. Turns out i cant really concentrate when my head is still buzzing from coldness, but it has given me an interesting point of view on things.
Been reading a little loomis. I'd only seen the figure drawing and like..fun with a pencil or something books before now, so I was surprised to find the 'head' book to be absolutely brilliant. I had an assumption loomis was all about those 1950s perfect models, or life drawing, so seeing stuff on human variation was awesome- i wish id known about it a couple of years ago. My own take on human variation tends to be too extreme, the examples shown in loomis really help to reign back the urge to caricature everything.
Also- yeah, i was watching family guy. Lois looks messed up.
The usual problems i have with human drawin pop up here- helped along by my headcold effecting my concentration.
1- Problems with eyes being too cartoony/anime
*shudder*- i honestly dont know why i keep doing this. When im doing creatures its clear in my mind which are 'realistic' and which are cartoony, but whenever i go to do humans the rules go out the window and i cant see the face as an organism. Oddly when i stretch features out or make them into aliens it comes back to me again.
2- Horsefaced/ low noses
A lot of the time this happens because ive been sitting at a weird angle to the paper, but thats not really a decent enough excuse
I dont usually have a problem here, im chalking this one down to the cold. Its hard to stay focused on keeping things symmetrical when your head feels like its encased in cotton wool.
Some of these arent really amazing, im prepared to blame the cold, but in reality i probably need to do a little study
A is probably my favourite here, despite his errors. Before the moustache he was a bit of a failure, after he looks like a soviet biker serial killer.
No refs were used on these. (NO, REALLY?..) I tried to ref things earlier in the day, but the amount of concentration required when my head is like this was like, i was reduced to scribbles, i couldn't handle it. Im kinda rubbish at making copies , i can get their essence in a caricature, but end up doing the noob thing of exaggerating it all based on what i already know instead of drawing whats there. I guess thats not something i should admit to when im looking for jobs, god damn, - and im sure it shows in my work- thankfully im not trying to be the next marta dahlig, but its still something that needs sorting out.
More imaginary Faces from a non headcold bedraggled mind. Im completely burnt out on tweetlord so im taking a proper week without it to get some study done etc. So,so sick of birds in costumes
When i do these sets i tend to forget emotions exist and just concentrate on getting the features in the right place without being too asymmetrical (though some of these are horribly wonky). I also have the tendancy to shoot for the weird and ignore potential archetypes like the villian, the hero, the sidekick etc.
What does this mean? Well, evidently it makes it so if these are to go into portfolio as examples of human face variation sketches, theyre not going to do me many favours because most of them are kinda blank with dead eyes.
My one happy image from this whole set is the standalone lady who has a kind of surprised expression and big mousey ears. Her face actually has some tension as well as character.
I need to pursue more characters like her, and do a little expression study to get my visual vocab fleshed out more.
The human issue.
Its struck me that while i have no problem playing about with different styles for animal characters...when im not in 'the zone' im actually rather scared of doing the same with humans, because i wouldnt want to end up with something resembling a huge rip of someone elses work. (though i suppose that doesnt hurt for showing you can stick to an established style)
The side effect of this? Well..without some meaty practise, I dont think I'd make a good human character design for cartoons. I know, right? Its insane, cartoons are the one thing I've always been confident with ...for animals, props..birds in costumes.. but as we saw with moon girl..it took a while for her to look anything but a freak. Her builder companions werent that much better and looked hideous when drawn from alternate angles.
So..having worked myself up into a panic at 1am, I set about doing a little exercise to have fun with humans again. I did a set of 4 shapes (thin rectangle, box, oval, pentagon) in solid blue and attacked them in photoshop, rotating them, flipping them and doing another set.
It was fun, albiet hard to concentrate when im getting sleepy - though theres nothing preventing me from redoing some of these later. I like the kinda pip boy dude 3 down on the left, his winking elvis friend, the thoughtful biker dude northeast from him and the worried kid at the bottom.
I only have one more set of 5 left to do with tweetlord now, then i can get back to updating this regular and actually doing these redos and studies i promise. I cant wait.
Wolloom shotnor wip. I was giggling like a crazy when i started to paint this . Still need to do some tweaks here and there to get the likeness, sort out the flat eye, make him a little sweatier/less waxen etc.
..As much as you can get a likeness when the features are so warped and the source image is compressed to hell and back.
So sleeepy. Spent a lot of today doing skulls, its been a while since i did real-ish drawing in general, nevermind anatomy, so it took a bit of headscratching to get it flowing like it once did. Totally need a new anatomy book at some point, one with photos/more accurate drawings. Mine has served its use.
I got frustrated at one point and went out to see if i could find a plastic toy skull so id have something to rotate in my hands, but ever since woolworths shut theres been nowhere to buy toys, and most places only have summer beach balls etc. In the end I had to settle for my old fish tank ornament skull, which is far from accurate, but was close enough for me to get my head around the 3d forms again. Not even the alternate shop which sells bongs and tshirts covered in skulls had a single skull shaped incense holder or something. What a gip.
Also did some figure doodles, which turned into mermaids for some reason. And a couple of pages of perspective stuff (not shown here). I was watching a couple of the older 10 minute drawing tutorial vids on youtube and it mentioned some stuff which just made me go *click* THIS IS WHERE IVE BEEN GOING WRONG. So now its a case of studying up on my architecture..again..so i can put it to practise.
A year ago i couldnt do environments to save my life, nor would i do quick figures without them being too potato sack to apply to anything but cartoons. Im pretty proud of my progress, though im not sure if it was fast enough or not..gawd knows. My next hurdle to tackle is the whole matt painting/realism side of things.
Being speedy is coming along, and im nott here yet, but like..ive literally never even tried matt painting, unless you count textures or something, so its something i should give time to at least once. Perhaps in the future, grinding cartoons seems a better goal atm.
Bic biro did all of these. bic are good biros.
I think that skullapaloosa yesterday did me some good, I've had no trouble at all with the ol ref picture buisness.
I was meant to be doing an accurate duplicate of the ref on this one since its something I ALWAYS avoid doing..but decided to avoid doing it again and ramp up the volume a little. Made the eyes bigger, eyebrows a little ragier, hair a little wilder, skin a little..purplier. She actually looks a bit like my mother now, which is scary as hell, as if being a flesh eating zombie wasnt enough.
Ref image was saved from deviantart yonks ago but the artist seems to have taken the original down. http://saylamarz.deviantart.com/art/Attack-44406096
EDIT- oh nice, its saved out more saturated than it should have. So we're back to that, huh photoshop?
Last edited by ALH; June 30th, 2009 at 05:13 PM.
Haven't been in your Sb in a while. Don't have a lot of time to give reply right now, but everything recently looks great. Skullapalooza sure did work out for you, and the last pic looks spot on.