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Was looking at some Botticelli earlier for todays master study. As ever, restricting my time on it as I have yet more art tests to finish this week, woo. Found it pretty hard to get the colours right using a book as ref, but more importantly I need to work on pairs of eyes at different angles, just could not get the second eye to look right in the time I had, probably because that whole side of the face is wonky, but eh. Nice to have it firmly underlined that this is a thing I need to work on .
EDIT - what the heck, typing 'master study' makes a link? Uh...ok! I guess that's one way of letting people know those boards exist!
Todays half hour study ( from ref ). Feels weird, half an hour feels SOOOO long now. Feels like my handling of the brush could have been a little more elegant in places ( at one point I kinda went in like a kid with a crayon and had to backtrack )but for half an hour, I aint grumbling. Tried to use a custom brush at one point but it added nothing so I backtracked, still something I need to play more with TBH, but its not essential, the more of these I do the easier it'll be to lean towards that.
Organic scenes are fun, even if you dont nail the shapes from the ref you can still abstract out a scene that works without feeling too bad about yourself
Looking at Botticelli again. ( As based on a book ref, the online versions I've found are a little more contrastey.) Hour and a bit spent on it, did a little pre-sketch breaking down the composition and focused the digital version on getting the colours and a little bit of the flow in even if I'm not exact with my layout. I could have used a grid to help me get this more accurate, but TBH I feel like I'm past that, trying to do a smart study not an exact copy kinda thing, I guess. Trying to understand the flow of the image rather than the detached mathematics?
I don't know if I'll add more detail, I guess I probably SHOULD, at least keep pushing a graphic version, but I do have other things I need to get on with atm.
It's crazy, since I started to do the pixar-ified gesture stuff more often my eye for shapes in figures has really beefed up a notch, I usually crumble and worry when I have to do a scene like this, especially digitally, end up kinda awkwardly drawing a mannequin then getting all worried about the pose before I've even really thought about anything else - but blocking it out with the most basic possible shapes, bearing in mind the expressive gesture as I do so? Whoa! It's weird how I could never really simplify the human body that much and still feel confident about it in the past.
'Simplify the shapes to boxes and spheres and stuff' is something we're all told on day one, but even that can be a bit of a headscratcher, can lead to stiff figures and scenes. Using expressive shapes? I dont understand how I've not thought of it like that before in a study when I think about expressive shapes *all the damn time* elsewhere.
Anyways, rambling, here's where I got so far-
Tried to paint a Physalis from life today, kinda spooked myself, dont feel like I can handle it :/. I seem to be going through a bit of a rollercoaster of art anxiety lately, I don't WANT to give up so early on things like this but at the same time I don't want to force myself through it if I'm getting too stressed. Making sure I enjoy art and dont just see it as a job is still something I need to keep an eye on.
I'm not seeing this as the end of the world, I really can't afford to think like that. In the case of tonight I'm probably just a bit tired, left this too late, not feeling comfortable to be digital painting kinda thing. At least I've kinda identified that I need to have a big ol practise with this kind of organic material.
I hate that my confidence was bashed SO hard that something THIS simple makes me freak out, but there's not much I can do other than like, keep trying, keep approaching these things in as many ways as possible to rebuild my self esteem. On the plus side, I am still keeping up with daily anatomy sketching in my sketchbook and my confidence grows by the day there, so that's cool.
I wish I didnt feel so much pressure, it's killing my mind, feel so terrified that I'll never find another job that it's crushing my chances of actually getting one by making me unable to contribute to my portfolio :/.
Also, I guess, feeling massively distracted. I started to play Civilization Revolution again on 360 the other day and I forgot how fun that game was, I keep thinking about it a lot and it's like...OK, it's a game I can go in and have fun with, but I need to focus and I can't focus if I want to go to a game to get my feelings of accomplishment.
Blah. It feels like I need art bootcamp or something :/
Super simple enviro photo study, but it's starting to feel like I'm getting more done with my 1hr limit than usual, I guess going down to 30 then back up again helped . My colours are more accurate here than they have been recently, for example, no colour balance tweaking or overlays like in the last photo study. Kinda tempted to keep working on it, really make those final details sing.
Still so distractable lately, it seems like 'I'm distracted' is my new thing to keep me distracted, yay.
So, this was me trying to do a study in half an hour, my initial intent was to see how far I could go but I ended up redrawing the thing so many times (within the half hour!). By the end of it I had a bit of a 'oh crap I need to get the important info down here' moment and scribbled in those leaves. I was intending on then working into it without the ref, as like a 'well this is the bed you've made for yourself' exercise, which would have been a fun way to push some creativity into things but something came up.
If I was gonna be nice to myself with this I'd say the parts where I was actually being more careful with my drawing set things up pretty nicely, the colours are way off from the ref but what they've been reduced to works nicely enough in a dreamy vintage kinda way, fine for a thumbnail.
Where I'd pour scorn on myself is being too messy with the lumpy staircase at the side, stairs are one of those things which freak me out if I think about it too much even though a lot of the time you can do an instant staircase with a single brush stroke. I should have put my attention there instead of on the brickwork ( which I could have easily 'suggested' ) but there ya go. This is one of those things where if I was drawing this from ref with an actual pencil I'd be more accurate/neater faster, which tells me that I do need to put a bit more practise into my digital drawing, but I'm not going to beat myself up about it too much.
I think I need to have a period of time where I concentrate on doing a bunch of these in a row, though that may be counter-productive, and perhaps I need to approach it from a different angle, like doing thumbnails of architecture or whatever without context ( but WITH detail ) so I have a library to pull from.
these are good enviroment works and studies!!!
I am going to be amazing! .
Working on some commission stuff today. Makes me feel nervous to apply myself in case I'm not perfect first time, I dunno why I'm always scared of that, it makes no sense, but hey. The ask is for a greek pottery inspired scene. I was going to do my sketching on paper but my thing this week is trying to regain my digital drawing confidence/brushmanship, so I'm doing it straight in photoshop. I'm not sure if that's helping me find a composition though, I find it so much harder to 'feel' the space on a digital canvas even if I get to move things around more easily, my coordination feels off so my scale gets messed up. I might default to a quick round of pen n paper sketches tomorrow.
I was really getting into these, into doing this, but I fucked myself over considerably by allowing myself 'just one go' on Civ Rev on 360, I've been trying for the hardest achievements and it's horrendously addictive. I can't afford to let myself get caught up in that when I still have so much I need to get on top of with art and I feel so damn ashamed that I wasted so much time. Luckily the deadline for this piece is a loonnnggg way off, so I really have time to nail it without as much pressure as I've been getting from art tests lately, but I might have a small freelance UI gig on the horizon which would eat into my time/focus, so I have to be careful.
So yeah, my horrible thumbs ahoy!
Second round. Spent some time studying the actual composition of greek vases, there's a specific rhythm to it, lots of angles. Feeling so much happier with the layout of them vs my fumbling around yesterday! These are still super loose, not really sure how to push them right now. I reckon I need to get one more generalised iteration out of this before I send the thumbs off to see which is closest to what my client would like, but I need to sleep on it cuz right now I can't see how to change things without pushing too far away from the source images I was given to ref from.
Didnt waste time playing videogames today, but my art day still seemed way shorter than it should have been, I guess I took too long a lunch break? Spent too much time on facebook or something? Woke up too late? Perhaps there were a couple of hours which I forgot to track, either way, I hope I can start to squeeze myself into a better routine. The hours I spent with my head on the task felt good, I wasn't all that distracted until my evening meal. It's not like I've never had an overtime meal before though, so a self-induced 'overtime' meal shouldnt have me feeling like its the end of the day!
Never have a big bowl of soup if you're trying to keep focus, mind, it takes soooo loonngg for it to cool down and be eaten, most distracting meal ever.
youre stuff is going good, ALH. you will finish and do amazing for your deadline. Might I ask, what is this for? Is it a challenge on CA or something within your school?
Best of luck to you, keep on trucking--beepbeep!
I am going to be amazing! .
It's frustrating to use 'I was distracted' as an excuse for not doing as much/as good quality work as I'd like to. Using headphones and music is helping. Skipping meals and zonking out, less helpful.
Monday was portrait day. I spent an hour or so looking at Loomis human face stuff, half an hour or so looking at wolf skulls/heads, then an hour or so sketching out iterations. I'd usually do this on paper first then scan it, give myself a bit more time to REALLY get in the swing of things, but I find that I sometimes make excuses for myself when I do that, I get too precious about the pencil or I go too loose with the pen and it adds so much extra faffing that I put myself off. Not good. So I dove straight in there in photoshop. I still think I should have kept drawing iterations once I got the base 6, I always do better once I get the early ones out of my system, but I wanted to keep myself from spending too much time on one part of the process, keep it moving, try to think about it like I would if I was working on a game jam.
I think to really solidify the game jam thing I need to think like this is an ASSET for a game jam, character portrait or whatever. Somewhere along the line I got it into my head that what I was lacking was technical skill, then somewhere else I thought it was imagination skill, but truth be told the problem is not bringing them together enough to prove myself.
First round of sketches.
Made some subtle tweaks to try and emphasise the differences a little more.
Started a quick colour/shade pass
Last edited by ALH; April 1st, 2014 at 08:08 PM.
Quick update. I need to scan more things, I'm falling behind again.
Good news is that I've got myself a 3 month contract starting like, next week. Bad news is that I have about a fortnight to find and move into new place on the other side of the country, while freelancing from home for the first week. No flexibility. No pressure then eh? Feels like the bummest of bum deals TBH, not exactly got me leaping around thinking it's totally worth the massive pile of fuss. Hopefully having the stability of a paying job will help me get up and running again so I can take down bigger prey in the future though. It's not a concept role as far as I'm aware, which, yeah. I guess pure concept roles are super rare nowadays :/
I do need to start packing my stuff,I'd say it can wait until I've found a place, but I guess it can't, for all I know I'll have to move at a moments notice...
Thursday is landscape/environment day. Trying to push past my fear of creative failure/inadequacy. Study today was a temple in bali, from this I made myself consider water temples - but only after making myself try to not be lazy at silhouettes for an hour or two. It was a struggle at first to get past this whole 'but people only want to see me do an exact photoreal copy' thing which has been in my head lately- I dunno where the heck it came from, but ugh. Once I started to get into it my imagination started to wake up a bit . Just need to practise more now TBH, been neglecting it outta fear.