Finally I can start a sketchbook.....my first image needs critique though I don't live near or hang around any artists so help me out please Rip it. This one is actually job for someone and after the initial completion, I took it upon myself to "add" a couple of things......I got stuck at the background...and a bit on the lighting while trying to create contrast in an effort to give a sense of depth to the arm holding the beads. Any ideas would help. This was done in PainterX - Intuos3 - 6D Art pen - Photoshop CS2 for selections and masking.
Post work more often and hop into other threads, be bit more active in threads. You'll get your crits. If you draw a bit often the more you improve. Okay, from what I see, I think you are having a bit of a problem with varying your edges, out of the two paintings I see. Your edges are too clean and hard, and don't feel very unified with the picture plane. Soft to hard can help out a bit and knowing when to omiss shapes and make shapes disappear into painting will help out for the mood of a painting. Check out Nathan Fowlkes to get a bit more udnerstanding of what I mean. Erik Gist has a nice tutorial about figure drawing, that can really help you with you work. He talks about four key components to a successful painting. Shape, Value, Edges, and Color. I really can't judge what the problem is if you don't have a good body of work and recent ones as well. That will help me see the progress and how far you have gone if you posted more often. Hope to see more work from you. Here is a start. Later.
Honestly, I didn't think people even came in here, and yes, I am admittedly slow at posting new stuff...I should just dig through and put more sketches up here LOL I've been slow at doing so for quite a while, hehe. I'm definitely going to check those guys out. When you mention Nathan Fowlkes, do you mean this guy: