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Here is my take on the Robin Hood cover. I worked on this one much too long, even scrapped a totally different composition midway through coloring it. I wanted to tell a little more of Robin's story with this image so I included the carriage he's about to rob, the castle in the distance, and two of his merry men. I had a tough time with the designs of the castle and the carriage because I didnt want to make them too fancy and take attention away from Robin. The lighting was a bear too.
The second image was an experiment were I tried to adopt some tips I picked up from tutorials. It is not easy to teach an old dog new tricks! I struggled, but I know I learned a few things.
The third is a rare collab with Dave Montes, one of the best character artists I've had the pleasure to work with. He did the pencils and flat colors, I rendered it up. You can see more of his stuff here:
All comments and crits welcome.
The only real problem I have with the Robin Hood piece, & this applies to the one SMurphy posted earlier in the FF section, & that is this... Robin Hood (if we are to assume for a moment that he was a real person) existed no later than the 13th century.. more likely the 12th century.. but both you & SMurphy seem to have painted scenes which seem to be at the soonest (based on style of clothing etc) set in the 15th century.
My issue is with the second piece-- everything is very finely detailed, but both of the characters stand so stiffly, and their faces are totally expressionless and lifeless. I can't get into the mood of the piece at all because they're so stiff.
Everything else is pretty nice though.
Second piece is awesome, your rendering technique works well in this type of the motive and theme. I really prefer that ''tensed'' & ''stiff'' look in ''Elliot Ness'' style cause it looks like some old gangster movie posters.Tough guys are always tensed ''on the edge'', just like their broads.
Robin Hood piece I don't like at all. It looks like some game intro screen from Amiga days 20 years ago! The trees in a whole look like a children plastic toys and you obviously didn't know what kind of tree you're painting.
When I look thoroughly you put almost all leaves from foreground to x miles further.
The mass balance is somehow disturbed especially in a front tree branches and leaves. I suggest you to find some book about painting the botanicals it will improve your work a lot. Just like human anatomy, plants have their own and very often happens that when you try to present imaginary plant up close it looks bad.
Hope you won't mind these critics.
Thanks for the input guys. I actually researched different oaks that are from England but the leaves were too complex so I decided not to use them. I did struggle with the foliage quite a bit, repainted it three times, I'll keep working on foliage in the future. As for the costuming, I looked up different Robin Hood outfits but I didnt base them on actual period costumes, my bad.
On the gangster piece, I admit they are totally posed, but not being a bad ass myself, that's my interpretation of a couple of bad asses.
Thanks for the input, I appreciate it.
The thing with the gangsters is not so much the poses but their attitudes. I can handle cheesy poses, that's practically required of a piece like that, but look at their faces! There's no life there! The man seems to be staring somewhat downward, and the woman might be staring off to the side or just staring sightlessly into space, I can't tell.
If you want badass gangsters, you need them to portray that attitude in the expressions at least, if not the poses. Have 'em actually look at the camera and challenge the viewer. Right now they look like soulless mannequins.
I think if you used a large, low opacity, 0% hardness brush and selectively darkened various areas on the gangster painting, it would look a lot better. Right now it looks like daytime light is sitting in the middle of a night scene. Needs way, way more contrast.
Cool painting, though. I think it has definite promise.
Thanks sourgasm, I can see that now that you point it out.