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Thread: J Wilson Sketchbook -Updated (some nudity)

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    J Wilson Sketchbook -Updated (some nudity)

    This weekend I decided to spend a little time just doing some quick unplanned environment sketches. My goal for each was to pay attention to what would hopefully be striking lighting and somewhat iconic simple images that would have an immediate impact.

    Maybe the next batch I'll make them a little more involved.
    Last edited by J Wilson; April 30th, 2009 at 02:32 PM.
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    i like the chromatic values on all four, but i think my favorite is the green one, it has the most atmosphere, easily readable as a story in itself. very inspirational since i need to work on my enviros myself
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    Thanks, that's good to know. I agree the green one sort of has the most going on. My favorite tends to be the lava one, because it's surprisingly my first lava environment. Lava should be a staple of every fantasy artist's portfolio shouldn't it?
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    Since I've been thinking about environments lately, I decided to participate in this weeks Environment of the Week challenge "2 Ancient Markers". The brief calls for
    Two ancient markers. Jutting out from the moors, two large navigational markers on the path that hints to what lies beyond."
    Not as much of a strong color influence as my previous 4, but I was going for a more dark overcast feel for this one, more natural than the previous ones.
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    I can hardly choose on the first four
    I think my favorites are the second and the last one

    Also like your last post version

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    The lava one is cool(pun intended), but the blue kind of grey stalacite in the farthermost left distracts the eye and takes the integrity of the scene away.
    NJ on the other ones! and the newest is pretty cool despite me not knowing the motif.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bullsey View Post
    The lava one is cool(pun intended), but the blue kind of grey stalacite in the farthermost left distracts the eye and takes the integrity of the scene away.
    NJ on the other ones! and the newest is pretty cool despite me not knowing the motif.
    Thanks for the feedback, very useful. My thought process was that without something cool in the image, the scene wouldn't read as as "hot", that I needed some contrast. I probably didn't incorporate it as well as I could- I should try a series of them to see if I can find a better approach.
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    Hello, great pictures, I like the green forest the best... it tells the story the most.

    However, it's good that you're working on all different ideas and feelings so that you can really explore and see which you like the best. Don't ever stop doing that! Two thumbs up!

    Oh I have one crit, on your last picture, I believe that the grasses are too saturated/green to really blend/mix in with the overcast sky. Since the grasses have a bit of spec reflection, it will reflect overcast sky's color so you might want to mix that in by using desaturated green some more... Not to mention that grasses have a very dark value too, so try to use that as your advantage to enhance the contrast feeling like you did with your rock material.

    I hope that helped a bit!
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    Dm7, thanks, that's a great point about the grass. I tend to work very saturated in color, so it's an adjustment for me haha. I think you are right though, the grass would fit better under that sky if the grass was darker and greyer. I'll try making an adjustment tonight.
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    Hey J Wilson. I'm really excited by the way you're using colors in work. I would encourage you to try putting more thought to how they are built and put together though. Perhaps even blocking things out in 3ds or sketchup could go a long way. Especially in that first sketch, you have a big issue with perspective on those spikes that could be fixed by considering distances and planes.

    I found the first piece especially interested and had to try a paintover, so I hope you don't mind. One of the weakest aspects to me was the storytelling. We have a figure that's ascended a small slope to cast a dramatic lighting spell? If we're going to go big with this, I say let's really go big and reap the benefits of taking it all the way. In this case I've tried to use that lightning to describe the forms in the foreground. I really haven't solved your distance/depth and massing issues on those spikes, but I think there is now at least a better distinction between the different spaces of the scene.

    The balance of detail and descriptive sculpting could be assigned and spaced more decisively. Consider all the ?cracks? in the side of the slope. Do you need this much of that detail to say what you want to about the terrain? Could you shake it around to highlight a certain area? Could you vary it to make it more interesting and break it up with other forms and shapes? Does it strengthen or weaken what you are trying to say with the piece about the character?

    I've also moved your figure to the upper third. This allows us to say more about what has happened and boost the drama. You could also use those spikes to really intensely focus the viewer on what you want, which here I assume would be the figure. You'll have to excuse how rough and fast this is. It's really only a start to all the cool possibilities you could do with a piece like this.

    What are your thoughts? Does any of this make sense?

    Cheers!
    BPM
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    BrennanPM, thanks for the lengthy post, and I certainly do not mind the paint over, in fact it's very much appreciated! I love the direction you took it in, and I agree it holds a lot more drama. I get where you are coming from in everything you are saying, especially the using different planes more effectively to create space, and limiting detail to the areas where I want to concentrate attention etc.

    I'm really enjoying exploring the environment concepts, because it's a different kind of thing than I usually do, so I'm excited to see how it evolves as I begin to incorporate more of the thinking that you are suggesting.
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    The improvements in that paintover are interesting, it feels like we can gauge the distance of the close spikes with the rest because we can see where they connect. Having them right up close to the camera isnt bad, but perhaps we needed that midground connection

    I am not bothered by the cool colors on the left side of the volcano piece, I don't think they ruin the feeling at all, but more enhance how bright the lava is without steal too much attention. The shapes on the left also steer our eye back towards the focal point if we wander to that side.

    I would also agree that the green has the most depth - the bright background makes it feel murky and very 'open'. It almost makes you feel lost. The blue on the ground might be too pure for the ambience, and we could use a bit more contrast or detail on the left foreground details, but I would like to see this one turned into a larger piece! See you around
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    nice start- bout time on the sketchbook.
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