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Here's a conceptual illustration of an elven-like messenger boy (actually young man) that I'm working on. Tell me what you people think about it. Any suggestions for the expression?
My suggestion for his expression is...give him one. He looks like a robot...or simply fixated on his parchment. Perhaps if he was looking more towards the recipient of the message. Ask yourself...what kind of message is it? Is it important? is it happy? does it carry impending doom? until you can tell yourself more of the story, there is little chance of your being able to convey it to us as viewers.
I can appreciate the effort you put into your rendering. I can tell you spent hours doing it, you have some very smooth blending going on. That being said, work more on your form and structure, really look at anatomy. the cloth is not reading as believable right now. That is an easy fix, just take a picture! Draw what is, not what you think you see. Same with his face, try to find a couple of nice 3/4 faces, even if you have to take them yourself. Also try to give him some pizazz (specifically the tunic)...hes a little boring, elves are elegant in everything.
You may also want to consider more dynamic poses. Although this kinda reminds me of an illuminated manuscript, I'm not sure that is what you are going for.
All said and done, good effort. My advice is rethink what you really want to achieve, aside for general elf messenger. What is happening? Why should we be interested as your audience? What should we feel when we see it? If you think about these things, it can help you give yourself better direction. Keep posting,continued work means always improving, and I'd love to know what you decide
Last edited by K-san; March 3rd, 2010 at 11:01 PM.
To add onto this, think about what you want it to look like. Right now, you don't get the impression that whatever message he's delivering is important. The elf looks like he doesn't give two shits, the the arm on the right is screaming "meh, don't care what it is just give it here"
Remember that hands can also show moods/emotions through body language. Perhaps you can add military banners/flags/colors to give the sense that it's an urgent battle field message. Give him light armor, make him look slim and quick, he is a messenger after all.
Thank you both for the advices K-san and hippl5, I really appreciate that.
I agree that I should've gone in a certain direction with the story, so I will have to figure one out. About the design, it wasn't final yet, detail 'n stuff are definetly to come.
This step below was done before I read your posts, just wanted to attach it that you can see how it changed after my first post (fixed anatomy and so on...).
I would take a look at the atmospherics of your composition. Everything is sitting pretty flat. I did a draw over for you to illustrate what I might go for on this. The shoulder width was a little meager so I beefed out the anatomy a little to give him a little more volume. The right side of him was looking a little awkward. I also worked out the darks a lights a little more on the figure to get some 3d quality to it. I would say if anything make sure your going from your darkest to you lightest with every shape according to the lighting.
wow Rainblade, I highly appreciate that you took the time for the paint-over. It looks great and I'd really like to go in that (esp. atmospheric) direction.
I think I'll restart the pic, except the face (wich I'm gonna "emotionally" change). I'll keep you all updated.
I didn't have much time to work on it further but here's what I changed since my last post. Atmosphere is mostly based on rainblade's paint-over. Changed the expresion to a rather serious one, don't know if it's noticable enough. Tell me what you think, so far.