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I'm working on a portfolio to apply with at an university. I already applied with another portfolio at this school but was rejected. Before handing it in, I asked a teacher and a former student from this university for critiques and comments. They were quite pleased and only suggested a few minor changes. After the rejection, I asked another of the university's teacher what I could have done better. According to this teacher, the portfolio was obviously bad. He found a lot he was not pleased with, but couldn't give any precise suggestions for what the school wanted. I know of course, that art is very subjective, and if one person likes a picture, it doesn't mean the next one has to like it, too. Nonetheless, I'd like to make it this time because I'd really like to work as an illustrator or concept artist.
I'll upload here some of the pictures I'm working on; not all, because they ask for 30 - 40.
I'd appreciate any critiques and comments you may give to help me make this portfolio seriously rock. Leave the kitty gloves off, please.
Thanks a lot in advance!
I can't see anything...?
Recently I've read some of Jules Verne's books, like 20000 Leagues Under the Sea or Five Weeks In a Hot-Air-Balloon. Lukily the books were contained many illustrations by artists of the time. These pictures inspired my imagination. But not in the way, what life must have been like then, but rather what life could be like if the inventions of the protagonists could have been produced in grand scale. How would people live in such a world? What would that world and its people look like?
So, here's the first one. (It's still a sketch and it will be in colour later.) This one is supposed to be more of an environment/ scene concept for a people that descended from Captain Nemo and his crew on the Nautillus. They have adapted to living in/ under the sea. And like Nemo, they live exclusively on what the oceans offer.
The jelly fish are supposed to be further away than they appear to be now. I plan to create this effect in the coloured version. A few less details and not so bright colours and a background that shows more depth should do the job. On ground in the front will be some small algae and pebbles/ stones. I left them out in the sketch, because they would have looked strange just in pencil. I will add the missing shadows in colour, too.
Thanks for your c&c.
Would love to see some of the work you submitted in your previous portfolio.
I'm not that good when it comes to composition, but it seems like there are a lot of things missing in this picture (not just the pebbles and whatnot). A lot of white space that really breaks it up.
Also the person bending down near the centre of the picture has some issues with their right leg. Seems like an oddly placed knee and ankle, it should also be further away from the viewer. I also have some issues with the person in the upright position. Their right knee makes it look like their leg has been twisted or broken.
Can't wait to see this coloured. And look forward to your other artwork.
Are you going for a realistic scene here or a more metaphysical/graphic look?
As well drawn as everything is, I'm not getting a sense of flow and harmony amongst all of the different elements in the picture. It feels like magnets or stamps that have been carefully placed on a board. Specific examples include the perfect vertical line of the seaweed on the left side and the way all the jellyfish look nicely spaced out. I guess that could improve once you start adding color/value/atmosphere.
Thank you very much for your critiques Muddus and wooblood!
I'll see what i can do about the anatomy issues and make the overall composition more harmonious. I already realised some of the problems but over time they didn't seem so big anymore. What a few new and different sets of eyes can help! ^^
Hopefully, by Tuesday, I'll have some colours to show off. For now, I still have to transfer the sketch to the good paper.
By the way, does anyone know a good way to tranfer a pencil sketch to another paper? I'm mostly using tracing paper. I do 'copy' my pictures this way a lot because until I have a finished sketch, the pencil lines tend to be so dark that they will shine through the actual picture when I use traditional media like water colours. I would be grateful for any advice.
Please keep criticising my pictures,
P.S.: I'll see that I put up a sketchbook on CA with pictures of my former portfolio. Thank you for being interested in those too, Muddus.
I can't really pick out much in the line of perspective here, which contributes to the lack of overall depth. This might be deliberate, but if so you should make that choice more clear. If not, you should plan out at least some degree of perspective to keep things on track.
The Nezumi Works Sketchbook - Now in progress
My online portfolio
"Skill is the result of trying again and again, applying our ability and proving our knowledge as we gain it. Let us get used to throwing away the unsuccessful effort and doing the job over. Let us consider obstacles as something to be expected in any endeavor; then they won't seem quite so insurmountable or so defeating." - Andrew Loomis
Yeah, I know it's not exactly Tuesday anymore. Some car trouble, personal stuff and many hours of Christmas baking got in the way. All not an excuse, I know...
The reason why I didn't give even a small update on the progess, is that I didn't like it half finished or with just some colour in a few places. Thought it looked odd. Besides, I got lost in the many details of the plants, especially the leaves. Never have painted that many of them. Even came to hate this picture for this. :-S
I started some blending with water (I use water colour pencils which can be blended dry or even more by adding some water with a brush). Now I'm nearly done with the colour stage. Just some skin (the left figure's skin should be done, though) and the ground are still without real/ final colour. And of course the water between the one looking at the picture and the plants and people, so it won't look like all this is pasted onto a sea background, and more shadows.
Then I'll finish the 'add water' blending and I should be done. Hopefully before Christmas. ^^'
Edit: Scanned and loaded it up again. Now the colours look more like they should. Seems like the scanning programme was the one to blame because it switched the colour settings back to recommended without me noticing. -.-
Thanks again for taking the time to take a look and maybe even crit,
P.S.: I started digitising my old portfolio, so it would be presentable. I wondered, whether it would be better to link to my portfolio album on photobucket or to load up each picture to a sketchbook here on CA. What would be preferred here on CA?
Last edited by Skhirocco; December 22nd, 2010 at 09:54 AM.
This time I'm faster with an update. Yay, me! ;-P I think I'm nearly done. Finished most of the colours today. What's left is mostly the blending with water and more depth and a few shadows, like for the grass like algae. Although, I'm unhappy with the way the skin turned out of the figure with copper hair. Something is not right. I've had troubles with that one from the beginning. What could I do to make her skin look more like that of the others? Also, I'm not so sure how her shadow should fall on the ground. The light comes from the top right corner and (slightly) from behind the picture. So, her shadow should 'fall' towards the observer onto the stone with the rope and the big one (abosorbing the shadow of the red plant)... but what about the hand that holds the rope... the rope's shadow and hers should connect somehow... I'm confused.
Thank you for any advice,
I started a new picture. This one will be Day and Night as in the ChoW #216 ( http://www.conceptart.org/forums/sho...ight=day+night ). I decided already for the last portfolio that character illustrations is what I'd like to show because they are what I most like to draw/ paint.
Took me so far about 20 hours to get this far. I worked most of the time on Night (guy) and about 2 hours on Day (girl). Hopefully, it won't take me as long to get her in clothes, too. I know, that the guy's balance isn't quite right. That's on purpose because I wanted him to look like he's dancing and about to transfer his weight onto the other foot and maybe do a pivot.
Light will be coming from above.
Tell me what you think!
P.S.: the references: Night: http://tak104.deviantart.com/gallery...et=72#/d23lq21 , Day: http://lockstock.deviantart.com/gallery/2114805#/dtgw7j (from this pack)
You should pick up some anatomy books and sketch from there before spending hours on a picture. I assume you drew this without reference because there seems to be some problems with the people. You should focus on drawing feet, the feet look too small compared to the rest of the body; try comparing your foot to the size of your head and you should be able to translate that to the picture. The womans arm (my left) looks far too short and both her hands are too small: an average outstreched hand should be the size of ones face. She also looks needlessly fat. Her face also seems to be to squished and does not look very realistic.
The man is better but not quite. His (my right) arm does not make sense; you would be able to see it IRL rather than it disappearing behind his head. His face is too squished and his eyes are too close together. His ears also look rather unrealistic. Again - the feet are too small. I am crap with male anatomy so I cannot comment too much on that.
I recommend looking at yourself in the mirror to see how things should look first, finding stock images on the internet or looking at books and tutorials on anatomy (eg. Loomis) and you should get the drill soon enough.
Thanks for your reply, dsacc.
I'll take another look at the refernce I used to see what you mean.
(in case they've been unnoticed, here are the refernce links again I posted before. Night: http://tak104.deviantart.com/gallery...et=72#/d23lq21 , Day: http://lockstock.deviantart.com/gallery/2114805#/dtgw7j (from this pack) )