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Hey, I'm an 18-year old Finn who finally submitted something here. Been lurking for a long time, but haven't had the courage to post, haha.
This is still very rough, but I'd like some comments on the general impression and the lighting (I'd like to improve in it a lot, so all comments welcome!). Don't mind the hand, it's still very robotlooking but i'm fixing it soon I'm going to add a background in a later phase. Be tuned for more updates 8)
Update: Added a background sketch and details, starting to color now. What do you think?
The back leg is shorter than the front leg right now and the feet are two different sizes. It would be nice if you could get some muscle structure into the figure to give it more believability and correct the forearm structure. If the light is coming from the right side then her hair should cast a shadow on her face and her shoulder. At this stage you need to get reference for th epose to correct all these little inconsistencies.
Thanks! The reference picture had more clothes on so some parts you mentioned so it was hard to reference. I'll try to fix these things
I know exactly how you feel. I was extremely hesitant and intimidated to post at first as well. But it's definitely going to help you're art out.
A pretty good start! I'd say if you're gonna add a background, you should knock out that white canvas behind it. The white will visually dictate any color you will place on the figure, and it's best to judge colors without the white behind it. A toned canvas will give you a better view of what colors you're putting down. Maybe someone else can tag along to what I'm saying and possibly explain it better. At least drop some sort of middle to high value of grey there.
The skin looks unrealistic. It looks as if it's made of very smooth clay, and each value you laid down is a change in plane. Try looking at the actual musculature of a leg and place values down according to the actual plane changes of the muscles. It's too generic and flat. I'd think that an Amazonian-esque warrior as herself would be quite toned, and that should be reflected in the drawing.
The arm is also a bit off too. It's a bit too short. Also, give some sort of hint that there is another arm back there. Maybe an elbow peaking out from the back, because she's looking like a badass amputee at the moment.
You did a great job at ignoring the unnecessary details for the most part. A lot of people jump right into details before key elements of their paintings are done (I'm very guilty of that at times). That can lead to a very frustrating process. Most of the painting should be at the same level of completion consistently throughout the process. Don't become attached to any portion of your picture because more than likely, you'll have to erase it to better accomodate the changes you're doing to the rest of the picture. The face looks too well done in comparison to the rest of the anatomically incorrect body.
Also look out for the angle of the spear. Try to fore shorten it a bit better and make sure it lines up with the end of the spear on the top. The angles seem a bit funky at the moment.
Good luck! I'll definitely stick around to see more updates!
EDIT: Sorry I took so long to post, but as soon as I did the next update showed up. Haha, man I'm slow...
Thanks for the great advice, I tried working on them, although muscles aren't my strongest point, haha. I draw too many faces and not enough bodies
edit: I moved the right leg in a slightly different direction, I hope it looks better now.
I'm a bit stuck with the skin though.. I don't know how to make it less clay-like :/
I also added a right hand holding the pole, testing it out if it works at leaks she doesn't looked onehanded, heh.
This is my first time starting with black and white and then coloring it, what's the best way to add colors? Using layer options make it grayish..
Last edited by Minelo; December 26th, 2010 at 12:27 PM.
Are you using a basic round brush? If so, try varying it up a little. Try using a brush with a bit more texture for the skin. That would definitely help get rid of the clay look.
I'd say at this point grab some paper and a pencil, save the picture where ever you are, and close photoshop. Really try to get form down and the muscular system. Try http://www.posemaniacs.com/ It's a great site that, if done consistently, will help you're work out tremendously. Draw and draw and draw some more. Then when you feel confident, get back to the current illustration you're working on. That new found knowledge and practice will help you're understanding of muscles.
I've tried the same method of coloring as you are experimenting right now. It's actually quite fun. What I did was I went to Hue/Saturation of the entire image and changed the entire color of the piece to what I thought would be the most prominent color. Then worked on a different layer with other colors. This helps maintain a color scheme throughout.
Also, http://www.conceptart.org/forums/sho...d.php?t=203299 someone else had the same issue as you, and an interesting solution is given by Leysan. She suggests taking the value drawing (set as "multiply" and an opacity of 75%) and layering it on top of the color layer. Of course, that level can probably be modified to fit you're illustration.
But for right now, I would suggest really studying muscles and getting the form down before any color is put down. It will only help.
Thanks Yup, i'm using a round brush so I think that's where my problem is.. I'll ust have to give this one a pause and make a little study Maybe I'll get a better touch to it. I've had a very long pause in drawing because of my finals so i'll have to get a better grip of myself!
i'ma dump some critique at ya girl
i did a quick demo on an easy way to achieve better skin. It's all about what direction you do your strokes in. As a general rule, when trying to paint something round or organic shaped, follow the shape with your brush strokes, and avoid lining the strokes up in a direction in which they would be straight.
i have an example here: in the 1:st pic I've painted parallel to the arm and the result looks like the arm has an edge in the middle or is like some kind of a polygon, a.k.a. clayish/blocky. In the second pic i re-rendered the arm using strokes that followed the curvature of the limb in question, and ta-da: looks much nicer. The last pic is just a reminder that u should think of everything as 3-d- shapes, and render them according to where the curves really are. Might seem strange at first, but save the straight parallel brush strokes for stuff with sharp edges. The human body is mostly made up of curves and round shapes, at least mine ;D
As for brush, i have used the so called "randis brush" (he uses it all the time), you should find a tutorial about how to set it up if u google it. It's a real nice brush with a semi-hard edge and pressure sensitive opacity, good for both blending and blocking in. I't good that u have so far used the hard round, way better than having to watch airbrushing!
U got some good stuff going on in that pic, proportions already look better, have you flipped your canvas? that helps with spotting the wonky stuff that ur brain has gotten used to.
other than that keep pushing the pic and making it better it's gonna end up real nice.
For colouring you could try painting with low opacity on a layer set to "colour", or then lighten the value painting first and then colour by adding a multiplay layer and painting on that (might make the pic somewhat dark if you don't lighten the pic first)
Gargantuan post, hope this helps ;D
FUTILE EFFORTS <-help me I suck.
Thanks guys! I used your advice and recolored the skin, and I think it looks more natural now Also, changed the background a bit to suit the character.. (She's a guard who moves in trees in my story ) the background's still a sketch, though. Just need to put some shadows on the pole and render the background and I can start putting some color on this
Here's the last version i'll probably post here, i've been sick and really don't feel like continuing this anymore since it was supposed to be a sketch originally I wanted to color this but somehow couldn't find any energy to put it in color (Finding a good method really took some time and seems like i'll stick with my old way of coloring , that is not starting with B&W)
Thanks everyone for the feedback, I learned a lot! (I still have to render that tree though , haha)