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  1. #1
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    Dryad (digital version) - Finished 01/01/2011

    As part of my prep for my watercolor Dryad piece I did a low res value map in Photoshop. I actually liked that value map enough that it has inspired me to do a full render of the image at high-res.

    I intend to keep this image as greyscale, or at very least monochromatic.
    Last edited by Truepinkas; January 1st, 2011 at 08:04 PM.
    "...To spend my life relentlessly producing instead of sedately consuming..." -xkcd

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  3. #2
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    Original value map:
    "...To spend my life relentlessly producing instead of sedately consuming..." -xkcd

    My site: www.truepinkas.com

    Slowly populating my It's Finally Finished thread!

  4. #3
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    There is obviously still a lot of work to do, but I think It's coming along okay. I haven't exactly settles on a 'pose for her limbs, I don't like how the one arm is in the trunk with her body. I'm also considering adding some woodland creatures, perhaps a bird or two or maybe a fox (I've been looking at a lot of Stephanie Pui-Mun Law's work recently, foxes are invading my head...)

    Big struggle right now is that I love the light streaming down on her, but I hate that the spread leaves make her look like a cheerleader with pom-poms...

    Current version:
    Last edited by Truepinkas; December 26th, 2010 at 10:18 PM.
    "...To spend my life relentlessly producing instead of sedately consuming..." -xkcd

    My site: www.truepinkas.com

    Slowly populating my It's Finally Finished thread!

  5. #4
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    Haha, didn't get the cheerleader bit! Mottled light perhaps? It can still be breaking through some unseen cloud overhead. And bring all the foxes! (Stephanie Pui-Mun is great!). The only crit I have right now, and it's minor, is that in this light her left breast looks larger than the right (left and right of the viewer, not her left and right-- so your left her breast... uh). Other than that, can't wait to see where this goes!

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  7. #5
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    Hey zy., you are absolutely correct on the breast mis-match. I went to correct it and when they were the same size, it looked awkward and fake, so I went back to a mis-match, though not as far off this time. I still may make them a bit closer in size than they are in this version.

    More general work on it. I figure a while longer on hammering out the forms and then I can get in there and play with the bark! We'll see how it progresses I suppose.
    Last edited by Truepinkas; December 27th, 2010 at 01:40 AM.
    "...To spend my life relentlessly producing instead of sedately consuming..." -xkcd

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  8. #6
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    oohh. I love the leg emerging from the bark! Nice work on the upper body, I'll take your word on the awkwardness, but it doesn't stand out to me anymore. Can't wait to see more!!

    edit: ooh ooh, I played with it a bit, and I think it's the right nipple. It seems to be falling just a little lower. Maybe if that way raised just a bit, then the breast could be re-sized (?). Again, not as noticeable anymore, but anyway... just thoughts
    Last edited by zy.; December 27th, 2010 at 02:32 AM.

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  10. #7
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    Hi Truepinkas,

    You do a lot of helpful posting on others' work so I thought it only fair to post on yours.

    Are you set on the pose now? only it comes across (to me anyways) a little like she has been caught up in some kind of predatory tree rather than her being a wood nymph.

    I think it is because she doesn't have a solid footing and her arms appear to be both above her head in a typical imprisoned fashion. I might be talking rubbish as already it is better than I could do but that's how I see it.

    Looking good though, hope you post more WIPs so we can see your decision making.

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  12. #8
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    This is unfortunately what happens when you start painting without a clear intent... I know for a fact that I don't want her to feel trapped or captured. However I'm not exactly sure what I do want her to be doing.

    I whipped up 5 really rough variations, and plan on letting it sit for a few hours and come back and see which one speaks to me. Opinions are welcomed, (though not always listened to hahaha).

    PS, zy, I think you are right about the nipple. Once I settle on a pose I'll fix that up.
    "...To spend my life relentlessly producing instead of sedately consuming..." -xkcd

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  13. #9
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    I think the imprisoned feeling is coming from her face. I feel like if you changed the face to match the other faces in the other sketches, she'd look imprisoned, whereas the last sketch as it stands right now she looks very controlled. It could also be the harsh lighting. Maybe a softer overhead lighting would help create a sense of wonder and even power and wisdom to the tree woman. Also, try adjusting the tree limbs a little bit if you get the cheerleader vibe. I saw what you meant when you mentioned it, but it still didn't affect the painting in my eyes. Try adjusting the limbs so that it's not a symmetrical "Y". Maybe you can lower the angle of the right limb to create a more interesting negative space in that opening? Just suggestions. Definitely mess around with it

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  15. #10
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    Here's my stab at why this has a trapped feeling to it so far. The girl is looking more or less human and independent of the tree which is enveloping her without a real connection between them.
    Some things that could bridge the relationship:
    - The tree looks more freely controlled by the girl, more of a human pose
    - The tree covers the girl more strategically (say, her breasts being cupped by bark)
    - Some gradual transition from tree to girl, bark to skin.
    - Making the girl less fully human (legs flow into tree wood, hands into branches, etc)

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  17. #11
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    I think the pose you picked is the best of the bunch, but I still reckon you could improve it.

    maybe something like:

    - http://i.dailymail.co.uk/i/pix/2008/...17_468x487.jpg

    or perhaps

    - http://t0.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:A...dWT_XQpFskOsZ1

    Just suggestions. I'm sure you'll come up with something much more suitable but hope that helps in some way.

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  19. #12
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    Since you're willing to back up a little: if it were me, I'd draw the girl first, independently, and then create the tree around her. My reasoning is this: naked women are generally considered more interesting as subject matter than trees are, and the picture should be constructed accordingly.

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  21. #13
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    Thanks for all the comments so far in helping me identify and resolve the issues I'm having.

    Giacomo: While I agree with your idea of drawing the woman first and building the tree around her (Which was actually what I did at the start of this version although I didn't solidify the woman well enough , it was more of a loose gesture that got lost as I worked), I don't think that will solve the primary problem I'm grappling, which is the 'trapped' issue. I'm going to take a few more stabs at working with what I already have, but if those do not resolve the issue to my satisfaction I will reboot the project with your suggestion in mind, and do a solid female form before progressing to the tree components.

    ScottDotNet: Thanks. Yeah, the pose needs work, especially the face. I'll spend some time trying to find some ref for it. I'm prertty sure I can work within the existing tree structure well enough.

    wooblood: I think you hit the nail on the head here sir. Originally I prefered a separated/wrapped/ feeling, but because trees are typically so rigid and immobile, that feeling is exactly what's causing the 'trapped' issue. I'm currently playing with a more blended transition, we'll see where it leads.

    wroblewski-art: I completely agree about the face. I will hunt up some ref and change that. I will mess around with the tree limbs as well. as for the 'harsh' lighting, I think that it is probably being seen brighter on most monitors than I intend it to be. On my home monitor, which is calibrated for the printer I use, it is not nearly as glaring as it is when I look at it on my wife's laptop or my work computer screen. I'll still play with it though.
    "...To spend my life relentlessly producing instead of sedately consuming..." -xkcd

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  22. #14
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    Hmm lets have a look

    First impressions Tru:

    It's very flat - or it's reading very flat (at least to me) - think this is partly due to the position of the girl. I get the feeling she is suppose to be reclining in the arms of the tree but she seems to vertical. Perhaps a 'sun-lounger' type pose might work, though you'd might have to play with the perspective.

    If your foreground are the roots, the trunk the midground and focus then I'd suggest you use the branches to support those elements - rather than the 'pom-poms' bring some leaves around or growing up from the base to help.

    If you imagine her covered in a cotton sheet/dress then the folds of the sheet/dress might link into the bark a little better, rather than the 'swallowed' by a tree, she becomes part of the tree - just an idea.

    looking forward to seeing where you take it.

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  24. #15
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    So it's moving along. I think it's going in the right direction quality wise, but I'm not sure it is hitting the mark of the original idea. I think it's getting a little dark and creepy, whereas I originally wanted elegance and beauty...

    Forks in the road and all...
    "...To spend my life relentlessly producing instead of sedately consuming..." -xkcd

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