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  1. #1
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    Limbo tree - Finally Finished! Thank you!

    FINALLY FINISHEDDD
    I'm nowhere near the calibur to post this in the actual, "Finally Finished" forum, but I really wanted to thank everyone for their help! I learned so much through just this one piece, and have a lot of advice I can take with me to others /end corny speech

    End adjustments were darkening the figures, making sure the dead woman's face didn't look like it was being pulled down, adding more texture and interest to the ground, and adding lilypads to direct the viewers eye away from the corner.

    OLD UPDATE: Made some suggested changes and added the figures. The girl feels disconnected from the pieces for me. I think it's her colouring. Can anyone offer any suggestions for me? Still working on adding texture to the ground...

    Why does this still feel super-blah to me? Have I just been staring at it too long?

    OLD UPDATE: Uploaded a newer version. I browned the ground out, adjusted the colour of the water, and generally worked on the lighting and depth. Does it look a little better? No figures yet, they're just silhouettes for now.

    I just really feel like something's lacking...........

    For my grad school portfolio. Just wanting to know if the colours/shading are okay... and I would love some advice on the ground if possible.


    Thank you guys !

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    Last edited by Lii-chan; January 17th, 2011 at 11:41 PM.
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  3. #2
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    Well I love your colors. I also really like the style with the linework in the tree.

    Just add some dirt texture for the ground. Or you could add blades of grass, mushrooms, stones, etc.

    My main crit would be that one cannot tell this tree has anything to do with purgatory. There's no story whatsoever and so it just ends up being unsatisfying and rather boring. I don't even get a creepy vibe from it. Its just pretty colors. Which is fine too unless you intended more.

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  5. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Artfix View Post
    Well I love your colors. I also really like the style with the linework in the tree.

    Just add some dirt texture for the ground. Or you could add blades of grass, mushrooms, stones, etc.

    My main crit would be that one cannot tell this tree has anything to do with purgatory. There's no story whatsoever and so it just ends up being unsatisfying and rather boring. I don't even get a creepy vibe from it. Its just pretty colors. Which is fine too unless you intended more.
    Thank you so much! I've really been trying to study colour theory, and I hope it's coming across.

    I definitely plan on a lot more texture for the ground. I just want the form to be consistent at this stage

    Perhaps I ought to not include the title then? The idea for this "purgatory" was based off of a swampy feel, where souls come before they realize they're actually dead. I haven't included any figures yet, but perhaps I should leave the reference to purgatory out, if it's going to leave one feeling unsatisfied. I don't plan on adding any cliche flames or souls in torment.

    Question though: are you still bored if I leave out the reference to hell? Is there something I can do to make it more exciting? I plan on adding a silhouette of a little girl in the branches of the tree...

    Thank you so much again!

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  6. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lii-chan View Post
    Question though: are you still bored if I leave out the reference to hell? Is there something I can do to make it more exciting? I plan on adding a silhouette of a little girl in the branches of the tree...
    At least it wouldn't give any Hell-ish expectations for the viewer. Maybe "Limbo" might express the look more?
    Though I'm bit meh about the idea of a girl in the branches, I'd personally be more interested to see somebody in the water, being all gloomy/bored, like they had been stuck and waiting there for a long time : D
    Also if you plan on using a silhouette, maybe adding some mist could help?

    I too would also advise on putting some texture or tiny plants/something to the ground, maybe in the water too.
    These might give some inspiration:
    http://i253.photobucket.com/albums/h...akoira/suo.jpg
    http://i253.photobucket.com/albums/h...mg_0093suo.jpg
    http://i253.photobucket.com/albums/h...g_0069puro.jpg
    http://pics.livejournal.com/vauvakolibri/pic/000k308p

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  8. #5
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    I think it might help to think of it this way:

    illustration tells a story/communicates a them, so you need to think hard about what it is
    you want the image to say (a thousand words remember!) and then use composition, colour, light etc to help sell the story.

    Im curious, did you do any thumbnail sketches to decide on a composition? thats always a great idea to flesh out ideas and get the bad ones outta the way!

    -J

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  9. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by TinyBird View Post
    At least it wouldn't give any Hell-ish expectations for the viewer. Maybe "Limbo" might express the look more?
    Though I'm bit meh about the idea of a girl in the branches, I'd personally be more interested to see somebody in the water, being all gloomy/bored, like they had been stuck and waiting there for a long time : D
    Also if you plan on using a silhouette, maybe adding some mist could help?

    I too would also advise on putting some texture or tiny plants/something to the ground, maybe in the water too.
    These might give some inspiration:
    http://i253.photobucket.com/albums/h...akoira/suo.jpg
    http://i253.photobucket.com/albums/h...mg_0093suo.jpg
    http://i253.photobucket.com/albums/h...g_0069puro.jpg
    http://pics.livejournal.com/vauvakolibri/pic/000k308p
    Hmmm, yea I think I will think of a new title. I don't want to mislead the viewer into being confused or bored. Thanks for the suggestion!

    I guess there already is a lot going on in the branches; the little girl is supposed to be the guardian of purgatory, and helps people find their way by making them crowns of daisies. Perhaps having her on the ground, interacting with people? Definitely planning on some mist action

    And thanks for the links! those are super helpful!

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  10. #7
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    Theres nothing wrong with painting a beautiful tree and calling it done. I do landscapes in oils which I actually have a lot more fun doing than complicated illustrations.

    But it sounds like you wanted more, and in that case, you should have thumbnailed and planned it from the start. I recommend painting some figures on a new layer and figuring that out before anything else.

    And in my opinion, a little girl handing out daisies to ghost figures would be awesome. I like that idea a lot.

    I also think people get too paranoid about being cliche. If anyone ever tells you that you've done something cliche, tell them you were born in the 20th century, and not the 1st century...so if they want something entirely original, they can look at 1st century artwork instead.

    One last thing...make sure the ellipse that your tree is making on the ground coincides with your horizon line. I would say right now that your horizon line is too high in comparison...or your tree ellipse is too flat...whichever you choose.

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  12. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Artfix View Post
    Theres nothing wrong with painting a beautiful tree and calling it done. I do landscapes in oils which I actually have a lot more fun doing than complicated illustrations.

    But it sounds like you wanted more, and in that case, you should have thumbnailed and planned it from the start. I recommend painting some figures on a new layer and figuring that out before anything else.

    And in my opinion, a little girl handing out daisies to ghost figures would be awesome. I like that idea a lot.

    I also think people get too paranoid about being cliche. If anyone ever tells you that you've done something cliche, tell them you were born in the 20th century, and not the 1st century...so if they want something entirely original, they can look at 1st century artwork instead.

    One last thing...make sure the ellipse that your tree is making on the ground coincides with your horizon line. I would say right now that your horizon line is too high in comparison...or your tree ellipse is too flat...whichever you choose.
    Thanks for the advice on direction. I'm definitely going to play around with some figures, and the little girl. I did a thumbnail or two, but I really ought to have done more. A lot of times I thumbnail and stray from it, I probably need to work on not doing that lol

    And hah, yea that's a good point about being cliche. I just don't wanna put something like, "Yea yea we've seen this a million and one times!" in my portfolio to get into school.

    Can you explain to me what you mean by the ellipse of the tree in relation to the horizon line?

    Thank you so much for commenting and following up with me!

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  13. #9
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    You have hints of some lovely back lighting. I would love to see a bit more of it (but not excessively more). Also, for the ground, why not skip the dirt and go for oozy muck instead? That along with some rotted reeds and bent over grass with scum hanging off of them would reflect the current title a bit better. I like the twists in the tree branches. Nice form. The foremost branch could use a bit of foreshortening though to give it more depth.


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  15. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eclectix View Post
    You have hints of some lovely back lighting. I would love to see a bit more of it (but not excessively more). Also, for the ground, why not skip the dirt and go for oozy muck instead? That along with some rotted reeds and bent over grass with scum hanging off of them would reflect the current title a bit better. I like the twists in the tree branches. Nice form. The foremost branch could use a bit of foreshortening though to give it more depth.
    Thanks! I think I will stick a bit more orange in there

    And I love that idea of the mud and rotting things. Thank you so much! I am going to give that a go.

    thanks for the compliments on form, I really wanted to convey a strong sense here. I'll make sure I go in and revisit the foreshortening on the branch

    Thank you so much again

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  16. #11
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    that water should be green more than anything.

    Also, why is the tree glowing? Why isn't the grass or water reflecting that yellow light?

    I think you could use another tree or two in the background to suggest that we're actually in a place and this isn't just a picture of a floating tree... even if they're just silhouettes enveloped in mist.

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  18. #12
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    it's looking good, but you need some depth to the piece. That is the most important thing about environments, if they don't bring you into the piece, the meaning is lost. You need to lighten up the background and darken up the foreground. Put a better light source in there, and make it look a bit more moody as far as the lighting scheme goes. Also, the ground could use some more detail, as well as the water. add some stones and grass and such.

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  20. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by clarithium View Post
    that water should be green more than anything.

    Also, why is the tree glowing? Why isn't the grass or water reflecting that yellow light?

    I think you could use another tree or two in the background to suggest that we're actually in a place and this isn't just a picture of a floating tree... even if they're just silhouettes enveloped in mist.
    Thank you for the feedback! I'll make sure to relate the lighting more to the rest of the BG and green up the water. I've been trying to rough in silhouettes of tree branches, it's still coming along. Thank you so much again!

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