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Thread: Imposing Mammoth- Finishing stretch. Let the beast lie.

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    Imposing Mammoth- Finishing stretch. Let the beast lie.

    I've been doing some projects for an indie development team. They provide me with new things to paint and give me deadlines, and this has helped immensely over the past week or so. I find that I'm trying out new things and having a lot of fun working with them. But I've recently been asked to paint a mastodon.

    He needs to be threatening, but still show a good deal of the form and the body. This is what I've come up with, after a few hours of roughing out.

    I'm really concerned about the creature's anatomy. I worked out a structure to act as a "coat hanger" for the hair, but found that I was correcting things late in the game as far as proportions go. I'm afraid his hind legs might have become a little small or that there are easy issues I'm just not seeing. Re-constructing the skull was fun, but it looks a little big? I'm not used to looking at elephants and mastodons .

    EDIT: THUMBNAIL UPDATED
    Last edited by Quigleyer; March 3rd, 2011 at 02:10 AM.
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    Hey Quig.

    Whenever I see/imagine an super angry elephant, it seems that they're flapping their ears, trunk is up and/or are on their rear legs about to squash their victims. Here it looks like he's sneering/glaring at the guy. Also maybe he should be bigger to be more imposing, since he's a mastodon?
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    This pic always comes to mind when I think of mammoths/mastodons

    It's only now looking at it that I wondered what the heck his back leg is doing...I guess he's pulling himself up.

    Maybe he could be a bit more dynamic? Stepping forward?
    Second image I think of would be Frazettas mammoth, which I'm sure you've seen/have. But in that instance only the head is visible.
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    I don't know what references you've got, and the perspective makes things a little difficult to judge too; but the head, at least, seems too tall and domed for a mastodon, and more mammoth-like. Mastodons were a little lower overall and sloped down from the shoulders. Check it out.

    Perhaps fix the width and length of the legs too. They were obviously thick and columnar, but in my experience thick-legged animals tend to be easy to exaggerate, if you're not careful. Overall, go look for references of mounted Mammut americanum skeletons and living elephants.
    Last edited by Vermis; February 21st, 2011 at 09:19 PM.
    ...which is only my opinion.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vermis View Post
    I don't know what references you've got, and the perspective makes things a little difficult to judge too; but the head, at least, seems too tall and domed for a mastodon, and more mammoth-like. Mastodons were a little lower overall and sloped down from the shoulders. Check it out.
    WHAT? Are you serious? I thought a Mammoth and a Mastodon were the same thing. I had no idea there were two different animals...

    What I want is a Mammoth, then. I'll change the thread title, thank you for the information and the advice . I'm probably just gonna do a few poses, it's not like I've done any REAL work on it.

    Star Eater- I originally was trying something a little more dynamic, but I heard somewhere (saw on a National Geographic thing) that if an elephant puts weight on it's leg with it bent it could break it. They always hit the ground with their front legs straight, apparently. See how they straighten it right before they put weight on it: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iOE7dTuLCiU&NR=1 ? I still want to do something more dynamic, but I'm having a hard time. Maybe I could make him charging?

    Originally the first thing I thought of was Frazetta's Mammoth. That piece is pretty sweet, but I always thought it was a little less dynamic than Frazetta probably thought it was.

    Kya- originally I had his snout up, but it became hard to compositionally justify. Maybe I'll just do up a few poses and maybe try to play with where that could go.
    Last edited by Quigleyer; February 22nd, 2011 at 01:04 AM.
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    Yeah I think Vermis just gave me a basic natural history lesson/reminder as well.
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    What about this one?

    I think it could be cool...
    "She took the ice cube trays out of the freezer. What kind of a sick bitch takes the ice cube trays out of the freezer?"

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    Oh yeah, that middle sketch is great. I like how he is tilted, and his front leg is up. His head is also just a little tilted. And with all the dust...oh yeah...I foresee some sweetness.

    Good work quig
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    Definitely, I second what Artfix said. It's got movement, weight and looks really good.
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    DO IT! DO IT!! This is going to be awesome!
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    I feel like it would be cool to have the mammoth rearing up on its back legs, sun just behind its shoulder. Of all the poses I have see elephant like creatures in, nothing is worse that five tones of angry mammal about to come crashing down on you.
    Unless that five tones is also backed up by gravity and a temper, then thats the worst.
    Just my thoughts.
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    Thanks guys!

    Artfix, thanks for the vote of confidence. I'm really glad that you liked it... sometimes that just happens. You start sketching, get to like sketch 4 and BAM, feel like somethings up. Then you can't sketch anymore cus you keep looking at the one you just did. I hope I made the right decision in moving on from there . Please come back and tell me what you think as this progresses.

    Star Eater, thanks for vote of confidence as well. I'm a little concerned about how it translates into the drawing I'm about to present, but I think it'll work. I found an awesome visual reference (though it appears to be done by another artist...?) and it helped make a little more sense of the pose. I still think the back leg is too vertical, and I should slant it with the body more. Like he's throwing his weight at the guy who'll be in the foreground.

    Hey Kyra, thanks. I will do it . I hope!

    Duman, I've got an understanding with the guy that both pieces will be finished, but I'm going to make modifications to the first. Since I'm working on one, I think I can take some risks with the other... and never use it in my portfolio if I don't wanna . Stay tuned, cus I might play with some of the things you discussed.
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    Also, please does anyone know the artist who painted this? Their hard work helped me make some of the last minute decisions (Check out the elephant on the far left, I actually think I figured out some of it pretty well, but the front leg is probably going to stay the way I drew it) and I need to properly credit him/her with the help.
    "She took the ice cube trays out of the freezer. What kind of a sick bitch takes the ice cube trays out of the freezer?"

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