(WIP) Playing with Color [updated]
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    Arrow (WIP) Playing with Color [updated]

    My washed out skintones always, always drive me crazy. In turn I've been trying to play around with color. Not really sure what this piece is turning into, I pretty much just played around with her for fun last night. I think I'm improving, albeit slowly. Any insight into how I could make her more colorful, improve the skintone, or make her 'pop' more at this stage would be very helpful/appreciated.

    One big question, I keep hearing 'never use white for a highlight'. I never use white or black as a cardinal rule, but when I use a highly-saturated/light cyan or peachy yellow as a highlight -- it always shows up as near-white once I upload it anyway. Am I doing something wrong?

    Edit: I added my reference photo just in case.

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    Last edited by Hauxe; April 14th, 2012 at 11:32 PM.
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    Have you tried starting with a dark color and gradually building up the forms on top of that?

    Here's a tutorial that explains is quite well (by an excellent artist, too): http://vimeo.com/10743423 .

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    you've got a good start. here's a quick paintover, hope you don't mind. all I did was boost the contrast and add some outlines to punctuate certain features. it may have taken some of the softness of your style out but I think it helps it "pop" more.

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    If you want to achieve a less washed out and faded look to your faces/skintones stop using references of washed out/faded looking models. I'm just sayin.

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    Lhune -- I love Charlie bowater! Thanks so much, I'm definitely going to keep returning to this.

    FourTonMantis -- Thanks for paint over. It actually helped out with the nose a lot.

    Blankstate -- I have gotten a visit from captain hindsight. I probably shouldn't have used that reference , but I've gotten too far along to just scrap it at this point.

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    First, you have definitely not gone too far to scrap the current image.

    Second, if you want your portrait to "pop", you need a stronger focal point. Right now you have a mostly average looking woman with a blank expression in neutral light. Both color contrast and value contrast can be used to make the eyes bounce around an image. It may just be a portrait, but composition is still a major consideration. Also, who is this person? What are they all about? It may seem like an inconsequential question for a color study, but without some idea you have no real reason for any decision on mark making, color, etc.

    There are some issues with the drawing beyond that, but I think such advice would be better saved for when your portrait has more emotive purpose. Here's a paintover to show what I'm talking about. Not saying mine is so great or that you should make anything like the choices I made, but simply deciding on " '80s Hollywood ruffian" gave me enough direction that I had a starting point for color and expression.



    Last edited by Grunler; March 16th, 2012 at 07:18 PM.
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    She looks rather disgruntled atm. Maybe it is her lazy eye or her high forehead or the fact that she looks like she might work in a sleazy bar. I like Grunlers paintover.

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    Right now she looks extremely masculine....rounding her jawline will go a long way toward helping her not look like a drag queen.



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    Quote Originally Posted by Giacomo View Post
    Right now she looks extremely masculine....rounding her jawline will go a long way toward helping her not look like a drag queen.
    ..but an egg in disguise...
    Even feminine jaws aren't completely round.
    I don't think she was very masculine, by the way. I don't think every painted woman must be oh so 100% feminine and men oh so totally manly. Variety is good. There are extreme cases but not this one.

    I didn't wrote here before because the others told what I could say. But I couldn't resist now.

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    Here is where I'm at so far. I think I'm 2/3rds of the way through. I need to render a lot of things in the image, but as far as the 'feel' goes I've settled on this. Kind of want to add more neon, but I don't want to go over kill.

    Grunler -- Thanks so much. I was going to add neon but you're paint-over reminded me to push it over the edge. I want to give her kind of a non-plussed look. She's kind of a trashy rock babe who just got kissed from someone unexpected in the alley way behind the club (hence the messed up lipstick, which I have to fix).

    I'd like it if you'd shed some light on the drawing issues. I've been working on my anatomy so if there are errors let me have it! Thanks for the help.

    Blankstate -- I kind of was going for a disgruntled look, but she just looked kind of constipated instead? Also, which eye is lazy? I tried to fix it, but sometimes when I stare at a picture so much I have a hard time seeing all the errors.

    Glacomo -- I'm working on the jaw, but I'd like to keep it sharp and kind of masculine. She is a kind of a masculine woman anyway.

    ShiNIN -- As a woman with kind of a strong jaw, thanks for the advice

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    Hehe that's great. Think it might be time to start bustin' out the courtney love refs. Lazy was a bad choice of words 'tired eyes' is more like it.

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    Blankstate -- hah yes! Courtney Love is exactly what I was going for, didn't even realize it >.<

    Here's my progress so far. Her face feels a little too round, but maybe it's just me being nitpicky. I don't know.

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    Oi. Might be the Stella talking but she's looking better and better. Realize I might not have been the most helpful here. Maybe this po is more helpful. Done in ps.

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    Anyways if you have any questions as to the technical or thought process of my po feel free to ask. or don't, whatever.

    [

    Last edited by Blankstate; March 27th, 2012 at 03:32 AM. Reason: realized i'm being a bit of an ass. sorry. it happens.
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    No critique, just wanted to say that I like the direction this thread took - Hauxe you really improved the initial sketch and all the others gave good crits.

    Hauxe, you've said in your first post that your brighter tones come out as white after you upload them. Is this a problem that you have directly after saving the picture as jpg? Maybe it's a Photoshop setting that's not alright, here's a thread about it:
    http://conceptart.org/forums/showthread.php?t=112720

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    Blankstate - You are awesome. Courtney s exactly who I was thinking of. Plus you're paintover made me realize how far I still have to go so I reworked it. It's still not quite there but thanks for the inspiration!

    Kiera - Thanks for the link it helped a lot!

    Here is my progress so far. It's getting closer to where I want it to be. Thoughts?

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    Worked on it a little more today. I feel like I'm almost there, but I'm having problems with the eyes and rendering shaved hair. The eyes just keep looking fake/cartoony to me and well- I've just never painted a shaved head before. I think I might want to make this a portfolio piece one day, so I'm being extra nitpicky about it.

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    I think you got the eyebrows the wrong way round, they were better on the paint over.
    her eyes on the new one seem too small and sunken in their sockets.






    this one looks kind of derpy, like maganzo

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    They're also not aligned. Come on, you've got this far, push it a bit more.

    Blankstate that's a great paintover.


    I didn't think it was possible to be called an artist when you have nothing to say. It's like being a writer who publishes individual words as books and expects to be praised for it.
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    Velocity - haha I did not mean to make a derpina yikes. But you're right she does look kind of spaced out. The eyebrows are killing me.

    Black Spot - Thanks for the encouragement. Sometimes I feel like I'm wasting time trying to revise this so much, but I feel like I've learned a lot too. I'm never starting a painting, even one meant for toying with, without making a some-what detailed anatomically correct sketch first. Problem is I've gone so far I'm pretty much working without references at this point.

    I reworked it again and I'm itching to render the hell out of the jacket. Looking back to the first image I can't believe how much it's changed so far, but it's still not where I want it to be. Why does it look so fake to me still? Am I doing it wrong?

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    If you're raising an eyebrow the eye will be slightly more open than the other one. Most women have some sort of bags under their eyes, even if faint, well real women do. Even young ones will have some indication of the muzzle These are the kind of things that are making it look fake. Look in a mirror and pull some faces.


    I didn't think it was possible to be called an artist when you have nothing to say. It's like being a writer who publishes individual words as books and expects to be praised for it.
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    this is awesome, it contains all the advice you need, study it.



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    BlackSpot-- Good advice. I've been using photobooth on my mac now to compare/contrast expressions. It's pretty useful.

    Velocity-- It's an awesome paint-over. It made me realize how very, very far I have to go. I keep coming back and looking over it. Half of the pageviews for this thread are probably me hah

    Pushin' it

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    Hey it's looking better but her expression is still kinda all over the place and derpy right now. It doesn't seem to make a lot of sense or work very well.

    I think you should not worry about the rest of the image and just work on the face until you satisfied with it. The nose looks good and the eyes and chin look pretty good but unless she's a close relative of THE ROCK those eyebrows just don't work. The mouth seems strange as well, making it puckered seems to add to the derpiness. The iris' and pupils of the eyes seem very oval and should be more rounded. Practice drawing different eyes/eyebrows and mouths from pictures you find. Smoth out the skin and add some more values.

    I wouldn't worry about any makeup or smears until after.

    So here's a new po that might help. I made all of these changes with a soft round brush at 25% opacity. Don't feel the need to follow it exactly but your going to have to figure out just what kind of expression you are going for.

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    "Velocity-- It's an awesome paint-over. It made me realize how very, very far I have to go."

    no didnt mean that, and i didnt mean theres a lot to learn in some abstrsact way. i meant literaly look at the differences between the derpy version and the giant dose of sassitude version.

    look at the eyebrows, which are reversed from derpy to sassy.
    the teeth, i cant see em on sassy so she looks less Jim careyish. the goof smirk becomes a pissed of moue. the hair, ok youre going for punky but it looks really small on her head. etc. look for specifics.




    blankstates new paintver again is full of specific information.
    girl on the left looks like shes doing that face you make when one of your friends makes a really goofy joke about you, you know that one? the "huh yeah good one Lorraine!" face.

    on the right, the her left eyebrow cuts down into her nose making her expression much more awake, like she just heard tomorrows modelling shoot is with polar bears and no one told her before now like, 'OK Fernando, dont worry its cool (you little bastard... Jeez the shit I do for ten grand per day...)" or whatever.

    these might help





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