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Thread: Fantasy ship crew: Finished.

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    Fantasy ship crew: Finished.

    I'm in the middle of a commission for Kelestia productions that I have been working on for quite some time and it would be great to get some feedback on it.

    I'm doing a series of 12 portraits of the crew of a freight ship. The illustrations are for a roleplaing module and the setting is an early medieval themed fantasy world. It is very down to earth fantasy so there isn't much room for craziness.

    Any thoughts and critique is welcome.
    Thank you very much.
    Last edited by Frida Bergholtz; June 12th, 2013 at 04:24 PM.
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    Here are the two youngsters of the crew. The chippys apprentice and the deckboy. I tipped over a cup of coffe over my drawing right before I was going to scan the finished thing. Some of the resulting textures actually look pretty nice on the finished painting.

    More to come.
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    Two more. I usually keep the original line art of the sketch in the finished paintings so I thought that I would show you those as well.
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    This is the captain of the ship he was extra important to get right. Marden is the heroic type.

    ugh I forgot to downscale the intial sketch.
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    I'd say these look pretty good, though the lack of any visible colour in the shadows makes them bit gray, but it might work for the benefit of you to give a bit more sadder feel.
    The first one feels to be the weakest though, his butt seems to be kinda hovering above what he's supposed to be sitting on, and I'd think we would see his other leg too.

    Also on a side note that depends on how real medieval look you're going for, but all of these people thus far seem to wear really brown and gray clothes, which (as far as I know) wasn't really the thing in medieval times. Some specific colours were expensive sure, but you could get several kinds of other colours from nature that were available for common folk. Of course colourful clothes might not fit the mood, but just throwing that in there.
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    This is one of the more gruff sailors and the pilot of the ship.
    I got five more to do and I'm finishing off with the one I just started on.
    Recently I removed his hat because it made him look to 16th century.

    Durn it to large again...Oh well that was all for now thanks for looking.
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    Quote Originally Posted by TinyBird View Post
    I'd say these look pretty good, though the lack of any visible colour in the shadows makes them bit gray, but it might work for the benefit of you to give a bit more sadder feel.
    The first one feels to be the weakest though, his butt seems to be kinda hovering above what he's supposed to be sitting on, and I'd think we would see his other leg too.

    Also on a side note that depends on how real medieval look you're going for, but all of these people thus far seem to wear really brown and gray clothes, which (as far as I know) wasn't really the thing in medieval times. Some specific colours were expensive sure, but you could get several kinds of other colours from nature that were available for common folk. Of course colourful clothes might not fit the mood, but just throwing that in there.
    Thanks a lot!
    I will see what I can do about the hovering butt issue. Maybe some extra shading could fix it.

    I know that I have an issue with grayish looking colours. Partly it is because I put my original drawing on top of the paint, making everything looking a bit grey. Party it is because I'm simply not very good at colours. But I'm getting better gradually.

    I know that bright colours were popular. I have been starting out with bright colours on many of these paintings but eventually I ended up with muted tones simply because I liked the look of it better. I'm also trying to avoid them looking clownish to our modern eyes.

    Thank you very much for your thoughts.
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    I have the same opinion on colors...or the same difficulty if you want to call it that. I find that bright colors look cartoony and so my paintings are almost always very muted. I think it looks more subtle, more sophisticated, and just more appealing. But I am also starting to learn gradually, like you, to add more saturation.

    I especially like the boy looking out the window whilst peeling the turnips or whatever they are lol. Good job.
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    Do some research on the anatomy of real-world human neck. Anime / manga artists get it consistently wrong and are not a good source of reference.
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    The right arm of the gruff sailor (his right) looks very weird to me, I don't think bending that way is possible, or at least comfortable, and the underarm looks too short. Actually, having the elbow inwards like that looks more feminine than gruff Also, the lady's head might be too big.

    Other than that, I really like the feeling of these pictures. They remind me of a children's book I have about the middle ages. It has lovely illustrations, you might want to have a peek at it: "Tillbaka till medeltiden" by Ebbe Westergren and Tord Nygren.
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    I really like the feel of these!

    The deck boy's foot isn't right. We should be seeing more of the sole from our viewpoint, and it's direction isn't matching the direction of the leg (this could be easily fixed with lighting/recolouring, I imagine). Attached a quick paint over for ideas, hope you don't mind.

    The jolly man with his brew's legs need reworking. His left/top knee isn't defined well, making the leg look like it's twisting down the leg. His right/bottom leg seems to be oddly broken. The green in the paint over highlights the odd area. There's also something about his mid-section that I can't quite put my finger on.

    The captain's left leg on the sack also is turned oddly from the knee down.

    Really love the strong pose of the lass with the dog! I feel you could incorporate some this boldness in to the gruff sailor, as his right arm (camera left) doesn't seem to be bending correctly. Posing myself, the elbow should tuck further behind.

    The dog-'n'-lass is definitely the stand out favourite for me, and I love the vibe the jolly brew man has. Makes me wanna be a pirate or some such @:-D
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    Quote Originally Posted by Artfix View Post
    I have the same opinion on colors...or the same difficulty if you want to call it that. I find that bright colors look cartoony and so my paintings are almost always very muted. I think it looks more subtle, more sophisticated, and just more appealing. But I am also starting to learn gradually, like you, to add more saturation.

    I especially like the boy looking out the window whilst peeling the turnips or whatever they are lol. Good job.
    I like to work with a muted and monocromatic colour scheme and then add a splash of brighter colour. But I would like to learn to use colour better. I think that I am held back by clinging to tightly to my drawings. Mostly because I am so much better at drawing than painting.

    Yes those are turnips, I could'nt have him peeling potatoes. Besides turnips are prettier. It is my favorite one as well, because it is the most narrative of the bunch.



    Quote Originally Posted by arenhaus View Post
    Do some research on the anatomy of real-world human neck. Anime / manga artists get it consistently wrong and are not a good source of reference.
    Thank you feet and necks are a problem area for me so I should indeed work on them. Do I draw them similar to anime? Because I certainly never use anime or manga as a reference for drawing.

    Quote Originally Posted by EagleGrove View Post
    The right arm of the gruff sailor (his right) looks very weird to me, I don't think bending that way is possible, or at least comfortable, and the underarm looks too short. Actually, having the elbow inwards like that looks more feminine than gruff Also, the lady's head might be too big.

    Other than that, I really like the feeling of these pictures. They remind me of a children's book I have about the middle ages. It has lovely illustrations, you might want to have a peek at it: "Tillbaka till medeltiden" by Ebbe Westergren and Tord Nygren.
    The arm, Yes now that you mention it. He was supposed to hold his arm back stretching out the rope. That is why his lower arm is short and the angle odd looking. But if I take another look at it, I see that the angle of the hand and wrist does not support that at all. Yes her head is to large it was even larger before beliveve it or not. ha ha

    As a kid I read everything about the medieval times that I could get my grubby little hands on, but that one must have been eluding me. Which is strange me being Swedish and all. But that illustrator has been a big influence on me growing up.

    Thank you very much. I will see what I can do about the arm.

    Quote Originally Posted by Brain View Post
    I really like the feel of these!

    The deck boy's foot isn't right. We should be seeing more of the sole from our viewpoint, and it's direction isn't matching the direction of the leg (this could be easily fixed with lighting/recolouring, I imagine). Attached a quick paint over for ideas, hope you don't mind.

    The jolly man with his brew's legs need reworking. His left/top knee isn't defined well, making the leg look like it's twisting down the leg. His right/bottom leg seems to be oddly broken. The green in the paint over highlights the odd area. There's also something about his mid-section that I can't quite put my finger on.

    The captain's left leg on the sack also is turned oddly from the knee down.

    Really love the strong pose of the lass with the dog! I feel you could incorporate some this boldness in to the gruff sailor, as his right arm (camera left) doesn't seem to be bending correctly. Posing myself, the elbow should tuck further behind.

    The dog-'n'-lass is definitely the stand out favourite for me, and I love the vibe the jolly brew man has. Makes me wanna be a pirate or some such @:-D
    Of course I don't mind! I appreciate you taking the time to scrutinize my sometimes poor work on the anatomy. All those things that you and others have pointed out are things that I know has not been feeling 100% correct or just a little bit to vague. I don't know if I will be having much time to rework the pieces since I still has a few more to make and deadline is coming up. But I will certainly keep all your advice in mind for the future.

    Interestingly enough the pictures where I have used no reference at all are the ones that seem less flawed. It suggests to me that I have not fully understood the poses where I used reference and that it would benefit me to sketch the skeleton underneath before I draw flesh and clothing.

    Henceforth I will upload my works in progress instead of my finished work so it will be easier for me to alter them if I get some useful critique.
    Thank you everyone so far. Your input has been very helpful.
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    Quote Originally Posted by arenhaus View Post
    Do some research on the anatomy of real-world human neck. Anime / manga artists get it consistently wrong and are not a good source of reference.
    Could you elaborate this? Is it the placement or rendering of the sternocleidomastoid muscle or something else that's the specific issue (in both these images and in other images)?
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