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Hi! My name is Ashley Stewart. I graduated several years ago and am currently working in a non art related day job while trying to improve my art in my free time. Attending TAD would be a dream come true, but theres no way for me to do it without a scholarship (and I'm afraid I'm not good enough for one of those lol). I've always wanted to work in illustration, so I am now trying to build a portfolio. I don't think I'm to the point of having anything I could send out yet, but that's why I'm looking for feedback
Last edited by Dreoilin; July 9th, 2012 at 03:44 PM.
Your works are pretty good, the only thing you need is to learn value separation to add depth to your composition and your painting technique. The color palette you use is ok for some type of drawings but not for everything, if you want to become an illustrator you really need to learn to catch attention from your viewers and in this job the only way you can do it is to use vibrant colors and details.
If there's anything you want to ask i'll be glad to help
I like your work. I would suggest simplifying your values groups to strengthen your compositions. Try to use the values to indicate depth. Most of your pictures look washed-out because you don't use cast shadows.
I'm gonna post these Greg Pro tutorials here because they were helpful for me. I think they clearly show how to properly use values in the simplest way possible. Also I'm posting a Ron Lemen's lighting conditions example.
I love your first and fifth images. Definitely a lot of cool things going on there. I think you're approaching a level of style that is definitely unique and "you," and if you'd like to start working as an illustrator, get going. I think the best method to see if you're ready is looking at the field where you want to join, and if your initial mental reaction is "I can do better than that," then you're ready.
But yeah, good work, good style, get goin.
For the most part, I agree with the crits, but I think when critting these pieces, it's important to remember that this is INTENTIONALLY an art-nouveauified version of the Arthur Rackham style. Which means that extreme cast shadows and lots of soft edges are not as common.
I definitely think value separation could be worked on. I love the colors in some pieces, in some pieces they are a bit wrong (muddy, random, unintentionally dull). I think you are improving, though. I always look forward to your IOW entries, even though I never participate.
I think part of the problem is that there is such a big market for the slick, smooth, glossy digital look, that the fairytale-esque illustrations often get unfairly compared to that stuff. But there is definitely a market for these types of illustrations and I think you will do well in it. Put together a whole portfolio that works as well as your best three pieces here, and I suspect you'll get professional work.
'Cuz life is full of your regrets, and I should be one...
Puppy you're half right about market. Sure there are request for that kind of style too but you think is right to close doors to all the other styles? It's kind like have a computer shop and choose only to sell cpu and mouses... of course people will need that for their pc to work but can you sell enough of that in order to make a good living?
That's why i think today you must learn to paint the "common way" and then you can specialize, not the other way around.
I really appreciate everyone's comments! The issue of value seperation is one I think I have been starting to get an idea of, but I haven't really gotten the hang of it- that's definitely top of my list of things to focus on. (I think it goes with my ongoing war to improve composition and color- all of which I suck at lol).
Puppykitten I really appreciate your comment in particular- it does feel sometimes like all styles around here sometimes get unfairly compared to the usual slick digital stuff. I love looking at that kind of art, but I don't love doing it- I enjoy painting the way I do, and want to improve without totally changing my style I'm not sure I can agree with the idea of everyone learning to paint in "the common way" Hitsu//San- but then I'm just an amateur so that might be why :p
I've been trying to practice working traditionally (instead of faking it digitally) so I've added a watercolor and ink piece. Hope to add more soon!
Hi there, Your artworks are very interesting, you got a nice style and I think should definitely start working as illustrator!
I think "Shorinji_Knight" gave you a lot of great advices, just use it and good luck!
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It's good work...obviously heavy Rackham influence. Actually in a couple cases I can see a little too much and that will likely be picked up by other ADs in the illustration field. Not a huge deal, just sayin.
There is plenty of room for your style of course, mainly children's books and I would look into greeting card publishers as well. That said, I would try to focus my portfolio a bit more and actually develop an illustration "arc" from a story or two. Basically in a portfolio you want the reaction to be, "Yeah, I can see you doing 18 illustrations in this style for this book". In other words, demonstrate what you want to do. Hope that helps - good luck!