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I drew a new character design and applied the base colors to the sketch. I still need to finalize the lines in a new layer but otherwise I am happy with the result. I'd appreciate your input the design, but any input would be lovely. Any further progress will be posted in this thread.
Yes, the feet look awkward. Currently studying my anatomy books to improve my knowledge.
Last edited by Rexon; May 4th, 2012 at 11:07 PM.
Care to elaborate who the character is and what she's supposed to be doing? Right now she reminds me of Lulu from Final Fantasy with the fur cleavage and other eye covered but I don't see anything glaringly bad in the design with a first glance and without any knowledge of who she is.
As to who she is, it's still in progress but I did write a "short" bio containing more info than you probably want:
As a young Rey'revari (dark elven) girl and one of possibly the only few hundred of her kind, Miaren showed an early interest in swordsmanship despite living on the run within the reservations of Theranir alongside the other Revari refugees. She showed a remarkable talent with the sword since the age of six when, despite her father's desire to learn to hunt with bow and arrow to feed the others, killed numerous game with only a sword. A former soldier in the Confederate Army, her first master taught her everything he knew until Miaren outclassed him completely at the age of thirteen, leaving her to seek out adventure and game. This became her undoing.
On an expedition, she was ambushed by slavers pursuing rumors of a rare Rey'revari sword maiden. Despite inflicting severe lacerations and a few severed limbs, she was overwhelmed by the numbers. Bidders all the way from the Lodia Dominion came to claim her as a status symbol, but Chesmarn (exiled Commander of the Knights of Lodia and eventually the leader of the mercenary guild The Brotherhood), took interest. Upon recently purchasing an estate with the money he brought from Lodia and with the money his associates Arannir (former High Magi in the Circle) and Aden (apothecary and best friend of Arannir) worked off selling potions to the other guilds while pursuing the dream of starting their own, Chesmarn outbid the nobles by at least double, putting themselves into a rather heavy debt.
Chesmarn, regretting spending such money but with no desire for a slave or status symbol, gave her a choice to be free. Miaren, in a world completely alien to her, wanted to stick with Chesmarn to repay what he spent on her. Chesmarn, oddly pleased, decided that she would be the first formal member into the guild The Brotherhood. Since her formal induction three years after the event, she has been prominent in swordsmanship demonstrations, odd jobs, and contracts over the course of five years, and unknown to her knowledge, paid off the debt. Chesmarn, fearing she would leave if she knew her debt was paid, paid for her tuition into schools and swordsmanship masters to train her to accumulate more debt all while saying the debt has only been repaid by half. While initially hating having her as a status symbol, he quickly became to like the renown of having such a prestigious member in his guild.
Driven, determined, and headstrong to a fault, Miaren has wandered across the free areas (not controlled by Ghath or the Ackad Confederacy) perfecting her skills. She is loyal to Chesmarn, though upon his constant requests to be her own person seem lost on her. Despite this, she loves travelling and, using her earnings, buys many outfits and trinkets as memoirs of her travels. Though she desires her debt repaid, she loves working for the guild and learning, appreciating her new life given to her.
Sorry man, but you asked and I wrote.
And fixed those feet....somewhat...
Last edited by Rexon; May 5th, 2012 at 05:38 AM.
Yeah, that was kinda unnecessarily lot. You could have cut the second and third paragraph, since whether dude X paid less or more than other dudes doesn't really relate to the character. But this:As to who she is, it's still in progress but I did write a "short" bio containing more info than you probably want:
Does all their prey actually charge towards them (like killer deer, killer birds and killer rabbits) or do they hunt something that realistically attacks them (like dragons or something) or did she actually throw her sword to the animals?killed numerous game with only a sword.
As for the stuff in the bio and the design, if she has a thing for collecting trinkets, I could see her actually wearing several of them, as well as have her wear a mish-mash of different styles/culture clothes, considering she travels a lot so she could keep her memories with her (them being probably important too to her), and they wouldn't be just stuff in a closet somewhere.
Also I wonder whether sleeves like that would be very good for a sword fight since they give the enemy a chance to grab them and personally I'd do more research on real swords. Those look bit... bulky, unbalanced and the lack of the hand guard makes it look like her hand may slip to the blade.
Not to be too much of a jerk---but in terms of real-world contrapposto and perspective, that pose just makes no sense at all. You'd do well to decide which leg her weight is on and proceed accordingly. It might also be a good idea to find some photo reference.
Clothing-wise, cloth is acted upon by gravity. That means that sleeves are not going to float above an arm unless there is good reason for them to do so (boning, tiers of stiff ruffles all resting on one another, etc.). It also means that it would be really nice if you set up some reason for why those sleeves aren't just sliding off her arms and the shirt off her boobs. I know there needs to be some suspension of disbelief in fantasy but "antigravity fabric" just seems a little hard to swallow.
PS - we didn't need her life history, we just needed to know, in three sentences or less, what she is (eg: master warrior) and what she's doing at this precise moment. And as a master warrior she wouldn't be wearing clothing that's going to slide down south any second now and impede her movements.
Thank you for the responses. Working on the corrections, though it looks like the design needs to be retooled, particularly the upper half. I intended them to be more traveler-esque clothing but I see what you guys mean.
@TinyBird, some game but mostly feral animals like the world's equivalent of tigers and lions. As a child, she collected a lot of animal pelts.
And sorry for the bio. Really should've kept it short.
@Giacomo, currently working out some new poses though I really like Kvel's reworking of the pose. You don't sound like a jerk at all.
@vineris, working on redesigning the upper body portion of the outfit. Also, need to add some trinkets she collected so that it fits her character. Yeah, kind of forgot gravity and focused more so on getting the outfit right in my head. Plus, looks like detached sleeves aren't so much a good idea for someone who is a swordsman...
Working on a different pose, this time a more defensive position with the swords. Let me know what you think so far on it.
You're relying too heavily on outlines, which I think is your biggest problem. Draw the skeleton first; it doesn't have to be a detailed skeleton, but it's so much easier to work from the inside out than the other way around. Either way you have to understand what's going on on the inside before you can properly draw the outside.
Look at these for example;
@Giacomo, Lhune: Thanks for the input guys. Decided to start studying skeletal structure, how the muscles form on the skeleton, etc. if I am ever going to draw the human form correctly. I own Atlas of Human Anatomy for the Artist, Artistic Anatomy, and Andrew Loomis' books, but I always relied on observation. It ain't easy being told something you felt proud of being criticized, but if I wanted mindless praise and pats on the back I'd go someplace else. Thank you for your advice.
@TinyBird, that actually sounds awesome. Lu Bu was skilled with both the spear and bow so having Miaren actually competent with a bow sounds excellent for her character.
There's nothing wrong with studying muscle-and-bone anatomy, but the issue here is your ability (or lack thereof) to accurately convey a specific pose. Rather than copying Bridgman, your time would be better spent putting in the due diligence of finding reference material (live model, Google image search, shooting your own reference photos, whatever) and using it to get the gesture and foreshortening right.
Looks like it's best to postpone this design until I get a better sense of the human form. Been relying to much on drawing what's on my mind.
This whole thread is out of my league when it comes to anatomy/pose/composition. I would only mention, about what you where asking for in the first place, that reference is a very good muse when it comes to design. You are trying to repeat the specific design language of a certain era, and therefore you should know that design language.