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Thread: Mario WIP

  1. #1
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    Cow Mario WIP

    This is a request from my brother for his birthday.

    I am drawing Mario/toad witnessing a natural disaster ruin an environment.

    Atmosphere is supposed to be chaotic semi-dark and dramatic.

    I am new to this site and jumped into a post on my sketchbook and put this here. Then discovered a better spot to put this. So i am posting it again.

    Please any input or ideas to help me improve as an artist is more then accepted and will be taken seriously. Or if you simply want to leave a comment that is fine too.

    Last but note least i hope you like my work.

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    At the moment it's a bit difficult to tell what is going on ( I can see toad and Luigi? Or mario... I can't be sure), but without a nicely focused picture, it becomes difficult to try and understand what it is you're doing. I can see as well, in the detail shot, we don't have all the detail that you've done thus far, which again makes it difficult to assess.

    So far I can tell that you've spent a great amount of time in this one corner of the entire page. Are you planning to use up the entire page? I would suggest mapping out your entire composition for this whole page before filling in any small amounts of detail. You should gradually fill in details through out the entire composition equally, this way the entire image in consistent. Also stops you from exhausting yourself on one fine corner, and growing bored of the rest of the image.

    This is really the only kind of crit I can give with this being the only example of your work, but I hope it helps in one way or another. Best of luck with the final result. If you don't achieve exactly what it is you want with this one, there is always the next.

    Also, you have a super long torso. Amazing.

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    Thanks. I'll try my hardest to take better photos. I'm no photographer and im working with poor lightning and various other things.

    As for the composition and detailing. I always break it into sections and work with my focal point first. My focal points usually have the highest amount of detail. I also already mapped out what i want in the whole picture basically and have an idea of what i want to do with it. But i will keep that into consideration.

    This piece is going to resemble my talents as an artist so i plan to work on it and try to make it the best i can possibly do. I will be using this to advertise my work and potentially (if its good enough) bring in customers. So i will be spending as much time on this little corner as the rest of the picture (if needed).

    The main thing i want criticized is my use of lighting. In my pieces i can usually always spot many mistakes with lightning. So i am making it a major point to make sure i do it properly or atleast better this time.

    Also, if i ever hit a point that i am "worn out" or i simply dont know what to do next or 100% positive how i want to tackle the proejct. I simply stop drawing and wait a few hours come back with fresh eyes / mind and go back to work. I am taking all precautions and plan to stretch the time i spend on this out as long as its needed to finish.

    Also, for those who might comment about it. The paper im using is very old (i bought it 4 years ago). It has marks on it and folds and bends. I dont plan on framing it so i didn't do the inch or so your supposed to do on the border. It's basically a poster on art paper.

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    I would post whatever preliminary drawing you've done, so we can see the entire composition. I think it's a valid process to work section by section if you know what you're doing, but it's difficult to critique a drawing that's not there.

    If you don't have a tripod, try setting your camera on something stable, like a stool, and taping or pinning your drawing to a wall. You might also try taking the photo outside, on an overcast day. Someone who knows more about it can give you less amateur advice.

    Oh, and why not buy new paper? The cracks and folds might work with the destroyed scenery, but more likely it just won't look good.

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    Most of the illustration seems the same mid-tone grey, and I can't seem to translate what's going on. Moreover, try drawing some thumbnails, it might help.

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    @Grunler- Thanks for the tips. I try to take it outside when i can and i usually have someone hold it verticle in the sunlight. Then i alter the darks alittle in GIMP to bring out what it really looks like to the best of my ability. But sometimes i dont have the luxury of having someone hold it for me, so the quality of the photo goes to the shitter. Also i forgot to put the close image feature on *facepalm*. As for mapping things out i'm a wierd artist in a sense or maybe just a lazy one. I'll upload something to give a general idea of how i approach things.

    @flashback Thanks for the tip. I probably should work with thumbnails first but when i have an idea and just want to draw i just tackle the project. The main purpose for this is to showcase my technique / ability to draw detail. So as long as it looks like what i want it to, i really don't care much about the other stuff that will be taking far more seriously in later projects.

    But critiques and stuff are still more then welcome.

    Now after this, my whole piece relies on a strong execution of this "wasteland". I need to capture its esscence just about perfect or atleast well. Or else the whole piece falls into shambles

    Oh and as for buying new art paper. I just lost my job its a money issue.

    Here is my latest update. I'm about 10 hours of worktime in.

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    Last edited by PMMurphy; June 30th, 2012 at 01:59 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by PMMurphy View Post
    @Grunler- Thanks for the tips. I try to take it outside when i can and i usually have someone hold it verticle in the sunlight.
    I usually just lay the piece flat on some dry concrete in the shade and take the picture from above. It's not perfect but it doesn't require anyone else and the ground doesn't move. You can also tape it to a box using low-tack tape and set the box up outside. (I get painter's masking tape and moosh my fingers on it to make it less sticky so it doesn't damage the paper.)

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    Quote Originally Posted by vineris View Post
    I usually just lay the piece flat on some dry concrete in the shade and take the picture from above. It's not perfect but it doesn't require anyone else and the ground doesn't move.
    Problem with that is i need to be real close to the picture to take a photo and i don't want my big body casting a shadow over everything. I tried it.

    As for everything else i will keep them in consideration. For now i'll just keep having people hold it for me

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    Update.

    I found alittle step i can sit my project on when taing photos

    Sorry about not showing the rest, i did leave a little so you can have an idea of what it looks like.

    I'm having an issue with this grass. Any tips or pointers?

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    I see some problems with perspective developing. Oh well. I continue onwards!

    ALso its alittle grey, but i think its still good enough so i didnt tamper with it in GIMP or anything. This is first time i took the photo in shade instead of sunlight.

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    It looks like it's coming along nicely, but still with much work to be done.

    I don't recall seeing a post where you explained quite what's going on - I think at this point, since you added the grass and it completely changed how I saw the perspective, either more WIP shots or a quick artists statement may help quite a bit. Plus, for grass, sometimes ya gotta grin and bear it (which just now hit me is a synonym for smile and nod..) and just do the strokes for the grass.

    Right now, I really can't tell what's going on.

    I'd also work on the entire composition, developing each section equally because if you work for 3 hours on one part, 3 hours on another part, and then screw up on the third section (badly enough that it cannot be fixed), then what? You just lost 6 hours of work. That's not fun. Just my two cents though.

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    I have to agree that your process is just not good. I don't know why anyone would want to work this way. How can you tell what the finished product will be like? Did you do some roughs? If you keep saying to yourself..."ok no one can tell what's going on but they will when its finished"...why would you ever risk all of that time? You need to know that is coming across the way you want it from the beginning, not the end.

    Apart from that, I think you will need linework around the figures to stand them apart. Its all lost in a sea of grey texture. Nothing wrong with using lines tho since they are cartoons.

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    Ok, So this is basically what the background is a previously large body of water got split in half with a unrealistically dramatic earthquake to the point that its slowly pouring and (evaporating) into the earth. The right side is chaotic and untamed while the left side is a bit more organized and tamed. The grass is slowly decaying from the cut-point of the earthquake. The right side of the lake is completely (if not entirely) dried up to exaggerate the effects of the earthquake.

    I understand my process could be better but i have a good grasp on what i want to do so i'm working with it.

    As for the comment on messing up a particular section, i know that fair and well and plan to take it with a grain of salt. Also im spending more then just 3 hours per section, i think i'm at around 20 hours so far? atleast 15 though.

    Also about the sea of grey. I'm waiting to see what it looks like at the end then i'll go back over it to darken spots if i think i need to. I'm currently using the pencils HB,2B and 10B for this. So there are parts of it that literally cant get any darker.

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    20 hours - How big is this composition? How big is each section? Just wondering.

    Also, at the end, it'll be even more confusing than it is now - I understand what you're doing, since when something is "finished", that sometimes helps determine tweaks we need to make. Either way, I can tell you that Mario and Toad will need to be darkened - and stop using blending tools. The end result of anyone's work who uses tortillians and paper stumps will only come out dingy and dirty every time. Many folks think that using these is a magic wand to making your work look well blended and really nice, when in reality, that's far from what actually happens. Or at least that's my opinion.

    I'm also wondering if an earthquake would cause a river to dry up, especially from the middle, when the fault line is clearly to the left. Plus, do you have a horizon line established?

    I'm asking questions and trying to give you some crits, since I don't think the idea is being communicated very clearly. Please don't take my words as harsh, soul-less criticism - I can tell you're serious about drawing both by the work you're doing and the fact that you've invested time in it. I want to see you improve, so I'm just trying to give you food for thought.

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    Thanks hitnrun very good crits and things to think about, i have also considered it aswell. As for the tip on the blending stumps and such i'll keep that in mind and practice without them. But my stuff i have that i used without stumps don't look as good as with them.

    The whole drying up the way it did is a highly exaggerated concept that can't possibly happen in real life. I have already thought of ways to do something like this better and things i might do when i finish. If people don't understand the concept then i know for a fact i can't do these type of exaggerations and i wont do them again, (or at least I'll show a reasonable transition into the exaggeration).

    I have just started taking things seariously these past 2 - 3 years and 2 of those years i didn't even draw or produce or sketch. So i am a very young artist with a lot of learning ahead of him. I appreciate the comments and also appreciate the understanding of how people can be emotional with things they enjoy.

    As for the reasoning behind the 20 hours. I spent more time looking at my pictures from short and far distances then i do actually drawing.

    EDIT: Also i plan to type a rather detailed description of what i tried to accomplish and the various things i feel could be better and many other details when i have finished the piece. But if you have things to say as i go along its more then helpful. The reason i posted here is because it says (Critique & W.I.P Showcase). Mostly the W.I.P Showcase part, i dont expect highly detailed critiques other then commenting on my process and or things they might be able to pull out. So if you want you can save your opinions for when its finished or share them now. Either way is fine by me.

    Last edited by PMMurphy; July 3rd, 2012 at 12:12 AM.
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    I would hold back on the darks until you've filled your page. You can always make an area darker later, when you can relate it to other parts of the image. Making your darks lighters is a bit more difficult.

    I would do some thumbnails of how you want the final image to be composed, and how you want your values distributed. You have a very specific environment in mind, so I would focus on readability. Your surrealist tendencies will no doubt show up even then, so I wouldn't worry about the image losing that quality.

    Here's a paintover as an example of how you might plan out your values. Simplify. Try breaking things down into 4 values. Do this to your current image, and you'll see that things are pretty jumbled.

    Mario WIP

    Also, here's a work by Hisaharu Motoda, as inspiration and reference.

    Mario WIP

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    @Grunler I am in complete agreement right now with you about the thumbnails and sketches. I have also came to a conclusion to do so. Simply because i have so much space to fill with very little idea of what i want in that space. I thought my brain would get clicking as i worked like it usually does but this time it doesn't. I still don't have an idea of what i want in the sky exactly but i do have some clues in mind.

    So i'll get to working on these sketches real quick. As for the surrealism part i am trying my hardest to not really manipulate too much of the world!

    Thanks for showing me Hisaharu Motoda's stuff, it really is interesting seeing how he draws that city and i really does help me think of ideas and such.

    Last edited by PMMurphy; July 3rd, 2012 at 12:58 PM.
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    Here is a composition sketch without values/shadows. I am going to work on the clouds alittle more then i'll upload the values version of it afterwards.

    The right side (grass = long untamed), the left side (grass = short and tamed)

    Left side is pretty much just grass.

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    Now this is with basic values.

    I understand the high importance of a thumbnail now. I have never worked this large on a piece so this thumbnail was much easier to invision my direction and plan for it.

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    Last edited by PMMurphy; July 3rd, 2012 at 06:27 PM.
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    Update, i was up till 4 am drawing this grass.....

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    update

    Time to push some darks here and there, and make the grass more "lively"

    Also the water still needs a lot of work

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    Oh! That's water?! Honestly, I didn't know what I was looking at. You see the thumbnail I drew? That was my best guess at what I was looking at, with the help of your description.

    When you do thumbnails, try making them much smaller and even less detailed. Maybe 3"x4". You should do lots of variations on the same idea, just to see if there isn't a better composition than what you first thought of. If the composition reads at 3"x4", you should be set for 18"x24".

    If you're not going towards surrealism intentionally, then you really need to invest a lot of time in the fundamentals. The landscape simply doesn't look like it's receding into space. Even fields, forests, and oceans can be broken down into geometry that conforms to perspective. Besides that there is absolutely no atmospheric perspective, and things remain just as sharp and focused in the foreground as in the background. Every section of the landscape (water, shore, forest, rocky-area) is also segregated by a dark outline, which flattens things out even further. You're also not looking at any reference for what you're drawing. If you're drawing a tree, looks at trees. If you're drawing clouds, look at clouds. Even cartoons are abstracted from life. If you don't understand what you're drawing, the viewer isn't going to get it either.

    Learn one, two, and three-point perspective. Do more still life drawings (from life). Do more landscape drawings (from life). When you do, concentrate on a.)Proportion, and b.)Perceiving your subjects as objects in three dimensional space. Forget about detail. In fact, I wouldn't even touch value. Try doing so in just line.

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    Those are things to note down, but honestly. I cannot see what you see no matter how hard i try to force myself. Would you please red line and divide the sections that confuse you the most?

    I have been working on this too long to see something other then what i intend to see / see now.

    As to thumbnails. If my project is very large, why make a very small thumbnail? its like impossible to fit everything.

    Thanks for the time and crits aswell.


    EDIT: This is supposed to be alittle surrealistic, its a drawing of mario / toad standing on top of a cliff. Looking down at an extended scenerary that is split in half by a fissure or highly exagerated earthquate that reaches infinity.

    Last edited by PMMurphy; July 5th, 2012 at 03:58 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by PMMurphy View Post
    As to thumbnails. If my project is very large, why make a very small thumbnail? its like impossible to fit everything.
    The main points are clarity and expandability. If you can convey your main idea (the basic shapes of the characters and environment and value areas) as a small and non-detailed version, then you won't have as much clarity problems in large size too, and your image won't become a jumbled mess even when looked from afar/in smaller size, and when your thumbs are small with few details, you need less time to do them, which means you spend less time and effort (and you're less attached to them) while exploring different compositions, versions, so on.

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    Well the concept behind this particular composition is the only thing you can really tell from a distance is mario/toad. That is because i want the individual to look at it be like. Oh hey i know those characters (walk up) then the closer they get the more details are being shown and the more particular it gets.

    Just an idea, probably not a good one though.

    Edit: The thumbnail i posted here is also 1/4th the size of the project. Why should i make a thumbnail that is 1/16th or 1/32nd etc etc etc. Doesn't make sense to me.

    Last edited by PMMurphy; July 5th, 2012 at 05:33 PM. Reason: forgot something
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    update

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    Life drawing & Still Life thread:http://www.conceptart.org/forums/sho...97#post3498997

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    Quote Originally Posted by PMMurphy View Post
    As to thumbnails. If my project is very large, why make a very small thumbnail? its like impossible to fit everything.
    You can't see the roads between Paris and Prague on a globe either, but if you want to see what shape Europe is and where it is in relation to Australia then a globe is more useful than a road map.

    If you want to see why having a good abstract design is important, go look at the Finally Finished section or the Sketchbooks section and start analyzing the thumbnails. You should eventually notice that there's often a big connection between how appealing the thumbnail is and how good the artist is overall.

    It's especially important given that we usually view pictures from across a room and if the overall design is not bold and interesting, if the whole thing looks like a grey blob from far away, then we're likely to skip it and go straight to where the food is.

    *** Sketchbook * Landscapes * Portfolio * Store***

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  30. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by vineris View Post
    You can't see the roads between Paris and Prague on
    It's especially important given that we usually view pictures from across a room and if the overall design is not bold and interesting, if the whole thing looks like a grey blob from far away, then we're likely to skip it and go straight to where the food is.
    I know this. That is why i spend atleast 50+ hours looking at my piece from a far distance usually from across the room while i work. The place where this is going to be hanging is a small room so i really don't have to take in accreditation someone looking at it from down the street.

    Here is my Sketchbook:http://conceptart.org/forums/showthr...93#post3491593


    Life drawing & Still Life thread:http://www.conceptart.org/forums/sho...97#post3498997

    If you comment on my art and i am curious about your critique and want to learn more. I will ask you questions bluntly and directly.
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    Quote Originally Posted by PMMurphy View Post
    I know this. That is why i spend atleast 50+ hours looking at my piece from a far distance usually from across the room while i work. The place where this is going to be hanging is a small room so i really don't have to take in accreditation someone looking at it from down the street.
    That's not the point.

    I cannot make out what is going on in this piece at any size. That's
    generally a sign that the piece is flawed. Thumbnail sketches
    are used to establish composition, placement and basic forms and are
    important tools to successful rendering.

    Honestly, you would be better off scrapping this altogether and doing
    some preliminary sketches to help nail the composition and structure
    which are severely broken at the moment.

    Last edited by Star Eater; July 6th, 2012 at 09:28 PM.
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  33. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by Star Eater View Post
    That's not the point.

    I cannot make out what is going on in this piece at any size. That's
    generally a sign that the piece is flawed. Thumbnail sketches
    are used to establish composition, placement and basic forms and are
    important tools to successful rendering.

    Honestly, you would be better off scrapping this altogether and doing
    some preliminary sketches to help nail the composition and structure
    which are severely broken at the moment.
    Good to know. But i was told by an artist named Jerry Stith to never scrap any piece and to fully finish everything you do even if it is "flawed". If i scrap my mistakes i can't look back at them and learn from it.

    Plus i'm not at the stage of learning to be worrying about composition and how perfectly readable something is right now.

    I plan to do thumbnails for now on and i will. But i am focusing on how i can improve this at its current quality. I am just having confusion as to why i should jam a canvas of any size into a few small inches. I mean, wouldn't this take away from the capabilities and possibilities of a large canvas? If not then why? What if i do 100 thumbnails and blow them up on the large canvas and i alter it afterwards anyway, what was the point then? I understand why you wouldn't want details i only made details because i already had them and i was aiming to work with what i have down on paper already.

    I understand how abstract designs are important and everything but i generally change everything i plan as i draw anyway. I always change everything. I always have a better idea or a different vision i feel is better so i never really stick to one thumbnail no matter how many times i draw it up.

    This is why i stopped making them actually, i figured if i did enough life studies sooner or later my creative ability would improve.

    But back to the thumbnails. I also cant imagine everything i want to put in a large canvas while staring at a small canvas. When i stare at a small canvas i think small. How would i change that habit?

    Just a few questions and such.

    Here is my Sketchbook:http://conceptart.org/forums/showthr...93#post3491593


    Life drawing & Still Life thread:http://www.conceptart.org/forums/sho...97#post3498997

    If you comment on my art and i am curious about your critique and want to learn more. I will ask you questions bluntly and directly.
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