Help need with light source and body posture
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    Help need with light source and body posture

    This drawing is proving to be challenging and I feel as if I'm drawing myself into a bigger mess . I would really appreciate some advice on this drawing. I smell that something might be off with the awkward posture and confusing light sources, but some advice will really help! I haven't focused on the BG much, so I want to suggest the character might be in a forest.

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    I'm thinking I don't have as much of a gripe with her posture as I do with the fact that her legs are cut off in a somewhat awkward spot. Currently they're of the same value as the face, and are thus stealing the focus away and leading the eye downward. If lengthening the dress isn't an option, then perhaps darkening the legs might be a good starting point. If the spell she's casting acts as a light source, its proximity to her legs should place them in deeper shadow since the skirt is in the way.

    (As an aside, have you considered extending the composition in order to show the entire figure?)

    All told though, I think this looks lovely thus far.

    Last edited by fusspot; January 19th, 2013 at 11:34 AM.
    Amy Phillips
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    Double Cluepon Software, inc.
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    Quote Originally Posted by fallen-reason View Post
    I smell that something might be off with the awkward posture and confusing light sources, but some advice will really help! I haven't focused on the BG much, so I want to suggest the character might be in a forest.
    To my eye, the piece looks fine for the approach you're taking (which I would describe as "rendered cartoon.") If you want to concern yourself with realistic anatomy, gesture, and lighting, find some reference photos or a live model and start a new picture. Right now everything is so stylized that worrying about posture and lighting is sort of beside the point.

    As far as suggesting the character might be in a forest: I will stick my neck out here and offer the radical suggestion that putting some trees in the background might do the trick.

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    That's such a wide base for a hat - what's holding it up besides frills of hair?

    Did you draw out the entire body before adding the dress in?

    The hands need a LOT of work. If your committed to the pose, then iron those guys out.

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    Quote Originally Posted by fusspot View Post
    I'm thinking I don't have as much of a gripe with her posture as I do with the fact that her legs are cut off in a somewhat awkward spot. Currently they're of the same value as the face, and are thus stealing the focus away and leading the eye downward. If lengthening the dress isn't an option, then perhaps darkening the legs might be a good starting point. If the spell she's casting acts as a light source, its proximity to her legs should place them in deeper shadow since the skirt is in the way.

    (As an aside, have you considered extending the composition in order to show the entire figure?)

    All told though, I think this looks lovely thus far.
    Thanks for the advice and I totally agree with you- the legs really did distract. I've tried opening it up to reveal her full figure and I still think the pose looks awkward =_= Will keep trying at it!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Giacomo View Post
    To my eye, the piece looks fine for the approach you're taking (which I would describe as "rendered cartoon.") If you want to concern yourself with realistic anatomy, gesture, and lighting, find some reference photos or a live model and start a new picture. Right now everything is so stylized that worrying about posture and lighting is sort of beside the point.

    As far as suggesting the character might be in a forest: I will stick my neck out here and offer the radical suggestion that putting some trees in the background might do the trick.
    Thanks. I do disagree though when you say you shouldn't be worried about posture and lighting because of the stylization.

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    I think the issues you're having have a bit to do with her center of gravity. I did a couple of quick paintovers, if you don't mind:

    Name:  crit_00.jpg
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    If you look at her center (the yellow line) and the approximate flow from top to bottom (the blue line) you can see that the position of (her) right leg makes her look a bit unstable. If you adjust the direction and the position of the foot a bit by bringing it out further and turning hte foot away from the center:

    Name:  crit_01.jpg
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    You can readjust the flow of her pose and give her a little more stability. You can also make it look a little more natural by putting an angle on the staff (the purple line). My paintover is pretty stiff-looking, but hopefully it'll give you an idea that you can play with. Also, be conscious of her hands. I know this is still in rough stages, but take care to pay as much attention to them as you have to her face. And be wary of their size. From the base of the palm to the fingertip, a hand should only be able to cover about 3/4 of a person's face, give or take, except when you're actively playing with proportions.

    Amy Phillips
    Director of Art, Minister of Beatings
    Double Cluepon Software, inc.
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