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This is my first post on the site, so hello to all.
I've been furiously drawing for the past month and a half after realizing that I need a career change before I get old. I think I have improved a lot with the help of FZDschool's youtube channel, but it's difficult to critique your own work sometimes and friends are far too forgiving.
That's where you guys come in, be brutal
Most of the subject matter is derived from my Dungeons & Dragons campaign, it's great for working out the imagination.
I've selected an assortment of different material to show my full range of skills, hopefully this will help you guys nail down what my weaknesses are.
OOps, I made the images huge O_O
Ok so since I know you're familiar with feng ill speak his language. One of your weaknesses is that you're lacking the "cool" factor. This ultimately means that your designs aren't interesting and creative enough. Your plane looks like a plane, your beach looks like a beach, your musician looks like a musician, but not really ones that grab your attention and say "Awsome! I want to see that in real life!"
To improve in this area you need to start studying what design truly is, and then start pushing yourself to be more creative. In your head you see a beach but you need to begin telling yourself that the beach you see in your head is mediocre and you gotta find 10 more cooler ways to paint a beach. Make sense?
I agree with the lack of cool thing, I have big cool images in my head, but when I try to get them down they always look very, VERY bad because I don't yet understand the fundamentals. This leads to all of my images being simplified and made up of very simple forms.
The biplane is not a design at all, but rather a study of how to draw simple forms correctly in 3D space. I just recently upgraded from cubes you see
I was trying some 3D desiging a little while ago but it looks a little skewiff. so I toned it back to simple shapes again to build my skills more carefully.
I'm not sure if it's 'cool', but it's a design. I drew it after watching an FZD episode about a t-rex science vessel, feng said that he just took a jeep and a t-rex and mashed them together to come up with a design, so I took a grasshopper and a glider and stuck them together. The resulting vessel is highly impractical indeed.
I'll take the cool factor on board and look forward to focusing much more on the actual design phase.
excellent advice, thanks.
I hear ya, and its good to hear you say you're focusing on fundamentals because that is key. Keep in mind that even with the most basic fundamentals, achieving cool factor is possible. Lets take your recent post of your science grasshopper vehicle. What you have is "ok". Its getting closer to cool, but what we want is "knock your socks off badass!" how do we achieve that? What I like to do is think about a grasshopper and a glider and ask myself, " What is the cool thing about a grasshopper?" "A glider?" and then you exaggerate that. what you've done here, is cleverly enough combined the 2 elements into 1, and the very nature of this makes it kinda interesting. But currently nothing is standing out. its not grasshoppery enough, or glidery enough. When i picture or study a grasshopper:
i notice that rearmost legs are quite visibly larger and vertically visible...its the thing that makes it a grasshopper...
Now in your design, the place where you could have really had fun and pushed it, was with those back legs, but you pulled back, and they're below the body, and not a showpiece...it's losing the essence of the bad ass grasshopper. Once again, since you enjoy fengs vids, You'll notice that a very common mistake alot of young designers and painters make, is they don't make the "selling point" physically and visually big enough on the canvas. Exaggerate, begin to identify the essence of things, feature them and exaggerate them and you'll get closer to hitting that "cool factor" mark.
-start a revolution.
It's something that I've always sort of known, but it has never really clicked. From now on when I start a picture, I'll first decide on a selling point and try to base everything else around that aspect. It just makes sense.
I can assure you that I'm giving heaps of thought to the methods... I'm just not good at them yet :p
Unfortunately you are very right though, I don't have anything specific that I should work on, just every fundamental drawing principle.
It just goes to show, learning a difficult skill is a marathon, not a sprint.
Okay I definitely like the vehicle design stuff you're doing in the FZD school style; seems like a great way to practice technical design.
I do agree that you should work on the "coolness" factor just by playing with design, and scale is one thing you can play with. For example a statue could be normal-size and be well rendered and still be dull, but show that the statue is god-size compared to a crowd of people and it becomes way cooler by default.
Also just keep doing studies of things like figure gestures, anatomy, flesh tones, etc. Remember though, values are more important than color, so focus on black and white studies until you get values down.
Hope that helped a little!
I do a lot of stuff that I see on FZD school, I'm trying to get a free art degree haha.
My girlfriend just bought me an excellent anatomy book, I'll go back to basics for a while and do some studies.
I've been trying to think cooler, even if it means just throwing on bells and whistles until I need to tone it back.
I think I have some problems showing off scale, I don't even know how to start working on it though, probably just try and draw things of vast scale next to things of normal scale... it sounds so simple, but my drawings often end up looking flat. Maybe I need to work on volumetric fog.