LeadCarbonate's Composition 1.1

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Thread: LeadCarbonate's Composition 1.1

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    LeadCarbonate's Composition 1.1

    Howdy!

    Thanks for taking the time to review my work. Please leave feedback if you have any.

    A few (windy) questions:

    A. I have been keeping fairly close to the 1 hour time limit. I've noticed the feedback often consists of a "check your position on this, value is a bit off here, watch your negative space" and that sort of thing. I'd never turn my nose up at constructive feedback but a lot of these issues would be corrected with more time.

    So the question is "should I spend more time on these to show the level of what I can see and correct"? Or should I stick to one hour to perhaps reveal other clues that may lead to valuable criticism. For example, one might conclude that I don't have a very organized approach to these based on the level they come to in one hour.

    B. What level of digital measurement are folks using? I tend to go without any aid until about 20 minutes in and then I start checking the positions of major points using guides. Generally I toggle the guides on/off to rely on my eye to actually implement the correction. I've experimented with a grid as well. This is naturally very helpful but perhaps undermines the exercise.

    Here are my studies. Again, I capped them to around an hour unless otherwise noted.

    Finally, some of these I did on a livestream while narrating my thought process. I'll include links where appropriate.

    Name:  masterValueCompStudy-01.jpg
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    http://www.twitch.tv/verbalprocessing/b/530566621
    (drawing starts around 41:00)

    Carracci uses rhythmic curves built from contours, value contrast, eye lines and action to circulate the viewer's eye around the image hinting at the relationship between the characters. Venus looks on dispassionately, even disapprovingly at the Satyr's antics. The Cherubs are pulling hair and mugging for the camera, suggesting that they may be competing with Satyr's for her attention.

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    I did this one offline and in silence. I was overwhelmed by the amount of detail and had a hard time blocking in shapes. I feel like I'm really fighting my internal symbols on faces, but then many do.

    As for Bouguereau he delivers a strong, fast read. The figure is confrontational but defeated. Her head is lilting in a blast of blooming light surrounding flat, black hair. The angle of illumination on her face guides to eye to her slumped shoulder and then across to reveal ill fitting clothes and an outstretched hand. Her bare feet are pulled back up under her skirt. Is she ashamed or protecting them from the rugged ground?

    Name:  masterValueCompStudy-03.jpg
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    Oh Sargent ... I was a fool! You drew me in with such a deceptive simplicity. This is the only piece I maped out lines for before adding value. It took too long and I didn't even finish blocking the values.

    Here Sargent used repetition with variation to add interest to the floor while helping to frame the rugs which run like roads to the censer. I feel the censer is clearly the second read but it seems like such a distant second that I wonder if Sargent had another motive for downplaying it.

    Name:  masterValueCompStudy-04.jpg
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    http://www.twitch.tv/verbalprocessing/b/532722819
    (drawing starts around 21:00)

    I'm feeling more comfortable doing the shape and value observations by now and I'm also sensible enough to choose simpler images so that I push them further in the given time. I also used more digital measurements in this one to *check* my work. I use it to find mistakes, not to position marks. Am I doing myself a disservice?

    Also, knowing that I had only an hour I admit I focused on the faces on 4 and 5. My ego won out -- I felt I'd be embarrassed if I turned in another face like #2.

    I think Sargent intended for this image to be utterly penetrating. Little contrast has been spared in emphasizing the face and ultimately the eyes of the figure.

    Name:  masterValueCompStudy-05.jpg
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    http://www.twitch.tv/verbalprocessing/b/533383226
    (drawing starts around 22:00)

    Using digital measures to check has led more awareness of my most common errors. Width and vertical position seem to be my most common basic feature placement errors. I'm forgetting to flip these to check shapes. I'm not sure why but I'm getting back into the habit slowly.

    This piece seems to be a study in subtle forms. To my less experienced eye there were few really distinct landmarks so sighting and measuring positions by eye was very difficult. Collins uses subtle flagging around the nose and eyes to enhance constrast and emphasis.

    Last edited by LeadCarbonate; May 31st, 2014 at 10:11 AM. Reason: organizing images
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    Edit: it's back now.

    Did my post just vanish? It's not refreshing and my thumbnail isn't showing up. I was editing the post and saving it a lot -- does that trigger some kind of quarantine?

    Last edited by LeadCarbonate; May 31st, 2014 at 01:00 AM.
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    OP vanished again as I was editing it. Will wait for it to reappear and hopefully get it plugged in finally.

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    The OP seems to be back now. No more edits for me!

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    Name:  masterValueCompStudy-06.jpg
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    I bit off quite a bit more than I feel I could chew here. The complexity didn't dawn on me until I was well into the study. Simplification and strategy are two areas where I need considerable work.

    Makart starts the the narrative tour of this image in the face, flagged by black hair, head framed by branches and a murky sky. The angle of the hair sticks and the light value of the clouds create a through line across the face. Were it not for the confrontational eyes of the subject I suspect the chest would be the strongest read. I'm left wondering why the falcon seems to be relegated to 3rd read but perhaps I'm focusing too much on the black and white version. In the color version the warm tones on the otherwise complex and difficult to pick out falcon make it much clearer.

    Finally, I wonder if Makart tilting considered the strap across the chest in the opposite direction to create more eye circulation to be bird. Maybe the whole point of the strap is to break up the decolletage.

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    Your shapes are looking pretty good. Nice work there. Your values can be even closer so double check and triple check there, even come back to them after you have had a break so you can compare the images with fresh eyes. The male portrait is beautifully done and would be even closer if you choose a softer edged brush for painting so that the transitions between marks blend a bit more.

    Keep up the good work.

    Here is what I had to say about edges that will be helpful.

    Be sure that you are keeping a close eye on your edges. Note where the sharpest sharpest sharps and softest soft edges are and use them as guideposts/landmarks for the rests of the edges in the image. Edges are important to space, form, and focal areas, so getting those in there will help the piece a lot. Once you do, you will see quality improve a lot. Keep up the great work. -jm

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    I took your advice to heart Jason, thank you. I decided to see how much I can really see and where my blind spots are. I made liberal, but not constant use of guides and grids bringing them in as I tried to make eye-only judgments about shapes. Value and edges were all sighted by eye.

    Name:  masterValueCompStudy-07-(15hrs).jpg
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    Name:  masterValueCompStudy-07-(10hrs).jpg
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    Name:  masterValueCompStudy-07-(half-hr).jpg
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    Analysis:
    I started this study of Frank Frazetta's "Serpent" on board with the notion that I was looking at a snake but upon further inspection I'm not so sure. Given the position of the head relative to the body and the presence of what appear to be suction cups on the tale I wonder if this isn't some kind of snake-octopus hybrid.

    Frezetta painted this for a book cover and thus designed it for a fast read. A lone figure struggling against his captor in a Stygian abyss. The pose and contrasts create a sense of upward motion where a hint of mist implies a distant overhead light source. Detail is evenly distributed around the figure and tentacle / serpent body with the reflections receiving a brushier, more impressionistic treatment. Their function in the scene appears to be to add variety and to communicate the existence of the water. They ground the figure in an otherwise formless void.

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    Wow... nice study.

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    Very nice! I think the only difference I can see really is that the knife on the original is a bit brighter and has a little more rim light. But that's just a very minor thing.

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    Now are talking! You did a beautiful job on the Frazetta. At this point just keep them rolling. You are making great progress.


    j

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    Now are talking! You did a beautiful job on the Frazetta. At this point just keep them rolling. You are making great progress.


    j

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