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Original Paintings will always be on left, my study on the right.
1. Young Woman Arranging Her Hair by Alexander
I loved mainly the flow of her pose. The deep shading on her chest and right (our left) arm work extremely well with leading the eye up and to the face + arms. The atmosphere was very melancholy which I liked. The whole picture feels very circular and round.
I never did many studies like these in my highschool art classes, so this is fairly new to me, which I'm sure is painfully obvious. Next piece though I'm going to use a different brush for more blending. Any tips on how to make raw practice like this less painful? The time went by fairly quickly but I was still occasionally dwelling on my below mediocre skills while painting. I'm not sure how to get out of the habit of being so hard on myself and my art, especially now.
Looking forward to critiques from this site though!
Last edited by tetoki; May 27th, 2014 at 01:58 AM.
I know how you feel. But know this...your feeling shows you are already in the second stage of learning...and not the first...so you are further along than you think. Confidence will come over time. by the end of these 20 you will see major strides. Just keep at it. It takes a little bit.
The stages of learning
1. not knowing you don't know or cant do something
2. knowing you dont know but want to be able to do it
3. capable of doing it but have to think real hard and try to do it
4. being able to do it without even thinking about it.
With that aaid let's start with the shapes. Here is what i had to say earlier. It applies to you.
When you are first getting started it is very important to really focus in on the mapping out of your shapes as accurately as you can possibly get them. If you put a shape in the wrong place and commit you end up having the other shapes off and require fixing, which increases painting time. By taking just a few extra minutes early on to measure out your shapes, to compare your shapes, and be sure they are placed and drawn accurately will make the rest of the painting process, working out your values and edges, much much easier.
You should flip the images horizontally and vertically so that you see the shapes with fresh eyes. This should be part of the process and if you are already doing that, keep doing it more. The professional artists will often flip images or use a mirror to see with fresh eyes as many as three or four times a minute as they are working when things really get flowing. You can also back away...actually get up and back away...and doing this works for shapes as well as checking values and edges.
Keep up the good work.
2. Girl With The Pear Earring by Vermeer
Firstly I love how this girl looks. Her face and her clothing just combine so well together in whatever way and I really really love it. I also love how (contrasting?) the values seem with the completely black background. Lots of darks more than lights which I like too, and again the black background gives enough black to frame the stark white of her face and balance out the pure white collar and pure white gleam of her earring.
A little better this time, not a whole lot but I can see some difference definitely. I used my main photoshop brush and blocked in the shapes more as Jason helpfully suggested! I flip my canvas constantly already so that's a no brainer. I'm sticking to the 1hr time on these because a big problem I suffer from is focusing too much on detail too soon, so this is helping me speed up working on my painting as a full painting instead of bits of a painting.
Last edited by tetoki; May 27th, 2014 at 01:57 AM.
I just wanted to say I can totally relate, since I'm feeling exactly the same.
Never studied classic art in art classes, as dumb as it sounds...(thanks "teachers"...).
That's why I joined LevelUp. Believe me, I was (and still am) surprised.
People here are really willing to help you improve and make constructive critiques.
I'm half way through this assignment and can already see some improvement, which I thought truly impossible.
I'm still having difficulties, especially about time spent in each study (like you I become early obsessed by details).
But I think it's slowly getting better, bit by bit. Like people say "first step is the hardest one".
So don't give up! You WILL definitely improve if you practice regularly.
This assignment is an excellent exercise. Hard, but very enriching.
@ ZeCarnevilCat Thank you for the encouragement! My art teacher was a great lady, very fun and helpful, but I wish she had pushed me harder during my classes with her to do fundamentals like life study or value study more often. I never was told the exact reason why those were important, so that too left me in the dark. But there's no time like the present.
1. Head Study of A Woman Looking Up by Van Dyck
Forgot to time this one but I'm going to guess around an hour give or take 20 minutes?
The swirls in her hair, the bust composition and the hard black background is why I liked this piece. I also liked the woman's appearance/facial features.
I had no idea in hell how to tackle that hair so I did what I could. Would love more critique! I hope these are improving as I go along, I can't tell much difference.
For just getting going on these you are doing quite well. You see value very very well. We simply need to get you flipping your images more and double and triple checking your shapes. Quadruple checking your shapes if we must.
With that said, the hair can be resolved by carving back in with soft and hard edged airbrushes to get the big overall shape right first. Once you get that big overall shape, double check the outer contour edges to see that you have soft edges where they need to be and hard edges where they need to be. You can use the photoshop brush editor to make a brush that kind of makes a mark like if you dragged a rake in sand...that way you can do it without having to paint each strand individually. I would recommend doing the strands on a separate layer so you can erase out any that you dont awnt...or turn down opacity if they are showing up too strong...that kind of thing. It just takes time...but you can totally do this. Good progress so far.
4. The Cellist by Alexander
The economy in her dress is a very nice place to rest the eye, and I love the gesture of this piece. Alexander captured the passion of a cellist and a musician very well in her pose and expression. Looking forward to more critique.
Been getting really into environmental concept and watching videos and tutorials by Feng Zhu, it's been very inspiring and insightful, watching his techniques. I hope to get deep into perspective studies soon as my environmental skills are poor to nonexistent ><
Last edited by tetoki; June 1st, 2014 at 05:39 AM.
Hi there! Pretty cool improvement from the first to this last one! Good values and fairly accurate shapes, but you might want to keep an eye for the hard edges (make them harder), since they do a lot defining the overall sharpness, emphasis and depth. Hope that helps & looking forward for more. :-)
Your shape work is improving. keep at that. for the next series of images please take the time to get your shapes as accurately as you can. That skill is going to come in handy when you hit the drawing/anatomy portion of Level Up and is useful to putting accurate information into your memory banks, so you can pull it out when you work from imagination. Big improvement...and I really want to see you push on that challenge. Be sure you are flipping your images and taking time to step back and look at both images from across the room too. the latter is a huge help.
Keep up the great work.