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  1. #1
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    Snowgem - Composition 1.1

    First of the twenty. Here we go!

    Artist: Johannes Vermeer - Girl with a Pearl Earring
    Time: ~60 minutes

    The economy in the background allows the viewer's eyes to rest solely on girl, making her the main focus of the piece. The primary emphasis is in the eyes, as it is the most detailed part of the painting.

    (I'm still fairly new at painting digitally, so excited to improve on my speed, accuracy, and design!)
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  3. #2
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    Not sure if I'm supposed to critique after each study or after I have finished all 20, but I just post the links to two that I've critiqued so far.

    http://www.conceptart.org/forums/sho...omposition-1-1
    http://www.conceptart.org/forums/sho...omposition-1-1
    http://www.conceptart.org/forums/sho...tion-1-1/page2
    Last edited by snowgem; July 21st, 2015 at 05:56 PM.

  4. #3
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    Study #2

    Artist: Albert Bierstadt - Among the Sierra Nevada Mountains
    Time: ~60 minutes

    Beautiful rhythm and variety in the shapes and textures in the receding mountains and the trees across the painting. Bierstadt also adds more variety by painting small deer near the water to contrast with the size of the Sierra Nevada mountains.

    I noticed that some of my darks on the mountains were a bit too dark and mountains in the back should be fairly lighter. Still need to work on accuracy but getting there. =)
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    Hey snowgem, just noticed your first piece and how its pretty good although I think you could have made some areas a bit more defined like the eyes. Especially with the highlights, that would make the eyes pop out more (in a good way). The skin feels just a touch too light but really close. Attention with those middle tones. Your second piece lacks some attention in the middle, again middle tones. Its a extremely detailed painting and for me a hard one. Keep it up your doing a great job!

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  7. #5
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    Thank you so much for the critique, DeadLurtz! I agree that I should add more detail to the areas of focus, and I shall also pay more attention to middle tones. Thank you again! =)

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    Artist: Deges
    Time: 1 hour

    The implied lines or continuity in this piece, such as from the tips of her fingers to her toes either vertically top to bottom or top to the right, gives this piece movement and thus life. That's incredible, coming from just one subject matter.

    I actually really like how this turned out. I learned to zoom in on the details and zoom out for the less detailed areas. Seem intuitive but for someone like me who likes to focus on details quite a bit, this idea helped me a lot. Wish I had more time to work on the background, but that just means I need to keep pushing for accuracy and speed.
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    Last edited by snowgem; July 21st, 2015 at 06:00 PM.

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    Artist: Claude Monet - Japanese Bridge

    One of the striking qualities of this painting is the variety of elements, such as as the shapes the flowers and lilypads and the texture of the natural surroundings and the bridge. This contrast in texture emphasizes the bridge, which makes it the main focus of the piece.

    This one was really hard for me. The details really test my ability to keep to the big shapes first. Ended up spending about 2 hours on this one, so I'll have to be more wary of my time. I really need to step back and look at the piece as a whole. Taking breaks helped me get through this one too.
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    Last edited by snowgem; July 21st, 2015 at 06:02 PM.

  10. #8
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    Study 5: Van Dyck - Lady Lucy Percy

    I notice that while most of the body is in focus, there is a softness or economy for the right arm, which pushes it back in space. Incredible variety in the folds, details, lights and shadows in the dress as well, making this a visually appealing piece. There's a great balance between the left and right side, with the dark space behind the curtain balanced with the gray bush in the background.

    I also took longer on this than I wanted to (possibly around 3 hrs). I will try to quicken my pace and push my next studies within 1 hour. I was wondering how I could do that so I looked around the forum. So happy to find one by Jason. I'll have to be accurate as I can with blocking out the big shapes first, then value, then edges and keep flipping my canvas as often as I can to check and triple check the accuracy of my strokes before I can dive into the details. Will definitely keep this in mind for the next one.
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    Last edited by snowgem; July 21st, 2015 at 06:07 PM.

  11. #9
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    Well done on that last piece! Everything seem to be in the right spot with the correct value. Looking through my eyelashes have difficulty telling them apart. I think the Monet one could benefit from a hard brush though, since Monet's own strokes have pretty hard edges as well. If the details tend to get in the way, maybe you can try squinting while looking at it. For me it helps seeing the big shapes first.

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  13. #10
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    Thank you very much Schraverus! I really appreciate the critique! I do squint, especially when I look at it from a distance, but sometimes I make the mistake of zooming in too much or too soon without getting all the basic shapes down first, so I'll have to be aware of that. That's what happened to me with Monet's painting.

    That's a great suggestion for the hard brush. My strokes are usually soft so either I find a softer piece or try using hard brushes for pieces like Monet.

    Thanks again!

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    Study 6: John Singer Sargent
    Time: 1 hr 15 min

    I notice the dark background in the top half balances well with the very light bottom half of the image. Despite this, the viewers eyes are still drawn to the face as the economy of the background and shoulders contrasts with the more focused forms of the face.


    Name:  john-singer-sargent-snowgem-1hr15min.jpg
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    For this one, I made a conscious effort to block out the large shapes first and then get to the smaller details. I realized my shapes were still off when I flipped my canvas before getting into the details so that saved some time, but still not enough to get to all the details. Some parts of the face are off but I promised myself to limit my time from now on, so they remain as is.

    Critiques are greatly appreciated!

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    You are improving with each study. You now need to work on those hard edge areas which give an image its emphasis. Keep it up.

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  17. #13
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    Nice work. You are making good progress.

    I shared some thoughts earlier on quality control and they are of use here.

    You are getting about 90 percent there with the three most important things...shapes, values and edges. are you flipping your images horizontally and vertically every minute or so to check accuracy?

    Make a pass at the end where you double check the following, in this order.

    a. shapes.
    b. values
    c. edges

    At this point all I think that is needed is double checking things at the end in a quality control pass...so to speak.

    Keep up the great work.


    jm

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  19. #14
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    Thank you so much Black Spot! I've been mainly working with a soft brush, as you seem to notice, so when I get to the point of fleshing things out and adding emphasis, I will remember those hard edges using hard edge brushes.

  20. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jason Manley View Post
    Nice work. You are making good progress.

    I shared some thoughts earlier on quality control and they are of use here.

    You are getting about 90 percent there with the three most important things...shapes, values and edges. are you flipping your images horizontally and vertically every minute or so to check accuracy?

    Make a pass at the end where you double check the following, in this order.

    a. shapes.
    b. values
    c. edges

    At this point all I think that is needed is double checking things at the end in a quality control pass...so to speak.

    Keep up the great work.


    jm
    Thank you Jason! I have been flipping my canvas horizontally periodically to check for accuracy, but not as often as every minute. I will try to remember to flip more often for my next studies! (I've done up to 10 studies by the time of this response.)

    I'm having some trouble checking accuracy but also not getting too engulfed in the details. When you say double checking things at the end, are you suggesting I do that at the end of my drawing session (like 10 minutes till the end) or after each "step" (i.e. when I see that most of my shapes are down, I double check shapes, then move on to values, double check that, then edges).

    Thank you again for your input!

  21. #16
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    Study 7: Thomas Moran Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone
    Time: 1 hr

    The rhythm of the diagonal lines for the slopes of the mountains shortens as you move up the image, creating a sense of depth. There's also repetition and variety in the sizes and shapes of the trees and rocks, all of which add additional interest to the image.

    Name:  7-Thomas_Moran_-_Grand_Canyon_of_the_Yellowstone-snowgem1hr.jpg
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    I admire Moran's landscapes so very much.

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    Study 8: NC Wyeth
    Time: ~1 hr

    I especially love the emotion and intent in this image.

    NC Wyeth creates a vertical balance with the main subjects drawn at the bottom of the image in medium to dark values and the large white cloud taking up a large portion at the top.

    Name:  8-NC-Wyeth-snowgem.jpg
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  23. #18
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    You're still neglecting those hard edges. Don't worry if it takes longer for a bit as speed will come the more you do. Go forward and rock.

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  25. #19
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    Artist: Anthony Van Dyck
    Time: 1 hr

    The crisp, sharp edges of the facial features of the face gives those areas emphasis while the soft edges of the hair further away from the viewer gives it less emphasis. The economy of the background also allows the eyes to focus mainly on the face.

    I drew this a while before receiving Black Spot's critique on hard/soft edges. Skip another study, I started using sharper brushes, so please bear with me.

    Name:  9-Anthonis_van_Dyck_Snowgem-1hr.jpg
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  26. #20
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    good progress, try to get shapes, values closer. try some texture brushes like jamie jones or huston sharp

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  28. #21
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    Thank you stonec! I'll try to get those shapes and values down closer and look into those texture brushes!

  29. #22
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    Yes, these studies were done way before I received your suggestion on working on those hard edges. I've done a couple studies a while ago but haven't had time to post them up. Will do that now. Thank you! I really appreciate the feedback!

  30. #23
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    Artist: David Rabbitte
    Time: 1 hr

    I know I'm still missing the hard edges and values and shapes are still a little off. Did this about a month or so ago, and now had the chance to post it.

    There is variety and repetition in the shapes and sizes of the little oval homes in the painting, adding interest and complexity to the piece.

    Name:  10-Davidrabbitte-animbackground_Snowgem-1hr.jpg
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  31. #24
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    Artist: Joseph Vincent Barber - The Golden Age
    Time: 1 hr

    I started focusing on hard edges here (after receiving Black Spots) feedback as well as experimented with texture brushes, especially in the trees. Still need to work on those shapes and values but I'm getting there! (I may have issues getting darks really dark.)

    There are implied curved lines from the foreground, middle ground, and background, giving the painting a sense of continuity and movement.

    Name:  11-Joseph Vincent Barber-Landscape-The Golden Age snowgem-1hr.jpg
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    Study #12
    Artist: Van Dyck (yet again)
    Time: 2 hrs

    Really like how this study turned out, especially the face. More hard edges and texture brushes. Still gotta get those values and shapes down but I can see my improvements already. =)

    The primary object, the woman, the secondary object, the trees, and the tertiary object on the left are placed away from each other, spreading the visual weight around to give the image a sense of balance.
    Name:  12-Anthony Van Dyck-snowgem.jpg
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    Study #14

    Artist: Cassatt - The Two Sisters
    Time: ~1.5 hrs

    This was harder than I thought. Imitating the strokes and finding the right brushes for the texture took a while.

    There are clearer, crisper lines drawn in for the sister's face in the foreground than the sister in the back, making the primary focus of the piece the sister with the dark hair. Lines on the clothes are very loose, creating economy around the center of focus.

    Name:  14-Cassatt-The-Two-Sisters-snowgem.jpg
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  34. #27
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    I like your studies. I can imagine how difficult it must be matching the strokes, you did a really good job. I think on the most recent one, the values are pretty good. The only area I think they are a bit incorrect is mostly within the face. For example if you compare the shape of the white value beneath the boy's eye, with yours, the shape is very different. Also the girl has a large white-ish portion on the left side of her face that is missing from yours. Overall great study on a very complex image, I look forward to seeing more.

  35. #28
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    this last one I like it, is more a drawing/sketch and it's harder to duplicate it, is a good improvement from the previous studies. Keep the good work
    "Know yourself. Express yourself. Master yourself"
    Instagram -- Sketchbook - Color 1.1 1.2 - Composition 1.1 1.2 - Drawing 1.1 - Illusion

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  37. #29
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    Thank you so much, Natasha! I agree with you. There are definitely areas where I can still work on getting the values and shapes more accurate. Thank you again for your critique and I will continue to work on improving! =D

  38. #30
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    Thank you very much, matato! I appreciate the comment and encouragement! I will definitely keep it up. =D

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