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  1. #1
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    Unfinished work critique. Visor, Lighting and General Critique requested

    Hi all,

    I have been drawing and sketching for a while but my rendering skills have not progressed much until recently. As of late this is my latest project which shows some promise. I am aware of several issues such as incoherent color pallet between the cold and warm grays, potential over detailing of the lower half of the suit (havent finished the top so Im not sure how it will compare when its finished), the yellow visor looking slightly off, as well as the shading of light and shadows (I have tried intensifying both but then the contrast is too strong and unpleasant to look at). Also the face may need some work, particularly the eyes.

    So feel free to critique the points above or add anything else you see wrong. I've included two points of development of the painting to show the line drawing and a bit of progress.
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    Last edited by tolebelon; May 19th, 2016 at 04:08 AM.


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  3. #2
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    Nothing? I realize I made the resolution a bit large to display on the forum page (on a 1080 screen) but would appreciate some input.

    (Ctrl+Scrollwheel zooms out in Chrome so you can get a better overall image. Apologies )

  4. #3
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    There's a lot going on that isn't right. Not only in your technique, but your knowledge in lighting, values, anatomy and color. Hit up some books on anatomy and facial structure. Do some still life painting to learn how to render properly and to know how to do proper contrast in your values. At this point, I suggest you halt working on this, dive into studies, and come back to it later or start over.

    Keep practicing. Everyone starts at the same spot and grows from there.
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  5. #4
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    Would you care to elaborate? The anatomy errors are mostly a giraffe-like length of neck and lack of cheekbones yes? (im not working on improving my eyes at the moment but I know they arent anatomically correct).

    In terms of values, are they that far off? Ignoring the helmet which I havent touched yet, I feel the lower half has ok values at least. Not perfect but ok.
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  6. #5
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    Hi tolebelon, I would say it is pretty simple. Where the light is coming from ? because values come from light and in this case there is just strange lightning going everywhere.Decide on a primary light source direction then render it with form shadow, cast shadow. Overall there isn't any values on your portrait so it is pretty off because I guess this is your main wished focal point. I said wished because right now your focal point is the strange golden, squint your eyes and you'll see it right away first strange golden shape the reason it pretty simple hard edge, strong contrast, strong dark, strong light.
    In term of anatomy the three feature you show us they all got anatomy strangeness I would say, length and width of the nose, size and placement of the lips, and the eyes of course and of course the non existent overall facial structure since you don't have values on it.
    You really should follow Havok advice because you've got a lot of fundamentals flaws which you seems to not see and you focus on details which aren't important since major aspect are still far off in term of shape value relationships.

  7. #6
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    Thanks for the explanation abichai. Yes the gold bit is overpowering and I hadn't had the chance to look more at it since I have been focusing on the bottom. It was a remnant of an idea I had and abandoned. But will definitely take note of things like it in the future.

    The light source I have been working off of (in my head at least) was a rim light from the upper rear with a reflected ambient light from the lower front of the character. I agree that its very all over the place at the moment which is maybe due in part to me simply mirroring left and right without adjusting for the light differences in the environment. *although now I think of it the center chest area is lit when it should be in shadow so thats my bad there. Will work more on keeping lights in mind.

    For the anatomy everything you have said is true. I have never been able to even vaguely draw faces and this was part of the reason why I decided on a portrait. But as you said, there is no structure and her face is more like a manikins face with stickers.

    I'll try doing some other practice paintings as suggested for now.

  8. #7
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    Just so I have a reference point, I took a BW portait off google and put it as a luminosity layer on top of my painting. This is more the direction I should be heading in in terms of the values of the face and the structure right? Ignoring the overall lighting of course since none of the lighting matches up at the moment.
    Im not going to use the face as it is, just as reference.

    (i was also playing around with the contrast of the helmet but ignore that.)
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  9. #8
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    structure, yes. Values, probably not because your lighting scenario is different. There are more things here that don't make sense than just lighting. Like the way the collar part wraps around doesn't feel right. Why would her hair look like it could flow freely in this helmet? It would need to be much, much bigger to be able to look like this.

    https://oneroomwithaview.files.wordp...successors.jpg

    This is a great example. The girl on the far right is from Pacific Rim (great movie btw) with a smaller helmet, her bangs are visible but the rest of her hair is pulled back. The other images are from Alien and Gravity if you need more reference. But look at the size of those helmets. They're huge and they are also stationary helmets, meaning that they don't sit on the head, and can't turn with the head. They are locked on the collar, allowing for more hair freedom.

    Another thing that is looking wonky is your technique and how you are treating your forms as a single object, rather than separate forms. This is most noticeable in the shoulders.
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  10. #9
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    Ok yea, I goofed on the helmet design. Originally it was similar to Sandra's helmet in Gravity but then I changed stuff around without thinking and its now the design mess you see above. I'll note that down as something to change after I finish more foundation stuff.

    For the collar it looks strange because it seems like it goes down again in the back yes? Where as normally you would expect it to curve continuously up similar to the green line.

    For the forms, if I understand you correctly you are saying that the "shoulder pad" part A looks like its a part of the shoulder part B rather than a separate entity?
    I hope I dont come across as fishing for compliments, I would just like to know where it is Im lacking specifically.

    Thanks in advance for your comments. I'll go practice the basics for now.
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  11. #10
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    Also, would you say that in terms of values (again ignoring the head and face since we established that it needs major overhaul) would you say that my darks arent dark enough and my highlights arent bright enough? I've been trying to understand where the values are wrong by desaturating and using CUBEBRUSH's skintone gradient maps. From what I can tell, it seems most of my values are stuck within this muddy middle region of grey?

  12. #11
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    Correct, on both counts. Your values are lacking in contrast and the shoulder pads look mushed together. So in this case, where your current lightest value on the skin is, should be the brightest spot on her face in general (the hotspots), so that means you will need to make areas darker to push the forms more.

    You dont need to go as exaggerated as you did with your red lines, but just note that objects should read as separate objects layered on one another. You kind of got it, but the technique you used to render them gives that mushed look.
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  14. #12
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    Thank you for your reply. I've stayed away from it for the past week so I can see it with fresh eyes and I do see your points better now. I'll endeavor to fix my techniques and post again when I've improved.

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    Try painting something simple from life - like an egg... or an apple and stick it on here for critique. I think what everyone's been alluding to is that this painting shows a lack of understanding of 3D forms... You'll get it but just focus on the basics first.
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  17. #14
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    This was meant to be a quick paintover to show you the things everyone was talking about: lighting, structure, and stuff. When you do a person, try not to make it look perfectly symmetrical. In real life you rarwely see a person front and center. Also, you went into extreme details before you got the lighting and composition right, thus creating handicaps for yourself to fix the real important and big issues.

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  19. #15
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    I'm doing the "Draw a Box" course so hopefully there will be some improvement. I'll do some more life drawing as well. Admittedly I never did much of it so probably explains much.

    Thanks for the paintover, its nice to have something tangible to look at. When I was painting it I did just mirror left and right because the original idea in my head was to have the astronaut as an unfocused background focusing on a foreground object (a tool or lifeform). But then I kinda wandered off that idea and focused too much on the suit and her.

    Once I get something sketched I'll post it here.

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