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    C.O.W. #401 - The Light Of The Sacred Bat - WIPS Thread

    C.O.W. #401 - The Light Of The Sacred Bat - WIPS Thread

    For more info and details about the rules go here:
    http://www.conceptart.org/forums/sho...d.php?t=110879


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    Round #401 The Light Of The Sacred Bat

    Topic:
    #401 The Light Of The Sacred Bat!

    Hey folks! You all had some awesome dragon sketches and it was great seeing the sheer number of them. Now that we've surpassed a new milestone in COW, I'll be making a change from here on out. First of all, community involvement has dwindled over the past year and it's nobody's fault. We've found that many more people are willing to participate in the WIPS thread rather than the voting. We simply do not have enough people participating to even make the voting exciting. From now on, we will only have a WIPS thread so that even the most novice of concept artist or illustrators can participate and have fun without the stress of public vote later. We think this will encourage new people to join and hopefully one day, inject some much-needed steroids into the voting rounds!

    So, now what the heck is the Light Of The Sacred Bat?

    In an ancient land long, long ago, there were villages being terrorized by hordes of demonic beings from an unknown dimension. Many had tried to fight these beings only to fail and never be seen again. The only hope of survival was to call upon a mysterious bat creature. This creature can emit a light that will protect the people from the evil beings. While the light protects the villagers, the bat can fight the hordes of evil creatures and defeat them.

    *Since there are now no FINALS threads, we will still hold true to due dates. This thread will close on Tuesday, November 21st at 10:00pm Eastern Standard Time*




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  4. #2
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    Interesting, I hope to see more people participate but, to be fair to creature of the week I think the website its self is very dead, even with 230 something people browsing sketchbooks there are a very minimal amount of new posts.

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  6. #3
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    BobbyRebholz: Glad you liked some of the dragon work we all provided in the last round. Thanks for doing what you do and even keeping COW going. Sorry on my part I couldn't produce more but I have been everything from busy and behind with work, to dealing with being sick with the flu and being physically injured with a pinched radial nerve that directly effected my right arm and use of my drawing hand. I try to produce what I can for COW but it is very challenging trying to find the down time with working for self, dealing with life etc. I pray I win the lottery and retire early so I can just marinate my days away enjoying the forums for real. People don't realize what a privilege it is to do their art for at leisure for real.

    I think the idea of not holding a public voting is a great idea and that the voting does tend to discourage people, or so I would think. Hopefully things can pick up in here once and for all. I don't understand how things have become so dead when COW used to be on fire years ago, or maybe I do. I started getting heavy on here back in 2006 / 2007 and that was before you all re did the website. I kinda feel like when the website was redone and so much of the old work and forums was lost that it made people realize how non permanent all their hardwork and efforts were on here and that everything was based truly around the idea of just sharpening skills. I would think it would be more on fire now than ever because everyone is going digital. I work in the tattoo industry and I can't even tell you how many of these artists that only used to work traditionally have now discovered digital art via the Ipad, and the app Procreate, and they are fu*king going crazy with the digital shyt now.

    I would recommend blowing up COW or the entire CA website on social media. Maybe even have tattoo design challenges and stuff you know, to keep up with the times and introduce something new to the game. I feel the tattoo designs are hands down a form of concept art and a ever so important area for those in the tattoo industry to better learn because we are making art on people that is permanent. Just some food for though man. It might bring a whole different wind of participants who will most likely participate in the COW and such too. Again I would strongly advise advertising hardcore on platforms like Facebook and Instagram. Maybe you all can team up with Deviantart as well and have them help direct clientele over to CA.

    I've said this in the past but it would be nice to see people explain their process of image making more in the forums as well. Since the forums are dedicated to the idea of sharpening skills and we are all supposed to be helping each other grow, why so secretive when it comes to process. I feel everyone is just trying to out do each other on the images for friendly competition which is great for the sake of producing something, but I feel like the real meat and potatos of what is important is constantly being neglected and therefore people either evolve super slow or barely at all. I think the COW tutorials is something we should bring back here as well. There used to be great tutorials that people like Jakub Kasper a.k.a. Jakkas put together. I think there should be more of that. I know it takes time and so forth but little by little I think things can really get back on track and for the better. I love COW and CA and definitely credit the website and it's users for helping me not only get better as an image maker but also keep me into wanting to do it.

    Cool topic as usual this week and sounds like a very big bat along with the grounds for the concept being set in a night scene to emphasize on the lighting aspect.

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    Hey Bobby, and COWies...

    Sorry I wasn't able to contribute to the past few rounds, shame how much COW has dwindled since the once boisterous times...Thought for sure the last round would pull more people in, but I guess not...Some pretty awesome work from the last round especially from scorge and VegasMike!

    It seems like a good idea doing away with voting outright, no point in keeping it when the average amount of entries per round has gone down to either one or none, and seeing people participate is pretty much where most of the fun lies to begin with...
    Art is not about competing against others and being better than everyone else, but it is about competing against yourself and discovering your greatest potential!


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  9. #5
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    Hey guys, I actually stopped in to see if the Dragons round was still going on. I only knew about it through Dave's posts on Facebook. Sorry I missed out on all the fun there.

    If I can throw my 2 cents into the talks about COW dwindling in participation, I think it comes down to medium. Most people I think have moved more or less entirely into social media platforms insofar as making and showing art, so navigating into what is now a fairly archaic forum to participate just isn't convenient enough. I can't speak for everyone, but I actually think if Creature of the Week was reformatted into a social media platform, it may see more participation and exposure. Certainly I would be more likely to engage with it.
    Last edited by Si_Swe; November 19th, 2017 at 07:22 AM.
    Check out creature designs and make some of your own:
    Creature of the Week; Creature Spot

    View Simon Sweetman's art etc. at:
    ArtStation; Twitter: @SiSweetman; Twitch Channel

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  11. #6
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    Si_Swe I agree with you on that. This entire site used to be the ONLY place to go for industry art and rightfully so. Nothing like this really existed before '02. I remember signing up in 2006 and seeing COW and was blown away. But times do change and that was 11 years ago. This place has seen its fair share of drama and reformatting. Just like Lege said, when this site was reformatted and so much work was lost, that kind of put people off for good. Also, CG-Hub, Artstation, Drawcrowd, all of the social media platforms like Swe said have taken the reigns now. I still think this place can be awesome but the one thing that still leaves a bad taste in peoples' mouths is the legal drama that happened in '14. It wasn't good for morale and it drove a ton of people away. That was the killer.

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    Heartbreaking to see these challenges being set up and so few participants , I think everyone who lurks on here and by that I'm referring to the passive observer who's sat there reading this right now really ought to pitch in with a picture or two , go on roll up those sleeves and get stuck in, theres nothing to loose and all practice however big or small helps in the long run and just think if half are dozen did the same it could spur more entries - so dwell on that a moment it could well be YOUR contribution could help start the momentum.
    I'm new to all this so I can't remark or lament about the good olde days of CA , the 400th cow the milestone edition was my first, but I would like to say how great it was to see newer artist like Fabianguiza bravely start the ball rolling and Summer the bummer s posting , they gave me the impetus to join in, equally important is Lege1 , Scorge and VegasMike who adding their dash of inspirational, words and pictures, guys like this giving their support and help so freely really make taking part a joy, at first it can be daunting and off putting but take the plunge get involved and have fun. My hats off to everyone who participates either by their helpful comments or by sharing their talent. I know I was pleased to see it and if I haven't done so already I would really like to say thank you deeply.
    Its good to see steps are being take by the admins to try and get some juice in the cow challenges by trialling new methods such as not having finals votes, lets hope it stirs some more artists to have a go. C'mon in, try it, there shouldn't be any excuses.

    If I have any suggestions to make it would be that as a newbie I do personally find a week to be so short, I guess its important and it good to work fast and under pressure but I am short of time some weeks , yesterday I was the only chance I had to do approach this Light Bat COW

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  14. #8
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    Anyways I am very restricted for spare time for a month two, I know poor excuse but I aim to try my damn hardest to turn in a sketch or some iterations for every COW that I can, I only had the time yesterday for a few hours and it was to be squeezed in at work so I took my sketch pad along and managed to do a bit, my bit now its your turn get something posted up.
    Name:  COW401 BAT OF LIGHT IDEAS.jpg
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  16. #9
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    Cool designs, GEE! I like the idea of the light coming from the ears.
    Here's where I'm at. Still very much work in progress.
    It would be great if there were an instagram account for COW

    Name:  progress_wip3.jpg
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  18. #10
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    Has anyone discovered how to get all that work back. Not that Im a big deal but this platform is the only place I had any known records of my pieces and many others.

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    Really wanted to redraw my rough sketch but there is no time.......
    Name:  COW410_LightBat_112117__w2.jpg
Views: 804
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    from black and gray into color using a variety of the transparent layer modes......
    Name:  COW410_LightBat_112117__w3.jpg
Views: 802
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  22. #14
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    Good going there lege1 , so great to see colour images I notice that you wanted to redraw but there is NEVER enough time at least you managed to get it to a colour stage that's good going, how long did it take to get from start of drawing to the final?

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  24. #15
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    nice to see you got a piece done too fabianguiza ,

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  26. #16
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    GEE!: Thanks man, yes always good to see color. I feel personally that working up from grayscale into color can save a lot of time because you are able to focus on the values so much better in grayscale. Once you get a sketch down you can just set a new layer on top to multiply. In this case I just filled the entire multiply layer in with like an 85% gray or so, this way you can put highlights and stuff onto the multiply layer which I find really convenient. I really wanted to redraw the piece prior to going balls to the wall with the values, but I felt I had a strong enough foundation to go ahead and move forward. Infusing some reference into the piece would have been good too and I still may attempt that here in the color rendering process. Everything you see so far is strictly from imagination for the sake of production and time. Speaking of time, the week deadline is legit, most companies like Marvel will give artists like a week or so to finish their cover art, and that's going back and forth with editors and shyt. I feel a week should be plenty time to get a decent image together.

    Scorge does it all the time and is known for coming with double entrees sometimes even triple or more which is crazy but he seems to have a superb process down that he is super comfortable with and can produce quickly all around. This illustration is going to probably have taken around 3 or 4 hours, but if I could work straight through I may have been able to complete it in a couple of hours. I feel a few hours is what it's going to take at the very least and that's really rushing to get to a final image. Obviously the more time the better cause you can go ahead and take your time looking things over and really bringing the image to a wonderful polish. I realize truly that there is no certain way to work for real, it's whatever works best for you. My ultimate goal is to just be able to dive in straight in color which I have done before and just bang the image out. Also for the record, I work on an old Intous 3 tablet that I love, and use Photoshop CS2 along with an old version of Painter IX. I don't use Painter that often but I sometimes like to take advantage of certain features in it like the blenders and some of the other mediums. I'm mostly comfortable in Photoshop, and really like to keep my brush economy simple and then leave everything else as an after thought. Alot of the other guys here will tell you in here that the hard round can go along way indeed. Hope that wasn't too much info but you seem interested so have at it man.

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    Thanks for such a well fleshed out reply, I am fearful of going in with the colours mainly because I over render the drawing stage and end up getting too precious with it, I admire your fast process. I know what my downfalls are I am slow and I agree a week should be plenty of time unless you have other draws on your time. Scorge is a beast ate unleashing his creative urges and all of these so fully rendered they look like a months worth of work judged by my pace. I am trying to spend some time and ease my way into challenges first few times its mainly about finding the best idea in the quickest way , work up some iterations and settle on an idea, then once I get that down to pat, I will concentrate on doing a couple of entries in nicely developed greyscale much like how you work...finally I will work on the colouring for entries.
    I loved Painter and still have the program but update my Mac and it has no disc drive so I haven't used it in many many years it has a wonderful painterly effect that PS fails to match ..also brush wise its best to stick with two or three and the plain old staple round is the almighty one to wield the most..especially at a beginners level. I actually need up with a serious serious pain in the wrist and arm this week from over using my drawing muscles, its is sooo painful I have had to rest for days with out touch a pen or tablet. First time ever Ive had it and it is a bit scary been reading top on it and I must take breaks and flex and stretch in a different range to what I settle into when drawing for hours and hours. BE WARNED all artists take that break!!!

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    GEE!: Thanks man and you're welcome. The best way I'd advise working in color is just stop seeing them as colors and look at the colors as different shades of gray. Percieving the color from this perception will unveil the illusion of them being so complex to work with. Dark blue is dark gray, blue is middle gray, and light blue is light gray. Use the saturation only at points of interest. This is what I concluded getting myself to jump right into color and thinking this way helps me a lot. Speed in your work will come in time, trust me it's taken me many years to get where I'm at with things. Focus on hard and soft edges in your work, mastering those the best you can is definitely going to speed things up. I'm convinced Scorge is an extra terrestial being. Just get an idea and run with it man, in my opinion spending too much time looking for the perfect anything can kill your creative flow and energy. By all means do a few thumbnails but just jump in and attack the shyt man, everything will come together during the process. Painter is definitely a cool program, but I prefer it as a side program not a main. You can get a lot of great painterly effects in photoshop but again, it's all about soft and hard edges. Try using some of the default photoshop chalk brushes and see how they work out for you. Experiment, experiment, experiment, with all the different settings. A great tip that Scorge told me as well is to stay zoomed out of the image and work it up. Only zoom in if you absolutely have to. This is going to help you so much. Yeah the round brush is like Thor's hammer Mjolnir. Defnitely use all the different transparent color modes when coloring gray scale work.

    Overlay, soft light, and multiply are some of my most commonly used. Experiment to learn them up and see what they are best to be used for. Remember you can always desaturate the image also by creating a color layer and painting with black or white, so if an area is getting over worked in color just have at it on a color layer and paint out with a soft round. So sorry to hear about your wrist situation man. I know exactly more, or less what you are talking about. It may be carpal tunnel. I suffer from a pinched nerve. I haven't had feeling in my index finger on my drawing hand in months. I would recommend maybe putting a piece of wood on the back of your drawing tablet to prop it up at an angle this way making it more natural like a drafting table. Algen P. Fledger did this when having your problem and this seemed to work wonders for him.

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  32. #19
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    I think I'm going to go ahead and call this my final. I spent about 6 hours on this one and just wanted to put the extra work in to experiment and try to learn more. Hope you all like....
    Attached Images Attached Images  
    Last edited by Lege1; November 24th, 2017 at 05:29 PM.

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