Illustrating a story (WIP)

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  1. #1
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    Illustrating a story (WIP)

    In my intro to digital techniques class we were given the assignment to "make a book" using the three programs photoshop, illustrator, and In-design. The class really is a waste of my time because its a "this is how you make a new document" very basic, basic class. But its required by the department so whatever. Well for my book topic I wrote a short story which I originally intended to illustrate like a graphic novel, but due to..laziness and lack of time, im going more for the childrens book style illustrating.

    If you want to read the whole short story heres the link to a thread, its only about 7 paragraphs long
    (forgive me for linking to another forum, I didnt want to make this post excessivly long, and this forum doesnt really deal with writing anyways)
    http://www.penny-arcade.com/forums/v...ic.php?t=79523
    (not to sound concieted but ive been told by quite a few people its entertaining at least)
    Id really appreciate if you read the story before critiquing but
    for those of you who dont feel like reading the entire thing heres the excerpt that this illusrtation is for
    "...Julius yanked the dagger from his leg with a grunt and handed it to Seoman, then the two men braced themselves back to back as their families came charging at them screaming “Death to the traitors.” "


    Up to this point ive just been working on the composition and haven done much to the figures except block them in, in any case im open to any crits you guys have good or bad.

    Illustrating a story (WIP)

    edit: feel free to tell me what you think of the actual story as well.

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  3. #2
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    Well, I'm sort of a neophyte myself, so I couldn't give any hardcore crits, but the general feeling of the picture seems wrong. They look like they're lost in the woods, and maybe have heard some odd howling coming out of the trees. What I mean is, the lack of any other figures makes them seem like they are alone in the clearing. Anyway, like I said, I'm no expert, but that's the feeling I get from the picture.

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  4. #3
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    The biggest problem you have here is the depth. Your background is advancing spatially and your foreground is receding. The reason this is happening is the colours and detail you've used.

    The basic rules of thumb are:
    dark colours recede, light colours advance
    cool colours recede, warm colours advance
    fuzziness recedes, detail advances

    Here you have your lightest, warmest colours and most detailed things in your background and your darkest, coolest colours and least detailed things in the foreground. It's pretty confusing for the viewer.

    The level of detail you have in the background is pretty good, but I'd pump it way up in the foreground. Also make the back part of the meadow a bit cooler, and take the yellow-green you have and put it in the closer parts. Do a lot more detail in those two trees you have framing it. I think that'll help the picture out a lot.

    I like the atmosphere you have going here though. Quite tense.

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    Thanks for the crit, I was having quite a bit of trouble with the depth.

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  6. #5
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    For a scene as intense as this is supposed to be, having a distance shot really doesn't serve you very well. I would focus in close, at an off angle and lock onto their faces, from about the waist up. Have the camera angle low, with both of them looking in the same direction ("upper" right) - one is looking over his and his buddies shoulder, with both knives visible. Use the trees in the background as arrows to lead the eye to their worried/scared/determined-am-I-doing-the-right-thing expression.

    Hope that helps.

    Cheers,
    ~Oreg.


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    im about to go to class, but the one thing that strikes me, is as oregano said, a distance shot is difficult to protray the action, tenseness of the situation. also, as it is, your focus is in the middle, which is pretty boring. hope this helps...

    I self-published a book on the fundamentals of drawing from life.

    http://www.amazon.com/Fundamentals-D...8951905&sr=8-1
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    oregano- would it be possible for you to post a sketch of what your describing? Ive found im for the most part a purely visual learner when it comes to anything art related. Id really appreciate it.

    thanks for your comments jetpack and oregano.

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  9. #8
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    Heya,

    here you go:

    Illustrating a story (WIP)
    Now, this is super ultra quick. I just wanted to get the basic idea down for you. I've brought the picture up close (it could, now that I look at it, be brought in even closer) in an attempt to highlight their faces. They are standing back to back, and angled to an extent so that you are viewing them from a lower perspective. I used the arrows to indicate where the eye would be led along paths - along the body, background elements (clouds, trees, etc.) all to create a bullseye effect on the characters, and the one in the foreground specifically.

    Also, not touched on in this example, I would use the lighting to further put emphasis on the characters as well.

    I hope this helps.

    Cheers,
    ~Oreg.


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    Thanks. That definetily portrays the mood I was shooting for. Time to get some new reference photos.. Ill see if I can use this BG for some other part of the story.

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  11. #10
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    ok, Took me a while to rework stuff because Ive been getting alot of projects thrown at me, end of the semester type stuff. heres a WIP shot of the rework, Thanks again oregano
    Illustrating a story (WIP)

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  12. #11
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    Now THAT works!

    I like that composition a lot. Great job. It creates a much more dynamic atmosphere, and the whole thing is very tense. The expressions are very good.

    My only suggestion at this point is to perhaps drop the blood on the blades and use a highlight instead. If I remember your story correctly, there hadn't been any violence *yet* at this point...

    Looking forward to seeing more!

    Cheers,
    ~Oreg.


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    Illustrating a story (WIP)

    actually this is the very last scene after they have fought each other.. so there is a bit of blood.

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    Quote Originally Posted by KenDeathwalker
    actually this is the very last scene after they have fought each other.. so there is a bit of blood.
    Plenty of blood on their limbs and faces and yet none on their clothing?? Add some more blood spattering & tear up their clothes on them to make it look as though they really kicked some ass. Right now they're almost too clean cut & sterile.

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    Illustrating a story (WIP)

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  16. #15
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    another illo for the story.
    Illustrating a story (WIP)

    Im fairly satisfied how I loosened up on this one and with the general effect of it but Im sure some one will point out a few reasons for me to keep working on it.

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