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a quick one from me. gonna be my new website theme.
Looking good, what is that standing on the moon?
thats gonna be a naked chick
heres an update. dragon is almost done. gonna add shadows and stuff and start work on the girl next
ps. funky lighting, i know
when doing things like this, try to think of how an animal looks, something comparable to the imagined or fantasy creature you are illustrating. In this instance you could refer to a number of real world creatures.. A horse for the body anatomy, a lizard for texture, and pterodactyl (I site this cause theres more than enough reference out there on them) and translate that understanding of form and function to your dragon. I feel that lacks in your drawing. Things aren't clear to me as to how this dragon would function, and that question brings up other questions like could it bend that way (with considerations of the spine that is in it) And yes there is artists licenes to whatever you do, true art is in the eye of the beholder. I'm merely commenting on the thought process you should put yourself through when doing somethign like this. It will ultimately help you in the end product. It will benefit you further if you do that little bit of thinking in the front end, so when you're working on it you'll have a good ground work to guide you. THIS IS SPEAKING IN TERMS OF TACKLING REALISM, sorry, I wasn't yelling, just wanted to categorize my thoughts....
now to play devil's advocate.
from reading your description, I see that this mage will be used as a site theme, which in that case, I am led to believe that the image should lend to a more graphic approach. If thats the case, make your gesture lines more fluid. Draw your overall shapes as they will appear as broad "gestural " masses. Just get a nice flow to your lines down, a nice motion to your ground work. Draw the outside silo of the dragon as a big circle, making it pleasing to your design goals, build you subsequent shapes off the original nicle designed circle... What you are lookign for is anice blend of form and function, form will make it pleasing to the eye, and function will stifle the reality picky critics. Rough your drawing out extremely loosely, forget details completely. Draw through the basic form shapes to place appendages properly... (left arm, aligns itself with right arm, chest sets itself to support wings.... the left bone is connected to the right bone, etc etc) and if yo are looking for a graphic symbol like drawing, this method is just as important in creating a believeable interpretation.
Right now I think you shouldn't get bogged down with details just yet.. ( I know you're almost finished, and I apologize for beign so critical) but I think you have issues that hurt the overall look of it....
things to look into are:
how do wings work? where do the bends, and support come from on them?
the jaw mechanism isn't lined up, the lower part isn't lined up with the upper
the rendering right now has to define form better, (the details are good, but it's hard to identify the actual shape of the body) play with some more shadows, if the image is lit form the circular light source in the middle, the objects in it would be primarily back lit, making the side that we see most of, to be in heavy shadow.. with light in an image, there is athought process behind that just as there is in drawing... take the time out in the beginning to work out these issues and the rendering will be merely putting thew puzzle together..
I did a rough thumbnail of the dragon in a graphical interpretation.. ( I will upload it if you're interested) I didn't do so yet, cause I wanted to see if we were possibly on the same wavelength.. and again, don't get discouraged by my critique, by no means do I want to insult you. I just felt there was a lack of the basic foundations, and since this will be an image that represents a first impression towards your work (being that it's a site theme) I think you should make it very impressive.... but, if you disagree, get some rottne fruit and start tossing at me, I'll stand in the corner for my pummeling....
@GenConfusion *goes and gets out the rotten fruit!!!!* he he he, no seriously. let me just say: wwwwoooooowww. im glad to inform you that you have written the longest reply to any piece of work that i have ever posted anywhere. youre crits are very welcome. i kinda figured that i got caught up in detail way too quickly. as to how the dragon would function, yeah ok, i admit to forgetting to paint in the legs >__< i totally agree with the image having to be 100% top notch.
a few things that confused me thou, i couldnt quite follow you on those points,
"question brings up other questions like could it bend that way (with considerations of the spine that is in it) "
"where do the bends, and support come from on them?".
what ive done now is ive worked a bit more on the shadows and stuff, and then moved on to the girl. i think ill distance myself from the dragon for a while and start fresh later. its looking slightly better now, i hope, but its no where near finished.
ps. HELL YEAH!!!! POST IT I NEED ALL THE IDEAS I CAN GET. THANKS AGAIN
ok zak, ready again
my mention of the spine, is so you realize that what you paint isn't just a flat piece of canvas, or illustration board with alot of happy colors on it to make your image. (it wil be that when you're done regardless of how you go about making it) Why I brought up the spine point was to shpow you how you need to think about logistics when you paint...
Again, the thought process is more than half the battle in painting.
Realize that this creature has a bone structure in it, that woudl allow it to have certain limitations to it's movements... Therefore possibly constricting it to being able to bend only so much.... ( it may not apply to your dragon as directly as I'm trying to explain, since a dragon is essentially fake and you could frankly do what you want in creating it) but that thought process of how things are made in a real world setting is what wil help you begin to understan FORM, an important part of drawing... then FUNCTION wil be your next step in good art..So don't take my spine mention as literal as you may be doing, but understand that everythign you draw has a way its made.. it has a Form to it, and that FORM could be an underlying skeletal structure that dictates how you're creature could bend..
here is a small teaser of a dragon scene im doing:
notice the shape SILO of the body isn't perfectly smooth, there are smooth overall qualities to it, that lend to a nice gestural feel but if you dissect the silo real picky like, you see that it does a smooth - smooth break - smooth transition to it... the break is most apparent in the neck area where the inner bone structure changes direction form the foundation spine that sort of displays the action.... this is where FORM comes in on an object..... also notice the wings on it, and the slight transparency (light comes throgh) this happens because the wings is like our skin and it's transparent, not see through... but put a flashlight in your mouth, and you can see the light through your cheek, its because the skin is thin and luminescant. And a dragon wing is the same thing.... (thats where I say refer to real life when doing stuff like this) there is always a necessary grounding in creating art, it makes it more plausible/believeable to the viewer..
now onto more wings stuff:
notice that it has divisions to it... like our fingers. because essentially that's what a dragons wing is, and that being his fingers... so these divisions have to be usd to make a wing believeable and again the wing part, is liek skin that has grown off of the finger for the purpose of helping it to fly.. and the meaty part of that wing has an underlying bone structure so thats somethign to consider when rendering it as well..
ok a bit more and I'm done
a leg to show you how the structure works, and agin its all subjective to what your preferences are, but I based this leg on a lion, since a lion has strength to it, I feel that a dragon should also... and of course you could beef it up if your dragon is to fight a Conan warrior dude, it's all up to you.... but again foundate it in reality and from there your limitations to size or look are up to your imagination
and one more:
this is extremely rough, but it sums up my points. An I did the imag in the round overall shape liek I initially said you should... (that gave me a graphical design element to play with, and it also lent to a pleasing gesture, which is helpful in making the viewer happy) but notice the FORM, and see how the appendages extend from it... the left leg is oppostie the right, left arm to right arm, left wign to right wing..... and that is done by drawing through the overall FORM, with cross-sections, so you can give yourself a visual map to your drawing , so you'll know ehere the pieces of the body fit.... this drawing, the crosssction are in red to differntiate them form the drawing but they are extremely important when dealing with perspective, proper FORM, and good drawing... do all this, and you'l get a A for the day... but don't copy what I did... that will only defeat my points, understand why you're doing what you're doing , then and only then young Jedi will you truly know the ways of The Force....
again best of luck with this, I want to see the final when you do it, soldier..... send it to my email if you want.... or post it whatever you like, and if you need more tips I'd be happy to help provided I have the time...
BTW how old are you?
I SEE THE LIGHT!!! i feel really embarrased now >__<.
thanks very very much your help. i now exactly what i need to do to fix that guy ^__^ im gonna scrap the wings and do some fundamental changes to the bodystructure. a kinda rework of the sketch.
your dragon looks pwetty cool too. i like the folds around the neck and head area especially. a small nitpick at the neck thou. where the neck and the body meet, it seems unusually narrow, like he/she is wearing a really tight dog collar or something like that. but its sweet anyway. i wudnt want one of those seeing a meal in me ^__^
im gonna go and fix my dragon now.
ps im 17 and a proud painter since jan 2002 (he he he)
well good luck Zak,
keep what I said in mind and you'll see the improvements happen right in front of you... (and yeah ny dragon is still very early, still in sketch stage, prpobably the only thing on there that is even close to finish is the wing that I used to show you my example)
so, when I finish it, it will be looked over with a fine tooth comb..
inform me when you finish yours, I'd love to see it...
he he he, ill be looking forward to that dragon! no prob ill email you two when its done, ill also post regular updates on here till its finished. thanks for all the help again. im reworking the sketch a bit more, its starting to look more promising
a quick update: i have made new sketches based on my original idea, and have made a rough 3d model based on these. im currently struggling with the posing of it, but it should all turn out ok. sorry no pics of that as its extremely rubbish, ill post an update of the painting when i reworked the sketch fully, based on the 3d model. im determined to make that one real good
your dedication to this concept is great, be careful about overpainting a 3d model though, as ive seen some that didnt look very good. keep it up though man!
he he he, at least its helping me with my 3d too ^__^. i depends i might just trace the outline after im happy with the pose or paint over. right now it looks like the outline is winning thou.
:bash: LOL, I had to use that smilie... don't use a 3-d model
you're setting yourself up for disaster, what will happen is you'll condition yourself to rely on that way of doing things.... get the foundation down first... the drawing...
think form and function, very important. I see alot of kids today relying on everything but the things they should rely on. A shortcut will only get you there quicker, but once you're there, you'll have no idea where you are... LOL jeez, you have me sounding like Mr. Miagi now... LOL but stay away from that avenue until you understand drawign 101, you'll see it will even help you with your model making, once you understand how form and function works..
heres a tip... draw til your hand falls off, then learn to draw with the other hand (I'll be expecting my check in the mail soon, for my advice).... just kidding..... unless you're independantly wealthy then my adress is... no I am kidding..... but seriosuly take my advice, I didn't get to be this old man without learning a thing or two
but doing the 3-d work is good for people who know what they're doing and need 3-d to speed the process, due to budget, but for you in your beginning stages.. take the time now to learn why things work the way they do
remember, I'll be watching you to see if you cheat LOL
lol @ gen. id love to see your progress zak.
hello everyone im back again, after a significant ammount of work on the dragon. well, gen you must have sent some brainwaves out that messed me up co i cannot set up ik, not to save my life . ive done many sketches since thou. anyway, it was back to the drawingboard and thats what i came out with. i have hidden may layers btw.
sorry i had to delete the other pics