I like these, but I don't, yet I do...
I think I'm not alone, which is why the reply count for this is so low...
The first one is better, subject wise, from a technical standpoint. His hand is very well rendered. What hurts this is the angle of his head, and his hairstyle. Both give him a leaning, crooked rendering effect.
The fact that you've cut off his right hand and both feet also hurts this piece a lot. Always try to make portraits that are more than heads, complete body works. You can always take it off. It's hard to add it on...
The second one has a nice and dynamic pose, but the technical execution hurts you. The shading is very crude and hurriedly done, and the bold hair strokes reinforce this rushed, somewhat careless feeling.
The overworked backgrounds are what, in my opinion, really lose these pieces for me. Too dark, too shapeless, too overpowering. Although they DO emphasize your postive space, they are not evenly blended enough, and look somewhat "messy."
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I see what you're saying about the head/hair for the mike piece. The hands/feet were cut off in the picture I drew it from, I probably could have added them in myself though.
I agree with you on the chester piece. The hair strokes were done fast. Since his hair was spiky and I was dying to go to sleep but finish the picture, I just made strokes with the charcoal all around. I could have done a better job with the shading aswell, I guess in the end, I was rushing to finish it that night, but I still like it though.
The thing with me is that I start things but sometimes don't finish them or don't feel like working on them after I've stopped so I try to finish them the time I start drawing it. I'm probably gonna start taking my time with the drawings I do.
I feel you could push the values on the chester piece.
Because the black and white range is low, it means that the lines around the eyes seem the same depth as underneath of his neck for example. This contrasted with the very dark background causes the piece too loose depth.
On the point of Mike i'd also like too add that the body doesn't read too well below the hand, i'm not sure why though, maybe if you posted the reference.
Here's the pic for the Mike piece.
thanks, I'm going to go back and add some darker values to some of the shadows on chester's face.
yeah, the head angle in the picture is towards the left, but the one in your drawing is to the right and that's what is giving it that skewed look. i agree with the second piece in where the hair looks rushed, as well as the shading. but everyones said that already so nevermind this post, heh.
I like the mike piece the best...because you have included his whole body..even though chester's face is much better...I think It would have been much cooler if you had included his shoulders.