Sketchbook: Moai's Sketchbook - Page 18
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  1. #511
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    Camara- Thanks!
    angel0- Who's this angel0? I want my friend redSpade! Thank you, buddy. I'd only say that I'm, maybe, a level 24 adventurer when it comes to digital painting. There are still so many things I don't know about light, color, value, composition, and all that.
    MonsterKill- Hey, man! Good to see you. Thanks for the blah blahs. And though I've heard several times that I'm good-looking/cute, I'm not nearly as magnetic as you say. Anyway, I only consider myself average-looking.
    I'll answer your questions about molds and stuff later.
    Hybrid_75- Thanks!

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    Trying to work out the structures and mysteries of the eukaryote metazoan eumetazoan bilateralian deuterostomian chordate vertebrate tetrapod amniote diapsid lepidosaur squamatid, also known as the lizard, for my mentoring thread.

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    I went on a trip to a local zoo recently to sketch. Here are some very pretty squirrels from Asia. They were hanging upside down and hopping around when I got there, but they all froze when they realized I was watching.

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    Some more animals. I accidentally made this image really small.

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    Boids. The flamingo was agitated for some reason.

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    The thing at the top is a spider monkey that I never quite finished. He was my favorite animal at the zoo. Whenever I came over, he'd come over to the side of his enclosure and look right back at me. Primates have such personalities. Well, some of them.

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    Moar animalz.

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    Is it done?? I think so. Right on the edge of being down, anyways. I am grateful to this painting, as it taught me the beginnings of the patience I'll need if I want to make art my career.

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    I was about to print this out at Kinko's, when I realized--Gasp!-it was 8"x11", not 8"x10"! I'd resized it earlier and forgotten about it. So, I did some quick tweaking and a little bit of extra painting, and that was fixed.

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    So far, this is the only painting I've produced for DEEP. I originally intended on having a whole school of various types of alien fish, but this is all I've gotten done so far. The concept is this: these fish are called jewelry fish, or just jewel fish. There are hundreds of different species from dozens of different worlds. Sold as eggs, they are fed by their owners and come to see their owners as their only source of food, and therefore spend the rest of their lives following their owners. It is not uncommon to see DEEP-women surrounded by a small school of these beautiful little fish, flaunting their schools just as other women would flaunt their jewelry or clothing. New, rare, and spectacular breeds are constantly sought after, and it is a status symbol to have a particularly unique jewel fish swimming after you.

    Last edited by Moai; June 11th, 2008 at 07:23 PM.
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  2. #512
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    It always astounds me how dedicated you are towards your studies. I do some from time to time, but you seem to be drawing all the time, where ever you were. Also, it might be an illusion in a small way, as I do draw a heckload, but I never post my small sketches I leave behind. I kind of feel ashamed of them. Also, if something looks relatively okay to me, I have to colour it, and most of the time, screw the thing up. I sort of need to learn to save, scan and post my, eh... "Lesser images". Anyhow, good looking stuff once again.
    This time I won't save up space by giving blah blahs.
    the reason to this is the mermaid. Now, seeing the process of said image, I knew it was going to be good. But I am absolutely paralyzed by the look of it. The only things I can move are my eyes and hands. Everything else just stopped functioning. I need to piss, too. Asswipe. Anyhow. the amount of detail is amazing, and by means, it doesn't have too much. And you have dealt well with placing them in the right places to center the focus on the mermaid's head and upper torso.
    Great job!
    The only minor change I'd love to see is the effect water makes to light. You know, the lighted crackles you can see on different surfaces in clear waters that the small waves create, twists the light, but I guess that'd be a major task, when it comes to focus points. Anyhow, good job.
    What species' tail does she have, or is it improvised? Maybe a mix of improvisation and a certain species of fish?

    Keep posting. I think the paralyzation is fading. I need to go to the bathroom before I soak my- eh, maybe I should just stop typing and go. Adios, see you next update.

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  4. #513
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    No words....the mermaid is just GORGEOUS!!!!!

    Your idea for Deep is absolutely fantastic,I´d love to see more of these jewel fish,and maybe a woman surrounded by them!

    Keep up!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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  6. #514
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    Nice mermaid, I just checked out your post in your mentoring thread. Wow pretty cool collection of skeletons. that was a really great post lots of info. great stuff.

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  7. #515
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    Something smells fishy

    Turisas- Jeez, everyone's changing their names... Thank you for all the compliments, man. They really make me feel like all the time I spent making this image was well spent. And if it does seem like I draw all the time, that is probably an illusion based on me posting my sketches in big dumps. When I was in school, my art time probably averaged out to about two or three hours a day (more on some days, much less on others). Nowadays it's probably down to an average of 45 minutes a day. The mermaid's tail was improvised. It was one of the last things I painted, because I didn't know how I wanted to do it. I thought about adding that rippling light effect, but I think that would have been the straw that broke the camel's back. This painting was hard enough as it is.
    Hope you made it to the bathroom okay.
    Camara- Thanks, pal. Hey, did you add me as a friend on Facebook? Here's some more jewel fish for you.
    Hybrid_75- Cool, glad you got something out of all those skeletons. Still more to come (eventually).

    So, circumstances have conspired to have me painting a lot of fish these days. There's my mermaid, DEEP, and father's day is coming up, so that's another shark-themed image for my daddy.'

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    Painted some more jewel fish. I changed the big guy's mouth. In the previous design he had pretty much a whole head up there, and that doesn't really make sense when his eyes are on the back of his body. The orange and purple guy is very much influenced by JakkaS. If you don't know that name, you've obviously never spent much time in the CoW forum. Here's some concept-type info on the individual fish.
    The Backeye is among the larger and more powerful varieties of jewel fish. Owners of the Backeye must take special care that their other jewel fishes are compatible, for although all jewel fish are bred to be unaggressive, the ancestors of the Backeye were reef predators, and it is not unknown for Backeyes to occasionally eat smaller jewel fish. A peculiarity of the Backeye and its relatives is that its visual organs are near the rear of its body, hence the name.

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    Originally bred for food, the Quat is slow and plump. Its body is heavy and its fins are small and weak, so it is very slow swimmer. Therefore, it is recommended for occasions where little movement is required, such as musical performances or dinner parties. A vocal and affectionate fish, it will often rest on or nuzzle its owners, and emits endearing grunting and purring noises. Nets and storage tanks are available for the easy transportation and containment of these slow, lovable jewel fish.
    (The image is at 100% zoom. I was working fairly small. I think it's one of my best renderings yet.)

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    The Discus Dragon comes in many striking colorations, including the Red Sunrise breed pictured here. These gregarious jewel fish get along well with each other or will other fish of similar size. Their thin, flat bodies are relatively rigid and inflexible, so most propulsion comes from the single caudoventral fin. A pair of pectoral fins just behind the head add stability.
    (This fish was really fun to paint. I made many spontaneous design decisions while painting it, and changed my mind several times, so it changed a good bit from start to finish.)

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    Here's the sketch I'm working off of. As you can see, I'm changing the designs somewhat as I paint them. It's really fun.

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    Here's another shark creature picture for my dad. I've tried a few different colorations on it already with no luck. I'll probably just look through sharks on Wikipedia and find one with a coloration that I can copy. Good thing nature doesn't copyright her designs!

    My mom and I are packing up today and moving to Oregon tomorrow, so this may be my last update for a little while. See you guys later!

    Last edited by Moai; June 12th, 2008 at 06:25 PM.
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  9. #516
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    Kamikazebob is offline [18:44] mr_pickles: Boob Level 6 Gladiator: Provocator
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    Hey Moai, dude. Lookin' good as always! That shark critter is wicked awesome. I can little things here and there on it that I can see the real life equivalents of. The Mermaid is beautiful too as are the fish and the... man I could keep going but flattery isn't my strong point.

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  10. #517
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    Grumbleputty- Thanks for thanking my post!
    Kamikazebob- Thanks, man.

    Well, here's what I've done since I last posted. Today was my last chance to get this done, so it's somewhat rushed. My dad'll love it anyways, though.
    I find sharks, whales, and other large, tube-shaped sea animals challenging to draw/paint. Their forms are simpler and more subtle than other animals, with less wrinkles and other little details. It's hard to find a good balance between details and simple rendered forms on these sort of creatures. Plus, it would help if I understood form, light, and shadow better. If I'd had more time and resources, I probably would have bought a little sculpey and made a small model of this as reference, so I could actually observe the shadows and values, rather than make semi-educated guesses. Oh well.

    Edit: Again, I must say how grateful I am for the experience of doing that mermaid painting. On none of these paintings that I've done since then have I felt impatient, or even really frustrated, nor have I wanted to say "that's good enough" and leave a not-quite-finished painting as it is. Not long ago I, when painting was getting really frustrating for me, I started to doubt whether this was really what I wanted to do with my life. Now, that doubt is leaving me, and I'm so happy for that. Now, once I'm finished moving, I have to really get to work!

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  11. #518
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    Quote Originally Posted by Moai View Post
    Now, that doubt is leaving me, and I'm so happy for that. Now, once I'm finished moving, I have to really get to work!
    That´s great!Now I hope to see lots of paintings from you almost everyday!Hahahaa

    I love the jewel fish,you know!!The shar is looking great,first I thought about blueish colors,or maybe white in the belly,but this color palettle works fine too,though it makes him looks more like a ground creature than a water one.

    Great work!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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  12. #519
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    Hey Moai, man it's been too long since I've last commented in your book. The studies are looking nice, as well as some of your later fish paintings. As for the mermaid piece, I can clearly see your improvement in technique on this piece. I do have some suggestions and things that stand out to me. The first thing that stands out is the focal point I'm assuming is the mermaids face, but to me it's competing with the large red fish behind her head. I think the intensity of the red fish is pushing my eyes toward that area,. This could easily be fixed by having the fish pushed further back and having it diluted with the ocean water. I think this would work since I already feel the water is murky then clear. Another thing that stands out to me is the lighting on some of the fish and on the mermaid. The lighting, I think would be able to hit her scaly body, and have some specular highlights. Because it seems the light would be strong enough, and not dilute in the water. Also as with some of the fish closes to the light source would have more of a reflective surface. Also the large fish would be casting its shadow on the red one below. Also if you flip the image horizontally her facial anatomy is off in areas. Her mouth should be push down a little and pushed over. Also the biggest thing that stands out is I don't fill like the mermaid or the fish is actually displaying movement, where are the bubbles? Maybe her hair would be floating more etc. Also the mermaids’ body fin is looking strange to me. I think this is because there is no separation from the rocky background to the middle ground. I think what’s hurting compositionally speaking is that her pose is breaking up the flow of the golden spiral. See below. Don’t get me wrong this is a strong piece, its great improvement over your previous paintings. I think just keep asking yourself questions when you’re working on a piece, even out load for that matter. One thing I’ve found is taking a tape recorder and talk into while workings on a piece then play it back to see what you’ve found or missed. Try to really think about the lighting and the type of water will she be in? How foggy is the water? What is the temperature? Etc… questions like these. Anyways I hope I made sense in my critique and even if you don’t go back on to the painting, I guess it’s good to think about these things in the future. I guess you could always go back and do another take on the piece, and to compare the two. That way you can see your progress. Well anyways hope to see your new updates soon, and thank you for commenting in my book. I’ll make sure not to wait so long to comment in here as well. Take care.

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    "Imagination will often carry us to worlds that never were. But without it we go nowhere." - Carl Sagan
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  14. #520
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    Hello, everybody. Well, I'm an official, card-carrying resident of the state of Oregon, now. It's been about two months since my last update, both because of moving (which was a terrible, stressful pain in the ass!), and because I simply haven't painted much since my last update. I was feeling unmotivated and malaise-ish, but I'm working past that now. Here are the paintings I've done. I've drawn several pages of studies and sketches, but I haven't scanned them yet, so you're just going to have to wait for that.

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    The creatures I design are usually vertebrates, so I did this to practice with an invertebrate design. It's based on a shrimp. The painting isn't finished, and since it's sat untouched in its folder for over a month, I don't think it'll ever be finished. Whatevs.

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    Also, I need to work on my robots. I'm okay at drawing simplistic, cartoonish robots, but when it comes to real, serious robot design with convincing mechanical components, I'm hopeless. So, I did this "exploded view" of the Honda P3 robot. P3 is the last prototype Honda made before ASIMO. Look up ASIMO on Wikipedia to get more information on these robots. It's really a cool metamorphosis from the ugly, awkward first version to the sleek final version.
    Anywho, the purpose of this exercise was to learn about different different components and joints and how they work on a real, functioning robot. There was really no emphasis on rendering technique, as you can see.

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    This is my most recent project. It's a redesign of a character, but I'm not going to tell you what character it is, or give you any other hints besides the progress of the image. You'll have to guess. C'mon, humor me. I really am interested in how difficult or easy it will be for people to guess.
    Anyway, I had a small breakthrough while rendering this work in progress. Whenever I've tried to render loose, draping wrinkles, I've had a terrible time. While rendering this guy's throat, I realized that the solution is to use soft brushes first! Paint in the soft gradations first, and then paint the hard edges in afterwards. This might seem basic, but that realization definitely helped me.

    Responses:
    Camara- With the shark, I actually was thinking of a more bluish color scheme at first. But it didn't work out, so I shifted over to this more brownish scheme. It's appropriate that it makes it look more like a ground creature, because this is a species of shark that is making the transition to living on land. Thanks for the comments, man!
    Yautja892- You always give me good critiques, man, and I thank you for that. Here are some responses to specific points you made.
    The first thing that stands out is the focal point I'm assuming is the mermaids face, but to me it's competing with the large red fish behind her head. I think the intensity of the red fish is pushing my eyes toward that area,. This could easily be fixed by having the fish pushed further back and having it diluted with the ocean water. I think this would work since I already feel the water is murky then clear.
    I was a bit doubtful of that bright red fish, myself. I kept it that way because I figured that, since it's in the same general area as the mermaid's face, it would draw attention to the face. Maybe it is too bright, though.
    Another thing that stands out to me is the lighting on some of the fish and on the mermaid. The lighting, I think would be able to hit her scaly body, and have some specular highlights. Because it seems the light would be strong enough, and not dilute in the water. Also as with some of the fish closes to the light source would have more of a reflective surface. Also the large fish would be casting its shadow on the red one below.
    I think you're right about the brighter light on the fish closer to the surface. The large red fish actually is casting a shadow on the fish below it, but it's a very low contrast shadow, so it might be easy to miss.
    Also the biggest thing that stands out is I don't fill like the mermaid or the fish is actually displaying movement, where are the bubbles?
    I see what you mean about having a stronger feeling of movement, but I don't think using bubbles to suggest that would make sense in this context. Bubbles are just pockets of air in liquid, and since none of these creatures are splashing at the surface or exhaling air or anything like that, I don't think bubbles would be appropriate here.
    I think what’s hurting compositionally speaking is that her pose is breaking up the flow of the golden spiral.
    I (respectfully) disagree about the mermaid's pose hurting the composition. Having her break the flow of the rest of the image makes her the focal point. Almost every other element in the image is moving more or less horizontally, while she is vertical and seems to be holding still. This sets her apart from the rest of the image, establishing her as the focal point.
    The rest of your suggestions were good, I just disagreed on that one. Plus, I don't think I'm going to be painting any more on this anytime soon; I'm really tired of mermaids!
    Thanks again for the critique!

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    I like the unique creatures!

    Not an expert, but a big fan!
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  16. #522
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    Science Fiction Fan- Thanks! So, what's you're favorite science fiction? I've been enjoying (and getting a little bit confused by) Gene Wolfe lately.

    Here's an update on my redesign of a certain character. The front view is done, save for some accessories I'm going to put on him later.
    Can you guess what he is?

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  17. #523
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    kingkostas is offline Train to help world with art someday...
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    Moai all your works are impressive and inspiring.I love you creatures and i loved them since i joined conceptart.org and checked your sketchbook.I hadnt any critiques to throw cause you are extremery good .
    This time i cant stand without post anything.

    (i also like your avatar lol)
    keep up

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    Wow, man- you've made leaps and bounds, and I can see with every new post that you're becoming more and more confident with your gesture, anatomy and color. Your work is fantastic.

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    spending a lot of time in the water eh? hehe.
    just dropping to say hi. love that last character. looking forward to see it all completed. i admire you friend, youre creatures never stop to amaze me.

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    hey... the mermaid is finally finished!!! it looks amazing!!
    can't wait to see your next works.
    that character redesign you're doing... is a Ninja Turtle?

    Hehe, just saying hi, and if my memory doesn't fails me, one of these days is your birthday isn't?
    Well, then... WELCOME to the 21s!!!! (I'm 3 months older than you, hehe)

    NOW Lets go drink some BEER!!, ohhh and yeahh... happy birthday man!

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  22. #527
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    Thanks, Markeshi!!! I am indeed 21!! Or rather, I will be in a little more than twenty minutes after I write this. I have a six pack of Coronas in the fridge, waiting for the stroke of midnight!









    I'll respond to the rest o' ya'll and post some art soon.

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    kingkostas- Thank you!
    Sway West- Thank you very much. It's nice to hear that. I always try to improve in some way with every new piece I do.
    Villa- You noticed I was doing a lot of water-themed pieces too, huh? Nice to hear from you again, man. Thanks for the comments.
    Markeshi- Thanks again for the happy birthday! It was definitely a fun birthday, despite a few disappointments. I had a beer at midnight, then yesterday I went to the Oregon Zoo and Powell's City of Books (an enormous bookstore taking up an entire city block) in Portland. For dinner we went to a Mexican food place and I ordered a margarita, and when the waiter saw it was my birthday he also brought out a shot of tequila. So I was definitely feeling a strong buzz by the time the food got there.
    Thanks for the comments. The character redesign is not a TMNT, but I'm glad it's obvious that he's a turtle. Thanks for playing along with my guessing game.

    So here's the digital art that I've produced since my last post.
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    Not much new on my mystery character. I started the back view of him. This was meant to be an initial, sketchy pass in preparation for the true painting of the back view, but I like how it looks, so I may keep the back view simplified relative to the front view.

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    I started on an entry for last week's CoW, Arctic Dinosaur, but since I was moving to a larger apartment in the building in which I live, I didn't have time to finish. This is the second sketch pass, solidifying the forms and details, as well as the suggestion of anatomy.

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    An early version of the coloration. Like I sometimes do, I experimented with filling the creature's silhouette with a texture.

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    Unsatisfied with how it was looking, and playing with layers, I found that the design looked much better with the dark texture turned off, giving the creature a light rather than a dark overall color. This also gave me an opportunity to do some markings and patterns, like I did on the face. I darkened the background so that there would be contrast between it and the creature's light "fur" (since this is a dinosaur, the body covering would actually be more like feathery bristles, rather than real hair). Then I started painting the head.

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    Since I liked how the back view of my mystery character looked, with the simple darks and lights, I used a technique similar to that when painting this. This is a view at 66%. I've been painting somewhat smaller these days. It's easier to get things more polished that way, and the painting doesn't look like a complete mess when zoomed in completely.

    That's it for now. I haven't worked on either of these things in about a week, but I don't want to add them to the pile of unfinished paintings that has accumulated over the course of my keeping this sketchbook, so I'll definitely try to finish both of them.
    I'll also try to scan my pencil sketches in some day soon.

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    Happy Birthday by the day...


    Your turtle character.... Franklin the turtle redesign?? Because I think he can remove his shell.... (I could be wrong...)

    Last edited by Spiralfish; August 29th, 2008 at 06:32 PM.
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    Thanks, Spiralfish! No, he's not Franklin the turtle. There's definitely some Franklin influence in him, though, now that you mention it.

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    Happy birthday! Your artwork is really freakin awsum man, keep up the great work!

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    Glory666- Thanks!

    Time for another one of my sketch dumps. This is what I've been working on over the past few months, while I was only occasionally updating this sketchbook.

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    Some amphibian creature designs I did one afternoon. I was going through a creative dry spell, so I really didn't cover any new ground with these designs.

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    A study of a coconut crab, plus some sketches for an EoW that I never completed. Coconut crabs are really awesome animals. Essentially very heavy-duty hermit crabs, they are the largest invertebrates on land, weighing almost ten pounds and with a leg span of up to three feet. I'd like to see them in the wild someday.

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    The sulidor, an alien species from Robert Silverberg's Downward to Earth. Any other Silverberg fans here? It's one of the alien species illustrated in Barlowe's Guide to Extraterrestrials, so I had to make my design distinct from that while still true to the description in the book.

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    Some sketches for DEEP. As with my Jewel Fish, I was consciously drawing these fish with shape and visual design in mind.

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    More DEEP sketches. The central creature is actually a highly-evolved marine human.

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    I didn't draw these specifically for DEEP, but I was still in a watery mood.

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    A cheesy robot. Since I drew this in rural Washington, with conifers everywhere, I drew him holding a tree.

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    A too-cutesy self portrait, a guy from a back pain relief ad, and a Japanese macaque. I find macaques to be among the most expressive animals, along with dogs and of course humans.

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    A few critters and the skeleton of a short-beaked echidna.

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    Of the weapons, the leftmost and rightmost ones are from reference (a great book on Native Americans that I found at a garage sale). The middle ones are from imagination. The robot sketch was turning out very boring, so I abandoned it. The warthog-type animal is based on one of my Spore creatures.

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    My aunt got me a great book of celebrities who look like each other. It's full of interesting faces to draw.

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    Stylinodon, a primitive mammal from the early Cenozoic, and some CoW sketches.

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    Some arctic dinosaur designs. The little alien guy is based off of the night children (I think that's what they're called) from Gene Wolfe's excellent--and bewildering--short story collection, The Fifth Head of Cerberus.

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    More dinosaurs. I ended up using the body of the lowest dinosaur, though I changed its head in the final design.

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    Some critters from the excellent childrens' book, A Trip to Woodland, and an environmental study. I had a little epiphany while doing the environment. It's a little hard to explain, though. Basically, these kind of rock forms are divided into primary, secondary, tertiary, etc. shapes. For this specific rock form, the primary divisions of the shapes are in the z axis (going away from us). The secondary division is along the x axis, going from one side to the other. So, the most important forms are going roughly from front to back (the large ledges and crevices going toward the background), while the second most important forms go from side to side (the smaller, more horizontal ledges and cracks in the rocks). The tertiary level of detail is in the small diagonal cracks, which are little more than surface details on the form.
    Sorry if I'm not being clear. I may explain this more in further studies.

    What follows are all anatomy studies from Bammes and Richer. Bammes is more geometric, with the forms simplified to artistic basics, while Richer is more detailed and scientific. Hopefully I'll get good information from both.

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    Thazzit for now. I'll have my latest CoW finished in a few days.

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    Sound Eater and Some Rocks!

    Well, I attempted CoW this week, and I succeeded. The topic was "Feeds on Sound." It's a strange topic, but I got inspired and went for it. Here are my steps.

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    I had two basic ideas for this round. The first idea was of some fantasy beast with a slender, lizard-like body and a massive ear-mouth (it eats sound, after all). The second idea was a more alien, less earthly beast, possibly with three legs, possibly plantlike. I liked the first thumbnail I did of the lizard-like creature so much that I just went for that instead.

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    As any of you who pay very much attention to my posts probably know, I love zoology and animal anatomy. So, I roughed out my creature's skeleton over the first silhouette sketch. This does two things. First, it obviously gives me a better idea of the creature's anatomy, and how apparent its understructure will be on its external form. Secondly, it allows me to have fun with two designs, both the creature and its skeleton! The basic idea here is that this lizard's mouth can flare out like the neck frill of a frilled lizard, and that it's massively expanded mouth is supported by modified skull bones.

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    Here I sketched the exterior form over the skeleton.

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    Beginning the coloring and composition process. The creature can both stand on its hind legs and on all fours, so I wanted to show it in both positions. More importantly, though, I felt it was necessary to show how it looked with its huge mouth closed, and some of the fellas over in the CoW forums agreed with me. So, I added a second creature on all fours, with its mouth closed. I also quickly set up the light and shadow on the main creature.

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    The mouth and head are the focal point of this image, so I added some bright and varied colors in those areas. This also makes sense for the concept, because its huge mouth is also used to surprise and frighten predators (again, like the frilled lizard).

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    I wasn't happy with my sketch of the second creature, so I altered its pose a bit.

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    And here's the final. I had to hurry to finish it on time, and it's not perfect, but I'm very happy that I was able to complete my entry for CoW this time.

    Here's the description that went along with it:
    It has been known sense prehistory that sound, especially voice, holds special powers in our world. Indeed, many scholars believe that our ability to manipulate sound at a high level of complexity is what allowed our race, when it was young, to triumph over all other species of animal and attain civilization. Through sound, we not only communicate and use language, but also cast spells, charms, incantations, and make use of any number of other Vocal Powers.
    In early days, it was believed that man alone had the use of the Vocal Powers. However, in this new age of science and exploration, it has been discovered that many other creatures have magical abilities, though few are as well-developed in their use of these powers as man. One creature with surprising magic abilities is the Sonagama. Lean, quick-moving reptiles as large as a small man, the Sonagama has developed an ability similar to the magical power known as soundleeching. Using this power, it draws all sound in its environment towards itself, just as a powerful magnet attracts metal objects. Using its fantastically enlarged cheek-flaps, this sound is funneled into its mouth, and through a number of both physiological and magical adaptations this sound is converted is converted into pure energy, and it is this energy on which the Sonagama lives. The creature literally eats sound.
    Now, let us discuss the natural history of the Sonagama, as far as our current state of knowledge allows. As mentioned, the Sonagama is a reptile, specifically a lizard related to the agamas, hence its name. It is large, with long, muscular limbs that allow it to both run at great speed as well as rear up on its hind limbs to nearly the hight of a man. Its skull is highly modified, with long quadrate bones allowing it to achieve a terrific gape when opening its mouth--the large the mouth, the better ability to consume sound, apparently. Its enormous cheek flaps--the most remarkable physical characteristic of the species--are supported by highly modified palate and hyoid bones, which swing outward from the jaws to hold the flaps rigid. When the mouth is closed, these bones are folded against the sides of the head and neck, with the cheek flaps hanging like curtains around the throat and shoulders. The cheek flaps themselves serve two functions. Firstly, they assist with funneling sound into the creature's throat, much like our ears funnel sound into the skull. Secondly, they make the creatures seem tremendously larger and more intimidating than they actually are, a useful tactic both for establishing dominance within the species and for frightening away potential predators. The Sonagama shares its habitat with a number of species that have rudimentary Vocal Powers. These creatures seem to be the preferred "prey" of the Sonagama, for magical sound obviously contains more energy than normal sound. However, in a pinch, any form of sound will sustain the Sonagama. When the Sonagama deploys its soundleeching powers, the world around it grows suddenly silent, with even the loudest noises seeming to become muffled and distant. Vocal Powers become useless when in the presence of a Sonagama, for the sound is absorbed before it can have any magical effect. For this reason, tamed Sonagamas have become popular guard animals for those who wish to protect themselves from malicious Vocal attacks.


    Also, I made a small image to further explain what I was talking about in my last post when I described the "epiphany" I had when I was doing some rock studies.
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    1: This is the basic, most simplified shape of the rock form I am going to draw.
    2: As I mentioned in the last post, for many rock forms, the form is divided first in a primary direction, then in a secondary direction, etc. For this particular rock that I am drawing, the primary divisions of the shape are along a horizontal plane. These horizontal divisions correspond to different strata on the rock.
    3: The secondary modification of this form is along the vertical plane. So, I added vertical cracks and crevices and irregularities, but these aren't as prominent as the horizontal divisions of this form.
    4: After the basic shape of the rock has been decided on in the previous steps, the last step is to add all the irregularities and other details, such as cracks, holes, chunks of rock that have fallen off, and a pile of eroded rubble around the base of the rock.
    I hope that makes what I was saying in my last post clearer.

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    Wow you are busy. I am not sure if i've seen your sketchbook lately, but man, you've got a lot of great studies and creatures. it made me want to go do some creatures. Keep it up, you get stars.

    "I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain."
    --- Frank Herbert, Dune - Bene Gesserit Litany Against Fear

    Check out my Sketchbook! Critique and Criticism welcomed.

    or my Deviantart!

    · or check out my: Blog
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    Cockatrice

    Artzealot- Thanks man! Good to see you in my sketchbook again. It's kind of funny how people seem to think that I'm always busy, constantly drawing and studying. I think it's an illusion created by me dumping all my sketches at once. I waste so much time finding distracting things on the internet; quite a bit more time than I draw, unfortunately.
    Thanks again. Glad I could inspire.

    Anyway, I saw "The Spiderwick Chronicles" last week, and it inspired me to try rendering out some more naturalistic fantasy creatures. So, I'm doing the cockatrice. In case you don't know, the cockatrice is a legendary creature that kills instantly at a glance, has deadly breath, poisons the lands it walks through, etc. It's a combination of serpent and rooster and has bat wings. It's more or less synonymous with the basilisk, but modern fantasy games and literature typically depict the basilisk as more of a low to the ground, reptilian creature, with the cockatrice being more chicken-like.

    So here we have thumbnails, reference sheet, loose sketch over one of the thumbnails, and some color tests. I kind of like all of these color schemes, so it would be great if you guys could help me make that decision.

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    I don't believe you.
    you must have like a 30 hour clock or something then. gimmie. mr. time waster.
    I haven't visited your sb in a while, and I must say you are truly kicking ass (you were also kicking ass last time I was here).

    Anyways, I love your work. very inspiring stuff, and a very good place to learn, no doubt about it. I shall check back more often! keep it up man!

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  33. #537
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    kingkostas is offline Train to help world with art someday...
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    Yeah very inspiring!!! Thank god you update .Man this Cow Creature is the best.Really like it.Also all your other studies are excellent.
    Thnx for sharing

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    Small Cockatrice Update

    dkounios- Great to see you again, ol' buddy! It's been quite a while. Thanks for the kind and encouraging words!
    kingcostas- Thank you. Glad I could inspire!

    Anyway, none of my original color schemes were quite doing it for me. So, I copied and pasted them over each other in multiply mode and messed with the hues to see if anything interesting happened. I'm liking one the best, three the next best, and two the third best. I've decided I'm going for more of a mottled, greenish coloration than the bright reds, yellows, and violets that I posted in my last color tests.

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    wow, haven't checked out your sketchbook before and its very inspirational. You really draw creatures welll! i also really like the colour combo to the left of number 3. I'd say its better than number 2 because 2's colours look a little muddy

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    Amazing work,man!!!!

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