tree woman
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    tree woman

    well, hey there. i've just signed up today and wanted to share this piece for some feedback,

    okay, refs are used by courtesy of tacostock and kaeloth

    i regret having drawn the female part with reference, it could've been done pretty much from my head but the hands posture was challenging and i felt i had to look it up to nail it right (still flaws, flaws...)

    sketched in artrage2, i had newly purchased back then and got hooked with the ref pin up feature and went further in ps and painter for coloring & detailing.



    a peek in to the sketch and work environment;



    zoom me up, scotty;



    as a hobbyist and novice, i welcome all feedback. thanks.

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    Last edited by jamsession; November 15th, 2012 at 06:52 PM. Reason: title change (other one was too pretentios ehehe)
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    Quote Originally Posted by jamsession
    well, hey there =)
    i regret having drawn the female part with reference, it could've been done pretty much from my head but the hands posture was challenging and i felt i had to look it up to nail it right (still flaws, flaws...)
    You're taking the wrong lesson from this. Indeed, you probably could have drawn what you have without the reference. However, there's all sorts of structural information in the photo that you're not incorporating into your piece. I suspect a misplaced fear of "just copying a photo" is holding you back from taking what is truly useful.


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    Just to add on to what elwell said, the details you're missing (i just realized) is what's making the top half so flat. there are highlights and shadows you could have used which were in the ref that could really make it more volumous.

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    thank you both for the crit.

    well well, i don't particularly like working with refs since they bear the risk of making the entire piece depend on the photo, alas sometimes it is a need 8like in my case with the hands. the figgie was a necessity, it is my very first fig tree to go that is)

    the photo does have the shadows and highlights but they do not match with those of my composition so i refused to use them and tried to nail the lighting as per the composition.

    btw, i don't know why my thread was moved because it is not a WIP but a finished piece already.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jamsession
    thank you both for the crit.

    well well, i don't particularly like working with refs since they bear the risk of making the entire piece depend on the photo, alas sometimes it is a need 8like in my case with the hands. the figgie was a necessity, it is my very first fig tree to go that is)

    the photo does have the shadows and highlights but they do not match with those of my composition so i refused to use them and tried to nail the lighting as per the composition.

    btw, i don't know why my thread was moved because it is not a WIP but a finished piece already.
    I don't see how the lightplay on the back of your model can't be developed for your pic. There is no detail on her back and underarms which is making it very flat, paying attention to the midtones, hilights and shadow of your ref could really help translate that into your pic and give it volume. I think we're having a miscommunication so I'll leave it at that.

    And the finally finished section is being reserved for pieces of work at an advanced or professional level. Even thoough some finally finished pieces also recieve crits because of some minor problems, the flatness of the top half of the woman and the ambiguity of size (I can't tell if she's human sized or tree sized) are major problems that have to be addressed before you post in there.

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    now i got it. misconception may be caused by the fact i am not a native english speaker. thanks for addressing issues on this piece as similar as those addressed in a few other art communities taking art seriously.

    i am not planning to rework / tweak this piece for the time being but i'll bear in mind not to use any reference for the next one and try to get assistance from my imagination instead, as this image suffers a conflict between ref and imagination, combined with the hesitation towards the widely known bias against references in online circles.

    cheers.

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    My opinion is that you need practice with working a ref into your pieces, rather than not working with ref at all. Remember too that just straight anatomy studies don't just help you with drawing from imagination, but also greatly benefit you when working with refs.

    Good luck

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    Quote Originally Posted by jamsession
    i am not planning to rework / tweak this piece for the time being but i'll bear in mind not to use any reference for the next one and try to get assistance from my imagination instead, as this image suffers a conflict between ref and imagination, combined with the hesitation towards the widely known bias against references in online circles.
    I repeat:
    Quote Originally Posted by Elwell
    You're taking the wrong lesson from this. Indeed, you probably could have drawn what you have without the reference. However, there's all sorts of structural information in the photo that you're not incorporating into your piece. I suspect a misplaced fear of "just copying a photo" is holding you back from taking what is truly useful.



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    Quote Originally Posted by jamsession
    thanks elwell. thanks.
    Quote Originally Posted by jamsession
    many many thanks.
    ..~°~..

    Last edited by jamsession; January 20th, 2007 at 06:51 AM.
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    thanks rhineville, i will definitely give a try to the recommendations and share the result for feedback. not sure how long it will take though. i cannot take enough time for art and exercising, my biggest concern.

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    i am not planning to rework / tweak this piece for the time being but i'll bear in mind not to use any reference for the next one and try to get assistance from my imagination instead, as this image suffers a conflict between ref and imagination, combined with the hesitation towards the widely known bias against references in online circles.
    No, he's saying you SHOULD be using references. There's is absolutely nothing wrong with refering to a picture to see how muscles move, how bones protrude, how lights hits an object, and applying that knowledge to your artwork. "Referencing" and "copying" are two totally different concepts, and no artist would discourage referencing.

    The more you practice using references, the more knowledge you will gain, and the less you will NEED a reference to produce a convincing picture.

    Notice how the body you painted has no bone or muscle structure: look at the reference photo and note the shadows, highlights, the shoulder blades (which would help this image quite a bit) etc.

    It's a really nice start, but anatomy, in particular, needs some work.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Somnilocus
    The more you practice using references, the more knowledge you will gain, and the less you will NEED a reference to produce a convincing picture.
    many thanks for the encouragement. a shy bunny i was turned into by reading countless threads in many art communities where i saw even some great masters being blamed with using photo parts or not painting from sheer imagination, i was at the edge of the decision to stop looking at references and stock imagery to avoid being the one of the next targets of such accusations. thank you all three for the relief.

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    no, no, it didn't take me five years to rework this piece but i finally felt like taking time to make the required tweaks. actually i wanted to do it last year and also found the original psd file but unfortunately lost it for good, so i had to work on this very resolution, plus it was flattened (murphy's law).

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    Quote Originally Posted by jamsession View Post
    no, no, it didn't take me five years to rework this piece but i finally felt like taking time to make the required tweaks.
    If you're going to rework an old piece (especially one that is FIVE YEARS OLD), you might as well start from scratch. Thumbnails, value studies, the whole shebang. Assuming you weren't on an art hiatus, you should have improved sufficiently to justify doing this from the beginning. Between the woman, the development of the roots, and the included snake, there are some very confusing scale issues going on here.

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    wow thanks for the quick response. yeah you're right, i should've started over i think. i'm content with the palette but starting from scratch seems to be the best way to fix lighting, values and detail, i'll give it another go =)

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    okay. just started from scratch and this would be the basic sketch.
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    I wouldn't call that starting from scratch. Did you make any thumbnails to explore the composition before making this? This is basically just a womans back in a field of green, I don't see how this will help you make a finished painting.

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    it's a basic sketch to help me fixing the anatomy issues first (her back and esp. her shoulder blades were the first issues addressed).
    the overall concept is ready thus far, i'll work on other elements once anatomy and light are intact.

    thanks, yo
    ...

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    Last edited by jamsession; October 30th, 2012 at 05:09 PM.
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    Well. You're getting ahead of yourself in that case. You should make a sketch of your composition first (but before that make thumbnails to base the sketch on) and then start doing studies for the different aspects of the painting. Figure out the composition first before you get into all the technichal stuff. Otherwise you run the risk of making decisions that don't fit with the rest of the image and you're too far into the painting to fix them. This is also where not being too dependent on your reference comes into play. You want to get a rough sketch going of what it is you want to achieve before you set out to find reference for it. This way your drawing will dictate the reference and not the other way around.

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    .. pfft double post.

    yeah you're right, i already havhe a sketch of the picci, just didn't up it as i'm rather concerned about anatomy. i'll post the advancements tho. thankies (laptop's keypad's giving me a hard time btw heheh)

    Last edited by jamsession; October 30th, 2012 at 05:11 PM.
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    I take it that those are shoulder blades and not buttocks? I liked the composition of the original and the misshapen arms. Look back at what worked and what didn't. You must have improved in 5 years, so I'm expecting a huge leap.


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    thanks black spot, that crit was what i was waiting for. i need to work on the back anatomy before moving ahead with the composition which is more or less ready anyway. i rely on the composition of the former version that's why i opt to focus on the anatomy before hurrying up with the piece. yes, although i had a huge hiatus until 2011, i must've relatively improved but it's never enough as i'm still really very clumsy when it comes to anatomy and values.

    i'm content with the three and bg of the former pic, i even may integrate the bark with the new body, don't know yet.

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    Well, the reson why I want to see the sketch is so that we can comment on the composition and tell you what you can do better. I think the torso is looking better and you have some nice colors going. But even so the surroundings will affect how you should apply color and value. It's allways a better idea to work on a painting as a whole rather than doing one part at a time and try to fit it all togheter afterwards.

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    been working on the main rough sketch which i'll refine in line with the crits. i've integrated the old trunk and sketched over to match it with the torso. i hope it's no longer flat.

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    The contrasts are too strong in areas of low importance. Use strong local contrast to draw the eye towards your attention center, not away from it, e.g. not the roots. Also, avoid detailed textures in the background, especially if you don't have them in the foreground. The center of attention is where the highest concentration of details should be. Probably would be nice with more overall textures, e.g visible brush strokes, anything to make it less smooth. I'm guessing you are leaving textures till the end, which is maybe not a bad idea.
    Maybe play with a second set of colors, such as colder (bluish or grey) hues in the background to increase depth? Or at least less warm green? If you madethe background totally blue (which might look terrible) you will see how much more easily you can create depth. Also, the yucky green color doesn't really give a sense of pleasant forest, but rather of yuk. I would refine the palette a bit.
    Composition especially of the last one is a bit odd, with a large area of nothing domination the frame. Might look better if you make a background similar to the first one.
    Good work, carry on!

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    aw thankies! your crits are spot on, and yeah you're right, i've left the refining bits and further details such as textures, snakes, foliage etc. to the later stage. ;D i'll reconsider the palette as well, the former seemed to me to lack contrast but this one hurts one's eyes heheh.

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