Thanks for the closeup of "Susan steps out". I love your strokes. I also love the captured moment quality of all of these. I like how the elements of your work combine to evoke a profound stillness. I do think in preserving the triangle in "Venus in ascension" you cheated the woman's arms beyond believability. Arm length seems to me to be an issue in "woman with a lily" as well.
As for the fine art v. illustration issue; about a year ago I showed my painting mentor a copy of "A Christmas Carol" illustrated by Christian Birmingham, explaining I was really inspired by this "illustrator". He thumbed through the book a couple minutes, then said "Well, you're right, the artist is very good, but he isn't an illustrator, he's a painter. Probably a representative of the publisher approached him, expressed the firm's admiration for his work, and said they were interested in a project for which they'd like to commission him."
My teacher is a portrait painter and muralist with a career spanning 40 years, and I know this includes one illustrated book, so I assumed he was speculating based on his own experience.
He went on to say,"If you want to be an illustrator, that's one thing, but you must understand illustration is a discipline different than painting, with a different course of study and ultimately a different emphasis."
I just nodded and went back to my easel, and realized later I should've asked him to explain the difference. I did the next time I was in class during the model break. His reply;"Painters--fine artists--have to know more."
In his view, and his name is Jon Onye Lockard, by the way, a trained painter can move more easily into illustration than an illustrator can into fine art.
On the other hand, I subsequently looked up bio information on Birmingham, and found his own study in art culminated in a concentration...in illustration.
And so it goes.
"Three's so little room for error."--Elwell