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Taking my art further towards the fantasy genre with these two. My new camera is still refusing to take a photo with the whole image in focus, so detail is lost, but you get the general idea.
Last edited by dashinvaine; December 11th, 2011 at 06:10 PM.
nice work mang. good job with the girls - very hot.
one quick crit - if you add a little more atmospheric perspective to the backgrounds they would pop alot more.
I am hoping to turn professional very soon, ideally specializing in book covers with fantasy, mythological and historical themes. All professional critiques are greatly appreciated, the harsher the better. I suspect that areas I need to improve may be composition, drama, tone (making figures stand out) and atmospherics. I am working mainly in oils because presently my computer is too... well, I won't insult it to it's face, but it doesn't find graphic tablets especially agreeable. I'm able to do the odd bit of tweaking in photoshop, as well as adding the typography. Shown below is a wrap-around book cover on an Arthurian theme, done with my portfolio in mind. I'm quite pleased with the magical mood evoked. I would also appreciate comments on the layout and typography, and any advice on securing freelance work in the areas of interest.
Last edited by dashinvaine; March 24th, 2009 at 06:31 PM.
Well the rendering skills are good to go, you just need to work on your composition, and making the subjects pop from the background a bit more. And perhaps some more dramatic lighting would help as they look a little flat. Composition is something you have to have a think about... a lot. For example, on the book cover, you have a horse's arse on the spine. Any publisher would have a bit of chuckle about that one!
Anyway, looking forwards to more.
I just have to make this remark on the cover. Do I get it correctly that the knight on the left hand side is just supposed to be galloping at full speed into the knight clad in red, so that his lance snaps? In that case the behavior of the victim is really disturbing at best. He seems completely uninvolved in the process and there seems to be no impact on him. Yo would expect him to be smacked backward and also his horse to be struggling for balance. Instead he is sitting upright, his lance loosely at his side.
Otherwise I think your style is remarkable, keep it up.
Because my last work was a complete layout I am now really picky about Layouts. Espacially when you say that you want to do it professional.
I dont know what you have learned so far, so I just mark some points that catched my eye.
1. The headline: If you can change it, please do. If the Head and sub-headline can form a box it looks better. At this size it should still be good readable. (And if you form a box rearrange it so that it fits in the center of the page)
+ Even if you dont see the front and the back together later, bring the front and back title on the same distance to the top.
2. The back of the book. Use guideluines over the whole layout to arrange the text and picture peaces. Usually it looks better if elements are arranged together than beeing on their own. (The last point)
Thats it for now, hope it helped.
I gree with what has already been said; your composition needs a lot of serious attention. That is, how to orchestrate the eye in its journey around your image. At the moment you are trying to mitigate this problem with rendering and it will not work. Have a deep, deep look at Waterhouse's work, not for the pretty girls but so to study how he tells the story through the abstract orchestration of his image in 2D as well as 3D. Turn his pictures upsidedown and try to find out how he uses shape to steer your eye the way he wants you to go. Look to see how he makes the metaphors for the action in terms of his shape organisation.
Here are a couple of compostional analysis I've done from the 'Advanced Composition Thread' in the Art Discussion forum at CA. The first is of course Waterhouse, the second is Mr Frazetta and the last is something I did for someone here on CA who was asking for a compositional crit.
It should give you some idea of how to go about this most important area of the work.
Please bear in mind that the Waterhouse study is nowhere near on the money as to how this painting works, but it is a tentative guide. The method of analysis I would use on this piece if I was doing it now would owe a huge amount to Kev Ferrara, also of this parrish, who is currently writing a book about narrative composition. It is for this reason that I cannot include it since I would not want to pre-emt his hard work until it is published.
Last edited by Chris Bennett; April 23rd, 2009 at 12:30 PM.
From Gegarin's point of view
Dash, you're improving by leaps and bounds. But I think you are constructing pictures using intelligence alone. I think you really need to get your emotions going and project yourself into your pictures as if they were real. The imagination is where images come from.
I would recommend reading Harvey Dunn's Lecture Notes: http://www.robolus.com/h.dunn-eveningclassroom.pdf
At least Icarus tried!
My Process: Dead Rider Graphic Novel (Dark Horse Comics) plus oil paintings, pencils and other goodies:
My "Smilechild" Music. Plus a medley of Commercial Music Cues and a Folksy Jingle!:
Thanks all for the excellent advice. I'm not sure what could have been done about the horse's arse, but its all stuff to think about. Here's another piece conceived as a cover design exersise (done before I was able to benefit from the above feedback). I've already been criticized for the undynamic square composition with four main elements. Doing it again I would put the severed head more centrally and not include the helmet, so to give a reverse triangle composition, within the larger triangle formed by the figures and the cave.
im a bit confused by the last picture....what you wanna say? whats your main intention to tell the "reader" ?
should he free her, hellp her to flee from this place? or is it more important that she is frightened by this place?or maybe from him?
whats more dangerous...these holes where they are in or the cuffs on her legs?
and why does it seems so, that her cuffs are loosy on the ground, but in the background are some stuck in the wall?
wouldnt it make more sense if she is also bound to the ground or on a wall?
and is it nessecary to show the bloody head from a monster?
and is it just a hole....similar to insect holes or is it something more??
ok...what im trying to say is....even if its not an overfilled picture....there are too many lost information....information that makes no sense or just confused the "reader"
Also, you lost your maion focus....and atmosphere....
this picture should feel like she really dont like this place....its very dangerous...
so....these holes in the background are too bright....you can see if someone comes....make them darker a bit....
ah and where is the light coming from? a torch on the wall ot stuck into the ground or whatever would make it also more dramatic....ah well....and because the light source is not clear...your characters dont have shadows...O.o
but shadows are the most important thing to make something look dramatic....how about try to use some black? places where not every detail is worked out? places where is not clear(because of darkness) whats in there?
and is this cloak from her or him?...whatever...make slices(is that the right word?) in it...make it look used...its too shiny at all....and i dont think its possible to stay clean on such an earthy looking place
Just do not try to compensate "bad" or "wrong" lines if you make it brighter....just use pure black! then you'll see your mistakes and such better
I found with the cover for Perceval, that it seemed as though the horses weren't moving - I had to work out that since the lance was shattering they must have been moving with some speed, but that white horse looks like its standing there waiting a groom to lead it away.
I think perhaps you would expect more movement in the fabric and the manes on the horses since if they were running full tilt (and they must be in order to shatter the lance), there would be wind and jouncing evident.
Also, I don't think the lance would be shattering in quite that arc over his back. Since the knight being hit is moving into the lance, you'd expect the shatter to be more radial with pieces flying backwards and sideways than arcing over.
As for the cover of Expectant, I had worked out that it was probably his cloak he covered her with, since it was clean - but even so, you'd expect it to be a bit dirtier (and her too) since he's probably had to crawl around the caves looking for her lol
Other posters have made better points, but one thing I just noticed, is that her eyes are looking over his head, but there's nothing there but wall - what is she looking at?
I love your rendering though, and the style of your work I particularly love the woman you first posted, she is nicely detailed and arranged. Thank you for sharing
Thanks for the comments. With the Percival one, the red knight is supposed to be in a deep trance due to suddenly with clarity remembering his forsaken bride, causing him not to respond when the knights of Camelot arrive and challenge him. Kay charges at him in order to snap him out of it. Hence the white horse is meant to look static.
great style going on! more from this!
T=ART, ...keep going to that special place, never surrender...
Lookin again, your art has something really appealing, CONGRATS!
Hope to learn from you.
T=ART, ...keep going to that special place, never surrender...
I can see sometimes that another layer of paint is often desirable. My paintings probably could all use another hour's work. But the trouble is there's always a risk of ruining whatever quality is there already. Sometimes I've seen other-people's pieces over-worked or reworked and felt that they were better in the original version, especially when they've done things that change the character. It's that old problem of knowing when to stop.
brilliant. I love the halberd in the first image is that your own idea? if so it's fanfreakingtastic
Also the female in the image is very well rendered, I love the woad paint.
-------- I am Available For T Shirt, Logo and Tattoo Design --------
---------- http://www.zedkhov.deviantart.com ----------
The one hand is a bit under-refined. My camera hasn't helped because it focusses on the face and loses all the detail everywhere else. (I'm grateful if it decides to focus anwhere, that's more than it does much of the rest of the time, piece of junk that it is).
Thats awesome but why not go digital?
I will go digital one of these days. I'm without photoshop or a tablet at the moment, and I can't drive fireworks very well. New to that. By the way, in answer to zedkhov, yes the halberd was my design too.
I perceived a fault in the dragon one, with the wing seeming to blend into the background. It was value related, the wing needed to be darker and the background lightened and pushed back. Have tweaked it a bit. Hopefully this is an improvement:
You are painting like a poet! More of this! This has future!
I really, really like the texture of your paintings!
Im tired of shiny skins and muscles, we need them of course,
but we need this too....
I will buy a print someday.
T=ART, ...keep going to that special place, never surrender...
Very interesting content!
You're getting better. Beautiful stuff.
Here is my painting 'The Last Centaur', completed today. (The photo could be better but you get the general idea). Trying out bit of romantic classicism, with an edge of melancholy...
It goes with my poem 'The Ballad of the Last Centaur', which can be read here... http://dashinvaine.deviantart.com/ar...taur-134817046 (Orbis88 on DeviantART rate it very highly. Hopefully he knows what he's talking about...)
I really like your concepts. Your composition and anatomy are strong. But I find that your images lack a certain amount of contrast that holds tham back from popping off the canvas. They appear flat. Please don't get me wrong your work is fantastic but I think it could be better. I don't just want to view your paintings I want to feel like I can jump into the images you create ..... bring them to life.
"Creativity emerges only when the imagination is given the freedom it deserves."