Critique if you please!
3mo
Dan B
It's me again, the weirdo that paints wasps :) My concern with this piece is the lower detail of the cocoon (it's a Lacewing cocoon being parasitised by the wasp), which I don't really notice because my attention is on the wasp but I wonder if it is actually distracting? Source pic: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/113030643. I didn't try to be exact with colours, but tried to keep my piece cohesive at least.
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Dan B
Ok so I tried to implement the feedback here: added slightly more contrast to the wasp body/head, toned down the contrast in the cocoon with slightly cooler shades (maybe too much?), added a little more detail to the leaf and some light cross-contours to the centre of the leaf. The changes are fairly subtle but I think work well and leave the wasp most focal. Thanks for the feedback!
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jkovalchek
I think you've done something quite fabulous here. You have great color unity. You've well described so many different textures: the reflective glassiness of the wings, the shiny body, the matte smooth leaf and then my favorite is the fuzziness of the cocoon. If your concern is that the cocoon is distracting, it is a dominant element: You have the highest contrast in values (brightest light, near darkest dark) and it takes up a significant portion of the image. If you don't want it to be a dominant element, it probably would be difficult to recompose at this point without losing parts of the wasp, but you could make all the values on the cocoon more mid range, and increase the difference in values on the wasp where you want people to look (maybe brighten the highlights on the abdomen right next to the dark rings (ridges? I don't know wasp anatomy. Sorry) All that said: I like it! You're good with wasps. What's your medium?
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Dan B
Thanks! I do the wasps digitally generally now (InfinitePainter), but like to use some charcoal and graphite. Otherwise and dabble in painting occasionally but haven't for a while. I see what you mean about the cocoon, I might try reducing the value a bit, making it cooler to reflect the sky a bit and bump up some highlights with a mask. The wasps are tricky because they're so small you don't get nice big shapes for light and shadow and there's lots of intricate forms. It's definitely been a challenge, but I enjoy it, so :)
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Steve Lenze
This looks great, well painted. The only thing I would do is maybe add some color variation in the green leaf background, and perhaps add some detail, like veins in the upper right hand side of the composition to help balance it out, and some cross contour detail on the stem part of the leaf to show its perspective and add some dimension.
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Dan B
Thanks Steve. Colour variation is a good idea. I wanted the background quite plain to simulate the depth of field, but it does make it a bit flat. I'll play around with it a little.
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