Well, My previous method for not liking an artwork was to treat it as a sacrifice for my next painting. So if a painting or a drawing didn't go well, I wouldn't worry too much about it and just try to experiment as much as I can, as to at least get some new technique I can use for my next work. Though right now, I just accept that I have to redo my work about 5-6 times until I get it right. I decided sometime ago that if it isn't worth redoing 5-6 times, it probably isn't an idea that is worth pursuing. I should also probably mention my other technique is to leave my work unfinish when I'm not sure about it and photo it and fix it digitally. (I think I got this idea from this muddycolors post https://www.muddycolors.com/2012/10/rembrandt-and-dirty-tricks/) Then I'll post it here and ask everyone here for feedback and when I get them I fix them digitally and when I think it's good enough, I'll try to emulate my result traditionally ( Actually now that I think about it, it's kinda similar with Steve Lenze's tracing paper technique but for painting) Anyway that's all I got. I hope this reply somewhat help for anyone out there who's struggling with their art. (Also this Steinbeck quote help when I was more of a perfectionist "And now that you don't have to be perfect, you can be good.")
Hey, @paper, it’s been a while indeed! Let me go straight into the comments. ---------- 1st DRAWING I think adding the red overlay helped hide a bit of the original drawing’s dirt and smudge which, to me, felt a bit like visual noise. So I wouldn’t say adding the red layer was a bad thing. Honestly, yes, I do think the drawing looks a bit slapdash - although, to me, this is part of what makes it interesting, as I, personally, tend to like the rough quality and spontaneity of sketchy lines. To me, the drawing really doesn’t appear to have any rendering at all, it really looks like a loose sketch. As I already mentioned, I like the sketch quality it has, but if what you were going for was something with more rendering, then I’d say you’d have to put more time and work into it in order to develop the image to a rendered stage. I believe some elements in the picture may have become a bit too ambiguous - for example, the little dots on the ground to the left: at first, I thought these were pebbles or soil texture; but they also appear on the sky, so what are they exactly? Sometimes, intentional visual ambiguity can be nice to play with, but, in this case, I think it might have gone too far and could be making the illustration a bit confusing and hard to read as a piece of visual communication. As for the composition, I feel that the values may have gotten a bit spotty, as there are many contrasty areas spread across the picture. For example, the large black spot on the top right is drawing so much attention to itself that it’s hard to keep focus on the character. The best way to solve this would be to choose a focal point and make it have the most contrast in the overall composition, while having all other areas with lower contrast in order to create some visual hierarchy. ---------- 2nd AND 3rd DRAWINGS I like these as little pieces of concept character portraits. To be honest, it’s hard to judge these drawings from a likeness standpoint because, in terms of style, they look so different from the characters you used as references. I can tell which is which, so yeah, to some level, I’d say you managed to keep recognizable traits of each character in your drawings. But, in the reference, the character designs are so cartoony and stylized (awesome, by the way), and your drawings seem to push them into a slightly more realistic realm, with a much smaller dose of “cartooniness”, less exaggeration and facial proportions that stay in a more standard, “average” zone. To me, this is neither good or bad, it’s just a different approach in style. Anyway, I’d definitely not get concerned about nailing the likenesses in these - at most, maybe just consider getting a “recognizable translation” from one style to another. As for value, I think maybe you could try achieving a bit more tone variations with your charcoal. When I squint at your drawings, I only notice two major tones (light dray and dark gray) besides the paper color, while, when I look at Sargent’s sketch, I can see at least five or six major value gradations. Have you tried practicing with a value scale exercise? Maybe do some of these and try to make at least four or five different values with the same charcoal stick by varying there pressure you put on it and the spacing between the hatching lines. Edge control: honestly, I don’t think it is a noticeable quality in these two drawings in the way they are right now. Both drawings feel very loose and, to some extent, even a little random and untidy, so they kind of go the opposite way of what I’d consider “having good edge control”. Personally, I don’t see this as a bad thing - in fact, I think it resembles the same visual qualities as most of your other drawings I’ve seen, which I think is nice because, in a way, this shows that your outcomes have a sort of personal consistency. But the way the edges are being handled in these two drawings here is still really not very close to the smoothness and control we can perceive in Sargent’s work. Now the bar is set way up high here: Sargent became a true master of painting while he was alive, so of course his edge control should be very skillful. If that skill is what you’re going for, maybe go a little beyond just attempting to copy his style - perhaps investigate what fundamentals he studied, how were his practice routines, what kind of exercises and basic knowledge did he go through in order to build up to that level. Keep in mind that, in an artist’s work, there’s a lot more than just what the image shows, there’s a whole imbued lifetime of studying, practicing and honing of skills. All that is more revealing of the artist’s path than just the surface of one specific artwork. ---------- Here’s one extra recommendation: in future posts, it might be nice to organize your images in bunches, according the theme or to the specific assignment you worked on. For example, in this case, you could make some quick collages to assemble each drawing close to their specific references, and post less images in a clearer way. I’m attaching a visual example of could be a possibility! To make these collages, you could use either a regular computer software such as Photoshop, or even just a simple phone app such as Canva, PicCollage, Layout or another similar one (there are lots of those out there). Organizing the images in your post like that would make it a lot easier for us to see the overall scope of your work and also to refer to each image as needed when commenting. Whoa, this reply has become way too long. :) Sorry! But hope it makes sense, and hope it helps. Please let me know in case you have any other questions or thoughts to discuss. Best regards!
Hello I made some new drawings, would like some critism
Hello, I haven't been here for a while. I got sucked up into writting and reading books (Actually I guess I'm still sucked up as I'm reading 2666 and other stories right now). Anyway I got so into writing that I finished another fanfic and decide to illustrate the cover and some opening illustration for it. The first illustration I did was based on this folio society cover of Dostoesky's 2 novel crime and punishment and the brother karamazov (the latter was illustrated by nigel lambourne, though i'm not sure who illustrated the former) I finished Karamazov when I wrote the fic and searched up different edition of it. I stumbled on the version below and just though of how perfect the illustration was (since the fanfic i'm writting is set in a fictionalized russia) but also because the tone of the drawing fit in so well with the story I wrote. So I decide to try emulate the style. I thought the illustration was done with charcoal, but I couldn't find my charcoal stick. So instead I used a glass pencil (the one glen keane use). But then after I did the value placement, I found that the illustration was done in ink. So I added that on top of the pencil work. In the end I thought the drawing was good, but the added red made it so the detail and texture of the original a bit lost. (Any thoughts on this would be appreciated) The second drawing and third drawing was influenced by the drawings of John Singer sargent (particulary this one of robert gould shaw the third) I wanted to capture the elegance and beauty sargent's portrait and applied to my own stuff- At this point I also found my charcoal stick. In term of feedback, I really want to know if the first drawing have a good composition and if maybe the style is too "slap-dash" and doesn't have enough rendering. For the 2nd and third drawing, I would like to know if my value and edge control is good. I really want to have that soft edge that sargent does- also here are the references I use( would also like to know if I captured the likeness) P.s. if possible, I would also like to know if anything jumped at you and it doesn't feel "right" But anyway, that's all, thank you for the criticism and feed back and I hope I didn't babel too much >_< (Oh and, even though it's been a while @Liandro and @Christopher Beaven , any thoughts?)
Hey, @paper! Sorry for the late reply, I appreciate your patience! I like you painting! I think the different versions you made kind of bring slightly different feelings and styles. Personally, I prefer the one to attached in the original post because it feels like watercolor, mild and more pleasant to look at (at least to my personal taste) - and I really like how the girl’s face pops against the light faded background. The updated version, with stronger constrasts and digital iterations, feels much busier and intense, which I kind of like too, although not as much as the earlier one - and in the update, I feel the girl’s face kind of got a bit lost with the darker shadows and amidst the busy background. However, I do think the blizzard efffect looks clearer in the updated version - there’s are visible hints of snow flakes and a sense of movement and wind which doesn’t appear in the original version.If you’re still taking any suggestions on this piece, one that I’d give would be to maybe try adding the blizzard digitally as you did, but keep the softer contrasts and more “watercolory” brushwork you had earlier. That’s what I think I’d do anyway. Hope this helps!
oh hey it's you Welcome to the proko community @touhoufan_008 !I hope you have a nice stay here :D Anyway for the painting,this is pretty good!I think you got the structure of the figure pretty well and I quite like the shape design on the hair :D. The biggest problem I see with this painting is the hand.The thumb and finger I found too long and felt like they lack structure.For example here's a drawing by the great Ramon Nunez,observe the location of the knuckle of the fingers and where it is facing.Though the proportion is a bit exagarated you can still see a sense of structure with the hand and the subtle foreshortening of the fingers going inward. Here's another example,observe these drawing by the great disney animator Milt Kahl,particulary the one where he shows the thumb.See the shape of it and observe how stubby and small it is compare to the fingers-Please also see the shape of the end of the thumb and how it is in a long oval shape-I suggest you copy and study these hands or other master you admired.(I would also recommend this video by MArco Bucci to get a better understanding of hands and it's structure https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XBMQ-H-qUVk) I also did an overpainting on what my personal solution would be.(I also changed the neck slightly to better fit the head.) But anyway,other than that,it's pretty good!Please keep going,I would love to see your improvement :D .(Also after you study hand I recommend watching this video to get a better of composition,as I feel this too could be improve https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TOYkXEGkXx0&t=3677s)
Oh hi hi! This is a interesting combination/remix! I think you captured the feature nicely, people should be able to tell that's the elements if they know what you are up to. I don't actually know much about the style choice of yours, I think I do see this kind of more or less free-form look from time to time, but I don't really know what's the incentive behind such stylistic choice? Is it something you learned from someone?
Hey, @paper, nice job! Great feedback and advice from @Christopher Beaven, I agree completely. Also, I love the colors and the way you treated the different areas of the painting, with various levels of sharpness, definition and contrast. If anything, one comment I’d add, not for this piece necessarily, but for future work, is this: when you plan the composition, make sure to clearly decide for a focal point, and then save the strongest contrasts and edge definitions to that area, while keeping other areas less dominant, softer and, when it makes sense, even slightly faded or “lost”. I think you’re already on track with the overall idea of this recommendation, so just keep it in mind and keep it up. As an additional thought, have you ever gone through Proko’s Figure Drawing Fundamentals course entirely at least once? I see in your profile you’re currently not participating in any courses, and I believe the Figure course might be a good start to help you with how to work the characters in your paintings, since you mentioned that as something that bothered you in this one. In case you’re not ready to purchase the course just yet, you could watch the free lessons on Proko’s YouTube channel and use this community to post your assignments - and also feel free to post any assignments you might have done already in case you have watched the course some time in the past. Hope this helps. Thank you for your patience in waiting for my delayed reply!
Oh sweet an excuse to gush about my favorite artist. At the start of art journey I had a lot of "art parents" but as my journey went through the artist that mainly influence me trickle down as I realize that their style did not match what I was trying to say.But here are the art parents that I consider the most prominent: -Dean Cornwell;at the start of my journey I was a massive Dean Cornwell fan,I actually just wanted to be a cornwell copy at the start and want to only paint like him.I was obssesed with his composition,his use of thick paint and especially his vignetting.I think I only looked at his artwork for nearly 2 years just trying to copy his result(I even had an album in my ipad of 270 piece and fragment of his art).But at some point in time,I finally did a painting in his style I was happy with but had no desire to do it again.It made me realize that even though I still enjoy his composition and vignetting,I did not share the same vision and mindset as him.I did not enjoy working in thick paint and my idea also didn't fit with it.So after 2 years I largely abandoned him,though I still take his composition and vignetting,as stated above. -Andrew Wyeth; Wyeth made me realize the thing I was missing in my artwork,with Cornwell I was just trying to study his technical skill and his great craftsmanship.Andrew's work made me realize that it is equally important to think of the mood and emotion of the painting.("Christina's world" and "that gentleman" really hit me when I first found them).It also made me realize how important it is to leave out elements in a picture and let the audience participate in the painting.He also inspired silent hill 2,the game that resonate with me the most in term of feeling.To this day I still played "Never forgive me,never forget me" and "white noiz"when I finish a painting to see if I get the mood right.(By this point I pretty much gauge how succesful a picture is by how much it fits "never forgive me,never forget me") -James Bama (particullary his western work);Bama is the artist I am most obssesed with right now,Unlike the first two,I love Bama both for his craftsmanship and mood.His use of thin oil paint is so unlike what's anything right now.He paint in a photorealistic style,yet there's still loosenes in the fabric of the clothes.Reproduction on the internet does not do him justice,it doesn't reveal all his subtle layering and thinnest of the paint.I recommend buying his book,the art of James Bama if you are interested in his images. -Adam Hughes;I've found his work about a year ago and couldn't get enough of it.Whenever I am struggling on the shape design of a character or a background,I would look at Hughes work,There's a cover he did for the 2018 superman's run-I think it was issue 6-where he simplified the mouth and the left eye as 2 simple lines,yet he still uphold the structure of the faces,he indicate the cheecks and subtle muscle anaotmy with his shapes.It is damn amazing and it made me realize that you can have both simplicity and solid face structure in the same painting. -Zun;not what people consider a great draftsment,but goddamn does he make some terrific character design and ideas.The touhou series are games that I played and instantly make me want to illustrate them.It's a series where there's barely a story but enough fun character interaction and world building to put yourselves into it.It's a series where if you make fanwork, you can played up the funness and lightheartedness of the characters (Sr pelo's touhou parody is a good example.)Or you can go to the complete opposite and make it depressing (I.E. Flan want to die) and both would still fit the tone of the series.This is not to mention the hundreds of musician he inspired and the countless catchy song that was created. Those are the big ones,then I wanted to put Takehiko inoue,Naoki Urasawa, Satoshi Kon and that great lineage started by Katsuhiro Otomo who didn't prioritized making their character pretty,but giving them as much humanity as possible.But I would be rambling.(Even more than I am now). Anyway,I hope you're having fun with the draftsmen podcast!That episode on art parents is probably one my most favorite episode-I think I watched it about 10-20 times min since they released it-just because I love watching people talked about their favorite artist and giving their opinion on them.(Just hearing Marshall talked about his love for Durer or Stan's love for Fechin is damn fascinating!It make me sad that there aren't more episodes like that where they just sit down and talked what they like or don't like about an artist (kinda like that heinrich Kley sketchbook tour). Anyway, the exercise you mention sounds great!I hope you can one day finally find your style and voice :D
Hey paper! Cool concept! But a couple of things I would suggest you do first before attempting a painting like this. First, I don't like the composition very much, even in the photo reference. I think that the top of the hat is too close to the top of the picture, and in your piece this proximity ended cutting part of her hair tie for no apparent reason. I belive you should try and find a reference that has a more interesting composition and use the one you picked just for the cowboy itself. Second, I would strongly suggest you do a couple of studies before attempting a painting like this. Especially a study of the cowboy. For example, look in the reference how his face, even in the snow, retains a warm tone and in your piece the girl looks very pale. I like the idea, but I think you should break down the process a bit it will look much better overall. Hopefully it was helpful, cheers!
Update,I wasn't too satisfied with the composition so I went back and add darker value in the background to contrast more to the girl's shirt.I also added snow and rougher brushmanship,I think it payes off just because the brush stroke make it feels like you're in a blizzard.I also went back and simplify the lips,because I realized the original painting she looked like a blonde bombshell trying to be angry than a normal teenager. Alongside I also did this James Bama study to get better at my layering technique (and also how he uses very thin paint to make a translucent effect),though in the end I think I failed and have to do it all over again.(also the original was in oil but I tried translating it to acrylic and gouache.) Anyway would love some critism on what's not working,and also thanks for replying :D(Also I did the brushmanship of the blizzard in procreate using the turpentine brush,I would like to know if this brush can be replicated in traditional medium using water based paint,Thank you in advance for replying >_<)
Oh also I forgot to wrote this,but here are the underdrawing and thumbnail of the picture if you're interested.(Also p.s. I was also looking at Adam Hughes and Andrew Wyeth While doing this painting.Adam hughes formixing lines and rendering and Andrew wyeth for mood-specifically his winter and snow piece.)
Hello I made another fanart,would like some critism.
Hello I made this painting,it was inspired by this painting the late great James Bama did of a cowboy in the snow.I love the snowy setting of it and wanted to try to mix it with my own interest.So I thought of making it a touhou fanart and adding Reimu (Girl in the painting) to it. I already painted her several times before so this time I tried to reel of her ussual design and make my own version of it.Though I did looked up several other Touhou artist to get ideas.I got the shirt idea from this fanart from fixro2n.For the small dots on her bow and shirt i took it from this Nikorashi-ka fanart.For the bag of miko stick she's holding I got it from this amazing Harano Kaguyama fanart.For the belt and little bag on her hips. I took it from this Ideolo painting.Alongside those I also took use my older sketch of Reimu and wanted to capture that normal tired teenager look. But anyway,going back to the painting,I would some critism on what's not working with the painting.Unlike the Bama painting I made the edge of her silloutte more soft to simulate the feeling of being in a blizzard.I don't know if this works or not so feedback would be appreciated.Alongside that I would also love to know if any part of the painting isn't clear and how to improve it Well that's all I hope I didn't bable too much,thanks again for the feedback :D(Also as always @Christopher Beaven and @Liandro any thoughts?)
Hey Paper! This new painting is looking great. At a thumbnail size the overall lighting works really well. The composition is a bit cluttered with too many details. This distracts from the main character but overall it's really nice. I don't mind the shape of the figure, she doesn't need to be very dynamic in my opinion. The only shapes that bother me are the flowing drapes. A little more study of how drapes flow when effected by the wind would be very helpful here. Stock image sites would be very helpful with this. https://stock.adobe.com/search?k=cloth+wind Don't worry too much about paint application at this point in your career. Focus on clarity of light and dark shapes and communicating clearly through the composition. The texture doesn't really matter if the structure, perspective, shapes and lighting are great. You're improving so much! Keep up the great work!
Hello I made a new painting,would like some critism
Hello,I did this.I tried making this painting better than before,so I challenge myself by trying to paint a full enviromental background,all with realistic lighting. I think the background turned out nicely,but I feel like the main character's shape is a bit boring,would like some opinions and suggestion on that.Also I would love to know if there's any repetitive texture and on how to fix it.(Alongside that please tell me if anything in the picture doesn't work) I was also looking at this James Gurney and James Bama painting and was interested in trying to copy their thin application of paint. Anyway,that's all,thank you for your feedback :D (Also as always @Christopher Beaven and @Liandro any thoughts?)
In front of me was a reflection of a girl. The left side of her was hit by a sharp light from the open slide door. She have no eyes and no body. Just a pile of flesh mesh together into one and clumsily clothed by her stupid hands.
Asked for help
Asked for help
Hello I made this,I would like some critism specifically if the sense of light is believeable and if you can still see the characters and their structure.I was looking at Sorolla and was trying to c apture his sense of looseness if that helps.(specifically his "lighthouse walk at the biarritz")Would also love to know if anything else isn't working for this piece. Also @Liandro @Christopher Beaven any thoughts on this? (P.s. I forgot to mention it but this is technically a touhou fanart,so here are the references I used.) Anyway,thank you very much for replying :D
Oh hey it's you This is pretty good @esthermaxwellfineart ,I think you got the value and shape pretty close to the original bargue plate.Though I think you made the edge on the shadow side of the left cheek too hard compare to the original.( and also in the neck now thay I look at it.) Personally I did that part using a stump,but of course you can go over it again with the side of a pencil and give a gradient to it.(here's an example by stephen bauman doing just that: https://www.instagram.com/p/CNIaVDvgm_E/ [Also if you haven't yet,please check out Stephen Bauman's bargue drawing series: https://m.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLOxIqHbLWHCDIMDWVLgKDrfEhedhB4Bxx ) Also I think you made the value on the left hair slightly too light-particulary the bounce light next to the terminator.(Also here's my own drawing and the process as example if that helps.) But other than that pretty good,please keep going and also if you're going to do more bargue plate,feel free to post it :D