in the las few days i´ve been working on this image and i´ve reached a point where i´ve played all my cards, and i´m still not satisfied...i sense that there is something wrong or that it just doesn´t look that interesting, and i´m not sure why...maybe a too weak storytelling or a weak technique... or both...
at the moment i don´t really know what could make this piece better...but i sense that there are tons of things that could actually work in that direction, so i´m hoping you could point a few to my attention =)
thanks a lot for the help =)
//story spoiler// -- i´m adding the story i had in ming for the piece so that you get an idea of my goals
Anna and her brother danny share the bedroom, and during the night anna wakes up, feeling strange, she looks at herself in the mirror and sees that she is missing one of her pony tails. She instantly understands that it is danny´s fault, and becomes sad and angry at the same time. So looking for revenge she enters her brother´s playroom and starts butchering all of his toys... ///
I like the idea, but what is that fluid?
This is nicely done in terms of drawing and lighting and color, etc. (Although her eyes are a bit cartoony... too white for the low level of light in the room, and lacking in anatomy.)
The storytelling is the main problem, though. You have two stories competing for attention and that's always a bad thing. You have the missing ponytail, and then there's the hacking up of the toys. You've given equal time to both in your picture, and this has caused the drama of the moment to be cut in half. This is a hundred year old rule, first articulated by Howard Pyle, the "father of American Illustration." Do one thing, show one moment as clear as a bell. If you try to do 2 things at once, you cut the drama in half, if you try to do 3 things at once, the drama is cut to a third, etc.
Part of the problem is that you have too much story for one illustration. In order to really understand what's going on you need a sequence of pictures. Maybe that's what you have planned. Regardless, each picture should stand on its own as a work of art.
So, this picture must work by itself, thus some stuff needs to be clarified. Firstly, what is the purple goop doing inside the teddy bears? Why are there only teddy bears, and no other kinds of toys being hacked up? How does this girl end up with a huge meat cleaver? Does this girl look enough like a girl that when we see the sign over her head (which I missed on first viewing) we understand that her name is not danny (It just so happens I know a girl named Danny, fyi.) Why is she staring at the big teddy bear in the foreground?
So, the more I look at this picture, the more it doesn't make sense. I think you need to imagine the story more clearly. Live the story in your imagination, act it out in your head, and you will see that a lot of what you are doing in the picture is not naturally occurring stuff. Its stuff you're putting in their to make the picture interesting, or easy to draw, or "cool."
So, to recap... Portray one drama at a time, and imagine that moment as clearly as you possibly can before you begin your drawing or painting.
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 a lot!! the picture should be stylized, but while doing it i lost a bit track of things....so some stuff remained stlized some stuff a little less...
i understand now what you´re saying about the story, what i was trying to do is to actually put as much story elements as i could into the picture, to give people a chance to understand the story...but indeed if there isnt´a focus on just one element of the story then the drama looses strenght...
meanwhile i showed the picture to another friend and his conclusion was that there was an egg hidden in the teddy bears, and she was trying to find it...=)
aha, spot on =) especially the fluid coming from the bear, that was done only to make it look cooler, but now, it looks like the main focus in the image..and it´s completely irrelevant to the story =)and you will see that a lot of what you are doing in the picture is not naturally occurring stuff. Its stuff you're putting in their to make the picture interesting, or easy to draw, or "cool."
thanks a lot for pointing out this things to me!
her neck looks too long
her head..... its too far from her shoulders
but MAN!! you got the facial expression right on the dot
i can definitely see the unstable mix of saddness and anger
Love the picture, great lighting on the girl. Even though you said the liquid was jam, it looks like radioactive pepto bismol. Critique: the shoulders are low, or the neck may be too high. That area's the only real area i see that needs re-working
What if the little girl had an eisel somewhere in there and that blood trail is from broken paints? I am just trying to think of something that fits the scene a bit better.
I would have to agree that the butcher knife really doesn't fit well and doesn't really feel like hot revenge but something more premeditated like murder. Perhaps if she had used a pair of the very scissors that her brother used to cut off her ponytail. Speaking of her pony tail perhaps showing Danny half slumped out of his bed hold the ponytail in his hand. I know it is dark in there but perhaps a nightlight or something could help see him better. This might help combine it back into one story because it makes it more of a cause and effect.
I do like the expression on her face but there are facial proportion problems mainly in the eye like they are spaced wrong also she seems to be lacking shoulders. The jam is slight confusing but one might guess that is what it could be however perhaps if there was stuffing everywhere or better yet if you want her stained what if there was one of those magic eight balls cracked open on the floor. Other broken toys I think would make more sense as well like a stretched out slinky, a punctured toy drum or other boy's toys.
I do like the style that you are doing this in and the dramatic night time lighting is very nice.
Hopes this helps
Imagination is not a total internal power but rather it is a reflection and multi-faceted projection of our experiences and knowledge. We take in information from the world around us and intuitively re-order it into something new. Something is not created from nothing but simply transformed from what was before.