lionheartGFX - I have no particular advice on likeness; honestly, I struggle with it like crazy. (See earlier in this thread as I make a half-dozen increasingly desperate attempts to paint a recognizable Nathan Fillion.) As for schedules - yeah, I need to get some more structure to my study. Especially because I'm freelance but low on work right now, making structuring my time a little iffy. I do spend more time on art than what I post here, though. I've taken to drawing for an hour or so when I first wake up, just sketching whatever, studies from books, anything. Rule number one with that stuff is that I don't post it here, though, because I'd noticed that posting to this thread was making me a little self-conscious about just randomly drawing crap. Still, there's a whole lot of stuff I don't work on, due to momentum and force of habit. Structure is good! My new years resolution for this year was to post something in this thread every day, maybe next year's will involve a schedule of some sort. =)
Zauselbart - Thanks!
MeteorCat - Thanks! Bobby Chiu is such an inspirational dude, he knows his stuff.
PollyBoffin - It's fine, I got what you meant. =) And either way, no need to put your work down, your stuff is really nice. It's a fair point on talent, I suppose, but as you say, it always comes down to work in the end. I think everybody wishes there were shortcuts. =) Skyfall is mostly named after a location in the movie, among other things. On the cap - it's possible it's a bit flat! It was a very diffuse lighting situation, though, here's the ref.
Ana Caspão - Thank you! I love gestures too, I really appreciate it. =D
Yet another Skyfall trailer cap! I need to do more interior studies, geez. The lighting in this one was so neat, though, and I'm completely geeking out over the composition. Every shot in this movie is gorgeous.
I spent way longer than normal on this one. Don't know how many more of these I'll do in a row; I know I need to do things other than study screencaps, especially work from life. I'm just... in this mode right now?
Lovin your painterly syle, keep up the good work!
What's taters precious? Po - tay - toes!
Good that you understood what I meant.
Aha, didn't know that, but then I'm no great Bond fan either (I mean, BILBO's showing in the theaters, that's what's interesting ). But when looking at the trailer caps you've used as refs, I must say it seems like an aesthetically pleasing movie.
Oh, thanks for posting the ref for your previous picture. There are some highlights that could be brighter (on his lower lip for example), and some more that could be added, like on the spectacles and the area underneath the nose... I don't know if it would make any differences, but those were the things that looked different from your image. Still it's a friggin great picture.
This new picture... Wow... Love it, especially the right part of the table top on the table thingy in the background. I just want to reach out and touch it, to see if it's as smooth and polished as it looks. Odd thing to notice, I know.
Love their expressions as well. I haven't seen the trailer cap, but they both seem like actual persons and not just random people sitting around and looking at each other. They have personality and they feel alive, something I think is hard to capture. Great work.
EDIT: Just noticed something that looked off with the right inside of the frame of the window in the middle (didn't know how else to write it ). The perspective looks off, does it look like that on the ref, too?
MeteorCat - Thanks! No, you're probably right about the light. I struggled with those faces like crazy; they came out sort of decent, but still off from the ref.
Hayden_Zammit - Thank you! I'm happy with it. =)
magicpudding - Thanks!
Eraiasu - Thank you, that's what I'm working on. =D
PollyBoffin - I stand by Skyfall as the prettiest thing I've seen in ages, if you ever get the chance to see it, I highly recommend it! I'm not a huge Bond fan, but I've gone a bit nuts over this movie. Thanks for the crit, I think I missed some of the subtleties around the edges, which flattened it out like you said. You're also right about the window frame, looks like I roughed it in and completely forgot to go back and fix it. Painting those tabletops was super fun, I'd never noticed quite how bright the highlights got on polished wood like that. Thanks a ton!!
GESTURE SPAM. I'm trying to get out of the habit of doing one length of time only, so these start at 15 seconds and move through 30s/45s/60s/75s.
wahhhhh 15s gestures!!!??! that's ssome next level shit!
now for a more serious question ahha. What would you say is that ratio between how much traditional and digital practice you do? or has it changed much during various points of your life?
check out my : SKETCHBOOK: All critiques much needed and WELCOMED!
Holy shit! You work like crazy XD. You have leveled way up since the last time i checked. The screen caps are awesome. Dont worry about doing more of those as long as you having fun. Lovely gestures as always. Great job! I have got no critiques, just keep doing what you are doing. Happy holidays and happy drawing!
sense of purpose
Nice work! Enjoying flipping through the pages and just lookin through all the tasty stuff
Absolutely beautiful gestures, oh my god. Mine look drunken compared to yours, and don't seem to be getting better. Maybe I'm missing something.
AAH CA IS BACK. HI GUYS. Between holiday madness and then the CA outage when I finally got back into gear, it's... been a while.
Gpozzo - Thank you! Spent way too many hours on it. =)
MeteorCat - I can. =) But thanks all the same!
wutangclam - I know a lot of animators do 10 and 15-second gestures... I still wish I could lifedraw like an animator, heh. The ratio between traditional and digital - when I was first starting out, and for several years after that, I carried a sketchbook everywhere, mostly traditional - I would colour in photoshop, but even after I learned digital painting I would still do the initial drawings traditionally. I also sketched a lot in college, did the requisite amount of acrylic painting (which I hated, and continue to hate), some watercolour (which I kind of liked) and the illustration style I left school with, though ending with a digital finish, was made up of traditional inks and watercolours mashed up in photoshop. (Here's some of it.) Since then, though - and especially over the past couple of years or so - I stopped drawing traditionally almost entirely, except for the one scribbly sketchbook I keep around for thumbnails and working out ideas, pen only. It's only over the past few weeks I've realized I sort of forgot how to use a pencil, and have started off my days with a half hour or so of random derpy pencil sketching, which will never, ever end up here. But it's also only over the past year or so that I've done this sort of serious study. Almost all of my traditional-pencil-sketchbook stuff was work from imagination. If I'd started studying like this in high school - hell, in ART school - then who knows how much farther I'd be by now. TL;DR - I used to work mostly traditionally, though not really for studies because I didn't really do studies, and I did finals in Photoshop. Now I work almost entirely digitally, studies and finals alike.
sin eater - Thank you!! I will! =D
vlad74 - Thanks!
PNate - Thanks a lot!
Woolichooks - Thanks, it's such fun light to paint.
kevin_ - Thanks!
diamandis - Thank you! I left some gesture tips in your SB, hopefully something helps. =)
rumpenstiltzkin - Thanks, I really need to start doing more large sets of gestures like that; I have a bad habit of only doing them when I'm too tired for anything else, which makes for small sets.
I'm going to post some long and rambly introspection and goal-setting, which is more for posterity and to have it in writing and on the public record than because I think this is of interest to anyone but me. Seriously, guys, this probably isn't worth your time. That said...
2012 was honestly a pretty good year for me, art-wise. While I haven't made as much professional progress or finished work as I'd really like, this was the first time I'd committed to this sort of daily study, and I have learned a lot. (I did a daily thing a couple of years ago, but that was mostly work from imagination, just trying to get back into the swing of things after a pretty bad few months post-graduation.) I got my new portfolio up and running, went down to GenCon to talk to art directors, and actually got my first professional work since ditching my old portfolio.
I did a lot of self-assessment, looking back on the past year, strengths and failures... this included a slightly obsessive spreadsheet, going through what types of studies, and how many, I did each month. My new years resolution for 2012 was to post something here every single day, and by and large I succeeded for the majority of the year. This fell apart 3 times - the first was before/after GenCon, when I was stressed out of my mind (to be fair, some of the missing posts around September were around the time CA was down for a while, but that's no excuse for not having done the studies anyway, and posting them in bulk.) The second was November, when I was doing NaNoWriMo, and I discovered I just don't have the mental energy for more than one ironclad daily habit. The third was December, when I had a hard time regaining momentum post-November, and then got caught up in social stuff, holidays, and so forth.
The fact that I thrive on momentum, and have a hard time starting again after letting a habit slip even once, is something I've long known. It's also something I can't really allow to stand - it's childish. Still, this is a new year, and a chance for fresh momentum.
A few other points of note:
- I don't apply what I'm learning as well as I'd like. I'm way happier with my studies than my finished illustration - I'm not internalizing what I'm learning, at least not as fast as I should be. Going through the motions for the sake of posting studies only makes me better at studies.
- On the same token, I'm not connecting the studies I'm doing to my finished work, at least not as often as I should be. Doing studies of unrelated topics, then gathering but not studying reference for finished work, is a pretty backwards way of doing things.
- I avoid studying the things I need to study most, because they frustrate me. My biggest weaknesses? Anything to do with backgrounds, or really anything but a single person just standing there - environments, perspective, relating multiple figures to each other. The things I've done the fewest studies of? Just that, especially perspective. I also struggle like hell with composition, but haven't made much effort to force that into my head, I just keep beating my head against the wall each time I start a new final. Also, animals. I've been trying to draw a wolf for like a year now.
And so I'm going to try to more or less do the daily posting again this year, but work smarter:
- I've made a schedule of sorts. I don't think I'd do well with a solid "draw this on this day" sort of thing, partially because my schedule isn't always predictable, but mostly because when I don't want to do something, I waste a lot of time not doing it but not doing anything useful, either. (Though not art, this was a huge problem during NaNoWriMo ; I would spend AGES sitting around going "I can't work right now, I should be writing," and then not writing. In the long run, this is something I desperately need to work on. In the short term, it's easier to just work with it rather than against it.) So instead I've made a sort of a checklist. Four things I need to do weekly (Gestures, anatomy studies, head study, and small colour/composition studies), a handful of things to do at least once monthly, and a few more complicated things to do at least once every 3 months. I'll probably revise it after the first 3 months, if I manage to stick with it, but it's a good experiment, at least. I can't avoid the things I need to work on, and this seems like the best way to do it. I don't like schedules, but I love filling boxes and crossing things off lists. (I've also made a giant list of stock sources, to make it easier to find something to work from, and thus get started quicker each day.)
- Better internalize what I'm doing, in three ways. First, make a legit effort to relate the studies I'm doing to whatever finals I'm working on, and do more specific studies for finals even if they're not things on the schedule/list. Second, take notes while I'm working of anything I notice/learn. I did this a long time ago, and just... stopped, I guess. It forces me to pay attention, and even if I never read the notes again, to articulate things I'm noticing. Third, any day when I have the time to do so, immediately follow up studies with something from imagination related to said studies. Sometimes when I've had a busy social day or something, I'll not start doing my daily studies 'til like 4 AM, so obviously that's a bad time. If I'm doing them in the morning before starting off my workday, though? There's no excuse for not following up gestures with figures from imagination, colour studies with quick comp speedpaintings, and so forth.
Other sub-goals include just finishing more things, having my portfolio completely refreshed by the time GenCon hits again, getting more work... but trying to quantify too many things at once seems like a recipe for failure, and I know I can more or less manage a single daily task.
So! All that said, here's some of what I've been up to since 2013 began.
[REF] - Real attempt to use mixer brushes here, for a much more painterly look that I've been trying to capture for a long time now. Honestly I'm not sure if I like the result, but it was worth a shot.
Attempts at understanding torsos; despite having no less than FOUR BOOKS open at the time, I think there's still some major issues here, even in the traced ones. Pelvises, man. There's some stuff here I'm seriously not grasping.
Poked at the goblin head some more, mostly because I wanted to play with brushes and it was there.
Commission for a friend, inked traditionally for once, all with one brush pen. (The line weights are pretty questionable in places, but not bad considering how out of practice I am.)
15 mins each, from various ref:
WIP of an entry for the ArtOrder nymph challenge:
HAPPY NEW YEAR, CA BUDDIES. Hope it's a good one for all of us!
My critique is to avoid using blacks in your shadows, experiment with cool tones (or opposite of light temperature) Great sketchbook and keep up the hard work, I want to see more
Last update was epic!! Superb!!
I'm loving how you are slowly building up to more anatomy.
You seem to be studying excellently I guess the only thing I don't notice are environment thumbs from imagination and mechanical studies (hard surface objects etc) but I have no idea if you are even into that.
Keep being awesome.
Ian Barker - Thanks, that's something I know not to do, but looking back on my last few posts, yeah, I need to pay more attention to that... I've been getting some really muddy shadows lately.
Xcarbon - Thank you!
Whirly - Thanks a lot! On the environment thumbs from imagination and mechanical studies - I want to try and do a few more enviro-from-imagination things, though mostly in the service of doing better backgrounds. (I've done a few I never posted, actually, because they were just THAT bad.) I also need to do some more perspective work and object drawing, they're both on the docket this year. Specifically working on full-on environments and mechanical objects, though - they're things I need to do, but they're lower on the priority list, because my highest priority right now is improving my portfolio, and neither of those are things that show up much in the kind of portfolio work I want to do. This is not to say that I don't think they're important and will never do them - just lower priority than other things. =)
Here's my latest attempt at a self portrait and, like all previous attempts, I don't really think I like it. Can I just complain for a second about what a hard time I have with my own face? I have chubby cheeks and a fat jaw area, making it hard to find useful markers like cheekbones and jawlines. My glasses get in the way of making sense of the area around my eyes, but if I take off my glasses I can't actually see. I still don't understand my own nose. I guess I just need to practice more, blah. Heads are hard.
To be fair, a lot of the issues here come from it starting as a straight-on shot and then migrating leftwards towards an awkward sort-of-3/4-view as I worked on it, but that's more of an avoid-for-next-time thing.
Last edited by Revidescent; January 13th, 2013 at 03:47 AM.
Wow. I just clicked through every page of your sketchbook because the stuff you do is GORGEOUS. So much progress in one year, what even. Also digging' the idea of screencap studies. (Serenity FTW). 22 pages of pure inspiration and counting. Keep it up!
Man, those trace-ref-imagination process is really inspiring! keep up the great work
vlad74 - Thank you!
Inishmore - Thank you so much! I love doing screencap studies, I probably do way too many. Crazy theatrical lighting is fun for colour and makes it easier to see facial planes.
Elias Leonard - Thanks!
Hyunjae - Thanks, I do them for heads and things sometimes... I find it's a good way to wrap my head around a 3D form.
Ugh, been having some serious Bad Art Days. Hopefully tomorrow will be better.
Here are some gestures and some colour studies. Not happy with the gestures. I tried to keep the colour studies to 15 minutes-ish each, but I was watching TV, so it's super approximate?
Anyway, your gestures are great, as usual, so I don't know what you're talking about in your latest post. Question: I notice little notches at the knees ... do you add those as quick and dirty weight/shading, or do you draw them very early on as guideposts, along with the hips, shoulders, and feet, and THEN you go back and connect contours for the legs, torso, etc? Are you basically drawing the contours from imagination, and just putting in guideposts initially, or are you drawing the contours based on what you're actually seeing on-screen?
My thing about gestures is that they essentially become blind-contour drawings for me, since I'm frantically looking back and forth from screen to sketchbook, and I don't have enough time to get re-oriented every time I look back down at my sketch. Doing guideposts and then connecting from imagination is easier, but I don't think I know the body well enough to draw the individual contours convincingly.
Such a weird exercise. I gotta try other things, because it's getting boring. (Of course, there's plenty of opportunities to get bored doing fundamentals.)
diamandis - Lists and spreadsheets are good if you're a list-and-spreadsheet sort of person. =) As for the gestures - I threw together a quick animation of how I generally do them. (Most people who know better than me start with the head, spine and/or line of action, but I usually start with the tilt of the shoulders, idk.) I hadn't actually thought of the notches at the knees until you pointed them out, actually, but mostly they're a quick indicator of some super basic 3D, showing where it's tilted. I always prioritize the form of the upper arms/legs and often indicate the lower with one line unless it's a longer gesture, but I couldn't give any logical reason why, save for habit.
I think a good way to think of gestures is getting down enough information so that you could recreate the pose if you had to. What way are all the major masses tilting? How's the spine bent? Guideposts aren't a terrible way to do it, honestly, and a lot of it just comes down to doing it over and over again, while informing it with more in-depth study. In the end, gesture drawing isn't really a product in itself, but rather a way to get a feel for the figure. The important part is, well, the /gesture/ - getting a sense for how all those disparate parts flow together.
Man, I offer gesture advice on a semi-regular basis these days and I feel so weird about it, because I'm still not even remotely happy with my gestures and don't actually have a clue what I'm talking about. Hopefully it's helpful, all the same!
Bluh bluh clothing studies. Wanted to do a couple from imagination, but ran out of time. Ref off The Sartorialist.
It's gonna be a busy week...
Your lines are so good, and those screencap studies are just awesome. ^_^