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I've been working on this painting of a generic fantasy setting: a castle and a dragon (see picture)
I figured to try the rule of thirds composition wise, so the castle and dragon are somewhat in those areas.
I don't want it to be a gigantic battle or anything, but right now it's a little too boring for my tastes.
Any suggestions on what I can do to make it more interesting?
Add another dragon? Maybe people in or around the castle?
It's really hard to figure out the scale, the form, scale and look of the castle looks pretty small, but then the stairs leading up to the castle are so small, meaning the the castle is pretty gargantuan. It doesn't help that the perspective doesn't seem to have any hold to the building.
Also what is the dragon doing? It's pose looks like it's more like hovering like a hummingbird as the tail part looks to be pointing down, as opposed to it being more horizontal like it was whooshing past while checking the castle. Actually how does that dragon even keep that tail up while flying? It either has to be going pretty fast or the tail is light as a feather.
Did you do any thumbnails before starting?
Last edited by TinyBird; October 12th, 2012 at 07:22 AM. Reason: typos
Wow that's quick, thanks tinybird.
Good point about the perspective, I'll see if I can incorporate that.
The dragon is supposed to be checking the castle, but it also looks like it's hovering, because it kind of stopped in its tracks.
I guess because it saw something interesting, however, I didn't really think it through. I should do that more in the future.
Thanks, you've given me some holds to tackle this thing.
Yeah I did do a thumbnail, which was basically this setup; I should have worked that out a little more before I started painting.
Hey Harm! < 3
If this were my piece and I wanted to make it more interesting, I would start with the sky. You could add in some really interesting cloud formations, though which kind you want depends on the mood you're trying to set here. You could use some big fluffy cumulus clouds with the sun's rays shining through, wispy cirrus clouds making cute little ribbons, or dark ominous cumulonimbus clouds spreading across the horizon. You can push the mood in the image, add an interesting compositional element, and encourage movement through the piece with some carefully placed cloud formations.
I would also consider redoing the dragon. It's very well done, but the pose could be much more interesting and informative. Right now I'm not really sure what you're trying to say with the piece - is the dragon an enemy or a friend? You have the dragon flying around a castle, but the image is very serene and actually has kind of a hopeful feeling to it with the pink sky in the back, so I'm not really sure if he's here to attack or protect the castle in question. Another thing I'm wondering while looking at this piece is how big the dragon is. Because the dragon isn't interacting with anything else in the image, it's hard to tell exactly where he is in space. Is the dragon behind, next to, or in front of the castle? Having the dragon overlap with the castle (even if it's just the tail passing behind the tower) could help the viewer understand the sense of space better.
Just my 2 cents ofc ^^
i find there is too much sky ,,a close up of the castle perhaps a (vertical composition can give more drama) and bring the dragon in closer turning the tail curling behind the castle..
you can dramatise the image by the use of light and stormy sky ...and as suggested below cloud formations and weather..highlight the buildings sharpen the edges of the rocks ..
Thanks, Dierat & Kliest, for your constructive critique.
I'll get to work on it asap this week, after a few commissions.
Hope to have your suggestions incorporated by the end of the week.