Here's my first digital piece done for print! It's my cousin's Christmas picture. He wanted an ocean scene, so that's what I gave him. This was a pretty challenging piece, as it required me to draw several things I'm not comfortable with: rocks, splashing water, clouds, etc. So, even if I was only partially successful, it was good practice, and it chipped away at my discomfort with drawing those things. Also, one thing about printing a full-size copy of a digital piece makes all the flaws and mistakes very apparent, so I'll know what to avoid doing next time.
My first CoW in a while! If I finish it, that is. We have a choice of topics this time around: Elf Eater, or Bauble Maker. I was initially more attracted to the Elf Eater, as large predators are fun as hell, but as I thought about it I decided the Bauble Maker had more creative possibilities.
-Some doodles. As with my Unique Lovers, I sketched many heads. It turns out my first one was the best one this time, though.
-My first line drawing of the Bauble Maker. I imagined its baubles growing on its tail, but as I drew it I realized I had no idea how to attach the baubles to its flesh (adding connective tissue made them look testicular), and that the design simply wasn't that attractive.
-My second line drawing. Actually just an edit of the first. I erased the baubles from its tail and added some bobble-encrusted antlers. The result, I think, is a much much better design. The head isn't so naked anymore, and the tail is no longer competing for attention with the face, which I like very much.
Lazy and Mr Man, thank you both. I'm thankful I can count you guys as my friends, I really am. Just some cheesy, warm and fuzzy holiday mush for guys.:p
Anyway, some aht.
-Further WIPage of my Spectacled Baublehead. Obviously, there's a halo of unerased tone value around it. Unsurprisingly, it's not going to be finished in time for the CoW activity. I think I've started and not completed as many CoWs as I have completed. Ah well, I'm still going to do something with it.
-The reason I'm not going to finish my Baublehead in time. Here's my dad's Christmas present. I have a history of doing shark-related pictures for him, so this year I'm drawing a land shark. I imagine it occupying a similar niche as a sea lion, agile in the water but still able to get around well on land. I confess that I eyedropped many of the colors from photos.
-My progress on the picture so far. I'm putting the lessons I've learned from recent pictures into practice: don't make colors too pale; use fewer, larger brush strokes, but get in close and small for details; reduce my reliance on the line art. Also, I've tossed out some of my eyedropped colors in favor of some of my own colors.
-Closeup of the land shark's head. To get a bit of a painterly effect, as well as a sense of the shark's sandpaper-like skin, I made a trapezoidal, direction-following brush. I'm happy with the effect I'm getting from it.
I like the antler baubles alot. Your thinking it through sorta made me laugh, about the shapes and the connotations, but that's what it's all about....how it's read and you don't want people impressed for the wrong reasons. As always, I love your colored paper critters. LOve to see them develop and just watching you playing around with their designs is fun. See you in cow sometime.
This is one of my larger image dumps in a while. I've been pretty busy making art the past few days. My last picture present is done and printed, so I'm no free to draw whatever I want. So, I'm going to work on my fundamental skills a bit and do some still lives.
-The final image of my Baublehead. I can hardly believe that it's gotten three votes already in the CoW voting thread. I usually get one vote at the most. I think it's my most successful creature image in a very long while. People have described it as graceful, elegant, and plausible, which was basically what I was going for. So, I'm happy. The rendering isn't the best, though. Ah well. I may work on it some more, or I may not.
-My final land shark image. To tell the truth, this wasn't very much fun to paint, as I didn't really know how to accurately render most of the objects. Plus, since it was a Christmas gift, and Christmas was like a week ago, I had to work some long hours to get it done. My dad's really happy with it, though, so I'm glad.
-My first digital still life. I decided to do these many months ago, but it's only just now that I'm finally starting. For observational drawing, I use many techniques that I learned in my high school mechanical drawing classes, such as using many horizontal and vertical guide lines to set up a drawing. I've found it very useful, and recommend to anyone to take mechanical drawing classes, if you can. Anyway, I believe my steps are pretty much self-explanatory. I also posted these images in the Critique Center. Here's the link, if anyone wants to go give me a crit. http://conceptart.org/forums/showthread.php?t=85995 Or just critique me here, if you like. Whatevs.
Great work Moai! I dig your thumbs/ideas/latest digital renders, keep it up.
AztcFireFlower- Thanks, pal. Your comments are always appreciated. I don't know about seeing you in CoW, though. I'm thinking of going off on my own course of study for the next while and spend each week focusing on a different thing. One week I'll focus on a certain type of still life, the next on a certain type of animal, the next on a certain part of human anatomy, etc. I think it'll be a good way to get my skills up without being overwhelmed by the sheer amount of things to learn. If I can stick with it, that is.
wizzy- Thanks! Ya know, you ought to start your own sketchbook. They're great for making connections with other members and displaying your artistic progression.
So, today I scanned a whole buncha pictures from some of my older sketchbooks. I was going to have a short description of each picture, my ideas behind the creatures, etc., but after all the time it took to scan these and attach these, I don't feel like it anymore. So there.
Keep in mind that a lot of these are a couple years old.
Just drew this tonight. I've been noodling around with the idea of a more mammalian dragon for a little while, and here is a result of that. It's not obvious the way I drew this creature, but I imagined some sort of bone process protruding from the side of the ribcage for the wing pectorals to anchor on. It's fun making creatures plausible.
I'm kinda playing around with an idea of an entire alternate evolution. Dragons, as they are usually depicted, are hexapods, with three pairs of limbs. All vertebrates that have evolved for flight have done so by converting one pair of legs into wings, not by growing an entire new pair of limbs. So, six-limbed dragons probably wouldn't be descendants of tetrapods, or even very closely related. In my alternate evolution idea, a continent that remained isolated throughout most or all of evolutionary history became populated by hexapods, not tetrapods. Almost all vertebrate niches would be occupied by hexapods; the dragon would just be one possible creature out of very many.
This idea was partly inspired by a little blurb in an addition of Zoobooks that showed a six-limbed human being and said something about what if the first fishes to crawl on land had had six legs instead of four. And it always annoyed me how even books or shows that tried to explain scientifically how a dragon would function never bothered to explain how the hell it grew a whole new pair of limbs, when no other tetrapod that I am aware of has ever done so.
Anyway, just a geeky ramble. Hope it was a little interesting for you.
Last edited by Moai; January 8th, 2007 at 05:08 PM.
So I finally got around to photographing twenty nine of my best life drawings from last semester. Seeing as how people drawing is a serious weak point of mine, I would really appreciate some critiques of these (Ahem!AztcFireFlower.Ahem!) Excuse me.
If you notice a certain monotony in these pictures and those yet to come, that's because every model in the class was a middle-aged woman.
For the latest CoW, Hairy Beauty, my creature will be the Peacockupine. I actually came up with it months ago, when doodling for a previous CoW. For some odd reason I decided to draw a skeleton of the creature. This didn't take very long, just about an hour. Based heavily on real rodent skeletons I found online. Always use reference, buoys and gulls.
sick progress in your sketchbook!
just wanna say you have some cool creature designs her, how do you come up with all that stuff?? the pokemons looks good as well.
I dont understand your latest chow, is its hair transperant?
anyway keep doing those studies!
Im gonna go look at some animal reff now...
frostsnake- Thanks! As for how I come up with my creatures, it's a combination of nature and nurture. I have always been a very creative, imaginative person, and my creativity has always centered on creatures. When I was young I'd constantly see creature shapes in trees and clouds and whatnot. My mom noticed how imaginative I was at an early age, as well as how much I liked animals, so she encouraged that by buying me hundreds of books on animals, dinosaurs, weird creatures, etc. I also watched a lot -- a lot -- of Discovery Channel shows. Even when I was in preschool I probably knew more about animals than my teachers. So, having all that stuff in my brain since early childhood definitely helps. So yeah, just soak up all the animal info that you can. It really helps.
As for your other question, no, my CoW's hair isn't transparent. That's just a quickie drawing of its skeleton, and the silhouette is there just to show what the animal would be shaped like with hair and flesh. It isn't my final entry be any means; if it's included at all, it'll be just a little supplmenent/diagram to the side of the main picture.
Anyway, thanks so much for visiting my sketchbook. I was stoked to see that someone had left me a comment.
Now, for a large dump of new artwork.
-A minor update to my pen stand still life.
-The steps for my latest still life that I just did today. It was pretty fun to do, and I'm really happy with the result. Both of these can be found in my still life thread in the Critique Center, if you want to, you know, give a critique. In the Critique Center. Yeah.:rollseyes: The last image in this series, the really ugly one, was a false start.
-The last batch of my life drawings. All of these probably only amount to about a fifth of the work I did in that class. We went through a lot
EDIT: Just noticed that this is my 666th post. The Post of the Beast!
Last edited by Moai; January 11th, 2007 at 06:25 PM.
Hey Moai, As always I love your critters. Simple cute attractive shapes and interesting what you leave off as well as include in your designs. The post of older drawings are so good! The blue humanoids are a little disconcerting, perhaps because the faces are too familiar as homo sapiens. Nontheless , great thinking behund your creations.This set I love. The little flying creatures and the 3 pronged sluggie at the bottom are my favorites.http://conceptart.org/forums/attachm...1&d=1167940141
A consideration on the these critters.http://conceptart.org/forums/attachm...1&d=1167940245 Great design and color patterns. Only thing that I wonder is with such a massive neck and heavy horn (heavier than a wildebeast head, it looks to me) on the head, the front legs, for me would need to be more massive, even if same length, to support that weight. A counterweight with muscles to help stabilize when the head is pulled up from a submissive pose. Anyway, like I said, love all your ideas. And I note that you are always aware of scientific plausibility, which is why I thought I'd comment.
Your life drawings are quite good! I'm going to go post by post here:
1st LifeDrawing post.
This 1st drawing has a good weight feel to it. I like that the flow line of the leg on left has an unbroken gesture coming form the hip, and it is a counter rythm from the torso. Good. The next 2 don't have as clean a flow, however, the proportions are real good, and the weight is felt thru the shapes. Gestures are nice. The last pose, I feel, dosn't have as nice a flow as your 1st drawing. From hip to foot of figures left leg gesture feels disrupted. Rythym needs to start higher on figure to encompass torso, hip AND leg. Always think and place long lines whenever you can.
2nd LD post.
Find the long lines, as soon as possible and build from there. Sometime, I will think of those rythyms and where to place them, and don't always finish the quick sketch. My thinking: (and your teacher may disagree) I don't feel I have to get everything in. As long as I have a good elegant start I don't mind if the legs are missing, as long as I have an indication of them.
The watercolors are very nice. Especially in that you mass the shadow forms. These simple shapes explain enough of the structure underneath, yet don't feel cluttered. I really like them. Keep developing this technique, because I think you have a strong ability to handle this medium. The last figure has alot of energy in it that is great. Your line is not as scratchy and the forms overlap nicely. And keep in mind how one form flows into another, overall. That is a big part of gesture drawing. KEEP doing like this last one. Really nice.
3rd LD post
Nice metal/brass painting. Studies I need to be doing as well.
2nd fig in first set is nice. Once again proportions are well observed.
The hand is marvelous! Washes are subtle and nice. Cool!
The head study is a little undefined in structure. This is where studying the planes will help give you confidence in your studies.
Is the next one a SP? There is alot of personality in it. Just needs stronger understanding of structure.
Like the mohawk dude. Watch the width of the cheeks on the right. Otherwise, awesome. This one and the ink fig. are great studies of masses, keep going. Small pieces of advice, really, because you're doing quite well, Moai. Hope I was little helpful.
Thanks for the kick-ass critique, AztcFireFlower! It's one of the better critiques I've received. I had a nice long response to it written up yesterday, but I accidentally closed the tab it was in in Firefox and lost it. So, here goes again, though prolly a bit shorter than last time.
Li'l Blue Humanoids- They are very human, and it troubles me as well. I initially imagined them as young demons or something, and you don't have to worry about being too human in a fantasy setting. But then, as I drew, they changed into a primitive alien race. And unless you're designing for Star Trek, you don't want your aliens looking that human. So yeah, too human to be plausible, and I don't know what to do with them. Oh well. Next.
Bigheadosaurus- Yep, big big head, and that's a problem. I drew this to make it seem like less of a problem: http://i22.photobucket.com/albums/b3...rfer/skull.jpg. But the skull still would be quite heavy. I might take your advice and beef up the front legs.
Ist Life Drawings- Thanks for the advice on long gesture and rhythm lines. Lately I've been noticing that the life drawings I admire have fewer, longer, and more elegant gesture lines, so I'll put that advice to use.
Second Life Drawings- Glad you like my wash technique! Yeah, I had fun with those. I'll definitely continue with those. When you talked about the last figure, did you mean the very last one or the last one done with the wash technique?
3rd Life Drawings- Yep, definitely need to study up on my planes. Also, my trains and automobiles. Or are you talking about a different kind of plane? Anyway, your crits are spot on. The mohawk dude did have very wide cheekbones, but that probably is a bit exaggerated. And you might have noticed I did a little caricature of him in one of my 2nd post drawings. Both of these that you said were great studies of masses were done with top-down lighting. I've found that that kind of lighting is incredibly inspiring for me, which is probably why those last two are some of my best from that class.
Once again, thank you so much! I'm not taking another figure drawing class immediately, but I'll be sure to study up on my planes, forms, anatomy, proportions, and et cetera.
Hey Moai, As you develop experience the lines become less in quantity and you find you just arn't needing to put in more lines! Mileage. For the fig in reference, it was the last pencil one in post #2 life drawings. There is alot of life in it due to your line. As you continue to study, your lines will begin to clean up on there own as long as you remember to find that longest gesture line first.
I find that top or side raking light is the best and most dramatic. I love it! It reveals all that beautiful structure. Flat or diffused is great for color studies in turning a form with cool and warm colors.
Yeah, even if you are studying a form mentally, inbetween classes, you're still creating new neuron pathways. No time is wasted. Keep it up.
Thanks again for the words, AztcFireFlower. I just picked up a copy of Hogarth's Drawing the Human Head at the library. I haven't drawn from it yet, as I'm focusing on other things this week, but it looks like it will surely help.
Okay, I've now begun my regimen of focusing on a different subject each week. This week I'm concentrating on fish. I've been a creature designer practically from birth, but I've never felt very confident drawing fish. I'm basically just going through the whole class Icthys order by order, drawing one or two of each general type of fish. I'm also drawing some stuff from a book I got from the library called The Rise of the Fishes: 500 Million Years of Evolution. None of these are from my head; they're all either images from that book or from Yahoo image search.
Thanks, Lazy. I actually don't feel like I draw enough at all. Many days I don't have to go to work until five at night, leaving the whole day open for creating art, but then I get distracted by frivolous things on the internet and end up only drawing for a few hours before I have to get ready for work. Ah well. Push the values on my pencils? Will do. I'll bring by 8B with me next time I sketch.
Okay, latest CoW. Here we have the Golden Guddle Greaper. It's gold, well, because that's it's color. Duh. Guddles are little finned mollusks that it eats. It's a greaper because...haven't figured that part out yet. I'll probably have to make up some sorta bullshit for that.
Anyway, wordplay aside, this is one of the first concept art results of my doing research on fish, specifically fish evolution. It's a Placoderm, which was an order of heavily-armored fishes that flourished in the Devonian period. More specifically, it's an Arthrodire, which is an advanced subgroup of Placoderms. Arthrodires' armor functioned in such a way that the head armor could move somewhat independently from the body armor; when the jaws opened, they could move their craniums upward as well as move their mandible downward, creating a larger gape. A group that made particularly scary use of this were the Dinichthyids, huge predatory Placoderms (and some of my favorite prehistoric creatures). They grew over six meters in length, the size of modern Great White Sharks, and were probably the largest creatures of their age; indeed, they were the first creatures ever to even get that large. Dunkleosteus, possibly the largest of them all, had one of the most powerful bites of any animal, ever, and could also open its mouth in one fiftieth of a second (!!!:explode: ). This created a powerful suction that was probably necessary to catch prey, as Dinichthyids were probably very heavy and somewhat slow. My creature is a related Dinichthyid that specializes in eating pelagic shelled creatures.
The second image is some more fish doodles, plus some other little weirdie critters.
Last edited by Moai; February 14th, 2007 at 06:47 PM.
Moai, you are simply one of the bestest creature designers that I know of! I am convinced you'll be right up there with Terryl Whitlatch and Ian McCaig (Star Wars concept artists) in a few years! Your life drawings are also showing you're getting better and better and the proportions are already quite acurate - Once you manage to clean up your lines (like in your latest fish studies for example, where you already got very precise!) you'll be awesome. You TOTALLY DESERVE A C.O.W. star!!! Go get one!!! I don't know what is taking you so long! You obviously have fantastic design skills and your drawing skills are already easily good enough to make creature drawings that would impress professionals!
I think you should make a really detailed drawing or a black and white painting of a creature for you next COW entry. Then grab the gold!
my homepage: http://www.trickstertoys.com
Well, I'm basically thinking the exact same thing, but dragon4lunch stole all possible adjectives.
So I'll only say : all that is great work, you're improving very fast, I love your works, keep going, in a few time I'll be buying your works.
And thanks for sharing
dragon4lunch- Excuse me while I go hug an effigy of you. Words like those make everything worthwhile. They also encourage me to get up off my lazy butt and get some work done. Believe me, Terryl Whitlatch and Lain McCaig need no introduction to me! Whitlatch and Barlowe are probably my two biggest influences. Anyway, thank you thank you thank you!! I'll go work on that CoW now. I don't think it'll be in pencil, but I'll put my best effort into it.
Norel- You'd buy my works? Thanks so much. Boy, this is the best morning I've had in a while. Thanks both of you for visiting my sketchbook.
More fish sketches, along with some unrelated doodles, and some more work on my former Golden Guddle Greaper. Since I missed that deadline, it's now just a big fish.
Rock on Moai!
my homepage: http://www.trickstertoys.com
Hey Moai thought I should pay a visit. I need to visit you more often bud!
Since looking at your past digipaintings your skills have certainly boosted up, it seems the way you render apears to be alot more smooth and controlled.
Thought Id put some time into giving you some crits to return the favour for you helping me out
Ive noticed your hands could do with abit more work. Heres one method which you might like to try out to help add more structure to the hand. Instead of drawing a block and then adding on the fingers, try drawing the whole form the hand makes, so for this you can try squinting at your hand and blurring in the basic shapes almost making it like a dolls hand. Then you can add the fingers inside the shapes, this way when drawing each individual finger you dont lose focus of the structure and forms going on. I need to improve on my hands myself so I dont want to sound like too much of a hypocrit
One more thing which you may or may not find useful. With your creature designs you tend to mostly either have a simple portrait view or front on view. It might be good practice for your do experiment with more extreme angles. I understand that alot of these designs are concepts and experiments but maybe once you have designed your creature, get a fresh page with lots of different views of the same creature. Understand the form of the creature, where everything would be in a different situation. Once you understand the basic 3d form of your creature you will then find it abit more easier to place it into an illustration because you understand the basic elements of what it is. Hope that all made sense
dragon4lunch- Will do! Thanks for the support!
Mr. Man- Hey! Sorry it's taken me a while to get back to you. I just moved to a new place and I've been without internet until yesterday. Yeah, I've been working on my digital technique; I've been making a point of taking note of what works and what doesn't work on my images. My technique is still evolving, of course, but I do feel I'm getting a lot better with the medium.
Thanks for the crits on the hands. I'll try that technique, though right now I'm focusing more on drawing heads than hands. Or rather, focusing more on thinking about drawing heads. I've been too inspired by creatures lately to copy from Hogarth. Oh well. I'll get to hands soon, though.
Yeah, I'd noticed that I ought to be drawing my creatures from some more interesting angles. A lot of these creatures were drawn in a generic profile view to make them less time consuming. For my most recent unfinished CoW ( ), I chose a more dramatic depiction. Doing a sheet of creature sketches in different views and angles would probably be a good idea, as I tend to "fake it" somewhat when drawing my creatures in different angles. I recently rented an animal drawing book from the library that should be helpful when drawing creatures from a variety of angles. It treats animal anatomy somewhat like Hogarth does human anatomy, as simplified architectural and mechanical structures and forms.
As I said before, I've recently been very inspired to draw some more creatures. I'm kinda considering this to be my "last hurrah" creature-wise, at least for a while. Once I get these pieces done, and a few more that are currently in my head, it'll be all environments, anatomy studies, and industrial design for me. I need to get some more tricks up my sleeve besides drawing some decent creatures.
-Another update on my dinichthyid fish. I'm really liking the way it's turning out. The scales on its body are very time consuming, even though I'm not rendering them in a very detailed manner. This'll be done pretty soon, I think.
-The linework and color WIP of my 75 Ton CoW, which, of course, I did not finish in time. At least this time I have the excuse of moving to a new apartment, rather than sheer laziness. This is the picture I was talking about in which I chose a more extreme angle. This and a few other pieces I'm either working on or going to work on will be the starting point of my portfolio, I believe.
-Another creature that's been waiting to be drawn for a little while: the lion dog. I'm working on the pattern I want for its face markings. I think the one on the right is closest to what I'm going for. I'm not sure if it'll actually be a dog or just a large species of civet. It exists in a world where most of the large, dominant lifeforms of today have been driven to extinction and the lesser animals have evolved to fill their niches. Basically, the same premise as Dougal Dixon's After Man: A Zoology of the Future.
More creatures, and updates to these, to come.
I LOVE your creatures.
And I love you for loving them.
But really, I'm going to have to start building my skills in other areas. I've decided that next month will be my month of environments, and creatures will be kept to a minimum. I'm delaying that until next month because I have too many creature ideas in my head waiting to be drawn to start now.