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Old 09-25-2016, 12:11 AM   #541
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I like where this is heading! :o Id just say that you could maybe try to find a commonality in her clothing. As it is right now, her greaves look like their part of an armor, whilest her...apron xD looks like its either that or an especially sexy bathing suit.
Id recommend finding some reference pictures on Pinterest/Google on female knights and the likes, just to see how they combine heavy armor with sexy clothing.

Looks already good nevertheless, cant wait to see it in color
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Old 09-25-2016, 02:22 PM   #542
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Hi Pariahjack. many thanks for replying to my sketchbook! The plan was to sort of create a sort of warrior queen of hearts look. Not quite full fighter, more high fantasy-sexy look that wouldn't be out of place in say LOL or DOTA.

ATM i'm trying to combine the royal hearts motifs and such and add some regal bits to her. Which brings me to my weekend update. Which to say is very little progress was made. its a bit of an embarrassment as i had plans to finish all the line art and i barely did anything. The dress is still causing problems, i tried suggesting it was armor but it didn't work out, i than had to figure out what to do with her bare arms but the pose meant that we would be looking underneath the arms or to the side which is being blocked. i wanted to use draw vambraces /bracers but everything i came up with didn't work out. I might have to cop out with dress gloves instead.

if i can come up with an armor design that would be great, but i spent a large amount of time searching for female armor, mage/magic armor, magic weapons and such but nothing happened.

haven't even thought about the background yet. will probably a simple background where there are curtains on the side and behind the chair is some read wall paper with golden hearts on the back (kinda like this). But once i have the chair and queen drawn i'm going to need to readjust the entire image composition again...

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Old 09-30-2016, 04:04 PM   #543
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nearly the weekend but i'm no where near starting to paint yet. Still going over armor design. i've hit a bloody wall on this. i want the armor to be extravagant yet harmonious, but yet at the same time the more i look at other designs, less is more. Gosh i'm so torn. So i throw it open to you guys for your thoughts.

here are the 2 i came up with:

this one follows the heart motif, for the queen of hearts. Its ok, but its a bit bland. i want to jazz it up but couldn't come up with anything. Perhaps if i just do a really good render and make it red with a few bits here and there it will be enough?




Design 2

certainly more detailed. But yet at the same time... limited. The other problem is the heart motif is missing. Perhaps if i add the hearts/spades,clubs, diamonds within the diamonds so they're like jewels or buttons? The bust area is lacking in detail and not sure with the threads around her neck. Interesting, but too detailed? I do like the lines converging it looks nice.




Design 3

just for kicks, i combined the 2 together. A winner or just a bloody mess? I had hoped to use texture/pattern brushes but they looked crap.

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Old 10-01-2016, 06:11 AM   #544
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Hey John If you want to go for a style with less detail then you have to be careful about crafting your shapes. First off though some technical issues. Her calves in particular are not symmetrical and it's a little strange, her right calf looks wider than the left. Her left forearm also looks longer and more wide than her right. Her crown also sits strangely on her head because it's off center and looks like it'll fall off when she sits up straight. Also you need to calculate your perspective with a vanishing point, those horizontals are not tending to a single vanishing point.

If you want to know how to make her look younger then you should go out and look at how young girls dress Stockings, heeled boots, form fitting shirts, all that. I think you can play up her curves and push the attitude more, make her waist curve in a little more and all that.

I think once you sort out the drawing issues you should move on to color, that's when you can really start to jazz it up I think the design looks interesting enough as it is because you already have a good variety of shapes and variation in the silhouette, it's really just the delivery.

Last edited by astrapho : 10-01-2016 at 06:27 AM.
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Old 10-01-2016, 11:10 AM   #545
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Hi Astrapho, good to hear from ya! i think the odd proportions of her right leg was my attempt at some slight foreshortening. i think a bit of modification should hopefully resolve it.

yeah, perspective was something i hashed out, i should whip out carapace and do it all properly.


When pariahjack mentioned she was wearing a skimpy swimsuit i was a bit miffed, i hadn't tweaked that the dress had exposed hips/waist and would be a good idea to try and get the female contours done properly. i might make the waist a bit narrower and see how it goes. i'll fix the arm as well. Luckily enough that was on its own separate later.


Its nothing short of frustrating when your ambition outstrips your skill. I see a vision that i think is awesome and when i put stylus to tablet its a struggle. Speaking of struggle, i haven't even started on the bloody background yet. I made tweaks to the chair but everything else is unrefined. Perhaps a stone background with overgrown rose thorns or vegetation everywhere? with a yellow skylight and secondary light from the glow of the wand?
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Old 10-02-2016, 03:19 AM   #546
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To get your vision down first it helps to do thumbnails so you can focus on the design without getting bogged down by the details. If it works small it will work big. I suggest some value thumbnails to figure out the lighting and your background ideas. It could work or it might not, nobody knows. I suggest you to test it in thumbnails first and fix it there before moving to the big version. About the unrefinement, don't worry about cleanness too much because you can always lineover it later, focus on getting the overall idea down now. You can always fix the technical issues later (though of course it's best to start correctly), but if you start with a design idea that doesn't work then no amount of refinement will help.

Good luck! Art is tough
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Old 10-02-2016, 07:02 AM   #547
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i rarely do thumbnails and mainly whenever i do any pictures i have no idea what i'm going to draw which makes it hard to plan or focus on something at a smaller scale. Hell, most of my thumbnails looks like a mess that i can't use. i might try using alchemy software and see what comes up next time. Might not be too late for this pic to cook up a thumbnail.


I managed to get carapace the chair and some of the floor. I corrected the leg and made a quick altercation to see how a different arm pose would look.

The leg is more anatomically correct, but the pose somehow is missing something since doing it. I'll sleep on it for now and see what happens.

Can't work on this till next weekend because i'm off to Germany to go to our german offices to learn their IT systems. Will be taking notes.

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Old 10-09-2016, 11:20 AM   #548
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Back from my business trip in Bonn, i got back to completing my picture. in the end i went back one step to the original pose. I felt that the new pose lost a lot of the dynamic aspect of it.

I'm itching to finish this piece now as its been far too long that i've made any progress or learnt anything from it. i standard on the basic flats and paints, cleaning it up and such.

the biggest problem is how much work there is to do. The lines are mess, the background hasn't been started and i haven't come up with a color scheme yet. i'm still working on it. i think in my next picture i'm going to take a long hard look at my processes and even look at other peoples and go from there.

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Old 10-13-2016, 05:07 PM   #549
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I think you have a good base to work with, and it was a good idea to revert to that pose. I'd suggest to think of making your shadow colors cooler or add some kind of cool local color on her because the whole palette is really warm and stuffy right now :/ Also I know what you're trying with the left thigh but I think the bend needs to be less exaggerated because it looks like her bone is bending haha. Keep it up you're making good progress. Don't worry about the lines too much, just use them to define your shapes, you're painting over them anyway.
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Old 10-16-2016, 07:20 AM   #550
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More weekend work. this time putting effort to the figure. We're getting there, just a bit more work to do on the hands and crown and we can sort out the background.

Without the multiply layer the colors clash, but hopefully once the lighting is put in place it should be ok. Enclosed are 2 images with and without the layer.

Just can't wait to finish it so that i can move onto something else.



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Old 10-18-2016, 01:30 AM   #551
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The background looks great so far. Waiting on the lighting to give you some final impressions since its currently incomplete.
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Old 10-23-2016, 05:41 AM   #552
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More weekend work. This time we finish the picture. This picture took just over 1 month. one Bloody month to finish. Only this weekend did i finally think it was looking good or to a point i was satisfied. I cheated with the light work by using a multiply layer + mask to create the rays of light.

Just to learn something i added a second light. I wanted a third light by the dagger, but with the intensity of the light coming from a window i doubt it would have been effective and would have confused matters.

But its done now and i can move onto something else. I had plans to go back to basics or find ways to speed up procedures. The most time consuming part was the line work and coming up with ideas and i sure as hell want to speed this up.

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Old 10-23-2016, 09:04 PM   #553
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Using the tools at your disposal is not cheating. Using a multiply layer to help you out is no different than using a ruler to draw a straight line on traditional media.
I love the rays of light. They add some nice variation to the piece and keep it from becoming too monotone.
You have a couple places where the shadows don't fall where they should. From the steps and foreground, it looks as though the main light source is at the top-right, but the right leg looks like it's being lit from the top left. Further, the right block on the foreground should have some more shading on the left-facing plane.
The left leg draped over the armrest looks like it's bending in some odd ways. The upper leg looks very bowed over the arm, while the lower leg looks like it comes around and twists over the front of the seat.
I love all the little details you put on her costume, especially the crown.

For these kind of pieces, I wouldn't worry too much about the linework, since most times, you end up painting over it, anyways. I wish I could help you come up with a way to speed up the ideation process, since I'm kind of in the same boat. If you do find something, though, let me know.
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Old 10-23-2016, 11:22 PM   #554
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Hi grieverjoe i had initially erased the lines and when i threw them back in again, i liked it much more so i kept most of it in. If i did that initially i would have saved so much time as i spend a fair bit of time plus multiple OP layers to get going.

I think part of the problem was that i spent so much time noodling and getting the details and despite working on a 5000x5000 resolution, it got pretty messy pretty quickly. if i could i would leave out the details, but i was more interested in laying down the intricate stuff and getting the final image out (frankly i was clueless what it was going to look like and was exploring it). I found myself doing a lot at the time was erased all the detail away, stripping areas back to basic and going over it at the end.

So i guess get the basic elements and than get the details. The left leg proportions i had tried to fix some weeks ago and in the end, when i fixed it i found it lost the essence of the drawing. If i wanted to fix it properly, i would have had to start the entire thing again.

I haven't quite worked out how to come up with a technique to combine 2 different light sources yet. i pretty much knew the shadows were going to be wrong when i threw in the pink light. (initially it was just one light source). Need to come up with a way to combine light sources and adapt it. Thinking about it, one way is to probably draw all the lights and than add the shadows in. Perhaps even leave it 2 tone (+1 for every light) first and once all the lights in place, do i add the shadows.

We'll see next time.
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Old 10-27-2016, 04:16 PM   #555
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grats on completing it Lights are additive in nature, so typically when you have a dual light source you should always complete one first and then add the second one. Shadow is only the absence of light so the second light source would never add shadows where the first light source hits and their shadow values would be the same.

I like how much attention you've paid to the decoration and the background. However I think you're having trouble with lighting, I did a quick paintover to give some suggestions for improvement, I hope it'll help.

Spoiler:

Last edited by astrapho : 10-27-2016 at 04:31 PM.
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Old 10-28-2016, 03:26 AM   #556
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Luvin' the colors and that pose
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Old 10-29-2016, 04:24 AM   #557
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Quote:
I like how much attention you've paid to the decoration and the background. However I think you're having trouble with lighting, I did a quick paintover to give some suggestions for improvement, I hope it'll help.

Indeed it does! It does make me wonder whether i should apply lighting/painting as flat planes angular rather than using spheres even for round objects. One of the challenges that i need to get my head around is not the direction of the light but the reflected lights and how that impacts shadows. I can't quite explain it, but i can't figure out the intensity how to apply it properly. What also challenges me is to maintain the values properly all throughout, when i start blending/rendering it gets lost. Its compounded that as objects are further away from the light, i have to find new values that work which proves tricky.

To help, i generally follow Chris legaspi's method (i don't remember the correct terms but you get the idea):

95% Highlight*

80% light

65% Mid light

50% Mid tone

35% mid dark

20% dark

5% Dark*


*Not expected to use these or only at the very end.

More practice i guess. Hopefully some today. But i think i want to do some sketching and sculpting style and see what sticks.

The decoration of the background was actually from a photoshop brush set of playing cards and the back image of the playing cards was one of the brushes. i took it, did some random bevel and emboss and added a bit of shading. I was actually quite lucky to find it as part of my inspiration for the queen of hearts was playing cards and it worked quite nicely as a piece of artwork. I had planned to use the queen of hearts playing card as a portrait but this was more awesome.
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Old 10-29-2016, 04:44 AM   #558
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I have a lighting tutorial in the works so thanks for explaining your difficulties

Quote:
What also challenges me is to maintain the values properly all throughout, when i start blending/rendering it gets lost.
Indeed this happens too often :/ Value is an essential part of color and not something separate from it, so when you pick your colors you always need to also pay attention to its value. It's not difficult once you know it, you just need to pay a little more attention here.

Quote:
It does make me wonder whether i should apply lighting/painting as flat planes angular rather than using spheres even for round objects.
Yes you should! Spheres are exactly the same as planes, just with smaller subdivision All that's happening is that the planes turn away from the light source very gradually which is why there's a gradient and not a hard edge.

Quote:
Its compounded that as objects are further away from the light, i have to find new values that work which proves tricky.
It's actually a very simple principle- When objects are further away from the light, just make sure they are darker in value relative to the stuff closer to the light, and less saturated.

It's an appropriate background pattern I think, but in the way it is I think it made the background too busy and takes too much attention away from the main character so it might help just to make the contrast less strong. That's another thing to think about when you set up your composition- what do you want to communicate with the painting? Eliminating things that distract from your objective strengthens your composition.

All the best for your next work
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Old 11-01-2016, 12:48 AM   #559
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Astrapho did a really awesome job situating the lighting for you. I want to see that lighting tutorial too!

The background looks amazing though. the steps look a bit weird, mostly due to the incorrect shadowing that Astropho pointed out.

I do feel like you're using too much soft rendering on the skin though, and it doesn't quite work especially in contrast to everything else. I'll try to do a quick paintover to illustrate it.
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Old 11-01-2016, 11:25 AM   #560
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Quote:
I do feel like you're using too much soft rendering on the skin though, and it doesn't quite work especially in contrast to everything else. I'll try to do a quick paintover to illustrate it.
Hi Robocat and many thanks for the reply. Tbh the issue has perplexed me, the ideal situation is for the skin to have some texture. for example, see kilartdev.deviantart.com or other artists with similar texturing. My problem is getting the blending right and i always whip out the soft brushes, i do have some other brushes like the pastel and skin/pore brushes but i haven't quite figured out how to use them effectively.

ultimately, most of my work on skin is soft and would like to address it. i was looking at chris legaspi's methods but he too eventually resorts to the soft brush to blend everything together. I wonder is it whether i have it at a too high opacity/flow and to get my results? Perhaps i should resort to a brush with some teeth like the chalk brush so that the edges get broken up for most of my blending. only near 75-85% completion do i neaten everything with the soft brush?


EDIt: But on the other hand, in some digital artists, they resort to a more cell shaded 2 tonal range and simply blend the edges where the shadows and light meet! it would be simpler but again hmm...

Hmm... until i figure it out (or buy the answer) i'm going to be doing this for a while.

Speaking of art, apologies for no work this week, i did some drawing trying to figure out the pelvis box but most of it was random doodles and rough lines. i'm not entirely in the mood to draw at the moment especially when an exam is looming on the 10th november. Not entirely confident tbh.
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