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Thread: I wasn't going to do this, though I'm inspired

  1. #1

    I wasn't going to do this, though I'm inspired

    I've seen many talented people here, my "problem" is I hate adding colour because I'm utterly rubbish at doing it. I've done three "artrage" digital art works and none are amazing, though I would like opinions.

    Please don't be too harsh, I understand it's important to get your opinion across and I have asked. Just be gentle, it's taken me 2 years to even get this far! LOL -edit- I also did this without a graphic tablet, just my finger and my laptops touch sensor

    I should also note, I did time myself. In order of images 1) 15 mins 2) about 8'ish maybe less 3) 15 mins


    Obviously I see the facial features are weak, I'm very aware of my defects but improving them I don't know. I would say this is also the best


    Took 5-8 mins, the skin could be done much better though I do really like it.


    Front grass and water is okay, rushed far to much on the background.

    Next time I'm going to spend longer, though I hope you like them.
    ~Joey

  2. #2
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    Hi Joey. It's great that you posted these and I think they are excellent considering what you are creating them with. I have a feeling these pictures are not a fair representation of your artistic ability. If you could get a hold of a graphics tablet, your product outcome will increase 10 fold and the sky would be the limit to what you could learn and achieve. Good luck, and keep us updated.
    "The significance is hiding in the insignificant. Appreciate everything."
    — Eckhart Tolle

  3. #3
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    Hi there. Well, I like these. Remarkable with just a few minutes of work and a touch pad. As speed-paint quickie sketches they are lively, immediate, and expressive. I'm a plodding, slow painter. It's refreshing seeing such rapdid mental impressions. Real improvement will surely develop with getting the right tools, participating in drawing classes, and practice, practice, practice. And then more practice. .

    Best, Byron
    Last edited by byroncallas; 05-05-2009 at 08:55 PM.
    // "Appreciation fosters well-being. Be well." - Byron
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  4. #4
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    What you're sensing about your portraiture could be fixed up with a few technical art lessons on facial proportions. there's a wealth of great books out there including at libraries. if you have a free public library near your home I strongly recommend popping over there and investigating the fine arts section for some drawing instruction books. It's also possible that Google can find free instructional websites, but sometimes a good book just can't be beat.
    There's ways of dividing the face up into sections and lining up features on them to get the proportions right based on the angle of the face and the age of the subject. Basic tricks like that (and there's tricks for figure drawing too) can help a whole lot with the comfort of an image.
    Of course, all the courses in the world won't make up for lack of practice. I'm a grand example. I've read books, taken lessons, and used a wide variety of media, but because my actual practice time is inconsistent my skill level is really quite poor. You'll get further with practice and no teaching than teaching and no practice, so keep going!

  5. #5
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    I'm not sure how far you can expect to go with a touch pad... there is a reason why painters have been using brushes and pens and the like for ages. But anyway, here's my recommendations, coming from someone who can't really draw anyway but likes to shoot off his mouth...

    Firstly, you write that you spent about ten minutes on each of these. Frankly, with tools like what you're using you can't expect to create a great masterpiece in ten minutes. It's just not going to work. If you want fast, look into getting a graphics tablet. Even the low-end wacom tablets are pretty good (as long as it says "wacom" somewhere on the case, it should be fine). I figure that learning hand-eye coordination anew is not going to be a problem if you're already using a touch pad anyway, which has the same issue. And when you get one, expect to spend more than ten minutes on a painting too. You write yourself that you were too fast with the background in the landscape painting. I can't add much to that observation. If you want detailed, spend time on details. They don't come out of nowhere unless you really really know how to use a brush.

    Secondly, your two portraits look like you used a photograph as a reference. I suggest that before you try copying photographs, you should get a book on the subject and study the basics. There is a tonne of material out there that is intended to teach people how to draw and not be "utterly rubbish at doing it" (your words). In particular, there are ways to construct a face so it looks real, that is, where to place the important bits that go in a face and all that. Again, be prepared to spend a little more than just a few minutes on anything you do. Over time you will learn how to draw with less and less construction, but as long as you haven't learnt that, it's extra time you need to spend on each piece.

    Thirdly, none of your paintings have any sort of shading. Even with a sketch, just a little shading can make a huge difference. Again, there are books out there that cover this and you should try and get hold of one and read it. To illustrate this, I'm attaching a very basic sketch of a head, with little to no features detailed. See the difference between the first and the second column? Both are coloured in one flat colour, but the second column has some limited pencil shading applied. The fifth version additionally has added shading with a darker skin tone. I'm not very good at this myself, but even then, see what kind of a difference you can get from thinking about the spatial layout of your scene and your light sources for a few minutes? Again, it's important to know why the colours are different in different areas, don't just try to imitate something you see in a photograph. A photograph will completely remove some details that you need to see if you want to learn this on your own. With a real person, you can move your light sources, or look at them from different angles, you can't do that with a photograph. Fortunately, everything that you would learn from doing this is explained in those books that I keep mentioning, so you should get one already. As a bonus, they typically contain much better explanatory imagery than what I can provide ;-)

    Finally, in addition to spending more time and thinking more about your layout, you should practice your technique as well. Fortunately, those same books that I keep talking about also teach you that. With that said, I will shut up about books now and I hope you didn't read this as more harsh than it is meant to be read as :-) Just keep practicing, and enjoy what you're doing, and eventually you'll learn to fix the bits that you don't like yet!
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    Quote Originally Posted by anarkissed View Post
    What you're sensing about your portraiture could be fixed up with a few technical art lessons on facial proportions. there's a wealth of great books out there including at libraries. if you have a free public library near your home I strongly recommend popping over there and investigating the fine arts section for some drawing instruction books. It's also possible that Google can find free instructional websites, but sometimes a good book just can't be beat.
    Absolutely true. Buy a copy of "Drawing on the right side of the brain" and go through its lessons. Also, check out http://www.wowio.com -- they do free books (no, really!) but it can be kind of a pain to sign up. I've picked up some drawing books from them (but haven't read them yet, so... I'm an idiot :-)

    Quote Originally Posted by anarkissed View Post
    Of course, all the courses in the world won't make up for lack of practice. I'm a grand example. I've read books, taken lessons, and used a wide variety of media, but because my actual practice time is inconsistent my skill level is really quite poor. You'll get further with practice and no teaching than teaching and no practice, so keep going!
    Let me say that while I agree with this in principle, believe me, if you get the chance, TAKE SOME CLASSES! I could not count the number of times I've said, or heard someone else in a class say, "OH! So THAT'S how you do that!" or learned something that shaved (literally) years off of my development as an artist. Several things I learned I think I would have eventually gotten... but it was so nice to not have to wait that long! Oh yeah, be sure to take group classes, not individual instruction... I know I've often learned more from the other students than the teacher. This was particularly true my first class, where the teacher was awful... but I still learned a lot from him, and more from the other students.

    And ah... yeah... practice... gotta do that too :-). But at least with ArtRage, it's a lot of fun!
    WARNING: ArtRage can cause serious loss of time, and excessive smiling! Use with care! Frequently!

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  7. #7
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    You are doing it backwards.

    If you do not understand color, in order to "get" it, you should start with tone.

    Do exercises in monochrome. Use black, white, and three shades in between. Don't use line; define form with light and shadow.

    Once you get the hang of that, and can produce a good, solid tonal image, color will be ridiculously easy. Just learn the color theory and practice a little doing color harmonies.


    Andrew Loomis has a good primer on tone and color in "Creative Illustration", if you want a detailed treatise.

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