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Jesse needs critique !

polycounter lvl 6
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JesseHenaoMonroy polycounter lvl 6

Hey polycounters !

I rarely post but i'm at a point where I feel like I need to open up.

I've been practicing digital art (both 3D & 2D) for the past 6 years, I work professionally in the games industry (doing 3D and rough 2D for a big French company) but I want to make the shift to be a full-time illustrator/concept-artist.

For that, I am well aware that I need to focus on my 2D art, but unfortunately I never seem to get any feedbacks/critiques on my pieces. And that's really tough since i'm pretty sure a great way of improving is by hearing what people who have master the craft have to say about my art !


So yeah this is a new and hopeful attempt at getting help going forward!

Here's the latest piece I worked on, she's the main character of a short story i'm writing at the moment.

I would LOVE some advice that I could take into account for the next painting, especially that she's gonna be the protagonist again.

Thanks a lot everyone! ♥


Replies

  • Eric Chadwick

    This is looking really nice!

    The first thing that catches my eye is the lack of bounce lighting on her darker forms, which makes it hard to understand her pose, and thus hard to get a sense of what she's doing.

    Her right upper arm from elbow to shoulder is almost invisible. And her ribcage and upper leg have the same problem. Lack of lighting means lack of shape, which makes it difficulty to read. Where is her left arm?

    She seems to be floating underwater, given the pose, lack of support under her, suggestion of bubbles, and the way her hair is lacking gravity or a wind direction. But it's not very obvious, so she could be in a dream, or she could be falling off a cliff, or drifting weightless in space. It's difficult to get a sense of the narrative behind where she is and what she's doing.

    It also helps to think about the crop/composition you chose. What if you were to "pull back" the camera to show her full torso and right hand? Would that improve or distract from the composition/focus/narrative? It does feel odd to me that her hand is cut off by the framing.

    Try squinting your eyes so the image gets blurry and details disappear. Does the composition still work? Does it still make sense?

  • Eric Chadwick

    Some neat stuff to absorb and try out. Composition is an awesome thing to study, so powerful!


  • JesseHenaoMonroy
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    JesseHenaoMonroy polycounter lvl 6

    Hello Eric, thanks so much for those insights and sorry for the late reply !

    Yeah I felt like my main issue was the overall darkness but didn't really know how to fix it! I'll definitely try adding bounce lights.

    As for the narrative she is indeed floating in water but the river Styx which in my story is full of Souls and Ethereal presence so I wanted to leave a sense of mystery but if the audience can't figure it out then its ain't working 😅 thanks for pointing it out !


    Finally for the composition I did try to use the Fibonacci as well but seeing your example helps me figure out way more of what can be done with it ! Thanks again :)

  • JesseHenaoMonroy
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    JesseHenaoMonroy polycounter lvl 6

    Right now i'm working on this piece; which is even harder for me than the previous one..

    So again, any feedback would be very helpful to figure out flaws in the picture.

    My next steps on it are mostly rendering the background and trying to loose some details on it. And then pushing details on the two protagonists.

  • Fabi_G
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    Fabi_G ngon master

    Hey, I think the illustrations look very cool 👍️

    With the last one, I think it could be also interesting having the frame centered on the protagonist with the teacher stepping in ("Surprise!").

    Keep it up 🙂

  • JesseHenaoMonroy
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    JesseHenaoMonroy polycounter lvl 6

    Hey Fabi, thanks a lot !

    I'll give it a shot; at first I did a few thumbnails mostly with the protagonist in the center but I had a hard time balancing the "void" on the right" !

  • Fabi_G
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    Fabi_G ngon master

    oh, hm I see! Didn't notice that 😅

    Oh well, seems composition is a rabbit hole for me 😵 Much success 💪

  • JesseHenaoMonroy
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    JesseHenaoMonroy polycounter lvl 6

    hey guys ! little update on this piece. After trying out another comp (stretched right) i came back to this cause I felt like it represented the idea better.

    Balancing the depth in the scene seems to be a good solution to my issues.

    Do you guys feel like the lighting feels natural ?

    Any other feedback is welcome !


    Next (and maybe final) painting session i'll render the hand on top of the book and try to repaint the Candle as to change the blur value from the background, hopefully it helps it stick out in the foreground.


    Thanks :)

  • carvuliero
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    carvuliero quad damage

    I would suggest simple armature like the one below as starting point then composition should expend on based on what is important what you like to say and so on

    Little explanation : she is looking to the right , so there should be space for her to look at which give you a rough position for her [she be left of center]

    in your version both characters are far apart no connection no tension no story or weak story base on what you want to say you might want to reconsider their relation

    I think you could get a better gesture exaggerating her shoulders also arms and chin could use some structure and proportion adjustments

    Mind you in my quick version right side is not balanced and is way to bright , and there is danger for candle to became too important and steal the show


  • JesseHenaoMonroy
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    JesseHenaoMonroy polycounter lvl 6

    Very interesting Carvuliero ! Thank you very much !

    I definitely agree, love what you did with the gesture and the relationship between her and the teacher.

    Indeed the right part of the comp still feels a bit odd with the big candle and void from the window, i'll try to come up with something based on that.

    Thanks again :)

  • JesseHenaoMonroy
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    JesseHenaoMonroy polycounter lvl 6

    Just realized I didn't post the result of this piece !

    Thanks for the feedbacks along the way! It really helped :)

  • JesseHenaoMonroy
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    JesseHenaoMonroy polycounter lvl 6

    Here's my newest WIP for that serie based on my novel.

    For this one I really wanted to go for more of a splash-style illustration and capture Chimaera's power (so later on in the novel when she unleashed it)

    This is where i'm at the moment, I feel like the background could use more informations but i don't rly know what.

    Next steps are blending the line art with the shadow, adding colours within these black shadows, rendering the face and hand in detail and I guess adding spec ?


    Any feedbacks would be most welcome !

  • carvuliero
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    carvuliero quad damage

    I have few suggestion :

    -not sure about the pose she look unstable and about to fall , try something else

    -maybe force prospective even more pushing columns in to triangular composition or any other arrangement

    -maybe try dome like structure

    -I even played with a staircase and cave opening [check the eye of god cave]

    -for background you could have broken column that are hold together by magic or some vegetation vines or mycelium

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