View Full Version : Simple theories and excercises to improve your drawings

12 December 2005, 12:27 AM
Rebecca has been on me to do some sort of tutorial here for some time now. I'm not sure what my qualifications are to teach anyone how to draw or what makes good art ... :shrug:

However, I figured I could offer a few pointers that I picked up along the way to maybe inspire or help new artists struggling to make their images more interesting. One thing I may excel at is being overly critical of my own work and having an ability to provide valuable feedback when reviewing other's work (I'm not trying to boast there ... it's what I've been told by others). :D

So, this thread will include some beginner concepts that you may find useful when working on your images. I'm going to try and cover a lot of different ideas and provide some sort of excercise that you can try these concepts on. Feel free to add any information that you feel is relevant or post your excercise results within this thread for critique by myself or other members of this forum.

Please, keep all images within 800X600 dimensions.

I hope you get some helpful ideas out of these lessons and have some level of enjoyment out of my ramblings here. My first lesson will be appearing in this thread sometime today.

Thank you. :thumbsup:

12 December 2005, 01:36 AM
Center of Page

Many new artists will use the center of the page to display their image. Although, it's not wrong in all cases ... it's generally a good idea to avoid putting the subject matter dead center of your page. Dead center has the effect that the name implies ... making your image "dead".

Unless you are trying to convey a mood of order, balance or structure in your image it's just best to stay out of the middle. Dead center will make most character illustrations seem lifeless, most illustrations appear flat and contributes to a lack of dynamics.

Take a look at the following images:

On the left, I've created a thumbnail image of a very simple form (the letter "A") and illustrated a character that mimics it's composition. Regardless of how interesting or unique your character is, he/she/it will appear dull and lifeless in this type of composition. It has the same artistic merit as a mug shot and everyone who has a Driver's License is familiar with how unflattering this is. :D

On the right, I've tilted, twisted and cropped the subject matter to occupy more of the left side of the frame. Instantly, the character seems more interesting to the viewer and the composition has more style (in spite of the unexpressive face I've drawn in example).

Your Exercise

Pick a letter of the alphabet to create a thumbnail composition that has complimentary amounts of positive and negative space. Avoid the dead center and twist, stretch or crop the letter to create an interesting composition.

Using the thumbnail that you've created, elaborate and draw something that mimics the composition. Post your final images here without the thumbnail and see if others can guess which letter you used in your composition.

12 December 2005, 01:55 AM

Thanks a bunch for doing this ~ I think this is a fantastic exercise, and that a lot of folks here (including myself) will really benefit from following this thread. :wip: Hope to see peoples' participation soon! :bounce:

Cheers, :)


12 December 2005, 08:11 AM
Hi kirt

its super nice of you to take the time to do this, we do appreciate it :thumbsup:.

Okay I guess I'll take the first stab at this one.
Don't know how succesfull I was, I still have sort of distributed the subject evenly on the page so i guess you could say I placed it in the center....:shrug: I'd really love some feedback on it, cause I don't think quite understood the exercise.

~David René.

12 December 2005, 08:50 AM
Thanks for being the first submission Corvax. :thumbsup:

OK ... I'm going to guess that you went with the letter "T"? Not a bad choice but you have to be carefull that you displace the center line so that it doesn't run down the center of the page. I like what you have, but as you've suggested it's still pretty much dead center.

When developing your thumbnail, try to create an equal amount of positive and negative space and really use up the page if you have to. I think the areas around the figure (negative space) are dominating this image and you could make this more interesting by increasing the size of the figure in the frame.

An easy crop will fix most of this without loosing any important information in your image.

OK ... I tried cropping your image, but I had a hard time getting the figure away from the center. Below is your image, a representation of your image in thumbnail and what I'd suggest to use up the space on the page a little better.

Notice how I've moved the center to the right and moved the top up to fill the empty spaces. The large empty space at bottom left isn't a concern because it balances off well with the positive space being used in the composition.

I hope this makes more sense. There are thousands of ways that you can do this, so feel free to experiment with other designs.

12 December 2005, 11:19 AM
Hey everybody!

Realy nice tutorial Kirt:thumbsup: Unfortunately, I'm not having a tablet at the moment. So I did the exercise with a pencil and took a picture. Here is the result

12 December 2005, 02:10 PM
hehe, please tell me you used a G on this one ;)

Great idea btw Kirt, I'll try and work on something!

12 December 2005, 02:23 PM
100 Points!!! You're right DanVL. I used for my character the letter G. :beer:

12 December 2005, 02:35 PM
Thanks for the reply kirt, it was actually quite helpful :bowdown:.

Okay I'm gonna try one more time..

12 December 2005, 03:11 PM
Nice work Corvax!!! Is it a P? In my opinion the composition of this work (especially in comparison to the first one) is great.

12 December 2005, 03:36 PM
That's awesome, Corvax / Dave! :beer: I love the humor to this ~ that's great! :D



12 December 2005, 03:39 PM
What the heck was I thinking? :D

12 December 2005, 05:35 PM
Hey there all!
There are too many good threads atm so let's just start with this one :beer:

Corvax That character is realy awesome, but don't you think it's still in a kind of dead center?

Rebaccak Isn't it an idea to make a thread for all weird textures and stuff like: how to make rocks, glass, rough ocean, etc. And when they post the add a walk-through with it? Hope i'm clear with my explanation

About my post:
When i wanted to give my 15min painting a little detail PS went a little crazy, so from there on i just saved it and here it is, hope it's good enough for this thread.
I used character "O" and tried to put it in a dynamic view.

12 December 2005, 06:54 PM
I haven't drawn anything since april due to depression and conflicts in my life. recently I have started slowly drawing a bit the past few days and was encouraged by JMbokenstein to take part in this thread to not only to get me back to where I left off in my anatomy studies, but also to gain improvement. anyways here is mine :)

12 December 2005, 12:16 AM
bermuda_boy_jimbo - Easily recognizable as the letter "G" but I don't think you're quite hitting on the concept here. Your illustration is dead center. Here's your illustration at top and a couple of suggestions underneath on how you could tackle this one. Maybe you can try another after seeing what I have done here?

Corvax - Very nicely done! Although it's not important to have the figure in the shape of the letter (we're not creating a new font with our illustrations :D ) I like how you composited this image. Good job.

zng-Y - Not bad. Definately off centered and nicely balanced image. I do think that I would have approached the letter "O" shape differently and tried to have the figure sort of curved around the perimeter rather than treated as a large focal point. But your image does work "as is". Here's another suggestion ...

Anurizm - Letter is "I"? If my guess is correct, then it's a nice placement of a difficult choice. Certain letters have an innate structure that is unnavoidably dead centered. But you've done well in working around this problem. With this excercise I might be more inclined to try using a more complex letter (Z, S, B, Y, M, N, L, b, g, f, q, etc.) and avoid those that tend to point dead center (I, O, l, etc.). Or you could even try a number. With the exception of "1" and "0" all of the numbers are great to thumbnail.

Also, in no relation to this excercise but still a good point for your illustration ... I probably wouldn't have gone side view either. It tends to feel like an ortho drawing and introducing even a slight angle of the character will add much more depth to your drawings.

everyone - Try to push beyond just putting a character into your layout designs. You could also add foreground or background elements into the design which will still match your thumbnails. I'll try to get an example of this idea done tonight also. :wip:

12 December 2005, 05:40 AM
Wahoo! These are great, Kirt! :thumbsup: The concept of using letters and numbers is brilliant. Heh, I remember doing a gridded paper sketchpad FULL of these kinds of comps in art school / design classes...they're really useful, though, unfortunately, most of mine were pretty lame :D ~ so I'm learning a lot here! :bounce:

Cheers, :)


12 December 2005, 08:14 AM
I'm not going to take credit for the letter idea. This was actually an assignment in one of my early art classes while I was attending a Junior College. I thought it was a very unique and easy way to develop compositions and it just sort of stuck in the back of my head somewhere.

I wish I could remember the instructor's name. He was pretty helpful in those years. :D

Sorry, I didn't get the last illustration done that I promised. I will try and do one for myself tomorrow and see what everyone thinks.

12 December 2005, 01:28 PM
Thanks Kirt for this great exercise in composition. Looks like a good and important complemental on my anatomy efforts around this place!

Will join in later this weekend and am looking forward to your next piece/example!

12 December 2005, 05:16 AM
This seems like a fun excercise! Alright here's my attempt.

I'm still trying to learn everything from anatomy, wacom, digital painting so any sort of feedback would be fantastic! I don't really know how long it took me but I'd say a few hours?

12 December 2005, 05:16 PM
IronhideNT Not bad at all! Maybe try to shorten your drawingtime. Position is overall nice i think, but that's Kirt's buisness ;). And a great welcome of course :thumbsup:

Kirt Thank's a lot for puting some time in helping us/me. Especialy the correction paintings are helping me out!

Rebeccak Did u read my last post? Hope to get an answer :rolleyes:

Here is my next try... (btw it's a diver ;))

12 December 2005, 03:10 PM
Ok, thanks a lot for your great help Kirt. I tried another one but it's not based exactly on the shapes you suggested. Here it is:

12 December 2005, 11:30 PM
I should have waited until after the holidays to do this. :D

The last 3 submissions are fantastic! Looks like everyone is getting the hang of this idea quickly and I'll have to move on to another excercise soon.

IronhideNT - This may be a bit centered, but I think it works fine with the diagonals that you've included in the composition. Anatomy seems a bit weird in some places (notably the head and limb joints) but we weren't really focusing on anatomy just yet. I like this one because it has some very lively colors that fit the character's expression. Letter "H"?

zng-Y - Fantastic improvement over the other submission! Very well done :thumbsup: I'm going to guess "X" or "R" though because the edges of the pool are really dominant in the composition of the image.

bermuda_boy_jimbo - Excellent! I think you got it!

Additional Note - For those unfamiliar with what I'm talking about when I mention "diagonals" you could read my older tutorial A Brief Look at Diagonals ( that I did last summer. I was going to review this again, but I guess it's not neccessary since the old thread is still available. Feel free to explore the use of diagonals in your compositions here.

Kami Z
12 December 2005, 06:57 AM
Awesomo! This looks really fun and helpful! Here's my quick sketch.
I hope I did this right. Please critic when you have time. Thank you!
P is for Pig lol

12 December 2005, 07:51 AM
haha cool sketch you got there :D

Kami Z
12 December 2005, 08:11 AM
thanks n_n I think both of your paintings are awesome.

12 December 2005, 08:24 AM
Thanks!!! :bounce:

12 December 2005, 12:55 PM

Thanks for your comments everybody! I just quickly sketched this one up as well with a golf club but I may have used too much positive space. It's an interesting study this one isn't it?

Besides, cropping these images gives me excuse for not drawing hands!

12 December 2005, 01:15 PM
Haha, nuffty trick :beer:

Had to watch for a second, but nice sketch you made there! And i may be not the teacher here, but i think u made it how it was ment to be, cool outcentered :D

12 December 2005, 01:36 PM
Hey guys!
@IronhideNT: I like your drawing style! But there is one thing I want to mention. I'm not a teacher but I think, that the hidden agenda of this exercise is to place the components of your picture I an way, that croping is not necessary. It's like taking pictures, first you do is finding a good composition.

12 December 2005, 01:52 PM
Besides, cropping these images gives me excuse for not drawing hands!

so i think it was necessary :D

12 December 2005, 10:14 PM
Ironhide - I like the crop and composition!
Kirt - thanks for doing this and I'd like to say thanks for that diagonal tut also, because that has been great, too!

Let us know when you go for another threadless submission...:thumbsup:

Here's my try: start/tweak/character composition sketch

12 December 2005, 10:41 PM
OK I'm going to have to get to work on the next excercise because you guys are just showing amazing progress on this last one. I really can't find anything useful to crit on the last 3 submissions. Really nice work everyone! :thumbsup:

Mr. Mu - I just submitted a new one, check my Threadless Submissions post in 2D WIP forum for the latest design. :D

12 December 2005, 12:16 PM
Awesome! ...if you were talkin' about my picture too:rolleyes::D:scream:

12 December 2005, 06:48 AM
Another common problem that I see with many new artists' illustrations is the lack of depth or distance in their images. Even if the image is a simple character on a monochromatic background, artists should remember the basic ideas behind conveying distance.

Often time, I think illustrators will concentrate on the details of the character and it's costume (which are very important in communicating it's purpose). However, as a direct result, we end up with a character that may be very well thought out and conceptualized ... but poorly rendered and ultimately appears flat on the page.

I'll admit, this is an area that I have had difficulties with as well. Here's an example of one of my characters which seems rather flat to me.

... and coincidently fails the "dead center" principles of the previous lesson :blush:

This is "Poser" a winner of the Hapless Heroes CGChallenge (March 2003). Say, "Hello" Poser ...

[Poser grunts]

Why does he appear flat? Well, the pose which is perpendicular to the viewer doesn't help in the slightest and the color values are pretty consistant through the character with the exception of the rear leg (about the only part of this character which pushes back into the Z-axis).

Let's break this down into basics and see if we can't apply some ideas to correct this character. :D

The colored spheres in the picture above are rendered fairly well (which is to say they have a light source applied to them which in turn give us highlights and shadows). I've even overlapped them to give the impression of depth. But it's failing miserably. :argh:

Can you see how each sphere seems to occupy the same space on the X-axis?

Perspective rules tell us that objects further away from us appear smaller while objects closer to us appear larger. We've all studied this stuff right? Nothing too surprising here ... I scaled the balls furthest and closest to represent the proper rules of perspective.

This is looking better, but still not perfect. This has the appearance of 3 different sized spheres occupying the same space on the X-axis. We need to go further.

Because objects at great distance must reflect their color information through atmospheric interferences, their values appear desaturated and dull when compared to an object with the same color that is placed closer to the viewer. (ugh that was a long sentence!)

Short version ... light/color doesn't travel well through smog. Our spheres are beginning to show more separation and distance between them. However, they can still be interpretted as 3 different sized & different colored spheres (desaturated color is still a color afterall) occupying the same space on the X-axis.

The final element is blur. For the same reasons we desaturated in the previous step we blur the edges more for objects furthest away from us. AND ... objects really close to the viewer (extreme close up - out of focal view) will be blurry as well.

Ah ... this is a tricky one and I haven't illustrated it properly in the example above. I focused on the yellow sphere so that it shows crisp and vibrant. But if I were to focus on the red (or place another sphere in the image in front of the yellow) I would apply some blur to the forground sphere(s) as well.

Finally we have depth in our illustration! :bounce:


Your task is to illustrate a character of your own (or use Poser there ... he likes to flex and strut his stuff) using the principles discussed here to push depth. Don't forget the previous excercise also. I'll be adding my *NEW* version of Poser to this thread later.

Good Luck!

12 December 2005, 07:01 AM
Sweet exercise, Kirt! :thumbsup:

12 December 2005, 08:03 AM

this thread is becoming absolutely priceless! Thanks so much...

question: do we add objects in the implied distance to make Poser pop out or are we to rely solely on him and feature him in such an ill-twisted position and perspective that we can apply blur and desaturation on his limbs a.s.o.?

12 December 2005, 03:02 PM
Yeah, awesome exercise!

12 December 2005, 05:57 PM
Yeah, great stuff!!!:buttrock:

12 December 2005, 06:17 PM
Mr. Mu - Entirely up to you. You can apply the principles to just the character or add other elements (foreground/background) to work with. Draw whatever you feel like drawing ... as long as it has distance. :wip:

12 December 2005, 06:32 PM
... oh and try not to include lines in your exercise (just colors). I will be covering lines in the next lesson and we'll be using this same illustration in the next one. :D

Kami Z
12 December 2005, 12:27 AM
Here's my attempt, he's name is AwesomeMan. I tried but it doesn't look right lol some help please?

12 December 2005, 12:32 AM
Kami - his fist is nearest to the viewer... it should be sharpest! Compare it to the foot at the right border of the pic

Gonna post mine in a second...

12 December 2005, 12:39 AM
the composition for the sake of completeness...:

My take on depth...:


I had the following problems:

- perspective... none of your concern, but I suck at it. Need to go through that again

- How do you blur? I just used a blur filter, but is there a preferrable method, like using brushes to do the job? IF so, how?

- I am just starting to understand values through the work in the OFDWs around here and here I had to mind a full colour palette. I mean, keeping an eye on the values is one thing, but minding saturation at the same time was really hard.
Maybe if we rested on this exercise a little longer? Or if someone who can spot my mistakes in this can give me a hint on what to mind next time so my homework does not totally suck? Again?

Kami Z
12 December 2005, 12:54 AM
Awesome Mr. Mu. Thanks for the advice too. I didn't know.. I was trying to set the focus on the head. Guess it doesn't work.

If you are using photoshop like me. There's a blur tool on tool set. It's under the eraser and you might have to right click it. hope it helps.

12 December 2005, 01:12 AM
Hi Kami Z,

Awesome Mr. Mu.

Thank you... I am still unhappy about the outcome, hope someone can poke my nose in the dirt to make me find out why:shrug:

Thanks for the advice too. I didn't know.. I was trying to set the focus on the head. Guess it doesn't work.

Sorry, I did not get that. In that case you were right to blur the fist (as Kirt said about very near objects), but you would have to blur the feet much more in comparison to the face, then, I guess...:)

If you are using photoshop like me. There's a blur tool on tool set. It's under the eraser and you might have to right click it. hope it helps.

Hmmm, well no, I use artweaver, awesome freeware, take a look at the link in my sig... But now you said it I realize there's a sort of blur brush there, too! So, thanks for that hint!

I do wonder though, is it better craftmanship to blur by blending colours? Is that advisable in order to "know your shit", as the americans say:scream:


12 December 2005, 01:40 AM
Kami Z - AwesomeMan is quite the styling guy! :D But he does appear to be flat. Here's a couple things that you can work on to fix him. First, the edges and details of his trailing arm and legs are too crisp. They are equal in all aspects to the character's face and upper chest area (which should be closer to the viewer).

Secondly, the saturation levels are consistent throughout the whole character. Applying black shadows over the limbs will not desaturate the color (only make it darker). Try using other colors other than black and white for your highlights and shadows then you'll find it easier to get the saturation corrected.

The smudge tool works really nicely to blur edges as well. :D

Mr. Mu - Try to open up the character's pose a bit so there is greater use of negative space. Since he's bunched up tightly into a ball, it's difficult to show perspective on his form. With arms and legs spaced out more, you'll be able to see the distance in the pose more effectively.

Tighten up your edges on objects within the focal point and be more loose with objects close or further away from the focal point.

The desaturation of the furthest mountains is good, but I think you can push it further. Try to do some mountains that are less flat and planar. There appears to be 3 distinct planes that divide your image. If you can show that the mountains recede into the distance the image will be more convincing.

Kami Z
12 December 2005, 02:54 AM
Thanks Kirt! I tried to fix it but it still doesn't have a nice 3d feel. I think I blured the whole thing too much lol. Here's my attempt to fix AwesomeMan. Instead of black I used a grayish blue for the desaturation.
Tell me what you think.

I'll draw another picture for this excercise. I really want to get the hang of it.

12 December 2005, 03:21 AM
Well, he does look more dimensional now. However, I think you could be a bit more subtle with the blur. It's a bit too much which distracts from the illustration's qualities. I look forward to seeing your next submission.

12 December 2005, 02:13 PM
Hi Kirt,

thanks so much for all the useful hints - we'll be visiting family members all over the place for a few days, so my update's gonna take til next week, but it is sure to come,

merry christmas everyone


12 December 2005, 04:40 PM
Hey Kirt,

I hope this thread isn't dead! (Kami?)

It may turn out to be a private tuition, though...:D

I tried to sharpen the edges on my character, blur the distant objects and desaturate the mountains even more. The mountains I tried to make less planar, also. What I feared to do is to recreate the pose of the character to make it more dynamic, but I might just do another assignment based on your hints on distance.

Looking forward to anyone's updates and your lessons, Kirt!

12 December 2005, 08:20 PM
No, the thread is not dead. I imagine everyone has taken a break for the holidays. I have much work to do at the end of the year on my job, so I may not be able to post my own drawing until next week sometime.

Good improvement on the furthest mountains, but it's still a bit planar. Another thing about the character is that he looks as if he's going to fall over. I wish I had some time tonight to draw a paintover for you. Hang in there and I'll try to squeeze one in as soon as I can.

01 January 2006, 09:01 PM
Hi Kirt,

this is not a character painting, but I thought it fit in here, because I could make use of both your tips on composition and depth in th emaking of this painting which I really liked when it was finished - which is rather seldom, you know?

I off-centered the circle of the petal, kept the contrast high in the foreground by juxtaposing hues and using crisp edges, while desaturating and blurring the petal at the left border. I think it worked.

If you have more gems in that pro-suitcase of yours and feel like sharing: I am all ears!

Also, if you think I should do another depth-exercise before we proceed... just let me know...

*blows the dust off the desk*
*stares at the door of the classroom, light is slowly fading with the setting sun*

01 January 2006, 12:42 AM
Mr. Mu - Not bad. :thumbsup: However, I think that you could desaturate background colors a bit more and tighten up your edges around the focal point a bit more. The background is highly saturated, which is competing for attention with the forground point of interest. Here's one of my older illustrations of a flower that has some of these principles applied.

Notice that even though the leaf in the bottom right is in the same plane as the flower/face, it's focus is desaturated and blurred. This provides the viewer enough information to make out the form and relevance to the image, but contributes to make the flower the more important aspect of the image.

I've also used muted colors when dealing with background elements and reserved the highly saturated colors to draw the viewer's attention to the main focal point in the image. The face is crisper and more focused than the green leafy parts behind it.

I think you can apply some of these ideas to your flower image to make it more focused and to convey more depth.

01 January 2006, 10:25 AM
oh, very instructive counter-example!

*raises arms*
*wiggles fingers in a wannabe virtuoso manner*
will post an update soon

01 January 2006, 11:47 AM
also the color red is the color the human eye tends to gravitate towards quicker than any other.

Another thing is doing hot and cold colors. Hot being the main focal points of your peice and the cold being everything else. hots are orange,red,violets,yellows cold colors are blue,greens etc.

Nice tips so far.

01 January 2006, 05:15 PM

I have been looking through all of your instructions and it absolutely nowhere said: "Destroy the freshness of your painting by dumbwitted and blunt strokes which you place all about the canvas!"

So, erm, I seem to have added this instruction by myself...:scream:

which means, I think I might have succeeded at adding more depth, but I somehow destroyed the liveliness of the first attempt.

But as concerns depth... Do you think that's better? I have another character concept on my mind, with a character that's completely stretched out in the z-axis so I can apply the blur/desaturation to the body parts also... Will post this this week also, I think.

(Still hoping that someone will join in so I don't get this private tuition feeling which is somehow uncomfortable...hope I am not bugging you...)

01 January 2006, 12:43 AM

I have been looking through all of your instructions and it absolutely nowhere said: "Destroy the freshness of your painting by dumbwitted and blunt strokes which you place all about the canvas!"

So, erm, I seem to have added this instruction by myself...:scream:LOL :D

Take it easy there Mr. Mu ... you have to make mistakes (often) in order to learn. If it was easy, everyone would be doing this stuff and then it wouldn't have any interest to anyone. I like your efforts and it's good that you can have a sense of humor about the entire process.

Since things have sort of turned to a one on one situation here, I'm going to help you out with this sunflower. First thing I'm going to do is get a rough line drawing going. I like to work with a sketch, but it's not a requirement. Some artists can just start painting and it works out great for them. I'm not one of those people.

I've used your original illustration and created the line drawing above. I've changed a few things, mainly getting tight edges on the pedals and varying the lengths a bit (making the close ones longer and the furthest shorter). This adds depth ... perspective rule applies.

Some values are added for my own reference, but you can see how I'm putting the brightest spots on the forward pedals. This will remind me that the focus will be on these pedals and the center of the flower. The pedals along the back edge should be desaturated and blurred a bit.

[I'm doing this on my free time at work ... so be patient for the next steps] :D

01 January 2006, 01:05 AM
Thanks for the continued effort, Kirt! Watch out for that Mr. Mu...he's a feisty one! :scream:

*hugs to Mr. Mu* :)



01 January 2006, 01:20 AM

I've put my drawing on a layer set to multiply (which will null out your highlights - so be aware of where your bright spots used to be. Setting to luminosity will show where they're at but will show colors on lower layers much brighter than you want). Under that I've created a new layer for my colors and started roughing in some values.

I'm going to try and do this with high saturation values to remain true to your original drawing, but will carefully mute colors where needed to push the depth. As you can see, I've reserved the highest saturation values for the focal point of the illustration. Leaves and pedals in the background are getting dulled and blurred.

But things are still very rough here ...

01 January 2006, 06:59 AM

I'm just adding in details and messing around with spreading my colors around the page now. Not much I can offer for advice here ... I just doodle around until I hit on something that I like. The left side of the image is coming along OK. I'm not too pleased with the muddy look of the right side of the flower. So, I'll continue working on that.

I also duplicated my color layer and applied some noise using a PS filter (then erased most of it). I generally say, "Avoid filters" but in moderation they can be helpful to introduce some chaos to your image. Another trick is to put a texture layer over the top and reduce the opacity enough so that the values randomly break up your solids. Unless you are going for a toon shader look, I find that a bit of random chaos improves the appearance of your brush strokes.

Still working on it ...

01 January 2006, 09:17 AM
varying the lengths a bit (making the close ones longer and the furthest shorter). This adds depth ... perspective rule applies.

*slaps forehead*

in moderation they (textures) can be helpful to introduce some chaos to your image

I see.
I read a tutorial by danielh68 about adding texture to your paintings which use similar methods. I did this in artrage however and that piece of software is basically a piece of paper and a brush - which is fine in most situations...
The mailman will deliver a copy of painterIX some time this or next week so these shortcomings of mine will change soon.
*fingers crossed*

I think what I can say already, though you say yours is not finished yet, is that I was still too reluctant to let go for the deafening deep blue on the right side, because I liked the contrast so much.
Also, I seem to have completely neglected perspective...!

These two things I can fairly easily add. I think this alone will help. Also I started on the other dept/distance study.
You know, I found that repeated pigheaded and stubborn finger exercise will eventually hammer things home to me...:scream:

That is the things you say will not be written onto water. I guess you know that I appreciate your efforts very much?

I'm doing this on my free time at work ... so be patient for the next steps

I am. Really. I subscribed to this thing - so mozilla is actually going to tell me when replies pour in. Do it whenever you like.

*fastens handcuffs to his wrist and Kirts ankle*
Take your time...

Watch out for that Mr. Mu...he's a feisty one! :scream:
Yeah, but as we see here I can also be a thickheaded one. Eventually, the whole anatomy forum community will tune in to "the daily depth", wondering:
"you think he'll graps the basic concepts today?"
"nah, much too soon."
"I heard they got him private tuition..."
"Won't do no good. He'll never get it."
*bitter nods from the crowd*

01 January 2006, 09:07 PM
added some perspective, further softening and desaturation to the sunflower.

introducing another character sketch which makes use of (lousy) foreshortening, desaturation, soft and hard edges and a bikini...

01 January 2006, 04:24 AM
apart from this being a bad drawing, and a horrible pose.... umm i fail lol.. well i TRIED to go for the depth thing.. but i guess it didnt turn out so well... (maybe i need color :p )

Kami Z
01 January 2006, 05:14 AM
I think Mr. Mu got it.

01 January 2006, 03:47 AM
:D :D Oooh, excellent thread, I wish I had time right now :sad:
I'll be sure to get in something...

01 January 2006, 06:50 PM
Here's my attempt (just from the first lesson)

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