View Full Version : The Journey Begins Challenge (2D) Entry: David Freeman

02 February 2006, 08:54 PM
David Freeman is entered in the "The Journey Begins Challenge" update: View Challenge Page (

Latest Update: Final Image: Final Image (

02 February 2006, 08:55 PM
Wassup, David Nice to see u back bud, best of luk to ya!:thumbsup:

02 February 2006, 08:55 PM
Guess we've all been waiting for you!
Know we're gonna see something amazing.. :thumbsup:
Good luck!

02 February 2006, 09:00 PM
:bounce: And the fun begins yet again

I knew it was challenge time as the work load has just gone crazy...and I did say to my wife that I would resist the temptation to enter as I did spend far to many evenings locked away from the world during the last challenge.

Hopefully inspiration will visit more often this time round and I can't wait to see what all you artists conjur up this time

Good Luck everyone!!

:applause: :thumbsup:

02 February 2006, 09:02 PM
I knew it was challenge time as the work load has just gone crazy...and I did say to my wife that I would resist the temptation to enter as I did spend far to many evenings locked away from the world during the last challenge.

Hahaha... i could've written exactly the same thing!

Good Luck David!


02 February 2006, 09:03 PM
don't worry dude we ain't tellin anyone you're here

welcome again Freeman


02 February 2006, 11:05 PM
glad to see you here again... have fun

03 March 2006, 03:33 PM
hi David! good luck! :thumbsup:
I am glad to see you at this competition :)

03 March 2006, 03:54 PM
Hi! Welcome! Hope to see som stuff soon! :), good luck and have fun!

03 March 2006, 10:38 AM
:beer: Thanks chaps....

Must get cracking soon, but I'm creating some titles for an edit on 22nd as well as some artwork for some clients, so just tooooo much work on (one of the problems of being freelance).

Such fantastic work out there already and I just want to get started...aaaaargh :cry:

03 March 2006, 02:11 PM
Good to see you back, David. No worries, it is a three month long challenge, there'll be plenty of time left to work on it. And by joining late, you get to see which themes have already been done by seventeen other people and thus carefully avoid doing mice, snails, and giant birds. :)
See you around...!


03 March 2006, 12:31 AM (

After weeks of work, here is one idea for a character I had a chance to sketch out today.

The facial expression and emotions are not there yet, but it's a start.

The concept is based around a planet largely covered in shallow water, aquatic plantlife and limestone towers of rock.

As such, the local population have developed hydraulic transport that fit to your legs and displaces your weight over a larger area, allowing the ability to cross the surface more easily (as travelling by foot or boat is nearly impossible).

My main concern at the moment is capturing the emotion of the characters, so storylines will follow as work progresses.

More sketches to post soon

03 March 2006, 02:43 AM
Welcome David! Goodl luck again dude, Nice sketch so far!:thumbsup:

04 April 2006, 09:33 PM (

I wasn't too keen on my last sketch and armed with new inspiration, decided to work straight into Painter where I tend to paint with a detailed oil brush and then push the paint around using blender (a strange but splendid combination).

Luckily I have three perfect subjects to use as reference, which makes life so so much easier than trying to draw from memory (which I still find hard to do with regards to the human figure)

The three children are entranced by a small robot / mechanical guide (who will eventually stand before them at waist height), who has convinced them to embark on an amazing journey. Behind we see across the landscape into the wilderness where they are heading.

I'm starting to think along an imaginary world where all sorts of weird animals and plant life exist.

I'm really enjoying this and am releived that things are starting to work out in terms of image and composition.

04 April 2006, 04:44 AM
I am gonna enjoy watching your prgress dude good luck with it David!:thumbsup:

04 April 2006, 08:08 AM
nice having u back david*haha walrus's right*giants bird been taken*haha,good luck mate and have a great ride:thumbsup:
will see whats ur next progress

04 April 2006, 09:35 PM (

I have started to add depth and detail to the background as well as adding in the mechanical guide.

Additional colour really has started to help add space to the composition.

More soon

04 April 2006, 11:51 PM (

I'm really enjoying working on this and after a crazy few weeks working on other things, it is really good to get to grips with this challenge at long last.

I've added the tree to help link elements and also help the lighting.

i hope to work on the composition for the next few days and then start on the details.

All comments (within reason) are welcome

04 April 2006, 12:40 AM
I would like to see some kind of light source coming from the robot to light the children's faces, that would give a little more to work with, like facial expressions and stuff, hehe ur moving along dude, keep it up!:thumbsup:

04 April 2006, 07:30 AM
Thanks again Beelow

I have to agree with you on this....Not sure if to stick to a warm glow which enhances the existing light on their faces, or have a more unatural blue.

I quite liked the idea of some sort of technological map that actually radiates blue light - a cross between a computer screen and a mechanical device.

The whole image needs to have an imaginary / fairytale style feel that reflects a childs crazy imagination, so lots to do yet. Luckily, I have a few days rest before my next big job kicks in, so I should get quite a long way. :)

04 April 2006, 02:03 PM (

Things are beginning to fall in to place and though still lacking detail, the composition is working better.

Still a little unsure about the robots in terms of positioning and I might make the girl on the left a little smaller so she is right with the other two rather than slightly nearer as at the present time.

I mmust now try and get the facial expressions working which is where the reall fun begins.. :)

04 April 2006, 02:15 PM
:thumbsup: I like the compo a lot better, must agree with that, still a lot more work to do dude, keep it up!

04 April 2006, 02:39 PM
Very interesting idea, as always is pleasant to me your color scale
In which you work
In the foreground it is the small robot?
Good luck!

04 April 2006, 03:18 PM
hi David, the thumb of this work attracted me with its gorgeous colour tones, and the image is quite enchanting upclose too! Though the mountain is perhaps the more 'done' choice for the background, the story works nicely with it, and makes the robot seem even more magical as he's then out of place in what first appears to be a fantasy painting with children.

Though having said that, it's only because I read your description that I even realised there was a robot holding the map! i read it as the boy in green looking at a map with some strangely coloured pattern on it, and that the girl on the left was holding some sort of toy robot, which puzzled me even more! Once seen, the robot does look very good, but I think something needs to be done with the placement of the characters to make it more obvious he's there, or the contrast or colouring on him needs to be increased. Or is there any way you could have some sort of platform the robot could be stood on (branch, hill, that sort of thing), reading the map while the children clamour round him?

Other than that, I love your painting style. People who can do this with Painter make me so envious!!

04 April 2006, 06:30 PM
Thanks again for the encouragement beelow - At least I really feel that this is working unlike the last challenge where I just went round in circles...I'm having a creative day, so hopefully will have more to post later.

Good to hear from you LexLe - still working on the robot as the space isn't quite working yet....more soon

Thanks Zephyri.... not sure if the mountain is to stay...more to aid development of the composition, so i can work out the depth and space. I really would like some strange limestone towers and rock formations, but we'll see how this progresses.

Good point about the robot....I'm still trying to bring the girl on the left back a bit so she sits on the same plane as the boy. I was thinking of having one robot looking at the girl on the left, but facing more towards the other two, who hold the furthest two corners of the map....we'll see

04 April 2006, 06:44 PM
It looks great David, there is a great sense of depth and the long journey ahead. :thumbsup:

04 April 2006, 07:06 PM
wow man! Some serious work is geting done here. Im so glad to see u in this challenge :) Love ur start and the colors u r using, that purple mountain in the back is so great comparing to the warm yellow color scheme of the sky. It really pops out the way it should be. And the children in the left, especially the one in green really balance the composition in my opinion. Keep up the good work buddy!

04 April 2006, 06:57 AM
:) Cheers Blaz... I'm working on the faces at present, so more soon hopefully...Good to see you in the challenge too

Thanks EdP-Art.... he he he hope you are refering to the title of the challenge when you mention long journeys....and not the amount of work I need to put in ... No seriously thanks for your comments :)

04 April 2006, 11:52 PM (

I've started to refine the faces of the children and have added a new robot that is clearer and links the children and space between.

i still need to develop the light and shadow to help with space, but still lots of time...

04 April 2006, 12:11 AM
holy crap!


i love your painting style!! it's a similar method to what i've been playing with. but i'm just tyring out and am grateful to see the heights it can go to. (ok maybe that's putting it a bit strong) but i would say your use of color is very inspiring.

only crit i would have is that the current robot might be a little too C3PO.

can't wait to see more of this one!

04 April 2006, 12:39 AM
:) Thanks anzibon

I have to say that after the last challenge i felt very similar....sometimes the inspiration is there or maybe an image just seems to work and the other times, you can go round and round in circles. Last time I got bogged down with trying to be too clever and come up with a really dynamic perspective whereas this time I'm focusing more on mood and lighting.

I like painting in this way and it's a lot cheaper than using real oils.

I see what you mean about C3PO similarities...I'm a 70's child so always thinking Star Wars even on a subliminal level. better make some quick alterations....thanks for the advice and keep on painting :)

04 April 2006, 04:02 PM
Great color work mate :)

They feel alive. Good job! This is only the beginning. More please :wise:

04 April 2006, 04:55 PM
Great color usage! One of my new favs!

04 April 2006, 07:12 PM
can't get those smilees to work....mmmmm

Thanks Falcor_ Great to see you back and thanks for your comments

cheers Jose-Pardo..... your support and advice is much appreciated

I'm just concentrating on getting the robot character fingers crossed

More soon, though off to the coast for a couple of days, so hope to post something before I leave...otherwise i'll take the laptop with me and try and get a few hours in whilst I'm away and have more to show on Monday

:) :)

04 April 2006, 08:57 PM
woww!!! color great dude!! :buttrock:

04 April 2006, 09:03 PM
Great colors you have going there! This is one of my favorites and I'll keep a close eye on this one from now on. The only crit I have so far is about the composition- it's divided too neatly in half, one half with the (adorable!) kids and the bots and then you have the other half with the landscape and the mountain. If I were you, I'd spread the people out some more so the halves aren't fighting for attention so much.

Once again......beautiful work....I really like that style you have going there!

04 April 2006, 03:46 AM
Couple of quick remarks:
-Maybe the wall should make one extra turn towards the travellers.
-Such bold use of colors...Loving it.

Now, the first question I have when I check out the different posts for this contest is "What's the story?"
O.K. Maybe the second question.
Right after "Why can't I be that good?" :sad:

So, what's the story? Your illo seems to suggest that the kids want to reach the mountain in the distance. They could conveniently maybe just walk on top of the wall and voilà.
If the mountain is the objective, then maybe there should be a major obstacle, like a breach in the wall, that would rule out that route. If not, why the map?

Maybe robots need to continuously check their bearings.:argh:

I'll certainly check your progression.

04 April 2006, 04:51 AM
Nice update dude it is starting to come alive! The characters poses are convincing really good stuff!:thumbsup:

04 April 2006, 08:26 AM
Thanks vader... pleased you like the colours...more soon I hope!

Thank you paperclip.....i see what you mean about the composition. i've been playing with some ideas for the background and I definitely will take your advice on board when planning the final composition / alterations :)

great points jayday ... I have to say that in past challenges i've spent far too long working out some crazy story where as this time around I've concentrated on getting across the emotions and feelings of the children first. though I do have a storyline that I'm working on, so more soon... i do have some earlier sketches which might explain one or two of the ideas of a story I had, so I'll post these when I get a chance

Thanks beelow... Pleased you like the updates...just got back from a weekend away on the coast....i sketched some great rock formations along the cliffs overlooking the sea, which just may feature in the background...

Well only two meetings today as my next job kick off in earnest next week, so I'll hopefully get in some time on this later :) :)

04 April 2006, 08:30 AM
Cool beans david, I hope to see some of that in ur work good luck with it!:thumbsup:

04 April 2006, 08:42 AM
very nice used of colors mr freeman~the red and blue contrast perfectly:thumbsup:

04 April 2006, 09:08 AM
Have to agree that the coloruse is really interesting. Their expressions are very believable too. Keep it up!

04 April 2006, 11:12 PM (

I've altered the robot and added more complementary colours to add more depth and atmosphere.

My main problem is that I tend to get carried away on details that just get lost when looking at the whole painting, so I'm trying to not zoom in so much.

the girl on the right is starting to work and colour and shadow are improving. Still feels a bit flat, but I'm adding more colour to all the characters as well as more contrasting light which definitely helps.

04 April 2006, 11:30 PM
Looking great, David! I see what you mean about zooming in on the details or not... Seeing the closeup of the 2 left kids, they both look fnatastic... but zoom out a bit and the left girl gets a bit muddy and doesn't look quite as finished (the boy in green's face still holds up as fantastic, though! :) ) The robot is still looking a bit cartoony compared to the kids, but I know you'll refine it more.

Hey, here's a trick that may help - apologies if it's already obvious. I only recently figured out how to do this in Photoshop CS 'though I used to use it all the time in PS7 and below: Go to Window>Arrange>New Window for "yourFilename." It opens up a new window for the same fiel you're working on, so you can have one zoomed in close and other zoomed out. I find it really helpful for working on details and silultaneously seeing how they affect the picture as a whole. Like I said, if it's obvious and you've been using it already, never mind! :)


04 April 2006, 11:55 PM
:) Thanks Mike

I've been using Photoshop for a long time and never knew you could do that - I suppose that's the only problem with teaching yourself software .

I really love the early stages of blocking in colour and shapes and the freedom this allows, but getting from this to something more finished is always tricky.

thanks for the great advice and i'll try and sort the girls face and robot later today


04 April 2006, 12:28 AM
Cool to know, I forgot that u can do that! Thanx Walrus!:thumbsup:

04 April 2006, 06:10 AM
:) FANTASTIC Mike..... anyone know if Painter has a similar feature??

as I'm working on this mainly in Painter at this stage



04 April 2006, 06:23 AM
Hi David! Great idea! Excellent coloring and lighting! The picturesque surroundings! Keep it up! Good luck! :)

04 April 2006, 07:14 AM
Hey Sergey....good to hear from you....I really loved your Spectacular challenge entry - and good to see you're back in the cg talk world. Are you entering this challenge??

Thanks for your comments :) :)

04 April 2006, 07:16 AM
Hi David,

Great job! I like your colors and ambiance, there is really beautiful athmosphere.
Good luck!!

04 April 2006, 01:17 PM
FANTASTIC Mike..... anyone know if Painter has a similar feature??

Who cares!?! bwa-ha-ha-ha-haaa! :evilgrin:

No, but seriously... I don't know, but it strikes me as highly improbable that Painter wouldn't have that feature, given how geared it is to traditional painting and how long that feature's been in Photoshop. You may just have to dig for it... but maybe it'll be easier now that you know vaguely what to look for.

And yeah, Sergey, why aren't you in this challenge?

Anyhow, keep it coming. Good luck with it!


04 April 2006, 08:17 PM
Oh sergey is in now hehe! I caught him entering last night hehe, he thought he could pull a fast on me!:D

04 April 2006, 10:02 AM
Journey Begins 2D

04 April 2006, 10:16 AM
About!! I have precisely assumed:) it is the small robot:)
Color scale at you as always at a level!!
It is very pleasant.. At the general competition gives much...
I study in much at others, I look, who as works!
It is pleasant to me CGtalk!

04 April 2006, 11:17 AM
Hi there, this is one of my favourites coloring styles.:) , i like the lighting. you know? the pose of the robot's head and nick looks a bit weird i don't know exactly what is it you can try to rotate or scale it (give it a try i think you will get some better looking robot.)

04 April 2006, 11:22 AM
:) Thanks for all your's really needed....

should post an update very soon...with new robot and third child (which is proving very tricky to get right, but I'm getting there very slowly).

better get on, but I'll put update and more detailed reply soon

:)....still can't get smiley buttons to work and only can remember how to type happy face :(

04 April 2006, 08:04 PM (

things are slowly coming together....

having moved the third character over to the right and got some sort of facial expression working (she will be pointing towards where they need to travel), I had the sudden idea to change this into a night scene, partly for atmosphere and partly to bring the characters together.

The background needs illuminating, but hey that's for another day....

The girl on the left needs to be better lit and also, she will be holding the map.

Still need to add a lantern to represent the light source in the trees (didn't want to lose this light source).

I'll post close ups of work in progress very soon.

04 April 2006, 08:13 PM
Cool , I think this will work better! Especially with the girl that is to the left of the comp pointing, to the distance afar, Compo seems a little tight though , I think it may because of the branch above, I think u had that in the previous one, but I think the rock wasn't there and the girl to the right was in tighter, so u may have to make adjustments, don't know if ur going for the look, though. I like the changes though!:thumbsup:

04 April 2006, 08:39 PM
:) Cheers Bryce... great advice

I see what you mean about the composition - I've been fiddling with details and now they are working am just starting to look at the overall picture, so hopefully can sort these soon.

I've got a three week job starting on Tuesday, so need to get as much done as possible over the next day or so. Still there are plenty of evenings spare.

Thanks again

04 April 2006, 04:56 AM
oooooo, very cool colors and concept! and excellent painting technique!

04 April 2006, 01:14 PM (

Well having had time away from the image due to other work, I decided that I prefered my original composition and lighting, so I'm concentrating on getting the characters working first.

I prefer them closer together as there feels more of a relationship between them.

I still hope to have a robot in frame and am extending the canvass to include the childrens legs, so I can have the robot (smaller in size) perched on a toadstall or similar.

As far as the composition, I'm in the midst of trying several options including a more portrait composition with tops of mountains visible above the trees at top of frame at present.

All feedback is appreciated...

04 April 2006, 03:37 PM
I'm concentrating on getting the characters working first.

Well, if that's your goal, I'd say you've succeeded: They look great! Lovely colors and faces. The body and hand of the left bow need more definition, but I know you know that. The center lad looks great, don't change a thing. The girl on the left.... the expression on her face isn't really reading as anything in particular right now. All of the emotions on the other faces are very subtle, so I'm having a hard time saying what's different about the girl, but she just feels a little more blank. It migh be the eye, or the upper lip need more refinement... maybe the side/bottom of the nose could use refinement...? (which has nothing to do with expression, just seemed a tad unfinished.) I wish I could be more specific about what I think could change, I'm not being clear because I'm having trouble putting my finger on it... but I thought you'd want to hear and comments so I thought I'd toss out this unfinished thought. (It might not help that I just got out of bed and it's early morning. Feel free to ignore me! :) )

Anyhow, looking forward to seeing where you go from here. Good luck! (and don't take too long!)


04 April 2006, 06:33 PM
:) Thanks Mike

Good advice and I'll definitely take this on board. I see what you mean about expression, though I did want her to look quite serious and in deep thought.

Once I've added the minute robot / man figure sat on a toadstool or rabbit or something equally strange between the children, the relationship and emotions between the characters should make more sense (I hope)

The changes I have been working on through most of last night and hopefully tonight at some point should make all the difference - especially to the girl on the right who still needs some work.

I'm just finalising the composition and depth / space and should have an update posted soon -

Thanks again


04 April 2006, 07:47 PM
Nice use of color, it really sets a nice mood. No crits just yet, waiting to see your final composition. Good job!

04 April 2006, 12:32 AM
:) Thanks SideAche

I was hoping to post an update tonight, but had a bit of a brainwave and still working to finish the composition incorporating this idea.

The space works a lot better now that I've added perspective references.

Well it's getting late .. so better get some rest....more soon :)

04 April 2006, 10:37 PM (

Having worked out the key characters (except for the robot which I'll probably add at the next stage), I have concentrated on adding depth and perspective to the image.

I'm working on a couple of options for the completed composition. The first is more verticle and shows the route the characters will travel above the trees, high in the mountains. The second is to the right of the composition, looking down at cliffs towards the sea??

I really liked the idea of the characters standing within a ruins of temple, working out plans for the journey ahead.

More soon

04 April 2006, 02:32 PM
Lovely :) It looks like a watercolor painting. I know your intention is to show a full horizontal landcape but I think the crop in on the children is quite powerful.

04 April 2006, 06:39 PM
I love the lighting! It's amazing how you made those kids look so serious without destroying the youthful look. Can't wait to see the remainder of the background fleshed out!

Honestly, the "path into the cliffs" seems to be working for many others...that, and it would seem unrealistic for the kids to be journeying out to sea.

Than again, this is art--who the h377 said anything had to be realistic?

Excellent work, man! :buttrock:

04 April 2006, 09:45 PM
Thanks Segvoia...I have been also thinking that this composition would work well as is (may be a little more verticle than landscape) and am currently developing this.

If I get too wide, you won't be able to see the childrens expressions, but I do need to explain, visually the journey they are about to I'm working on another concept for this scenario

Cheers OliveBeard....actually having spent another day compositing (joys of being freelance), and so I've had plently of thinking time to come up with a better idea, so I'll hopefully post an update soon.

Thanks for all the comments :) :)

04 April 2006, 10:02 PM
Actually, this can work on its own, David! As this close-up, adds expression of the children, as they seem very innocent, interested and ready for a journey, I am so digging ur color pallete, Somewhat reminds me of Boris Vellejo, in a sense! Cool beans, waiting for ur next update!:thumbsup:

04 April 2006, 04:13 AM
I think it would be great to find a clever link between the riddle the kids are trying to figure out and whatever is behind them.
I'll second what beelow wrote... The way it is, I don't see how a grand landscape would be relevant with all the children being back to it.
However a vertical composition could do wonder.
An even bigger doorway is good. The map is so-so. Your task is to suprise and interest us in the children's interrogation.

"I'm still making it up as I go along".
Sometimes it works, Sometimes not. It is a risky way to work.
I am curious as to how you will resolve this one. Bet it is going to look fantastic.

04 April 2006, 06:32 AM
:) Thanks Bryce.... I'm thinking the same thing, though think a slightly more vertical canvass will feel better.

Thanks jayday... I like that Idea of linking the elements, and I do think you are right in terms of landscape and whether it is required.

I have to say that I usually come up with a finished concept first, but this is one of those situations where I was keen to get the characters working first. I have a great idea now and all will be revealed soon..... (sorry just woken up so hope this makes sense) :)

04 April 2006, 08:40 AM
Hi Freeman

I think your route to a vertical pic is probably best as the kids will be the main focus. How about putting in a mountain above the church window almost in the same shape with a path like you had in your earlier horizontal version. It might mean a slight change of light source.

I love the colours and the kids expressions. I like the map too but it looks like a Lara Croft puzzle map not a geographical map for a journey.


04 April 2006, 11:39 AM
Thanks Ed

i was hoping to put in something above the church window as long as it didn't take your attention away from the children too much.

As far as the map, I was intending this to be more a stone plinth with runes carved deep into the surface - but just have not completed this yet. I'm still keen on having a little robot sat on this...but hey who knows what ideas will come from my brain in the next few days.... Thanks for your input :) :)

04 April 2006, 04:01 PM
fantastic character design, color and composition. beautiful technique, too. really cool work, pal!

04 April 2006, 04:28 PM
I love the three kids´concentrating face and their´s clumsy(I am not sure whether I used the right word) and cute clothes. Especially the red one, she reminds me the little girls in northwest part of China.:)

04 April 2006, 07:48 PM
damn - another day passes into the past and i've not had a chance to do anything more to the image (though it has progressed since the last post). After a day compositing and filming tracking markers, I can't wait to get some serious painter time tonight (as long as I stick to only one or two beers - hey it's been a long day).

Thanks jevinart... I hope to have more updates to post very soon....

Thanks also ciao.... I'm pretty sure that's the right word ...thank you for your comments
I'm always looking for reference and inspiration so I'll have to check out your reference to northwest China

:) :)

04 April 2006, 12:12 AM (

It's been a busy week so I've not got as far as I would have hoped. but here is an update to show development of characters, colour and composition.

The composition may be even longer, but I'll post a final layout when I get to that stage.

I was keen to have another source of light radiating from where the children are looking and like the idea of glowing runes / puzzle / map (it will all make sense...honest).

I've elongated the church / ruin window to make it more imposing and added pillars which will aid perspective as well as allow the addition of shadows.

more as soon as I can...

04 April 2006, 03:53 PM (

After a rather mixed week of starting and stopping this challenge, I feel this composition is the strongest.

I won't put up another update until I've made a lot more progress, but feedback would be more than welcome at this stage.

I've had too much on lately, so should get a lot further over the bank holiday (in the uk)

04 April 2006, 04:39 PM
This pic is very great i love the color and the emotional ambiance, good work i wait the next update

04 April 2006, 06:36 PM
The colors are great, but it looks somewhat dis-balanced (after the addition of the background). The background doesn't look bad--and a suggestion doesn't immediately spring to mind--but something will definitely have to balance out the composition on the right hand side.

Loved the robot in the previous update...I personally think you should keep it. :)

Best of luck!


04 April 2006, 08:09 PM
:) Thanks MDN67 ....hope to post an update within a few days - once I've sorted all otstanding elements in the composition.

:) Thanks OliveBeard.... great advice...

I agree about the composition, but love the space and opportunity to tell a story of the journey about to commence. I still need to sort out midspace, etc. and I hope to have some immense gothic / religious ruins to the right.

As far as the robot, I really liked him, but worry that he is too cartoon like....mmmmm

I hope to have a chance to focus on this for a day or so and really sort out the loose ends.

:) Smilees still not working except for smiley face...sorry :( (and sad face)

04 April 2006, 02:34 AM
hey man, havent had a chance to stop by here, but thank you for checking mine out! first off, awesome job on the kid in the middle (green shirt) really well rendered. i think all you need to worry about is the kids and that backdrop (the city) those are your two strongest images because; character and destination.

so it looks good to me man, just keep working!

04 April 2006, 06:33 AM
:) Thanks adonihs... Good to see your entry and hope I was constructive!!

I've just changed the perspective so that the vanishing point is located to the right of the composition leading towards the city rather than behind the boy. Changing the angle of map / table / stone and architectural ruins at last links all elements together.

Busy day today, but I'll definitely squeeze in a lot of time on this tonight...

04 April 2006, 07:41 AM
I have say that I like this image, but the more I look at it and the more there is a small criticism who comes to me to the idea, the blue light on characters, comes it of the right? If it is the case, she is too strong, because she does not correspond to the right par of the composition.

04 April 2006, 08:22 AM
Thanks for the advice MDN67...

The blue light was actually radiating from an object on the table / area directly in front of the children, so once the source is visible, this should make more sense (I hope)...

The update I am currently working on makes such a difference and I'll post soon

:) :)

04 April 2006, 08:45 AM
OK, I understood but if the light comes from the table, the characters with the red jacket is bad expose the left part( should reflect the light, it is for it that I thought that the light came from right-hand side, OK, I suppose that in fact, you have not worked it yet, I look forward to the next update

04 April 2006, 01:40 PM
looks realy good, the architecture is also wonderful. i think of one the kids should point out to the horizon. it will tell the story a little better.

04 April 2006, 02:29 PM
You're such a master of colors, man! Love the skintones and the soft way they are rendered. Just one crit on the background in the last version - I think that on the very right these architecture should be getting higher - just to balance the composition a bit, by now it's unpleasant for the eye.

Great painting :applause:

04 April 2006, 04:50 PM
Hi David, great job you're doing here, man. I really like your style. Your machineflesh entry was great! I wish you the best of the lucks with this one.

04 April 2006, 06:02 PM
doh! silly me - sorry MDN67 you are right and I somehow overlooked that. Something else to add to the list of things to do.... thanks again :)

Cheers warpy good idea and something I did start to do at one point - and then I sort of got lost and everything started going weird and I returned to my original composition..

I agree that I need some sort of device like someone pointing and I hope the update I'm working on solves this....Thanks for the advice...

Thanks elgrozni... you're too kind... as far as the architecture - the version I'm working on does exactly this (and I wasn't sure if this was right to do, so you've given me more confidence in how the image is progressing..

Thanks Nigio... if you've seen my Machineflesh entry then you probably have noticed that the boy in both images is the same. This is one of the benefits of having children and being able to sketch them all the time, though getting them to stay still is a bit tricky!!

More soon... :) :)

04 April 2006, 06:30 PM
So u decided to go with the original, I trust ur judgement, I will be waiting for the next update David, good luck with it!:beer:

04 April 2006, 07:36 PM
:) Cheers Bryce... and there I was saying how I wouldn't keep changing my mind like the last challenge...mmmm

Still I feel happier about this image and am pleased with the update I'm working on.

I think tonight could be a busy one..... :) :)

04 April 2006, 07:35 AM (

Having had such great feedback, I decided to put up this wip to see how people reacted to the changes I've made.

I've added a second line of perspective leading to the city to help lead the eye across from the children to the area in to which they are heading.

Changes to the table and archway behind help to add space and direction.

I also intend to add more architectural details to help with space, but that's for the next update

I'll hopefully add remaining elements over the next day or so, so I can then concentrate on detail...

04 April 2006, 09:50 AM
Good improves :thumbsup: . Robot is definitely a must for this painting! Just one suggestion: What do you say about separating the place they are in from the hole in front of the city. I suggest putting there a wall or something coz like now it seems like the girl in red is flying in that blackness you have there or like she's going to fall inthere. IMHO a little courved wall in the bottom-right corner would make it a lot more logical and improve the composition too. Not neccesary a wall, just something...
Keep going

05 May 2006, 06:38 AM
Thanks elgrozni

I'm trying to sort out the mid space at the moment plus some key issues relating to the idea behind the journey....

More very soon....

Thanks again for your advice and support :) :)

05 May 2006, 09:07 AM (

I've changed the perspective so that it isn't so extreme as the archway behind the boy was too wide angled and started to look a little silly (and I like the way it frames him).

I'm still working on the background and have been trying to get the depth and space working first.

I've also started to develop the characters and make them look like they are embarking on an adventure (addition of goggles, etc.)

I'm now adding the details that will help explain the concept behind the painting...

05 May 2006, 09:55 AM
awesome! you added the robot back, and wow this is really turning out to be a winner bud. you have some lovely colors as always in this, and I love how its still a bit loose, but solid at the same time..and maybe thats just because its a WIP..but still, its really a beautiful painting :) good work!

05 May 2006, 11:37 AM
Really starting to love it, ahhh the beauty of painting! Keep it up dude, u will find something that ur comfortable with, I have that problem as well changing stuff around hehe!:thumbsup:

05 May 2006, 11:56 PM (

Now that the composition is fairly much there, I've started to improve the characters, especially the girl on the right who I felt was the weakest.

I'm trying to make the figures look more like they are about to embark on an amazing journey, rather than just out playing.

05 May 2006, 06:13 AM
Hi David!
Interesting foreshortening.. It is pleasant to me..
Only I would advise something to change with the girl in a cap-on mine hands at it small...: (
It is pleasant to me as you work
Yours faithfully LexLe

05 May 2006, 12:55 PM
Great faces you have done there, David! Actually they look like they are out to a war or something (there is something that looks suspiciously like a rifle gun on the boy's back), I think having bigger backpacks on the kids would help. One of the kids could be putting something (like a can of tuna for example) into his/her bag while looking at the robot. This way we can sense that they are just starting out on their journey.

I like the faces!

05 May 2006, 01:09 PM
Hi David! Really great job! I like your characters very much! I think you succeeded in finding necessary expressions. Excellent details! Good luck! :)

05 May 2006, 01:22 PM
this piece has really developed well, the characterisation is paricularly good, it kind of makes me think of a disfunctional futuristic version of enid blighton(well her stories are pretty messed up anyway)!

05 May 2006, 01:33 PM
checking back in to take a look at the progress of this piece -- it's coming along beautifully! really love the creative approach and the wonderful sensitivity of the style and color palatte you've chosen. very nice work -- a pleasure to view...

05 May 2006, 02:48 PM
Nice work David, looking forward to seeing where they are going.


05 May 2006, 03:58 PM
:) :) Wow...lots of feedback - thanks so much for the comments, ideas and advice...

Thanks adonhis - glad you like the robot. I was in two minds, but wanted this to be more than just three kids mooching around. I'm also trying to keep a degree of looseness to the image as I normally overdo the details and lose the energy of the piece...

Thanks again Bryce... glad you like it and the thread should be easier to follow now I know what the final image needs to look like.. :)

Cheers LexLe :) Good point about the girl's hands - I need them to probably be a little larger and to definitely look like they are holding the stick...

Thanks Jeromoo.... mmmm definitely starting to look like Rambo or something with all the kit the children are wearing, but I wanted it to look like the journey was going to be a real challenge. I really like the idea about the can of Tuna and agree with what you said about the size of the rucksacks...great advice thanks again :)

Thanks Atris

The faces were really tricky and I'm relieved they are looking sort of believable at long last. Thanks again for dropping by.

Cheers Vitreous... like the Enid Blighton gone weird idea...absolutely spiffing

Thanks again jevinart....hope to have more soon :)

Thanks EdP-Art ...I'll be glad to see where they are going too!!

Thanks everyone for the support and advice...more soon :)

05 May 2006, 10:21 AM
Mr Freeman, aka David...congratulations, man! This is one stunning piece you've got here. The lighting and colors are just perfect, so full of live and theatrical. Like everyone else note, their faces are very well done. One minor detail that I noticed: the middle boy's goggles don't seem to be adapting to the curve of the forehead, and they seem to be a bit assymetrical or offcenter.

Fantastic! I'm really looking forward to this one.

05 May 2006, 04:46 PM
:) Thanks a lot for your comments and advice andreasrocha...

Yes there are still details to sort, but I'm getting there. I'm lucky that I've had a lot of reference for the characters - mainly sketches which I've drawn from life which I must post before the end of the challenge.

I normally don't get time to draw people as I'm still a little slow at getting them to work, so this is very enjoyable.

I'm hoping to put in a few hours tonight, so will hopefully post another update very soon

:) :)

05 May 2006, 06:45 PM
Amazing work of you, David, as we are used of you! :cool: :buttrock:So things about your most recent update(s): I really like the way you render down the metal of the robot! It makes it look very realistic and integrated into the rest of the scene. Also the girls fabric 'hat' looks really nice with all those different color spots!
And -just as every 'fanboy' who posted before me ;)- I love the childrens faces. They look so realistic and full of personality - in the way you draw them I could even regonize them out of a 1.000 ones! :applause: And last but not least: the lighting of your work looks very well thought and realistic!

I'm very curious and looking forward to the further progression on the compostion. To me it now looks a bit out of balance, but maybe that's going to be compared with the details on the architecture ór maybe I'm going to get the idea of 'intending it to be so'. We'll see! In every case I'll be looking forward for further progress! All the best with it & Have a good night ;)

05 May 2006, 07:07 PM
I really loved them. The way you deal with hightlights and shadows is very impressive. Good luck in the challenge ^^

David Freeman is entered in the "The Journey Begins Challenge" update: View Challenge Page (

Latest Update: Coloring WIP: children -cu- character development / detail (

05 May 2006, 08:07 PM
:) Thanks Dutchman - you're way too kind - but I'm pleased that you like the work so far

I'm still working on balancing out the composition and hope I can sort this out over the next few days... Thanks again and I'll try and update tonight, but I've just had a couple of beers, so I'll have to see...mmmm :) :)

Cheers PATTY SCHERER... definitely getting there.... more sooner than later ... :) :)

05 May 2006, 11:14 PM
Hey Freeman it looks great. I like the light ans shadows, also some details like the character expressions (specially the girl in the left and the boy). I'm agree with LexLe about the right girl, her arms looks too small....anyway all is excellent. Keep going.

05 May 2006, 01:38 AM
It's looking good, David. I like the robot there. The book looks great too. I agree with Snowan about her arms - the hands should reach past her waist - but I know you're still working on it. Can't wait to see the robot after you've done more passes on it too, it's going to look even better! Keep going (and post those study-sketches of the kids, please!) Keep going...


05 May 2006, 11:57 AM
:) Thanks snowan

It's funny that the girls arms appear a little small - I think the main problem is that the girl I sketched is aged 2 1/2, but I've made her up in term of clothing to look older, so the proportions I sketched seem wrong (or maybe I'm just need more life drawing practise - but it's a good excuse).

I will sort this out asap... thanks again for the great advice

Thanks Mike (walrus) .... I'll make the robot my next priority after performing arm lengthening surgery on the girl. mmmm I think you are right about that..,.. oh and will post sketches soon, though I'm doing some effects / compositing work to pay the bills, so won't be able to do that until later tonight.. :(

05 May 2006, 12:03 PM
i know you're about to work on the girl but here's my impression anyway...

it seams like everything on the right side of her body is a bit too small. (my right, her left) and the hand looks a bit wierd without seeing those other fingers. hope that helps. i'm looking forward to seeing another whole pic post.


05 May 2006, 12:10 PM
He He He.... oh dear .. I think you are right anzibon...

I got so carried away with the details that I've gotten too close to this and it really helps having you advice... could be a late one tonight

:) :) still can't get the smilies to work so happy faces all round :)

05 May 2006, 12:51 PM
Oh dear, it's been so long since I've been here! I hope you forgive me!

Coming along fantastically, but then we all expect that from you. :)

A few crits.... I can't help feeling that the kids' arms are too short and also I think the robot would look a lot more dynamic if you tipped his head up a bit to look at the boy beside him, so there's more communication between the characters- right now, they all look a bit spaced out (mentally) and that's not conducive to the story you want to want it to look a bit 'famous five-ish', right? I think having them interact a bit more would be good for the story.

05 May 2006, 01:59 PM
the details on the characters are very great, always a good pic

05 May 2006, 02:01 PM
:) Thanks Theresa aka paperclip.... good advice

I'll definitely sort out those arms tonight. Still working on characters, but I wanted the characetrs to be thinking about the journey ahead, so more reflective than communicative - but I see your point and I'll have a look at this tonight.

Hope you've decided to carry on with your entry!! :)

05 May 2006, 08:52 PM
Beautiful. All new changes really works. This coming out absolutely great!
I'm looking fwd, good luck David.

05 May 2006, 11:39 PM
:) Thanks notpill.... having feedback makes it all worthwhile...

It's been a busy night and I've nearly sorted the characters and appreciate all the great advice which has certainly helped.

I'll try and post an update v. soon :) :)

05 May 2006, 07:27 AM
Wow, some stiff competition up here. Good luck.

05 May 2006, 09:00 AM
Cause of English proficiency,my ideas is difficulty to express. But, I like your concept and the color very much, specially the middle boy! hope the succeed! .

05 May 2006, 03:10 PM
:) Thanks anticz - your comments are really appreciated :)

Thank you chinabear - I understand perfectly - and as far as your English - if only us Brits were as conversant in so many languages as half the creatives on this site!! :) :)

I'll be posting an update very soon - I've ammended the girls hand / arms and added a lot of extra elements. I've also moved the robot and changed the angle of it's head (thanks paperclip), so the relationship between characters is stronger.

:) :) :) :) :)

05 May 2006, 09:15 PM (

Still a lot to do, but I've updated the characters so hopefully the proportions are more accurate.

I also have moved the robot to the right so that he looks closer to the children, as well as altering the angle of it's head, so that it appears to be looking up at the boy.

I have added a map onto the table which I like, but would be interested to see what all you creatives think....

It's a busy week at work, but I'll try and get something more posted soon :)

05 May 2006, 08:21 AM
Nice work David. I think when you had the map visable where we could see what was on the map was better. It drew the viewer into the story so we could be there with the children and almost share the experience.

Looking forward to more updates.


05 May 2006, 10:54 AM
Thanks Ed...point taken about the map. :) :)

I suppose the map makes things a little messy on reflection, where as last night it seemd to add some depth. Well I'll have another look at this tonight (if only I didn't have to work!!).

Anyone think the proportions of the girl on the right are looking better??

05 May 2006, 03:26 PM
Hi David, your entry is looking gorgeous, i love the lighting, so warm and inviting! The kids are all looking great too the little girl on the right looks like she's missing a bit of skull at the back of the head, if where the hat connects at the top of her head is anything to go by, either that or the hat needs adjustng just a little along the top line, I'm not sure. Her arms look fine to me, though maybe the bottom line of the coat is throwing people off, as it might look like that's where her waist in too?

I do like the addition of the map, but loved the glowing lines on the table from your last entry, they added a really mysterious feel to their journey, and if they were actually lit (via magic or other means) then even in shadow you'd be able to see them (if not moreso), so you could illuminate them on the right hand side of the book and compass. Or maybe you could have glowing lines on the map?

But it's looking gorgeous so far. Keep up the great work!

05 May 2006, 07:54 PM
:) Thanks for your comments Zephyri...

I'll have a look at the girl's head - I did paint her without a hat first, so it could be just the way the hat is positioned.

That map...mmmm... I'm working on that......

Thanks again for the advice, etc... :) :)

05 May 2006, 08:53 PM
fantastic atmosphere, love the piece. keep on goin, great style and great mood. rock on mate

05 May 2006, 10:53 AM
the kids look great , adventurous bunch of little people, good job dude :thumbsup:


05 May 2006, 01:08 PM (

Not a great amount of changes, but I noticed the boy didn't have one of his arms because of the way I had painted the children (and they overlapped where I thought the arm should be). So I've added that and also simplified the foreground as it was looking to busy.

Still a few details to add, but time to focus on the rest of the composition...

05 May 2006, 09:15 PM
It's looking good David.

I like the map/table now. The girl on the right looks better with every update. On examining her a bit more maybe her head is too big for her body or her body needs to be wider. :hmm: I'm not sure really.


05 May 2006, 10:32 PM
Great work, your color palette is incredible. The lightning is particularly well done, you've got a winner in your hands.

05 May 2006, 08:06 AM
:) thanks EdP-Art..... your comments are really appreciated...

i think I'm going to focus on the rest of the image, then return to the characters a little later - I know what you mean about the girl, though it's partly because the children I used as reference are younger than they look beacause of the way I've added all their garb and younger children's heads are bigger in proportion to their body (well I think that's true from sketches I've drawn and if not, not a bad excuse??)

:) :) :) (still can't get smilies to work - so lts of happy faces :) :)

Cheers slickgreekgeo... you've made my day with that comment... better get on and finish this soon!!

:) :)

05 May 2006, 08:38 AM
this is looking better and better man, i stil llove that robot i think he/she/it really adds a lot more to the image. and im digging the left girl, her little hand in her mouth gig is cute, great job so far =)

05 May 2006, 12:06 PM
:) Thanks for your support adonihs...

Glad you like the robot - I'm thinking along the lines that the robot is the some sort of shaperone (is that how you spell it?), guiding the kids on a dangerous and exciting journey into unknown territory.

I quite liked the idea that this journey was an assignment - homework set out for the children during school / pre-school holidays.

The ancient ruins in which they stand mark the edge of the unknown and clues as to what path to take adorne the ancient stonework, along with artifacts spread out on the stone plinth in the foreground.

Busy day at work today, so I'll have to wait until tonight to carry on :(

More soon :) :)

05 May 2006, 08:48 AM
I felt i must post something to you cause i am watching your work with a great inspiration from the begining...All the stages of your process are very good differently each other. Also very artistic...Taste of your work is always good but when you detailed it, i think it is broken a little... Especially i didn't like the robot in the middle...this is as someone put it there to sabotage your job...There is a different approach breaking apart of your whole work... I hope you don't angry to me:shrug:...Anyway, This is one of my favourite...congrats...:thumbsup:

( )

05 May 2006, 02:18 PM
Starting to look really impressive dude, keep it up, I so love the those children! Much can be said with the poses of those children!:thumbsup:

05 May 2006, 06:59 PM
Thanks emptyparenthesis...

Your comments are fair enough and no i'm not angry by your opinion. I worry too about overdoing the image and I have removed some of the clutter, but have to say that I like the robot. I feel this adds another dimension to the piece which I didn't want to be just a study of three children. It will all make sense very soon!! :) :)

Thanks again Beelow...

It's been a busy week, but it's 7pm over here in the UK, so I think I'll settle on down to a good few hours on this

More soon

MrFreeman :)

05 May 2006, 11:55 PM
Hey ok...You know your job. I don't say don't put that robot, i am just talking about execution you see...There is a very good mood which is hard to catch...THis robo is missing it completely. At least i felt like that... Waiting impatiently...:bounce::bounce::bounce:

( )

05 May 2006, 12:13 AM
Better and better, you've got a great command of color. Foreground elements and kids are reading well. The robot is't quite there yet though. Needs to be tightened up a bit. The tree on the left is creating some tangencies with the girls back pack. Maybe consider knocking that back a bit. Other than that this is looking great. Very dreamy.

05 May 2006, 01:31 AM
Just move the elbow down a bit on the left-hand fella's arm and you'll definitely be on your way. Is he munching on his hand, by the way?

It's turning out beautifully, I love it! Your stuff in general is really inspiring to me. Carry on. :)

05 May 2006, 03:43 PM
Thanks emptyparenthesis ...your comments make complete sense and I hope to work on the robot more, once I've finished working on the background. It does look a little cartoony, so I'll sort this... :)

Thanks also anticz... again - the robot is being worked on.... I'll have a look at the tree tonight as I see your point... great advice :) :)

Cheers Theresa (paperclip).... mmmm....The fella is actually a girl, but I'd better make this more obvious!!! I'll also have a look at her elbow, thought this okay..... as far as her hand, I liked the idea of her deep in thought, hands in mouth as kids do.

I'm working on a new update and will post when I feel it has solved the background and other points (especially thosed mentioned)

more soooooooon.... :) :)

05 May 2006, 04:35 PM
Hey - lovely light. I'm imagining the time of day as twilight, so the characters are about to head off beyond their tea time and into the excitement of the night.

Perhaps a few more visual cues would add to the sense of journey they are about to undertake eg: a hint of a mountain range behind the tree on the left or a key / map / or having the book open....?

love the tiny robot :)


05 May 2006, 05:41 AM
:) :) Thanks QUILLS

great ideas - I'll definitely use them....... new wip is really coming along, so will post Very soon...

freelancing until Wednesday, so I'm working late nights on this so progress may be a little slow today, but should pick up - especially as there's not long left!! :) :)

05 May 2006, 06:13 AM (

I think I've finally cracked the composition and feel that it's working at last.

Sometimes I overcomplicate things, trying to use weird and wide angle perspectives - and this is one image where this is not needed.

I had a brain wave with the ruins in the mid-ground area which adds depth and links foreground and background. I'm just sorting out the travellers pathway / route and I'll be getting close to the final composition (which is a good job bearing in mind time left)

05 May 2006, 10:54 AM
I think I've finally cracked the composition and feel that it's working at last.

I would agree.

I'm still diggin' the robot.

Fantastic work...can't wait to see it finished! :buttrock:

05 May 2006, 02:44 PM
Cheers OliveBeard...

Thanks for the comments....

My freelance job ends tomorrow, so I can then spend a couple of days solid on this thank goodness as time's running out.

No more comping woolly rhinos...hurrayyyyyy...

05 May 2006, 03:06 PM
It looks great David... Lovely bold use of colour!

The foreground bits of ruin do exactly what you say. They add a whole heap of depth and the perspective helps draw the eye to the kids and the cool little robot. My only small crit would be that the girl on the right seems quite far forward (and big) compared to the central boy and the robot, but she's low and the robot overlaps as though he's in front of her. Something about their relationship doesn't sit quite right. maybe if she was turned a little or overlapped the robot as though she was in front of him but turning to look... i dunno... whaddya think? Is it just me..?

Good luck getting everything finished.

05 May 2006, 03:46 PM
:) :) Thanks Jonny..... I think you are right about the girl... I would make up some story about she's half giant or grows fast for her age, but instead I'll probably scale her down a wee bit.

Not sure about turning her face to look at the robot as it took a long long long time to make her look human in the first place and I don't think I'll get time, but we'll see...

Great advice :) :)

05 May 2006, 08:04 PM
The illustration is really interesting and has mood. The kids look so sweeet :) Good luck with the finish !

05 May 2006, 01:38 PM
Thanks Wojtala - glad you find it interesting...

lot's more completed last night, but thought I'd get in another evenings work before posting...mmmm..time's running out very fast.... :)

05 May 2006, 02:13 PM
Hi David :)

Your piece is looking absolutely gorgeous - the colours are wonderful and bring such a life to the painting, also the perspective on the background is spot on. I'm sure I couldn't add any advice since your clearly know what you are doing ;) but just thought I would cheer for you!

05 May 2006, 02:39 PM
:) :) Thanks Elsie....

Locked away in a darkened room with only my wacom for a friend (no I'm not that sad really), You've made my day with your cheering...

I least it looks like I know what I'm doing (even if I'm not entirely sure).... and I hope the final image will be worth the wait..

:) :) :)

05 May 2006, 06:18 AM
Hi David! I really like your latest changes in the composition. I think the background carries a great load of meaning here. And therefore it seems to me the ruins in the mid-ground area must be more interesting (forms, textures etc.) In my view it looks a bit simple now. Good luck! :)

05 May 2006, 07:43 AM
:) Hi Sergey... Thanks for your comments...

I think you are probably right about the ruins and I'm working on this at the moment as I have actually got a day off....

Unfortunately I've got so much work on at the moment, that getting to finish this is proving rather tricky...

More very soon...promise :) :)

05 May 2006, 10:05 AM (

Bit of a crazy week, so have not got as far as i'd hoped, but here is where I am at the moment.

I'm starting to work in details without overdoing it as I like the painterly feel and don't want to loose this quality.

I'm currently working on the ruins and clouds and will update soon...

All comments really welcome at this stage

05 May 2006, 01:09 PM
Again very neat'o stuff, David! :thumbsup: :scream: Its good to read your freelance project is about to be finished, so that you now can fully enjoy this one! :twisted:

About the composition I was 'worried' about: its getting really more interesting now, as there now are becoming two points of interest! :) I think that -once its finished- this piece of art is the most justified on a big print, as you then can study the different 'points of interest' (just 'my way of thinking ;) )!

All the uncoutable very best for the next 9 days! :scream:

05 May 2006, 02:45 PM
hey freeman. great stuff. been watching this one take form and its been a pleasure. finish it up soon!

05 May 2006, 03:17 PM (

I've reworked the background as it was feeling too busy. I've also reworked all the lines as some were not right (especially when you flip the image).

mainly, I've changed the ruins so they look more religious. The archway behind the boy has been extended so not to cramp the area around the children.

All comments as to these changes would be gratefully received...

05 May 2006, 05:25 PM
wow! i love the broken cathedral look now, adds a lot more..kinda like their last resort to go to. killer work as you improve and improve on this :)

05 May 2006, 12:18 AM
:) Cheers Dutchman for your support...

I know what you mean about points of interest and I've been changing things so that the focus will begin on the children and then turn towards the journey ahead.

Still lots to sort, but I hope you agree that it is improving :)

Thanks Slav for dropping by - hope the end result is worth waiting for :)

Thanks adonihs...

I wasn't sure about the new ruins but felt they worked better in terms of looking more religious (like the other ruins) and also helped to lead the eye towards the focal point of the composition.

Still feel the balance is not entirely right but I'll have to try and work on this tomorrow as it's getting late...more sooooon :) :)

05 May 2006, 08:12 AM
very well done so far mr freeman~the mood and the choice of colors are great especially the blending between the warm and cool contrast in it.i hope u finish this :)

05 May 2006, 07:04 PM
Thanks for your support Michael.....

Time's running out, but i hope to get quite a lot completed tonight...

More soon I hope :) :)

05 May 2006, 12:14 AM (

I've managed to get quite a few hours in tonight and as this has to be finished very soon, thought it worth posting an update showing the work on the ruins (in distance and behind the children).

I'm definitely getting closer but last minute advice and comments are always welcome ....

05 May 2006, 01:28 PM
Whaaa... Where does the world turn to, if even you don't get any reactions after an update?! :eek: :shrug:

What you say about making it that way the you first look at the kids, and thén to the ruins, seems to work indeed! Also the new cathedral-ruins look very interesting!

A little comment/critique might be that it's a little hard to see how far from the camera the (right) ruin is standing... Maybe 'there is some way' to make it more clear (althought it doens't matter very much for the final image... it only is a bit confusing in this way ;) ).

All the best!
[ps: as there is no space in my signature anymore; My Journey! ( :D ]

05 May 2006, 01:48 PM
It looks great David. The frame of the ruin around the top right and right helps give a position to the viewer.

I loved the distance and journey feel you had in update #21 (on page 3 of thread) with the path up the mountain. If you added it in to your current mountain it might help.


05 May 2006, 04:56 PM
Young Tomb Raiders! I am waiting to see how you flesh out the ruins. I am not so sure about the book on the stone table. It is closed, so there's nothing but its plain cover for the children to look at. It would make more sense for it to be open, revealing all its secrets for the children to ponder their next move. Be careful with the objects framing the scene for they look a little forced.

Keep pushing on, Gordon.. Er, David Freeman! :D

05 May 2006, 05:41 PM
Thanks Gijs....

I know what you mean about lack of feedback - I'm hoping it's because everyone is too busy finishing their own entries rather than thinking it's not much good - still i'm enjoying this which is the main thing... as far your comments, I'm working on the depth of the image and hope this will appear more convincing once completed.

Cheers EdP-Art... I had a look back at that mountain path and have to say that I also like the perspective and how it places emphasis on the path / journey.... still I hope to show a pathway continuing up into the mountains.

Thankyou jeromoo ....wise and much appreciated comments..... I was looking at the book last night and wondered what to do, but I think having it open will be more logical - and I still have last minute props to add.....

Will work on the framing

Thanks again

Dave :) :)

05 May 2006, 11:48 PM
Hey David, there is not much more that I can add to what has been said, see you at eh finish line, Best of luck to you!:thumbsup:

05 May 2006, 11:59 AM
:) :) Thanks Bryce...

time is definitely ticking away and I've just had to take on a couple of days storyboarding, so it's going to a last minute scramble as always - but hey this makes it all the more fun??!

I had a great night last night and I'll post an update soon... needless to say that the comments made by everyone have really helped and those last minute changes and additions are making a lot of difference :) :)

05 May 2006, 11:13 PM (

I've started to work on the final details to ensure the picture tells a story clearly. I've also altered the composition slightly to add balance and a little more space without detracting from the children too much.

Still quite a bit to do, but I should make it despite the work load at the moment...

more very soon...

05 May 2006, 11:42 PM
Very cool!

Just discovered this entry and I just wanted to say that it looks really great!
Strong characters and excellent rendering.

Good luck!

05 May 2006, 07:51 AM
:) Thanks Mumphy

Much appreciated... have to say that it looks better high res as the colours look rather muted online :(

Good to see your entry and I'll definitely get round to replying once I've completed some storyboards that needed delivery by lunchtime....

05 May 2006, 05:27 PM
It's coming along nicely. Those changes have made a big difference and it's better for them.

I've no other comments other than get it finsihed, go, go, goooo :wip:


05 May 2006, 08:40 PM
:) Cheers Ed....

I was hoping to have a good night on this but still working on some visuals for another job.... real nightmare.

I just hope that I can finish in Time....

More soon I hope :) :)

05 May 2006, 08:42 PM
It's looking really good! I think you just need to dirty up the ruins a bit more, add some rubble, you know yourself.

That mountain looks like a pointier version of croagh patrick (just down the road from my parents' house!). Just so you know. :)

Where is this meant to be? A fantasy land, or is it around their home town or...?

05 May 2006, 07:59 AM
Thanks Theresa aka paperclip...

Why is it that work always goes crazy when I'm trying to finish a challenge.....

I thought I had two days to work on nothing but this, but I now will have to work overnight or something unless I can invent a time machine or something (which isn't really likely)...

I'll put up a detailed explanation of the image with the final entry, but i hope the extra elements I'm adding will fill in any gaps.... but their home is in the valley below - which I'll add tonight. The ruins in which they are standing hold clues to help in their journey / task and explains the ruined city in the background, etc.

originally they were on a school trip / assignment, collecting rare artifacts or bugs or something and the robot was a mechanical guide, but all will be revealed soon... :) :)

05 May 2006, 12:11 PM
hey david,

well done wip, but even though you have the whole opening the map and consulting the little robot thing.
i think that there is something missing from the story that you want to convey. i see the "what they are doing now" but not the "what they need to do to overcome difficulties in their trip" i think i would like to see something that completes the story you are trying to tell about this journey.

cool stuff !

05 May 2006, 03:08 PM (

Well after several crazy days of work, I stayed up most of the night working on this...

I've mainly been working on the girl on the left and have spent a long time reworking the face. I'm still trying to get the eyes to look towards the robot as they seemed to when I did a quick sketch... Still there's a chance I may get this finished...more very soon

05 May 2006, 03:16 PM
Hey, this is coming along splendidly! No crits, just finish the detailing. I love this piece. Go go go go...

05 May 2006, 03:44 PM
Thanks Theresa....

Still got to sort the lighting out - I think I prefered it when it was darker in the left hand corner.

Time to venture out into the real world for a few minutes before I go completely mad

Still, should keep me busy tonight.... more sooooon... :) :)

05 May 2006, 03:49 PM
I agree with you there, that tree is quite contrasty and sort of takes away from the main focus (i.e the children) . Looking forward to seeing your updates. Keep that sanity going! (I lost mine about a month ago, I think you could notice.) Enjoy your foray into the real world...

But be back soon!

05 May 2006, 03:52 PM (

Here's a close up of the children updated, as the wide doesn't really show the details due to compression.

All comments welcome as tonight is really my final long haul before finishing. :)

05 May 2006, 09:05 PM
No crits David, its turning out great. Just get it finished because it'll be a winner.


05 May 2006, 09:24 PM
:) Cheers Ed...

having a bit of a last minute rethink of the colour scheme... having been up all last night working, I'm feeling a little spaced out, so I hope this will help me out...

otherwise it could all go pear shaped...

More soon

:) :)

05 May 2006, 10:56 PM (

Bit of a drastic change, but i wanted to have more dramatic lighting and place more importance on the children.

The orange light brings the characters foreward and sets the background back.

I have definite reasons in terms of storyline for making these changes, but feedback would be really welcome.

05 May 2006, 04:34 AM
Hi David! Yes, the image is now looking more dramatic! But it seems to need to give more lighting to the characters! In my view, they are a bit dark. By the way, I really like you've opened the book! I look forward to your final image! Good luck! :)

05 May 2006, 05:12 AM
I am still a fan of the old color palette, but this looks like it would work as well!, I hope to see you finish in time! Good luck again dude!:thumbsup:

05 May 2006, 07:14 AM (

Having worked a lot of late nights lately, I started playing with light and colour and on reflection probably still prefer the daylight version (though composition is better in the top and colours could be simplified in the foreground).

Last day on this as I'm on holiday tomorrow, so it would be good to get a second opinion :) :)

05 May 2006, 07:20 AM
I prefer the daylight one as well. Nice job on the kids, but the background needs more love. it just doesn't keep the same quality. It almost looks like the kids are standing in front of a painted mural.

05 May 2006, 07:22 AM
i like the day light version better,it has more color variations to it,the cool and the warm contrast remains.maybe its just me,the blue version seems to take away a certain amount of details,it could be the colors.
best of luck to u mate,lets make this to the final:)

05 May 2006, 08:52 AM
Hi David, me again! :twisted: Its interesting that you're playing with the mood and colors so late in the game, and if in fact its only a good thing, as you show to be moving constantly. :thumbsup: I'd say that the nigthversion has some unnatural touches (as the kids are lighted in a warm tone > where comes the light from? From the robot?), while it has a nice mood.
The daylight version has a very nice mood which I really can feel blowing out of it (exactly as you described it: as a perfect day for a schooltrip ;) ), which might be more interesting to keep... So I'd vote for the daylightversion. ;)

<...> but the background needs more love. it just doesn't keep the same quality. It almost looks like the kids are standing in front of a painted mural.I must agree a little bit on this. You might want to add a little bit of contrast on the background? (unless I'm totally in-experienced with these sort of paintings...).

I hope to see it finished soon & if I don't see you posting before you going on holiday: have fun! :thumbsup:

05 May 2006, 09:34 AM
:) :) :) :) :)

Thanks everyone.... I'm pleased you prefer the daylight version as that's what I'm working on... It's good to have some creative advice when you've looked at something for too long.

Time's rapidly running out so I'll have to thank you all when I've finished :(

onwards....... what ever am I going to do next week with no challenge???

05 May 2006, 11:08 AM (

I'm now working into the background to add depth and make it slightly more detailed.

i've added a path to the mountain and have one ot two little visual clues to add and I'm nearly there.

it's got to be finished tonight, so I'm starting to get worried about finishing (I'm away tomorrow), but fingers crossed!!)

05 May 2006, 02:05 PM
Man,you are using my fav colours, lovely image,and figures,and I prefer the day version too, keep it up,
lookin forward to your final

05 May 2006, 06:07 PM
:) Thanks Michael...

I'm supposed to be packing to go on holiday, so getting a little worried now - but the latest version is coming together -....

Final image will be posted sometime tonight ...eeeeeeek!!!

05 May 2006, 06:53 PM
<...> Final image will be posted sometime tonight ...eeeeeeek!!!I'll be waiting for it (while painting my own entry ;) )! All the best on the final few hours! :beer:

05 May 2006, 05:28 AM (

The Journey Begins - The Field Trip

The last days of summer come to a close and the first signs of autumn and colder times slowly creep in.

Three young children venture out into the unknown with their mechanical guide and tutor on a journey of discovery and magic and endurance.

Part real and part imaginary (as children can spend a lot of time inventing stories) this is a sort of Famous Five / Enid Blyton for the modern age.
Cakes, picnics and scary adventures with a fantasy, sci-fi twist.

The image shows our intrepid explorers and guide, standing within the ruins of an ancient religous ruins which reveal long lost secrets of old civilisations and truths about their past.

The book opened, shows clues to a journey which wouild take the children through an old long lost city and on into the wildreness and mountain ranges full of monsters, strange people and treasure.

This was created entirely in painter 8 and Photoshop. The children were drawnd from scratch in Painter using an detailed oils brush and blender, though I did sketch facial and figure reference from life.

I could still spend longer on this, but time has run out, so hope you enjoy....

05 May 2006, 06:16 AM
Nice to see that you have finished, really nice image dude! I so love the use of colors in this entry! Good luck in the judging!:thumbsup:

05 May 2006, 06:48 AM
:) :) Cheers!! Bryce aka Beelow...

Still a lot I could have added but time's run out - thanks a lot for all your support

I'm off on holiday in 4 minutes so will reply properly when I return

:) :) :) Good luck everyone

05 May 2006, 07:17 AM
congrates dav,glad u have made it,definitely one of my favourite here.wish u the very best of luck :thumbsup:

05 May 2006, 07:30 AM
yo, congratz on finishing it dude, as I told you I love the colour you are using, and the children looks innocent for their journey, lovely! good luck for you dude.

05 May 2006, 08:54 AM
Awesome job man! Loved watching the progress of it, when I could of course! Very nice, I love the tones and characters in this one and im also oh so glad you left the robot.

Great pic man :) congrats

05 May 2006, 10:04 PM
Lovely pic, it works well, well done. I'm sure it'll be a winner.

It struck me that we could make a story with a number of pics from this challenge. Here's the bones of it...
A Soul gets drawn down into the physical worlds (see EdP-Art ( )
The Soul gets a physical body and is born (see BlackDidThis ( )
It goes through many tasks and adventures (here's just a few suggestions MrFreeman (
- Omer-n (
- Cyberone (
- Stahlberg (
- Jeromoo (
If you have more please suggest them to me.
And finally the Soul finds its way back to its home (see Beelow ( )

Jerome might even put it to poetry :)


06 June 2006, 01:51 PM
Hi David! You've done a really great work! Congratulations! I wish you good luck in the voting! :)

06 June 2006, 10:05 AM
:) :) :) I've been away since the challenge ended so I thought it was about time I thanked all of you for the support and advice that has kept me slaving away throughout the challenge...

I suppose there is still quite a bit I would have added to the image, but the workload always goes crazy at the end of a challenge (they just seem to know). Also not sure about colours as they look different in Painter and Photoshop and also between my laptop and other macs...mmmmm

Thanks to all of the following for contributing to my thread - and good luck to all in the judging! :) :) and see you next time....

Squibbit - it's been a tad quiet on the squibbit front - must be working hard - hope to see you in the next challenge!!
beelow...aka Bryce - so much great advice
Jeromoo - wise words that made all the difference
Atris..aka Sergey - thanks for your advice and support!!
paperclip ...aka Theresa - that advice really helped the composition
Adonihs - thanks for constant support
EdP-Art - again - for all your support and advice
Dutchman - good to hear someone else was working through the night to finish

07 July 2006, 07:01 AM
:) :) CONGRATULATIONS To all the winners!

Definitely one of the most enjoyable challenges yet and I can't wait for the next....

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