View Full Version : Secret Agent Entry: David Freeman

06 June 2009, 09:59 AM
David Freeman is entered in the "Secret Agent" update: View Challenge Page (

Latest Update: Work In Progress: c/u - character development (

06 June 2009, 10:00 AM
:arteest: he he...about time to. Let's hope I have enough time to get stuck into this challenge this time around..... :bounce:

Good Luck everyone :beer:

06 June 2009, 10:24 AM
Good luck David!

I truely expect a lot from you! ;)

06 June 2009, 06:12 PM
hi there :) just stopping by to wish u all the best and as much fun as possible!

06 June 2009, 10:08 PM
I can see you have delivered some pretty nice entries in the challenges. I look forward to see another piece from you :)

06 June 2009, 06:10 AM
:cool: Thanks for the comments....

I'm determined to complete this challenge this time around. Funny how work always goes crazy when a challenge is announced and it's a case of juggling as always.

I have lots of ideas and hope to post some initial sketches this week, but I really want to make an effort this time, so need to spend the extra time trying to come up with an original and unusual approach.

Then I was wondering whether to go the Painter / Photoshop route or merge this with cgi, using Zbrush to sculpt the characters, etc. Soo many choices :eek:

06 June 2009, 08:03 AM (

At this stage I am still trying to work out the composition and lighting before getting bogged down with detail. Usually I start working on the character first and the final image tends to suffer.

The idea, is that we see our agent amidst the wreckage and debris from a recently fought battle, where she has stopped to communicate with the powers that be. I want to portray the solitude of such an life style and the idea of a lone figure on a vast plain surrounded by imposing mountains seemed right for this. I would also like to add rain and mist and make it feel bleak.

I am trying to stay away from the typical agent approach and wanted to create something that combines the historical role of the messenger on the battlefield with the idea of a secret sect of individuals working on covert operations.

Still plenty of time to develop, so I'll see how this goes.

06 June 2009, 10:27 AM
looks interesting, something more unusual than most other works.
Hope this works out, i'll keep watching it! :thumbsup:

06 June 2009, 11:50 AM
It looks good already :) I don't see any agent reference in it yet, but I guess you come to that.

06 June 2009, 10:15 AM (

Just trying to come up with a few ideas and here is a sketch for idea number two....I'm uploading a further colour image for this, so more info then :)

06 June 2009, 10:20 AM (

Just further to my last image, this was just taking it a little further whilst juggling ideas.

This is only to work on possible lighting and scenarios, so please don't pay too much attention to the girl at this point with regards to anatomy and face as this will come later.

I wanted to have some sort of floating shipyard behind to show scale and height. Colours are a bit muddy too, but that again will come later.

06 June 2009, 05:41 AM
Looks good and the colors sure add a sense of drama. Curious as to what's she crawling out of?

06 June 2009, 10:59 AM (

I'm not 100% happy with the ideas I have come up with so far, so here is another possibility.

I had the idea of showing a lone figure walking across the tarmac (or some sort of hard surface) towards a new style craft that will take them behind enemy lines on covert ops.

I had the idea of creating a craft that looks like a butterfly with four seperate wings that rotate allowing verticle take-off and rapid course changes.

This craft would be near to silent allowing the secret agent to get to places otherwise too risky to reach.

I liked the idea of this solitary figure striding out face this dangerous mission.

Not sure if I'll go with this but I like the direction it's heading

06 June 2009, 02:12 PM (

Maybe going off on a tengent here, but just another idea along the theme of weird craft with which to enter enemy terratory.

I'm still unsure whether to show the agent close up or more as part of a larger scene, using shadow and light to highlight their position.

I suppose as long as the story makes sense, then either is possible....

more soon

06 June 2009, 04:35 PM
Oh, I like that latest idea. I think you should go more down that road rather than having just the girl as the focus-piece, as I'm sure there will be many many...many others of that type. Not to say that that's a particularly bad thing, it's just that I like the originality of that dragonfly vehicle thing.

06 June 2009, 06:35 AM
:) Thanks for the comments...

VanillaChicken - Good point and I think I'll probably take your advice on this and keep pushing for something more unusual.....the comments are really helpful... :thumbsup:

BUZZFX - Initially, I thought of the woman climbing aboard some ship, but started thinking more towards her climbing high above a city with gothic architecture (though I did think about having some sort of futuristic spacecraft based on a more pirate ship style designs, docked above the city far below). Not sure if I'll go with this now, but thanks for the comments :arteest:

Unfortunately I'm busy today, so can't do much more until tonight, but hope to post something very soon :beer:

06 June 2009, 08:32 AM
you just gave me an idea with that last dragonfly concept.. it could be something like a small infiltrate device/spy gadget, with satellites and cameras installed on it, taking info from the mob undergrounds meeting or something :) it also could be very small and the rest of the image would be just bunch of silhouettes and blurry. Just a thought that jumped into my mind when checking ur great sketches :) best of luck!

06 June 2009, 10:31 AM
:cool: Thanks for the thoughts NinjaA55N..... sounds a good idea... hope to have time on this tonight, so will post some updates tonight. :beer:

07 July 2009, 07:57 AM (

I really liked the dragonfly style craft and wanted to use that in a composition that showed the solitude of the secret agent, alone in a desolate place - the craft his / her last link to their own world as it prepares to leave them alone for their next mission.

At this stage, I am more interested in composition, atmosphere and lighting as I can add detail later.

I would like to add dust and wind to show both the power of the craft and the hostile environment.

I still believe that this shows the secret agent lifestyle and though removed from the James Bond style imagery, hopefully still will work.

Not sure if I should be this wide as I still need to ensure the eye focuses on the character.

I did think of having them holding a flare or some sort of lighting beacon to make them stand out and add an element of drama.

Finally, the background is not decided at this point, but more for placement references, but I did envisage derelict structures that don't appear too much like earthly structures, but that's the next thing to worry about.

I have also completed variations of this which I hope to post soon.

Oh and I did think about making the dragonfly minature, but upon reading His Dark materials again, realised that there are similar references made in that, so I have kept well away.

07 July 2009, 08:07 AM (

Just a possible development of the previous image.

I quite liked the idea of a submerged cityscape.

Hopefully more soon (work permitting_

07 July 2009, 11:38 PM
Hey David,

Really cool concept for a dragonfly craft :D The atmosphere and mood of the last image is awesome, can´t wait for more updates!! Cheers!! :beer:

07 July 2009, 11:37 PM (

Thought it was about time I uploaded work in progress, no matter how rough... As you can see, I have spent time reworking the image and composition so that the agent preparing to board the ship is the main focus, which will improve as I add the lighting.

Mt main concern was to make the image more dynamic and use light, scale and long shadows to pinpoint our agent.

I am trying to show the solitude of such a role and depict a scene that is unusual - the dragonfly ship was starting to get very angulat, so I have reworked curves back in - hence the reason the image is a little messy.

I wanted to make the ship look old and metallic, though curved andorganic, and am collecting reference of old and battered helicopters for detail reference and have started working on the detail. I need to enlarge the canvass, so I can start to add detail and refine particular elements.

Well, it's getting late and I'm starting to talk rubbish, but hope to post an update very soon

07 July 2009, 11:38 PM
:beer: Thanks for the comments and support Ferx and sorry for not replying sooner - hope you like the update!!

07 July 2009, 12:33 PM (

I've been working on this idea for a few days now when I get the very rare free moment and with time moving on will probably stick with this concept.

My main concern was to ensure that the figures in the foreground (one of which is our agent) remain centre of focus and I am developing light concepts to ensure this is the case.

The concept / idea is of an agent about to embark on another dangerous / covert operation.

I wanted to try and show architecture which is more curved - similar to the dragonfly craft and this will develop as I start to work in detail and the final environment.

I can see this just strarting to possibly work, so I hope to have a late one on this tonight

07 July 2009, 01:11 PM
Hi, David! This is a really interesting concept! I love the design of the ship. So far, though, this feels more like a sci-fi piece and doesn't seem that tied to the secret agent theme. I mean, this could easily be a star-faring ship, not a spy ship. If you could somehow combine this concept with the woman from post #11, the saboteur, then I think it would be more in the right direction, imho. But either way, nice work... good luck!

07 July 2009, 02:39 PM
:D Hi Michael

Good point and I like the suggestion.

I might just do that - just need to ensure the composition work well if I do this

Thanks for the advice - when you have so much freedom to do whatever, it's easy to get sidetracked :beer:

07 July 2009, 09:14 PM (

Just an update after the last comments....any thoughts all you creatives out there??

Do I go for a close up of our agent as this image shows, or go for a wider shot with some sort of exchange taking place by the ship as in the previous.

Funnily enough I did think of having ships above a city when I worked on the concept of the woman - clambering over the side of a ship (though originally it was more pirate ship style.

Sort of works and I may develop this after working on the composition.

Hope to work on this for a few hours now, so hopefully post something later

07 July 2009, 11:52 PM
I like your job, the forced perspective looks very good! (sorry my bad english please!!..)
The image ambience make me remember a chapter of animatrix.
I like the beatifull agent in that dangerous situation, and the color palette.
Of course you are welcome to see my job!
See ya!

07 July 2009, 12:32 AM
hey,nice update,your image looks better now,keep it up!!

07 July 2009, 12:58 AM (

I decided that if this is going to work, then it needs to have more atmosphere and the lighting more film noire / high contrast. So I have removed the colour for the moment and reworking the lighting and feel and then can go back to grading later.

When originally thinking of ideas for this, I wanted to do something more gritty and in the rain, so thought I would do this to add to the feeling of danger and covert ops. It's too early to get too precious about this and would rather rework than not feel happy about the look, architecture and character.

Lots of ideas for gadgets and additional but better get some sleep before work. Hope to post more very soon

Thanks for all the comments and I'll reply very soon

07 July 2009, 01:02 AM
:hmm: looks a lot better high res, so probably will post some detail shots in the morning...early days, but I feel its improving :p

I'm working on the woman's face, so you can't really see this on the update, but more soon

07 July 2009, 09:51 PM
I think it's getting better and better :) I wish I could see it in high res.

07 July 2009, 10:45 AM
:thumbsup: Thanks for the comments Martin.

I have been working late on this, though work is rather busy at the mo, so juggling as always!

I hope to post an update and some close ups in the early hours tonight / tomorrow

Wish I could be working on this now :arteest: :beer:

07 July 2009, 12:18 AM (

Having removed all colour so I could go back and work on the detail and lighting / shadow / contrast first, I have been developing my character with regards to adding more detail and refining the look.

My main concern is adding more depth, a lot of which will come from the lighting and later, colour.

It's a bit weird as I usually use Painter more, but find Photoshop more useful this time around (though I prefer the Blender brushes in Painter which I have started to use on the woman's face.

I really would like to carry on with this, but the hours are speeding past, so that's it until tomorrow night...

more soon hopefully

07 July 2009, 07:43 AM (

I've added more colour and contrast to the scene and working on getting the face and body correct which has taken longer than planned, but after which progress should be a lot quicker.

My main problem is that I tend to work up a line drawing first and sketch and sketch into this - and then spend the next year removing the lines and replacing with colour. I really should just work in colour from the start!

Just realised we only have 10 days must have been looking at the wrong deadline, so bit of a mad panic as I'm off on holiday next week.

Few late nights ahead then, but at least progress and updates will appear a little more often

07 July 2009, 11:58 AM

i love this kind of agent and pic.

Good luck for the final.
I´m very intrested for the final workout.


07 July 2009, 12:23 PM
hi,looking really good,you just have to work more on her nose,try to make it better and she will be more beautifull i think,good luck ^^

07 July 2009, 03:12 PM
:wavey: Thanks for the comments Björn and diissar...

diissar - I'll have a look at her nose tonight...looks like it may be a long one (night not nose that is) as I assumed the deadline was 10th september not August and I have to finish the challenge for once.

Some fantastic entries out there and hopefully I'll have a chance to write some comments at long last :beer:

07 July 2009, 04:54 PM
To me, there is a problem anatomy with his neck.It is a little bit too on the left.
There is a problem with her shoulders to.
Her back is very curved, I think it s very hard to climb with the back curved in this case.(her position to climb is strange. too rigid)
Problem with her nose to.
But Your color is very very nice ! Good Mood. I like it.

07 July 2009, 07:34 PM
:) Thanks for the advice JiDy

As far as anatomy, it seemed okay when I started, but I should go back and check as I might have got carried away with the look and lost some of the detail from the original sketches.

To be honest, I tend to be better at architectural / landscapes and the fact that she looks half human is a good start :argh:

Saying that, when you see the whole image, it does help explain the pose and she is supposed to be resting / about to climb up onto a ledge - hence the leg sticking out. But maybe it is too wooden??

I'm working on this tonight, so hope to solve some of the outstanding issues and post something in the morning

Thanks again

Dave :beer:

07 July 2009, 07:38 AM (

I spent a long night reworking the woman - concentrating firstly on her nose and problems surrounding her posture and also neck. Since sketching out the concept ages ago, I had reworked sooo much that some areas of the posture has been lost, but hopefully all is now back on track.

In addition, I have added more neck detail and worked on arms and legs (though the hands are still just sketched out).

I have also started adding detail to the background to help add depth and space.

Hopefully another night or so will sort any remaining problems such as the backpack being slightly wrong.

Hopefully I'll get a chance to post more soon

07 July 2009, 02:54 PM
I like your designs, very interesting, just be careful on how the image reads. It is my first time looking at your entry so the the first image I saw was your latest, with that said, I had a tough time reading what the ship was and what was going on in the scene. I went a couple pages back in order to tell what your idea was.

good luck!

07 July 2009, 03:50 PM
:bounce: Thanks angel for the comments...

The latest image is a cropped image showing the area I was working on - just as otherwise it is all too small to see and I wanted all you creatives out there to give me some feedback.

I'm working on this again after work, so will post a full image including the ship and remaining elements to add later.

Thanks for bringing this up though as I am keen for the image to make some sense. :beer:

07 July 2009, 04:01 PM
Yes Freeman is very good!
But I know your illu go in Right Way!
Nice work. Good archi !

08 August 2009, 06:59 AM
:thumbsup: Thanks for all the feedback and I'm sorry that I never finished this :sad:

Next time I had better check the deadlines a little more closely rather than just looking at the main page which said the challenge ran to the 10th of September. I was on holiday last week so just couldn't get there in time, but hope to post a completed version sometime soon.

Still some fantastic entries out there and good luck to you all in the judging...

see you all again in the next challenge

Dave :thumbsup: :bounce:

08 August 2009, 07:23 AM
hi david,good job and good color palette, congratulation for your final image!

08 August 2009, 06:34 PM
Nice final :thumbsup: The colors are very nice.

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