View Full Version : Need Comment and Critiques

12 December 2010, 10:30 AM
Yesterday i've just posted my work, but sadly it wasn't accepted yet by CG talk's moderator for this reason :

"We're very sorry to let you know that this work does not yet meet our standards as a completed piece for the Showcase Gallery. We'd like to encourage you to post your work in the WIP forum to develop it further before submitting it again."

When i read this message, my first thought is that CG crew feel that my work isn't finish yet, and they want me to change it to post to WIP forum.

Hmm, but I think, I've already finished this work though.But, it's ok, and now I'm trying to post my work into this forum and I just want to know about your opinion on my work. What can i fix?

All critiques and comments are welcome, to develop my work further. Thanks a lot before :)

12 December 2010, 10:45 PM
Did you use a reference when you painted it? The proportions on the face seem off, but I can't tell very well since I typically don't paint animals as a subject matter (it feels like you need to pull up the nose and the mouth because of the way you painted it).

12 December 2010, 10:03 AM
Thank you Ejay for your comment and advice. Now i know what's wrong with my work and next time i will fix it.Yes, i use some photo references to draw this cat. But, maybe you're right, the cat's face is still weird and flat, and it's still lack of shadow. Soon, i will fix it.

12 December 2010, 01:42 PM
Ok, this is the result of trying to fix the gesture of cheetah. How about this? Am i still need to fix? Oh, i just adding the branch to balance the composition, what do you feel?

Thanks b4 for the comments and critiques :)

12 December 2010, 06:04 PM
Although the face of the cheetah has better structure and rendering now, it looks like it's lit from the front. But we can clearly see the setting sun behind it, so the lighting of the environment and the lighting of the subject are off.

You placed the subject dead center and there's visual interest on the right side of the image, but without something on the left to counter balance.

Some of those plant heads are transparent where they ought not be and we see the background shining through (like the mountains).

The sun and the treebranch's edges are fused together, creating a tangent. Best to either overlap or have some space between them.

There's isn't any narrative or design or anything, so that means the image will be only technical. It has to be technically excellent for it to be considered 'worthwhile' then.

12 December 2010, 10:51 AM
Thank u very much RicoD for your comments and advices. It's really help me to fix my artwork. Here my latest correction on direction of the light and shadows by replace sky color . How about it? Do I still have to fix it? Now, I just find trouble to make cheetah's fur and hair details and texture details of the tree branch, may some help me, how to make them easily (may from some techniques or custom brushes). It's hard to me to make them look more realistic.

Hope I can finish it quickly and start the next project :)

12 December 2010, 05:07 PM
I think the your painting is really good looking, but it still seems a tad flat, there is little contrast and a lot of the painting consist of soft brushes and has a blurry feel to it.

If it was me I would force myself to work further until you truly hate working on this piece, then it would be finished one way or the other. take a new perspective on this, take some heavy contrast cat pictures like this one add a new layer where you experiment. Don't just settle for single reference with the cat, add some hard strokes :) gogo you can do it !

12 December 2010, 12:14 AM
The lighting makes a lot more sense now. I would change the background gradient a bit. If you make it more diagonal (not to much, just a bit) it makes more sense. The colour shift is uniform, with the sun at it's center and is radial. But the area is so large that at a crop like this painting it wouldn't look all that round. I'd also make it lighter near the horizon.

There are several ways to paint fur and hair. What I like to do is paint clumps of hair, basically in the value of the shadowed area. Then, using a dotted brush (I like the 3 dots brush, but for larger areas you cold make a brush consisting of more dots, just have a lot of space between them) paint on lighter areas. You can then use this same brush as your smudge brush and have tips of the fur sticking out and make the areas between the lighter and darker areas more smooth. Finally, you can take a solid round, very small brush and paint in some final highlights and hairs that stick out and go against the flow and such. If you lost overall shape a bit, you can adjust it with multiply and / or screen layers or painting over areas.

There are tricks using the wind filter, but I don't like them since they're so uniform and don't follow the shape of the body and such. I also think it looks off and tacky. Plus, it helps if you master the technique by hand, since you will need it for corrections and painting hair anyway.

As for the tree, don't really have a good trick for that. I still paint those by hand. A phototexture might work, but you'll have to make a lot of effort to blend it in with the rest of the image.

01 January 2011, 03:34 PM
Thanks RicoD for the comments.
Here my latest progress of my work, and I think that it will be the last progress after I'm giving details and lighting to the objects. How about this??


I really really want to finish it :)

01 January 2011, 04:37 PM
Not bad. The tree looks good now, though you could still

Give some more detail and sharpness to some of the grass (its blurry where the tree is sharp)
Give more contrast/expressive lighting to the face (the dark side should be darker and the details should be very bumby in such a dawn lighting)
Correct the overall lighting on the face. It does not match with the environment (environment appears to be lit more in parallel while the face is more lit from in front - note the spec hilight in the eyes, too)
The fur currently seems to be combed into one single diagonal direction. Take some references and try to comb it realistically.

01 January 2011, 05:00 PM
Nice going! Quite some progress from version 1 I think.

I think the first sky has a start of the Golden Hour kind of feel to it. The blue also makes a nice contrast with the yellow and orange of the cheetah. You would have to adjust the cheetah and surroundings a bit. It needs a bit more blue in the highlight and shadow range then.

The second has a rain clouds coming in during the afternoon feel. Except, the colour order doesn't make sense. It's supposed to go infrared(not visible) - red - orange - yellow - green - blue - purple - ultraviolet (not visible). This is from the brightest area to the darkest area and goes in all 3 dimensions. So, it makes no sense to have the brightest light on your clouds be on the bottom left side if the sun is right and behind the viewer. Nor will it be that purple and orange near the horizon. The colours of the setting is right for the lighting of the cheetah and surroundings though, so you wouldn't have to adjust those.

In the end, pick the one most suited to whatever you feel like you ought to express with this painting. Then look at suitable reference and adjust accordingly.

I'd also give the hills some more form. Even if blurred out through camera focus you'd still see some more value and colour variation.

01 January 2011, 06:50 PM
Thanks a lot ManDay and RicoD for your advices and comments. Your comments really help me, although I still have to learn more about the color tones and lighting. Here my latest correction, There are 2 alternatives colors I use. First: brown nuance ( it gives warm feeling). Although it has same color tones, but i don't really like because I think the color still dull ( i don't know what's wrong). Second, the blue/purple nuance. I prefer to choose the second color, because as RicoD said, the blue also makes a nice contrast with the yellow and orange of the cheetah,i tried it and i thought so. I hope I don't make a big mistake with color gradients and lighting.
How about these? Can I post this unto CGTalk :)

Sorry b4 for bad English.

01 January 2011, 07:32 PM
I like the last one :) As Rico pointed out a striking improvement compared to your first attempt. I would easily deem it ready for show-off, but that comes from some one who has never posted anything on the Gallery. Two more things that I find could use improvement:

The purpe highlights on the back appear a kind of mismatch.
I'd *still* put more shadows in the face. See for yourself, it's just my personal impression but I think the picture would benefit if you could put some shades in the face so it doesnt look that flat. Especially the nose appears to cast abs. no shadow - from 1/6 of the left on the face remains flat to me.

Another minor thing that I think only needs clarification from your side is why is the hill in the background so dark although we see its sun-oriented side? Did you maybe intend that?

01 January 2011, 07:46 PM
I'll just add these to ManDay's comments: the sky colour is the colour you want to add as bounced light and atmospheric perspective.

The right tree branch looks flat in comparison to the rest. There's a strange horizontal cut off in the lower left corner.

01 January 2011, 09:45 AM
You're right, Rico and ManDay,the sky's colours are the important part that influence bounced light and atmospheric perspective to the object. I think, I've got some problems when I've tried to give some lights reflection to the cheetah's body, tree branch or others, especially when I use some blending modes, such as overlay, hard light,etc :D. The colours are change to other colours that didn't match with what i want ( the colour seems not natural).Maybe you guys can give me some advices. Are there some tips to give bounced light more easily?? Thanks a lot b4 :)

01 January 2011, 10:49 AM
Something I've forgot..I just have the same thought with yours ManDay :). When I saw my work again, i thought that I make mistake: there's something strange with the hill's colour, but i'm not sure, until you reminds me...ha ha, i will make it more lighten and give a little detail..Thanks!

01 January 2011, 07:48 PM
I really love this peice. I would say your imagined line on the composition is whats giving your the hardest time. You have a great diagonal line from the mountains down through the cat. But the nearly verical line of the branch takes it in a different dirction so that the veiwer tends to not know which to look at. You can solve this by either of 2 ways. One: you cant tilt the branch to the right which will make a "V" shape and will draw the veiwer to the focus of the painting. Or you can add a slight gauzzian blur to the branch to put it into the background. Or if you want do both of these. But I do know this....It is a fantastic painting. Excellent job!

Kevin Dryad

01 January 2011, 10:43 PM
Wow, really nice progress on this one since I saw it last... really awesome! I agree with Manday though, the face still looks too flat, and the only reason why I think this is because the snout doesn't have any shadows. The left side of the snout should be dark because its facing away from the light source.

Good job on this one!

01 January 2011, 05:46 AM
Thank you Kevin for your advice.Here my latest update after I edited tree branch. I tilt it and give blur effect. Did you intend like this?

Maybe this is my last progress :), though i could still give some detail, especially the fur.

01 January 2011, 05:53 AM
Thank you EjayM, I can improve my work like this because of your comments and advices.:)

01 January 2011, 06:43 PM
Hi Tony,
I've been watching this for a while. You've made some good improvements, I like that you are trying different things. I also like the texture in the way you've drawn the fur.

First of all I think you've chosen a rather unflattering posture, the cheetah face does not look very attractive to me head on. I prefer more profile shot like these,

Secondly the neck looks very squat. Look at this cheetah in a similar pose, the neck is lifted more so it can see over the grass,

A lot of your skies look overly dark blue or purple to me. The most recent one is the best.

The purple and green reflections on the back/underside are way too intense. I would change the purple to sky color and have it more subtle, only in the shadow parts not on highlights..and get rid of the green altogether. It's not the right shade.

The grass looked better in a previous version, the shading you added to individual strands makes them look like big clay spikes rather than grass. Look at how the grass looks here and if you can do something like that I think it would look better,

Now, the expression on the cheetah face is also very important...right now it looks very passive. Why don't you give him a more intense face like this?

Lastly, the black outline of his mouth is too dark...most pictures of cheetah show that the white fur around his mouth mostly obscures his black lips so it should look much softer

01 January 2011, 07:41 PM
Thanks a lot stuh505 for the comments and some photo references that you gave to me. Maybe you're right that I've chosen a rather unflattering posture, but if I want it more attractive, it's means that i have to change all the face posture. Hm, it will take me for long time. Maybe, I will try to fix the expression of cheetah's face, especially its eyes sight and fix the grass form.
I also will try to fix the shadow and highlight colors. Next time i will choose the posture and camera's angles of the object I draw more carefully.

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