View Full Version : scene: Bat Man

10 October 2003, 03:10 PM
I created this artwork about a month and a half ago to play around with painting. How does it stack up from an evocative point of view?

10 October 2003, 03:35 PM
In my opinion, it doesn't do a great deal. It's a nice image, but the composition gives it a lot of dead space which serve no purpose. The city itself looks rather desolate, not at all the bustling metropolis we (or at least I) think when we think of Gotham City.

If Batman is standing on a roof, looking down on the city, a more dramatic sky would be more fitting, and maybe lose the city skyline altogether.

If he's standing on a ledge of a building, where you can see the city in the background, the city should rise up more, be a little more bulky and perhaps detailed. Not too detailed or it will steal the focus :)

Lastly, there's a glow behind Batman which looks a little off, partly because the sky is one colour. I thikn that's what makes the city sort of boring... If you look at photos of a city skuline, the sky is almost always lit up by citylights. I think that might help give the illusion of a large city. At the moment, the image is a little too blue

I hope this will help and not sound as if I'm tearing you down.

10 October 2003, 03:53 PM
no, not at all. that helps a great deal. the sky city and glow around BM were actually intentional. I'm kind of going for a sort of symbolism with batman. you'll notice that the gargoyle weeps under the strain of holding up gotham as it crumbles around him, and that from a 2d point of view, batman is the only thing holding back the dark clouds coming.

10 October 2003, 04:01 PM
Not bad at all ... great job actually ... it's a good balance of elements in a typical gothic style typical ot batman.

In this case you could actually try backing of the saturation and heightening the rimlight on the hero figure. I'd also suggest heightening the contrast between Batman and the background -- except keep the area behing batman brighter as you have it -- but not so obviously a radial filter -- stretch it vertically a bit perhaps.

Also -- he looks a bit unhappy -- you got the lighting right but the stern look with the down light combines to give him an overly unhappy look... when I think you were going for a stern look? -- tricky.

You should also try raising his cape up and generally enarging it a bit -- so his left side is also framed within the cloak and it appears behing his right shoulder a bit more. I think that will enhance the brooding gothic feel overall and emphasise the hilights on him a bit more.

10 October 2003, 04:11 PM
Yeah, I see what you mean, but it's not really apparent, and I don't know if it's the compression or my monitor, because I can't see any tears on the gargoyle... It's a tricky thing to illustrate, the crumbling and such.

Mark makes some good points too, the saturation is probably part of what's bothering me... Rimlight is always good :) And the radial gradient is indeed a little too obvious.

I guess it's just that it feels like two images grafted together. The upper two thirds is batman, while the lower third is just sky and skyline. I think that's one part of the composition that is really bugging me. Maybe have the city encroach on Batman, or make the cape blend into the city, making Batman part of the city itself, standing against the clouds as an extension of the body of the city. Or something. I dunno...


I still stand by what I said about the city being too simple. It just doesn't fit IMO.

10 October 2003, 04:24 PM
you are lacking contrast.....right now the moon stands out more then Batman

Your composition is alright but your technique needs practice.

ie: make the cape flowing in the wind.....give it life!

suggestion: make the moon larger and put it behind Batman to give greater atmosphere and focus on the Figure

also.....right now Batman is in a relaxed position...having him crouch in a similar pose as the gargoyle....ready to strike would give him both dynamism....and have a symbolic juxtaposition with the gargoyle/enivironment

i dont know if this is for lack of effort or not....but skyline is so low that looks far off....why not raise the skyline to nearly the middle or so of the page? would bring the character back into focus more and create a greater illusion of city heights

10 October 2003, 04:38 PM
Remember, your light source should be the same color as the light it projects on the environment. If you have a yellow moon, then it should be a yellow ground.

This is not always true, for instance, have you ever seen an orange moon in real life? I have and the ground is not orange when it's out, it is still a blue hue, but for composition's sake, I would change the moon to a more blue tone, and I'd also add more colors to the scene.

Something that compliments dark blue, like fuscia, green, yellow, or all of the colors.

10 October 2003, 04:57 PM
maybe you could also have the dark clouds form a sort of loose bat give it a little bit of creepiness

10 October 2003, 06:03 PM
A Good start.

I think you need to:

1 - Make the environment and batman glow yellow from the full moon. (adds more contrast)
2 - Add some clouds over the left shoulder of Batman to fill that void up.
3 - Bring the city-scape MUCH closer to batman so he looks like he's in it.
4 - Add a few more buildings closest to batman in the gothic art-deco style batman is famous for.
5- Batmans facial expression seems a bit weird, I'd play around with it a bit.

All in all, its got the makings of a great pic.

10 October 2003, 06:31 PM
While the actual painting is well done, in terms of technical ability, I get no emotion from it.
Basically, I'm not sure what emotion you're trying to convey, yet evidently you're trying to convey some form of expression, or else you wouldn't have posted it here.

Perhaps if you give us a little more information about what you'd actually like to do with the image, we can help to suggest ways of improving it, because right now it's really nothing more than a painting of Batman on a ledge (a good painting, but a totally emotionless one).

10 October 2003, 06:36 PM
since a picture is worth a thousand words here is my suggestion.
basicly I pushed the composition a bit. and added some underlight from the city below for some more fill light to help with the forms. no big changes. you just have to get a little braver. you can always pull back later.

oh I made the moon blue. I thought it looked weird orange and so small.
typically when you see a moon orange like that it's called a harvest moon. it happend around dusk when the moon is low to the horizon. it looks bigger and the light is getting filtered though all the dust in the air and makes it look orange. later in the night when the moon is high and there are no geographic scale references it looks smaller and the light is crisper.

10 October 2003, 07:03 PM

Most images we see of Batman are against this type of moonlit sky background in a kind of retrospective mood. I find it very cliched. How about changing the mood completely and having him against a blood red sunset. It really depends what you are going for i'd just love to see something a bit different. Another side to his character perhaps. Hell, you could use any colour for the sky, a misty dawn, rain(bit cliched). Maybe you just have to take a risk and go in a differnt direction.

One more thing, his pose is a kinda boring. He looks like he's about to jump to his death. I'd prefer something more dynamic and sculptural.

Anyway hope this helps

10 October 2003, 07:06 PM
KoryH: I love what you've done there, greatly improves the image withough changing it all together. Thats what a good crit does: takes the person original vision and improves it.
One small problem though: the moon is tangent with top edge of the picture plan creating a-lot of tension there. I'd suggest adding a little bit to the top of the canvas or reducing the size of the moon just a bit.

10 October 2003, 07:06 PM
heheh KOryH just fixed about everything I saw od with it

10 October 2003, 09:40 PM
Great paintover KOryH. Can't really think of anything to add to what the others said...

10 October 2003, 11:02 PM
The changes are definately an improvement. HOWEVER....

I think what is throwing this pciture off for me is the perspective. Or the sum of two perspectives.

We see batman going up and into the top horizon line, yet, the city stretches out flat into the horizon? twin focal points are definately a comminality in comic drawing however, this picture seems to combine two different pictures into one.

It is also playing into the side of the building on which he is standing. He is stretched into the top of the canvas, yet the building he is on is straight up the side.

IOW, you need to pick one major horizon line and draw from there. It seems to have two competing focal points. Perhaps that is also due to the large amount of empty space.

10 October 2003, 11:05 PM
i think a bit of light was necessary and the moon had to be changed. but i think the pose and mood are perfect. it is totally batman. he was never a "sculptural" figure. always subtle in how he stood and never too dramatic in his acrobatics or position. the "dead space" is appropriate for batman and his desolate character/city. i like what KoryH did, though im not a fan of editing others pieces, except maybe a bit too much light. it does look good. j_bond_hmss, i hope u can do something similar and maintain the mood u created. good piece.

10 October 2003, 01:12 AM
i think the changes that he made are totally along the right lines. his take on the lighting really made me think about it. Thanks for all the input. I'm not going to alter the piece, cuz its done, but a lot of great input helps me grow as an artist.

As for the cape and dead space, its still really exactly what i wanted. I was going for a very 2d look more than anything you would "photograph" If you look at his face, its dimensions arent those of a real human face and it is very simplistic by design.

So i think the blue moon looks better, at the time i was trying to get some complimentary colors going on and such. As for the perspectives being off, definitely. they are totally off and i knew this from the start.

Once again. thanks for the tips.

10 October 2003, 01:41 AM
im glad u had a vision for the painting and the almost comic feel. nice. :thumbsup:

10 October 2003, 03:59 AM
you can probably get more of a sense of what i was going for by looking at the rough pencils...

thanks again for all the feedback from everyone. CG talk is such a great community for building on my skills. Seems that the better i get the more i realize how much further i can go.

10 October 2003, 07:36 PM
the changes Coryh proposed realy show how a slightly different composition completely tansforms an image.

I like in that version how the moon is now slightly behind the character, as someone else proposed too. it better shows that typical profile of the batsuit more. the blue light of the moon fits better too.

however, it might be a bit big [the moon]. sure the former one was a bit small, and from the sketch you see there are three main points of interest, the moon, the city and batman, wich is one too much for this image in my opinion. maybe it's not really to big now, but i feel it floats a bit, being just off the center. either really center or put it a bit more to the right, still making sure batman's head then is not centered in the moon.

10 October 2003, 10:49 PM
The new version looks awesome. I like how the moonlight shapes his body.
Though I miss contrasts, especially very dark shadows.
What I loved about the first two batman movies and especially the animated series was the dark scary mood. And when I first saw the title I expected your work to be much darker. The empty space behind him was taking away much atmosphere in the first version. It's better now but still I think we see too much of batman.
I'd love to see really dark shadows in contrast to the moonlight. It would have a much more stronger expression when batmans shadows would mix with the shadows of the building.
I can imagine that you want to point at the statue but for a scary dark batman nightscene I would expect that the moonlight is the only light.
Sometimes we gain more from seeing less.

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