Machineflesh 2D Challenge Entry: Nathaniel West

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  06 June 2004
A new legend signed up the contest!

The whole idea with the parrot gives this piece a deeper meaning, not just another half man half robot thing. Stick to that and yea, the parrot should be a wood like
Did u think about wood and rope mechanism of a pirates arm as well? just a thought....

Cant wait to see more (after i looked ur webpage )!
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DW V 2d
  06 June 2004
Yay, you drew the parrot! I can already see it perched on the pirates shoulder. How about attaching a tellescope to the pirate or something, just a thought. I can't wait to see more, keep it up
  06 June 2004
Arrrrr !
thats what the parrot is going to say most of the time anyways

If his mechanical arm is holding his sword how will you do the connection ? a mechanical hand or some plug type thing or hooks or something ?

I love the concept !
*Lifts a boddle'o Rum and cheers*
  06 June 2004
Concept Sketch: Pirate

Here's the pirate ideation. I'm not going to go into too much depth with the mechanics, as I don't have an engineering degree. Basically the pirate has a resonating chamber that is attached to the remains of his windpipe, thus reproducing the necessary vibrations to emit sounds. Those vibrations are sent to the parrot, and BAM! instant ventriloquism. The muscles of the neck are replaced by springs and pulleys, much like the pulley rigging one would see on an old sailing ship.

The arm is made of mahogany, which is a commonly used wood for seacraft due to its tight grain structure, which allows it to resist water penetration very well.

Oh yeah, and the hand can hold a sword or be used for general slapping and surprise backhands when necessary.

Let me know what you think please. I'd appreciate some feedback.

Last edited by NathanielWest : 06 June 2004 at 09:33 AM.
  06 June 2004
Concept Sketch: Comp

This is my first comp of the finished painting. ignore posturing please, as this is just an idea of placement of elements. Obviously I'm the only one that can understand what is going on at this stage, so I will explain the elements for you all.

The pirate is standing above an island girl, who is on the ground in great distress. Behind him are the vague heads of other pirates approaching. There will be some lush plants and palm trees around the edges of the painting.

I'm thinking about silhouetting the pirate's face to make him more menacing and mysterious. Besides, I don't think this piece is about how he looks really. It's more about the mechanics, and the distress of the girl in front of him.

Please let me know if any of you have opinions on this!
  06 June 2004
Great concept....

I always have liked the idea that the machine parts could be historical or mechanical in appearance. The parrot looks great and I can really imagine just how good this will look in colour.

I like the composition. I suppose you could empasise the fact that the pirate is towering above the girl by looking up at him more from floor level - make him more menacing - or alternatively be looking down at her from shoulder height so you can see mechanical arm and parrot in more detail.

Great stuff...keep the WIP coming
My B-Movie Entry
  06 June 2004
MrFreeman: Thanks for the kind words. I agree completely about making the arm the and parrot the focus. I really plan on using a light source from the upper left side that would pick up the details of the mechanics without turning into a rendering job. I really want the viewer's eye to make some of it up, especially when it comes to the pirate's face, which will only have hints of details. I might adjust the pirate's pose so that the arm is closer to the woman, and give the arm and her head the most light, making it the hotspot.
  06 June 2004
Concept Sketch: Value Study

Here's a quick value study just so you all can see an idea of the lighting that I'm thinking about.

Feedback is always welcome. I'd really like to hear your ideas.
  06 June 2004
I absolutely love the arm (looks sort of like an electric eggbeater)

I can see why you want to hide his face in shadows, but it somehow distances me from the picture.

I think you might need to make something of his personality shine through. Could be body language, could be a moonlit nose (or whatever, you get my drift)

2 cents from E.T
  06 June 2004
E.T. thanks for the feedback! I really appreciate your opinion, and I agree that the true character of the pirate will need to come from his body language. I can see how you might feel distanced without seeing the pirate's face, and I'm hoping to solve this by making the focus more on the girl.

Does anyone disagree with the fact that I'm taking my Machineflesh character, and NOT making him the focus of the painting? I really want to only suggest him, whereas the woman would have more details.

Should I show his face? Please reply with yes or no and why...I'd appreciate your everyone's input on this. Thanks!
  06 June 2004
I think you know exactly what you want to do with this illustration, and whatever you decide on doing will undoubtedly turn out well. I enjoy seeing your progress and can't wait to see the final, keep it up
  06 June 2004
hmm... it could be just me, but i would like to see the face of the pirate. Pirates r always scarred, their skin is rough and full of wrinkles (i hope u know what am i talking about... my english vocabulary isnt as great as it should be )... so u could give this pic a deeper story just with the pirates face and his expression... god I hope u know what im talking about
But i know that u could make a great atmosphere, so im not scared that the final piece wouldnt be awesome.

PS: but i think that the main element of the pic must be the character (machineflesh) and not the ambient... i think
My Blog

DW V 2d
  06 June 2004
Line Art: Rough Line Art

Hey all,

I've disappeared for a week or so. Kind of got busy with work and I'm in the process of moving as well, but I'm back and determined to finish. This is my composition, and it will probably change here and there as I start painting. I just wanted to get the overall positioning and poses for each character, and this is usually how I work when doing a painting. Frankly, I don't like drawing really tight, and things change during the painting process anyways, so here's my progress. This is nothing fancy, it's just what works best for me. I'm also not conerned with details just yet, as that will come out during painting. Let me know if you have any suggestions.
  06 June 2004
Oh yeah, the story for this is basically that the pirates are looking for a treasure chest, which this island girl was trying to cover up until they came upon her. She's in trouble. That's it. Just the usual pirate lifestyle depicted in this one.
  06 June 2004
Coloring WIP: Color Comp

This is my color comp thus far. I'm mostly conerned with overall color harmony and value balance. I work pretty small on the screen so that I don't get bogged down to much in the little details at the moment. I find it easy to start noodling around with little things, and it's helpful to work very small to force yourself to focus on the picture as a whole. Let me know if you have any ideas or suggestions please! I'd really really appreciate some input. Good times!!
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