in progress lynx study

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  05 May 2013
in progress lynx study

Trying to use mainly the hard round brush here. My values are too light and some of the details are still off. Fun practice though.

  05 May 2013
No huge changes. I fixed his right eye lid, detailed around the eyes and tried to sharpen up the hair texture. The values are still too light overall and I've missed some of the subtleties in the coat pattern. Very good exercise though.

  05 May 2013
Are you trying to do an accurate copy of the photo, or are you trying to use it as simply reference and then do your own artistic interpretation?
  05 May 2013
I was aiming for a direct copy and this is what I ended up with. Had I been going for the style it could have been kind of neat. But I just missed. I've had some time away from it and can see a little clearer where things went wrong. Not really sure how to correct it yet.
  06 June 2013
Working on improving the values and the hair texture.

Last edited by tibbi : 06 June 2013 at 10:54 PM.
  06 June 2013
Originally Posted by tibbi: Working on improving the values and the hair texture.

The right pupil has wandered to the right - you need to fix it, the cat looks cockeyed. Someof your overall shapes have drifted too, it's nose is getting a little lopsided and un-catlike.

Good work. Fur is a challenge, huh?
  06 June 2013
Thanks for the critique. I was noticing the face had gotten away from me. I'll get it in line.

Fur is a challenge. Kind of fun though.
  06 June 2013
Originally Posted by tibbi: Thanks for the critique. I was noticing the face had gotten away from me. I'll get it in line.

Fur is a challenge. Kind of fun though.

Yep! There's a logic to it, once you figure it out, it's just a bit tedious. I did an illustration years ago that had several animals in it, where I figured it out. And that was painting with a brush!
  06 June 2013
I'm glad I'm learning fur in Photoshop. It has layers of forgiveness

I worked on the alignment of his pupil and nose. That led to a lot of messing about with the whole image. The values are still off, why is that so hard? I'm looking at it, seems like I should be able to dial it in. Also trying to get more of the right hair texture to happen. It's still much softer than the photo.

  06 June 2013
One trick that some artists use, is to use the Unsharp Mask tool in Photoshop to do create a crisper look, which will in your case, allow you to create a sharper sense of detail in the fur. Try something like 150`200 strength, .5~1 pixel radius (for typical web resolution). If for high-res such as print size, then 1~3 pixels radius.

You still have problems with accuracy in shapes, values, edges, etc. If your goal is to do an accurate copy to hone your technical ability, then you must be very strict with yourself--make your copy look identical to the original, in every way possible. While the fur will be nearly impossible, everything else is within your control to get very close. Make sure your shapes, proportions, values, edges, etc are accurate, for every micro and macro areas.

Another issue you have is that you are flattening the image too much. You need to convey the overall sense of volume and mass by observing the BIG shapes such as how the entire snout having form shadows that makes the snout look rounded and protruding from the face. The entire head (skull and face) also has form shadows--it's not just a big flat fur rug. Squint your eyes and look at the reference photo, and then look at your copy, and you'll see what's missing.
  06 June 2013
Thank you Robert. I've been working on the shapes and positions of the shapes. There is so much subtly at work in the original image. By the time I'm able to reproduce it I will have really learned something.
  06 June 2013
Closer, still not there...

Last edited by tibbi : 06 June 2013 at 05:37 AM.
  06 June 2013
If you want to get closer still, start using texture brushes and experiment with brush customization. For example, its nose is obviously textured, but your copy doesn't convey this because you're not using the right brushes for texture surfaces.

If you're doing this as technical exercise to train your eye-to-hand coordination and observation/analysis skills, it's far better to use a human face, because we are intimately familiar with how people should look, and even a tiny bit of deviation/inaccuracy will be glaringly obvious. With other subject matters it's much more forgiving and not quite as challenging.
  06 June 2013
I found some brushes that created texture similar to what I'm seeing in the photo.

The entire image is still far from a prefect copy. I see many things that are off, mostly in terms of texture and value. My impulse is to put it aside and move on to another project. As per your advice I'll try a human face.

Thanks for sharing your time and experience. It's helping me.

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