Nexam's Blizzcon artwork

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  06 June 2014
Nexam's Blizzcon artwork


I'm working on an artwork for the blizzcon contest. I try a new workflow as well: grayscale to Color, usually i start with color.

The last 2 steps:

Still work to do on it...
  06 June 2014
Here the last version:

  06 June 2014
Hey! Its looking pretty good!
I saw this on CA.o actually lol
The only thing that I noticed, though its more of a personal preference, is that the highlights on the skull look a bit metallic, like they were done with the dodge tool in photoshop.Though it could just be me.
Great stuff anyways.
And good luck in the contest!
  06 June 2014
Thank you for your advises !
  06 June 2014
The tonal composition and control of lighting/values, the atmospheric perspective, etc, are nice.

The frontal lighting is a bit too strong on the left figure, and sort of undermines the back-lit lighting scheme of the scene (unless you have a logical light source coming from the viewer's direction that's concentrated on the left figure's head/shoulder area somehow).

The body language of the two figures don't look quite as expressive as they could be. The poses could be more dynamic and convey a sense of motion and strength. Right now, they both look more like in-between frames as opposed to important keyframe poses (thinking like an animator is a good way to approach poses in still images). Push the poses more so the joints and limbs are pushed to the extremes of their articulation as well as logical follow through limit of their arc of motion in that specific action. They need to look like they are pushing their weapons with all the might of their bodies and even leaning their center of gravity into the action/impact. This is important for creating a more compelling and dramatic visual narrative.

The other thing to think about, is how people actually fight with weapons. Doing a little research into weapons fighting will make your work appear more authentic and credible. For example, in a long weapon like the one the left figure is wielding, why would he want to sacrifice the advance of his longer reach and move his hand all the way up the shaft of the weapon? With a long weapon, you want to take advantage of the longer reach and get yourself out of harm's way. Logical thinking like that is also an important component of being a visual storyteller, so take the time and really think your visual narrative through, the way a writer or movie director would.

Remember, you're not just some guy who makes pretty pictures--you're a visual storyteller, and your visual stories have to be compelling and make sense, and if you're really good, you can also evoke emotional and intellectual resonance with your visual stories (for example, a fight scene can be so much more--it can contain a heartbreaking story full of emotions, if you put in more time and energy to come up with a compelling scene that maybe involves relationships and betrayals or loss of a loved one on the battlefield).
  07 July 2014
Thanks a lot for all these advises !
Really helped me to spot some area to improve. I wish i had time to redraw the position of the character because you are right. I will keep that in mind for the next artwork.

Here the final version

Version HD
  07 July 2014
The final version's more polished, but all the issues I pointed out still stands. What this means, is that how polished/finished/detailed a piece of work is, is only part of the equation, and there is a lot more to creating a compelling piece of artwork, and much of it has to do with the artist's ability to tell a visual story and express emotions, not just how well he can draw and paint. Too many visual artists focus on just the drawing and painting, or lighting and colors and composition, but they don't spend enough time improving their visual communication skills.

In a way, you have to think of it like this:

Some of the biggest visual spectacles in the world of cinema have really bad storytelling--just meaningless, trite drivel, with a predictable plot, devoid of character development, lack of emotional resonance, etc. Yes, it's a lot of really pretty eye-candy, but all of it is just disposable entertainment.

As a visual storyteller, the quality of the narrative you convey matters. So it's important to really think about how you can make the visual narrative in your images as compelling as possible. Even if there's no interesting plot and just a simple action scene, find ways to make the action scene really interesting instead of looking like the countless other action scenes we've all seen before. Imbue it with emotions and unique situation and make the characters really expressive.
  07 July 2014
I agree with you, but like i said, the deadline was today and i didn't had the time to fix it the way i wanted to. I will definitely keep all that in mind for the next work i do, thank you.
  07 July 2014
Everything you do is a chance accumulate precious lessons that add to your experience, so nothing is ever wasted. I look forward to your next piece. With your overall skill, you should be able to tell a compelling visual narrative, as long as you took the time to think about the visual story first.
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