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Old 06-07-2013, 02:03 AM   #1
shutterbones
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Bones - 2D Illustration Critique/Discussion

I've been looking for an art community forums I could post some of my artwork on to get some general feedback.

A quick bio: I'm currently a freelance artist. I quit my job in order to focus on my career as a writer and in the meantime utilize my skills with artwork to make my money until I can get the ball rolling on my writing projects. I've been professionally drawing for clients since 2005, and have built up a solid client base over the years. I have never been to art school, never plan to, and do not plan to pursue a career as a professional artist. This is primarily my hobby, but for the time being it is my job in order to pay bills.

I've been frustrated with my artwork for the past year, attempting to push my limits and boundaries to try and find a way to improve. My biggest hurdle lately is my inability to find a solid direction whenever I start on a painting. While I can whip up sketches in no time, I have a problem with consistency when it comes to my digital painting steps because I have no method. Every painting I do feels like a hashed-together messy process of completely blind trial&error despite my years of practice, studying, and application to many, many different approaches to rendering a digital painting.

Anyway, I'm hoping I could get some focused, honest feedback on my artwork as a whole. I personally feel like my artwork has no identity or consistency and there's just things I cannot quite put my finger on but I KNOW exist. Which is why I need a second pair of eyes to hopefully find the root of the problem and ways I can approach fixing it, because what was once just a minor aggravation is now a serious problem. My clients all expect efficiency and consistency with each commission I complete, and I want them to be able to know what to expect when they commission me. Not just "well let's try it this way and hope it turns out okay" because I know I can do better. I need to find structure in how I approach this.

So without further ado here are some examples of what you'll be working with if you choose to brave this thread and offer your opinion/insight on what I'm doing wrong.

Recent Lineless Paintings:



Some Semi-Realism Portraits I've Done:



Recent Work-in-Progress Pieces I'm frustrated with:





A good portion of these are commissions that I've already done for people, and some is personal work. I do a good bit of fanart commissions so there's that, too.

When I'm trying to work on an hourly basis it gets harder to find consistency and fair payment (some of these I've spent over 100+ hours on and it barely shows, while some were only 2 hours) and I need to find some sort of happy medium in my art so I can keep from working myself into the ground to produce quality, consistent artwork for my clients.

Any suggestions, discussion, or feedback would be hugely appreciated thank you!

-Tys/Shutterbones
 
Old 06-14-2013, 03:54 PM   #2
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hi shutterbones..

ive got some thoughts about this.. i dont have much time right now.. hopeffully ill have time to write back soon
 
Old 06-18-2013, 02:28 PM   #3
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Wow,attracting concept!Feeling sad but romantic.
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Old 07-09-2013, 02:12 PM   #4
Kanga
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Just some ideas. If you are already successful and paying the bills then who says you have to change?

If you did though I think your figures and environments suffer from lack of structure. Tracing the anatomical elements back to basic forms would show they are skewed. The perspective is off and the drawing has something akin to Byzantine flatness which just gets back to practice. I think you would benefit a lot by grabbing some figure drawing dvds and work through them. My favorite figure artist here is bumskee: http://forums.cgsociety.org/showthr...ghlight=bumskee

Notice the gesture sketches. This core base is the juice
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Old 07-12-2013, 11:25 PM   #5
shutterbones
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kanga
Just some ideas. If you are already successful and paying the bills then who says you have to change?

If you did though I think your figures and environments suffer from lack of structure. Tracing the anatomical elements back to basic forms would show they are skewed. The perspective is off and the drawing has something akin to Byzantine flatness which just gets back to practice. I think you would benefit a lot by grabbing some figure drawing dvds and work through them. My favorite figure artist here is bumskee: http://forums.cgsociety.org/showthr...ghlight=bumskee

Notice the gesture sketches. This core base is the juice


Thank you so much for your input, Kanga. I very much appreciate it. I definitely haven't practiced loose figure sketches in a long time (I use to do it on a weekly basis) so that could certainly be a part of the problem. If there's one thing I learned it's that the composition will suffer from poor execution of the anatomy. I also noticed whenever I flip hand-drawn sketches around in photoshop that they are skewed to one side. I unconsciously tilt my head when I draw, so that might be why... I should try to remember to check it by holding it up to the light.

I am honestly petrified of structural backgrounds. I have very little knowledge of how perspective works and how to construct backgrounds using perspective.

Oh, here are some recent sketches I suppose that could suffice to help analyze my art? Hopefully? Lol.






Newest at the top.
 
Old 07-19-2013, 05:33 AM   #6
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So I got back into the art groove and I'm slowly attempting to work more on my saturation levels and shadows. I think I figured out part of the problem - all of my shadows and contrast were far too soft. I checked out a bunch of my pictures, turned them to black and white, and the problem kept cropping up. Though it isn't my usual approach, I've been forcing myself to work with more hard-edged brushes and a higher opacity. Also challenging myself with light and how it falls, though I haven't fully grasped it yet.





As a note, not all of my artwork is semi-realism or lineless. And I obviously also draw a lot of Mass Effect fanart - though all of these are commissions.

Just an update. Hoping someone is willing to comment further.
 
Old 07-19-2013, 05:33 AM   #7
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