Open Critique - Magma//Fire Lady

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  05 May 2013
Question Open Critique - Magma//Fire Lady

Hello there!!


So I've been working on this off and on for the past 2 years, and I wanted to come back to this by reaching out for some critiques, thoughts, and ideas from you guys!

I've been referring to her as the Magma Lady, but so far there's no fixed title.



What I know of her so far is that she's this being who was formed in and currently resides in a deep cave of a dormant volcano. She uses surrounding magma and rock to create things, like that "flower" she's holding.
There is a way to travel in to this cave, which is through a remote passage known by only a few. If I continue with this, I'd like to eventually have her leave the mountain (volcanic eruption = her ticket out, possibly? Still thinking).

So what I'd like to achieve with this painting is setting this up as this being her in her "home setting"; This is where she lives, and creates. And in that I'm kind of stuck.

I have yet to create a background (probably should have done that first...) which will be cave themed.. I'll ask about that in the future, haha.



What I was hoping to have critiqued is her current set up. I don't really feel like there's a strong "Line of Action," or a good flow going on, if that makes sense...



I'm up for any other thoughts//critiques as well! What you think works or doesn't work - I'd love to hear what you guys think!

Thank you for your time, guys! I hope to hear back from a few of you

Sincerely,
Rachel
 
  05 May 2013
from the face i see that it might be a pretty lady but her attire/body/form erm... idk its very hard to follow it. still cant really tell what her body is like. just a lump of magma stone o_O
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  05 May 2013
"I don't really feel like there's a strong "Line of Action," or a good flow going on"

My suggestion is to start over. Do several quick sketches/ including a general background...might want to do thumbnail sketches to get a better basic design. Put the focus of interest in different points of the image and choose the one you like best.
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  05 May 2013
Thumbs up

Originally Posted by Stormchain: from the face i see that it might be a pretty lady but her attire/body/form erm... idk its very hard to follow it. still cant really tell what her body is like. just a lump of magma stone o_O


Hi there! Her body is supposed to be a part of the rock/magma, but I agree it blends in way too much.. I'll keep that in mind.


Originally Posted by SteveIacopetti: "I don't really feel like there's a strong "Line of Action," or a good flow going on"

My suggestion is to start over. Do several quick sketches/ including a general background...might want to do thumbnail sketches to get a better basic design. Put the focus of interest in different points of the image and choose the one you like best.


My first instinct here is "Nooooooooooooooooooooooo!! :( :(" But honestly I think that might be where I have to go from here. I'll try to plan this out better for next time!

Thank you both very much~!
 
  05 May 2013
I really like your colors and your style. Has a great feeling to it!

But like the others said, her form is very hard to read. I would give her some legs. Maybe has one leg over the other. But this depends on how much you want her to be integrated into the magma.
As far the Magmathrone goes. I would give the silhouette a more interesting shape.
Magma/Lava has this flowing look like you have in your picture but maybe make some parts overlap/overhang.

I tested my suggestions with my limited skills. I hope you are not offended by me scribbling in your image (if you are i am truly sorry, some people don't like it. But i think its easier for me to explain my points). But hopefully this will give you a fresh look on your own image even if you disregard all my ideas
Would be a shame if you let your great work go to waste, but on the other hand you should never be too attached to your work
 
  05 May 2013
I cannot tell you how much I love the fountain idea. And no I'm not offended at all! I've heard of others taking that sort of thing horribly personal, but honestly I'm actually rather honored you took the time to draw up some ideas, so thank you!!

I also like the idea of showing her legs more, her body just gets too lost in the rock/magma.. Cross legged works well with the setup too, so when I redo this (which I'm already working on new thumbnails) I'll definitely keep these in mind.

Thank you!!
 
  05 May 2013
If you currently still aren't sure what exactly you want to communicate with this illustration, then I would suggest you really think it through before going any further, because putting all that hard work into a piece without having a clear idea of the visual narrative you want to convey, could end up causing you to waste a lot of time and energy if you later decide you want to change the idea because it wasn't compelling enough.

As a visual communicator, it's important remember that you are more than just someone who draws/paints pretty pictures, but a visual storyteller, and storytellers have to know what story they're trying to tell before setting out to put all the work into an visual narrative piece.

Spend some time to think about the premise, the character, the background story. Who is she? What's her personality? What is interesting about her that would make us care and want to find out more? Why is there in the scene? What is she doing in that moment, and what is the significance of this action? What is the feeling or emotion you're trying to convey? How does the location in the scene relate to the character and the story? Are there more interesting situations you can depict that is even more compelling than this one? A dramatic scene? An emotional scene? A visceral scene?

If you give yourself time to actually think these things through, you'll have a much more clear idea of what you want to do with the piece, and thus be able to come up with a more effective strategy in achieving your goal.
 
  05 May 2013
Thumbs up

That was a very enlightening response, thank you! I'll definitely do more rough sketches and character/story planning before jumping into painting something like this from now on haha.. Learning a lot from posting on this website, this is fantastic...
 
  05 May 2013
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