It's Over


Hi everybody!
My first painting of 2013, a detective after a car chase and shootout.
Need some critiques please ! Thanks !


Okay so here are some of the pros of your illustration: I like the rendering of the fire and the atmospheric perspective to your background. It does feel like the car is smoldering and smoke is fuzzing out the police cars in the background. The hazy police cars could be done better, try not to bleach out the details with light effects and the blur tool, the police car in front is way too close to not have much detail. Also the flaming car is not very accurate, you have the wheel in a 3/4 view but the whole car is drawn in profile. Plus don’t crop the car too close to the edge of your painting, I’d extend a few inches on the left and show the whole car. Use reference pictures if you have trouble with cars. As for you main character, the lighting could be done better. His body looks like its just a cylinder, there’s no variation in the vest when in real life the plates from the armor would create hills and valleys where light and shadow would show up. The shirt could be done better as well. Try looking at fabrics and study how they crease and drape. The gun he’s holding gets lost in the shadows, try giving some highlights to it to better define what he is holding and keep it away from the edges. Okay I think that’s it, hope this helps. Cheers.


Don’t use black to render shadows. Think about your light sources and ambient environment–they will color your shadows.

Don’t resort to black, sharp lines to define your shapes and forms. If this isn’t meant to be a comic book/anime styled image with visible line art, then convey shapes and edges properly by using values and edges.

Different surface materials will reflect light differently–don’t homogenize them. Skin, cotton, nylon, plastic, steel, blood, hair, etc all will have different levels of smoothness/texture, and will have different levels of specularity. For example, anything wet will have high specularity and distinct/sharp specular highlights. Skin can get oily or have perspiration, and that also creates a wet surface. Steel and plastic will be more reflective than cotton and nylon.

The tonal composition can be more effective. You have this big flaming car with really bright flames stealing attention away from your main point of focus. The light you do have on him doesn’t actually model his forms for good readabilty. I would suggest a secondary light source or an ambient light to lighten up his shadow side so the overall readability is better.


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