Captain Swings portrait work ... Undead

Contribute art for mainline Wesnoth.

Moderator: Forum Moderators

Forum rules
Before posting critique in this forum, you must read the following thread:
Post Reply
User avatar
thespaceinvader
Retired Art Director
Posts: 8414
Joined: August 25th, 2007, 10:12 am
Location: Oxford, UK
Contact:

Re: Draugnatomy - portrait attempt

Post by thespaceinvader »

First thing's first, you need to make sure when you're filling your colours, you grow the selection slightly so that you don't get that unsightly white border around your lines.

As regards the rest: you seem to have lost a lot of the colour variations from your previous flats. And you should be aware that LordBob's techiques as posted are heavily reliant on the variable pressure effect achieved by a tablet, I don't know how to translate them into mouse work.
http://thespaceinvader.co.uk | http://thespaceinvader.deviantart.com
Back to work. Current projects: Catching up on commits. Picking Meridia back up. Sprite animations, many and varied.
Captain Swing
Posts: 52
Joined: January 20th, 2009, 8:43 pm
Location: The Coastal US of A

Re: Draugnatomy - portrait attempt

Post by Captain Swing »

I'm still trying - rust is next I think then the other surfaces

Image

thoughts as always are appreciated.

...Swing
User avatar
TL
Posts: 511
Joined: March 3rd, 2007, 3:02 am

Re: Draugnatomy - portrait attempt

Post by TL »

Your verdigris is too verdi and not enough gris, I think. Needs desaturating.

The linework needs to be integrated, but I assume that's just a WIP. Texture is looking pretty neat, but the lighting is extremely flat; I'm not sure if you were planning on going back and doing shadows over it later, but as it is it is very problematic given how complicated the armor is.
User avatar
thespaceinvader
Retired Art Director
Posts: 8414
Joined: August 25th, 2007, 10:12 am
Location: Oxford, UK
Contact:

Re: Draugnatomy - portrait attempt

Post by thespaceinvader »

Another slight issue is that you need to darken the colour of the lines so that they roughly match (or slightly exceed) the darkest shade in the shading.

I think the verdegris looks great, actually. Perhaps a touch of desaturation, but not a lot. Verdegris is surprisingly bright and saturated.
http://thespaceinvader.co.uk | http://thespaceinvader.deviantart.com
Back to work. Current projects: Catching up on commits. Picking Meridia back up. Sprite animations, many and varied.
User avatar
Kestenvarn
Inactive Developer
Posts: 1307
Joined: August 19th, 2005, 7:30 pm
Contact:

Re: Draugnatomy - portrait attempt

Post by Kestenvarn »

Captain Swing wrote:I am doing something wrong. :( Yes I am, what though?

Image
Head down and squatting. The overall pose is strange but not menacing or powerful. This feels similar to what the undead creature would look like before his Animation - he is still 'asleep'.

You could make him appear more alert by turning his gaze towards the viewer, having him stand up and possibly holding his weapon/shield in a readied instead of ceremonial position.
User avatar
LordBob
Portrait Director
Posts: 1282
Joined: December 8th, 2008, 8:18 pm
Location: Lille, France
Contact:

Re: Draugnatomy - portrait attempt

Post by LordBob »

I second what TSI says about the lines: their current tone makes the picture harder to read.
As to the verdegris, the light tones are great but the dark green you use would be more suitable for emerald. I'd try switching it for a desaturated bluish-green.

The plate texture you managed has fine a look of old iron, but I think you could give it more highlights in some places. Especially the shoulder & arm holding the axe, the volumes of which are difficult to read. Treat them as whole with until your eye really feels the volume of the arm, then you'll be able to tarnish & rust each plate individually. It's always better to apply general shading while your texture is simple :wink:


Altogether I like how your colour scheme is developping. Those greens, browns and greys are doing a fine job bravo! :D
Want to see more of my art ? Visit my portfolio !
catwhowalksbyhimself
Posts: 411
Joined: January 23rd, 2006, 8:28 am

Re: Draugnatomy - portrait attempt

Post by catwhowalksbyhimself »

Actually I think just turning the head towards the viewer while leaving the body the same would be both menacing and made his animation quite clear without having to portray any action at all. (He's watching you, waiting for the order to attack but not being alive doesn't bother to prepare for it)
Captain Swing
Posts: 52
Joined: January 20th, 2009, 8:43 pm
Location: The Coastal US of A

Re: Draugnatomy - portrait attempt

Post by Captain Swing »

Thanks for the encouragement, I just finished him up as he currently is and now need to figure out if a) Major changes in pose are necessary (unlikely to happen - without a compelling reason I don't want to go back to the pencil phase) b) Minor adjustments in pose - this can happen - such as maybe moving the axe/enlarging the axe - though were becomes an issue c) color changes - desaturation on the copper (though I do like it popping out over the generally dull tones of the armor) or fixing a light source.

If you have any more thoughts in these area I'd be glad to hear them, and especially if this fellow is up to the bar for usable portraiture, or can he be made so.

Next stop special effects on the eyes - an unnatural greenish flame/glow/wisp perhaps

General complaints about him looking not scary enough - well I said at the beginning of this that it is very hard to make skeletons look threatening to the average video game player. Skeletons are something one smashes up in the first level, in addition to that prejudice we a simple have a mass problem, once the primal fear of death visage is gone they're just smiling bundles of sticks. Take a look at the skeleton portraits Kitty and Spaceinvader cite earlier in this thread for an example.

...Swing

Edited: Yipes! he still needs external shadows - how did I miss that? Myopic focus on texture I guess...
Edited 2: Added some shadows - they may not be dark enough - whole portrait is perhaps too dark? Fixed some of the outlines (though next time outlines will be thinner I think) and gave him wickedly glowy eyes (hope they aren't too silly)

See next post for image - having trouble uploading
Captain Swing
Posts: 52
Joined: January 20th, 2009, 8:43 pm
Location: The Coastal US of A

Re: Draugnatomy - portrait attempt

Post by Captain Swing »

Image

With above mentioned changes

...Swing
User avatar
thespaceinvader
Retired Art Director
Posts: 8414
Joined: August 25th, 2007, 10:12 am
Location: Oxford, UK
Contact:

Re: Draugnatomy - portrait attempt

Post by thespaceinvader »

It's looking good. I'm astounded by the sophistication of what you've achieved with just a mouse. You've got a good eye for detail, and I really like your pencil work. Clearly this has been a useful exercise in getting to know your way around some of GIMP's features. I particularly like the smoke coming out of the eyes - it's a nice effect, though it might eb more suited to a magic-using undead.

However... this particular portrait currently isn't going to make it to mainline. There are major issues regarding posing, to begin with - it lack a certain dynamism, and really doesn't look big enough. The aforementioned issues with line colouration remain - they need to contrast the darkest areas of the shading, otherwise it becomes difficult to read the image. The light is lacking in uniformity of direction. The skull is simply not realistic enough. Take a look at this and compare...

I hope you understand that I am not trying to be blunt. I am merely one artist trying to help out another, and you have the skills that I feel could be developed in creating mainline art. I would hate for you to get too far down developing your skills in one direction just for us to have to point this out to you later.

As I've said before, I'm a big fan of your pencils. I really like your style, and your work is clean and would be fantastically easy to ink. I'd love to work with you in the future (too many projects on my plate at the moment)and I don't like to send you back to the drawing board, but I fear that a fresh start may be needed.

But can I suggest that your talents might be better applied to a different species? In particular, the Trolls - Shaman, Grunt, Warrior, Rocklobber, Hero, Great. Any or all of those would be a good place for you to start - I think your style naturally lends itself to them. i really look forward to seeing what you can come out with for them.
http://thespaceinvader.co.uk | http://thespaceinvader.deviantart.com
Back to work. Current projects: Catching up on commits. Picking Meridia back up. Sprite animations, many and varied.
Captain Swing
Posts: 52
Joined: January 20th, 2009, 8:43 pm
Location: The Coastal US of A

Re: Draugnatomy - portrait attempt

Post by Captain Swing »

thespaceinvader wrote:
However... this particular portrait currently isn't going to make it to mainline. There are major issues regarding posing, to begin with - it lack a certain dynamism, and really doesn't look big enough. The aforementioned issues with line colouration remain - they need to contrast the darkest areas of the shading, otherwise it becomes difficult to read the image. The light is lacking in uniformity of direction. The skull is simply not realistic enough. Take a look at this and compare...

I hope you understand that I am not trying to be blunt. I am merely one artist trying to help out another, and you have the skills that I feel could be developed in creating mainline art. I would hate for you to get too far down developing your skills in one direction just for us to have to point this out to you later.
Hey no offense taken, since the problems are all though the portrait (posing especially - can't fix that at this stage, but also the lighting issue and lines - [lines I know how to redo now, thinner!]) I'm going to start off at sketch again. I figured the inking/color on this one wouldn't make it given that it's my 1st try using an illustration program. I'll chalk it up as a learning piece.

Anyway, I somehow can't seem to bring myself to work on trolls right now - at least until I take another stab at an armored skeleton. This pencil should give an idea, armor goes on next then ink assuming the pose is 'dynamic' enough.

Image

...Swing
User avatar
Darker_Dreams
Posts: 608
Joined: February 1st, 2008, 5:26 pm

Re: Draugnatomy - portrait attempt

Post by Darker_Dreams »

I want to say right off (since I jumped on the unnaturalness of the last pose) that this pose is much more natural.

The helm looks comically large though... ;-)
User avatar
Kestenvarn
Inactive Developer
Posts: 1307
Joined: August 19th, 2005, 7:30 pm
Contact:

Re: Draugnatomy - portrait attempt

Post by Kestenvarn »

Much better pose. Would look good with the axehead resting over his shoulder, he reminds me of the Deadites standing at attention from Army of Darkness. (You know, the part where it plays this song.)

Helmet...?
Captain Swing
Posts: 52
Joined: January 20th, 2009, 8:43 pm
Location: The Coastal US of A

Re: Draugnatomy - portrait attempt

Post by Captain Swing »

Kestenvarn wrote:Much better pose. Would look good with the axehead resting over his shoulder
...
Helmet...?
Indeed the helmet was a bit big and the axe now rests on his shoulder.

Here's my inked version (gosh a tablet would be useful for this), along with pencil in case anyone wants to ink it for me...

Image

I ended up sketching a Conquistador version as well, but nobody here needs a matchlock armed skeleton.

... Swing
Attachments
Penciled on an alpha background ... Swing 09
Penciled on an alpha background ... Swing 09
draugDpenciled.png (189.27 KiB) Viewed 2872 times
User avatar
Kestenvarn
Inactive Developer
Posts: 1307
Joined: August 19th, 2005, 7:30 pm
Contact:

Re: Draugnatomy - portrait attempt

Post by Kestenvarn »

Captain Swing wrote:Indeed the helmet was a bit big and the axe now rests on his shoulder.

Here's my inked version (gosh a tablet would be useful for this), along with pencil in case anyone wants to ink it for me...

Image
Truly, that looks terrific. Or as my friend put it, "that qualifies as badass."
Post Reply