Valkiers portraits: It's like I can touch you!

Contribute art for mainline Wesnoth.

Moderators: Forum Moderators, Developers

Forum rules
Before posting critique in this forum, you must read the following thread:
Post Reply
User avatar
Valkier
Art Contributor
Posts: 509
Joined: May 25th, 2009, 5:43 pm

Valkiers portraits: It's like I can touch you!

Post by Valkier » June 27th, 2009, 6:08 pm

Gonna use this to show the portraits I have finished from now on.

Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Image
Attachments
deathbladesmall.png
deathbladesmall.png (47.87 KiB) Viewed 7059 times
deathbladelarge.png
deathbladelarge.png (181.34 KiB) Viewed 7059 times
skeletonsmall.png
skeletonsmall.png (38.58 KiB) Viewed 7059 times
skeletonlarge.png
skeletonlarge.png (143.05 KiB) Viewed 7059 times
Last edited by Valkier on December 23rd, 2010, 3:40 am, edited 19 times in total.
Win if you can. Lose if you must. But always cheat.

User avatar
Sapient
Inactive Developer
Posts: 4453
Joined: November 26th, 2005, 7:41 am
Contact:

Re: Valkiers portraits

Post by Sapient » June 27th, 2009, 6:19 pm

I think this skull looks very nice and is certainly of the mainline quality, for what it is.
http://www.wesnoth.org/wiki/User:Sapient... "Looks like your skills saved us again. Uh, well at least, they saved Soarin's apple pie."

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

Re: Valkiers portraits

Post by thespaceinvader » June 27th, 2009, 6:35 pm

Indeed - ideally, though, you'd need to match the mainline style too, which involves comic-book style inked lines, coloured to match the areas they surround. Check any of the more recent mainline portraits (the ones by kitty, myself and LordBob primarily) to see it, or have a look at the tutorial. I'd also suggest that, for bone, this looks very desaturated and grey. Something a bit more cream or... well, bone... coloured would be preferable.

I really REALLY like the idea of having the magical symbols carved into the bone, though. We've experimented in the past (with one of the two current skeletal portraits in existence) with fixing various bits of the unit's armour and equipment directly to the bones. I really like the idea of modifying them this way.

Also, I love to see peoples' work process. Nice job, I look forward to seeing more from you =D
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
Valkier
Art Contributor
Posts: 509
Joined: May 25th, 2009, 5:43 pm

Re: Valkiers portraits

Post by Valkier » June 27th, 2009, 7:27 pm

thespaceinvader wrote:Indeed - ideally, though, you'd need to match the mainline style too, which involves comic-book style inked lines, coloured to match the areas they surround. Check any of the more recent mainline portraits (the ones by kitty, myself and LordBob primarily) to see it, or have a look at the tutorial. I'd also suggest that, for bone, this looks very desaturated and grey. Something a bit more cream or... well, bone... coloured would be preferable.

I really REALLY like the idea of having the magical symbols carved into the bone, though. We've experimented in the past (with one of the two current skeletal portraits in existence) with fixing various bits of the unit's armour and equipment directly to the bones. I really like the idea of modifying them this way.

Also, I love to see peoples' work process. Nice job, I look forward to seeing more from you =D
I tried "creaming" the skull up a little. I'm trying to keep the colors a little off to make the image more disconcerting. It's a dead thing that is moving, which to me seems a tad unnatural. I want it to express that in more ways than just the figure itself if I can. I'm glad you liked the symbol. That was one insert I was curious about how well it would be recieved.

I tried working in the lines, but to be honest it's proving difficult at the moment. I referenced the picture of the wizard over and over and think I may have found a piont where I can keep my coloration and lighting, while putting in enough lines to make it somewhat cartoonish. If I need to push it more, just say the word.

I think my biggest challenge is going to be trying to match styles, more than actually drawing the portraits themselves!
Attachments
skull.jpg
Win if you can. Lose if you must. But always cheat.

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

Re: Valkiers portraits

Post by thespaceinvader » June 27th, 2009, 7:41 pm

That looks fine - there's some flexibility in the style, as you can see by the differences between kitty's portraits, Bob's and mine. With the lines (though they could stand to be a little less dark) this looks fine.

The only other slight issue I noticed, having looked a little closer, is that the eyes and mouth don't seem to be on the same horizontal plane - you need to lower the eye further from camera slightly so that the brow is parallel with the mouth. It could maybe stand to have a little more forehead, too.

Looking forward to seeing how the rest of the pic pans out =)
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
Valkier
Art Contributor
Posts: 509
Joined: May 25th, 2009, 5:43 pm

Re: Valkiers portraits

Post by Valkier » June 27th, 2009, 7:59 pm

thespaceinvader wrote: The only other slight issue I noticed, having looked a little closer, is that the eyes and mouth don't seem to be on the same horizontal plane - you need to lower the eye further from camera slightly so that the brow is parallel with the mouth. It could maybe stand to have a little more forehead, too.
I wasn't really trying to put them on the same horizontal plane. The side furthest from the viewer is meant to be raised up so it looks like it's tilting its head towards us a tiny bit. That way it doesn't look as stiff as it would if it were just staring straight ahead. I think what may be setting it off slightly is the outline I have around the nose, and the far side of the teeth can be raised a little bit. Thanks for letting me know.

Forehead could stand to be a bit larger however. Thanks for pointing that out to me as well. I'll also try mixing the line colors up a bit and see if I can get something I like from it.
Win if you can. Lose if you must. But always cheat.

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

Re: Valkiers portraits

Post by thespaceinvader » June 27th, 2009, 8:48 pm

Raising the teeth works just as well - the issue was that one side of the face appears longer than the other. Glad to be of help =)
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
kitty
Retired Portrait Director
Posts: 1290
Joined: January 2nd, 2008, 3:29 pm

Re: Valkiers portraits

Post by kitty » June 29th, 2009, 7:55 am

Hey, nice start! Good to have somebody working on the skellies who obviously knows his anatomy! :)

Just out of curiosity: Do you have an overall plan for the portrait (like a sketch for the posture or something) or did you start by rendering the skull alone?

And you are right, matching the styles is one of our biggest challenges (the tutorial is somewhat outdated - bringing it up to date is one of my plans for the summer). For now you seem to be getting pretty near, the lines should be a bit smoother (what kind of brush do you use?) and not pure black. Your darks also look very black, if you observe your surroundings (in a normal light situation) shadows are hardly ever pitch-black, they rather feature a lot of different hues, more than the lighter parts actually. :eng:

User avatar
Valkier
Art Contributor
Posts: 509
Joined: May 25th, 2009, 5:43 pm

Re: Valkiers portraits

Post by Valkier » June 29th, 2009, 4:40 pm

kitty wrote:Hey, nice start! Good to have somebody working on the skellies who obviously knows his anatomy! :)

Just out of curiosity: Do you have an overall plan for the portrait (like a sketch for the posture or something) or did you start by rendering the skull alone?

And you are right, matching the styles is one of our biggest challenges (the tutorial is somewhat outdated - bringing it up to date is one of my plans for the summer). For now you seem to be getting pretty near, the lines should be a bit smoother (what kind of brush do you use?) and not pure black. Your darks also look very black, if you observe your surroundings (in a normal light situation) shadows are hardly ever pitch-black, they rather feature a lot of different hues, more than the lighter parts actually. :eng:
I wouldn't say I "know" my anatomy. I have a very good idea from drawing nude figures in college and the like, but I am far from perfect. For anyone reading this, references are the lifes blood of concept art. That skull you see? I stared at a front and back diagram, as well as pictures of them online to get it to where it is. The skeleton you'll see shortly? (working on it now) same deal. If you want to learn to draw things well, then study the actuall subject matter.

My idea for the normal axe wielding skeleton is to just have him in a sort of hunched over holding his axe. If you want it in a more action oriented position, then let me know soon. I don't really picture skeletons as being overly skilled and battle ready, so I didn't want to put him ready to take a swing or anything. Now when it comes to the level 2's and 3's, those fellas are going to be ready to tear someone apart.

Shading: Complimentary colors to do shading. I always just render in greyscale first and then add color. I'm toying with the lighting and seeing what I can come up with, so yeah. For now it's black.

Lines: I'll work on them. I paint with a round brush in photoshop, and trying to work lines in general into my style is proving a bit difficult without coming off as lazy. I sort of like the placement on the skull at the moment, but I agree they need to be lighter in places.

Update: Got a decent torso going. Yes, he is currently lacking armor. It will be added once I have a good idea.
Attachments
skull.jpg
Win if you can. Lose if you must. But always cheat.

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

Re: Valkiers portraits

Post by thespaceinvader » June 29th, 2009, 7:27 pm

It shouldn't be too action-oriented. Remember that these portraits should be usable for any dialogue a unit has, so a unit that looks like it's halfway through an attack, talking to its leader deferentially... would look odd. That's possibly less important with skeletons, who have naff-all dialogue, but it's still worth bearing in mind.

This looks good so far.
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
Valkier
Art Contributor
Posts: 509
Joined: May 25th, 2009, 5:43 pm

Re: Valkiers portraits

Post by Valkier » July 2nd, 2009, 10:38 pm

Not much of an update. Work has been keeping me away from my computer. I figured I may as well show I have gotten something done the past couple days anyhow.
Attachments
skull.jpg
Win if you can. Lose if you must. But always cheat.

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

Re: Valkiers portraits

Post by thespaceinvader » July 2nd, 2009, 10:44 pm

Looks like it's going well.

I'm intrigues by your work process, though - do you have a sketch, or are you simply painting freehand?
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
Valkier
Art Contributor
Posts: 509
Joined: May 25th, 2009, 5:43 pm

Re: Valkiers portraits

Post by Valkier » July 2nd, 2009, 11:01 pm

Little bit of both. I use sketches for the intricate part such as the ribcage and skull. The armor doesn't really need one as it's fairly basic and just needs to conform to to the shape of the ribcage, so I don't bother taking the time.
Win if you can. Lose if you must. But always cheat.

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

Re: Valkiers portraits

Post by thespaceinvader » July 2nd, 2009, 11:03 pm

I more mean an overall layout for the whole piece, showing an idea of the final construction.
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
Valkier
Art Contributor
Posts: 509
Joined: May 25th, 2009, 5:43 pm

Re: Valkiers portraits

Post by Valkier » July 2nd, 2009, 11:23 pm

My process is probably NOT one everyone should follow. It is a completely backwards process from what one should normally do, but I just find it lets me work easier.

In a normal pencil and paper drawing, you want to lay in the objects with lines, then block off where the darks are, and proceed from there. In photoshop, especially figure drawing, I take a couple different approaches. One way I do it for figure drawing is to just sketch in the body and position. A good example is the tutorial I wrote up in Art Workshop where I draw the torso. I usually sketch in the arms and head and legs and the like. Once I basically have a naked figure, I start putting on the clothes/armor/whatever. While I draw the contour lines of the figure, I just keep in mind what I basically want it to end up like, and go from there.

Another way I do it is to make a silhouette of the figure or object I want. Typically I do this while putting armor or weapons on a figure. I do it for two reasons. First, I can quickly just edit it with impunity since it is basically just a black mass. Second, it lets me see what the outline of the figure will look like, as you do want it to be pleasing. From there I just quickly lay in which area is being hit by light, throw in some details, and just work my way smaller and smaller till I get the desired results.
Win if you can. Lose if you must. But always cheat.

Post Reply