Vii's Sketchbook

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Vii's Sketchbook

Postby Vii » Fri Nov 18, 2016 9:52 am

Vii here! Was a lurker for a while, decided to finally make a sketchbook after getting back into art for the nth time.

I never took any formal art classes and spent most of my high school years doodling all the heads and shoulders (welp) so my knowledge of anatomy is shaky at best. Also never did any color and rarely shaded stuff so my color/value theory is pretty much nonexistent. Whee. I'm currently in college, so my free time is limited, but I'll try to draw an hour a day.

I don't have any plans on doing art as a profession, but I want to improve to the point that looking at my own art pains me slightly less, so here we go. Hopefully I can get motivation/constructive crit from all of you amazing people :)

I'll start off with a sketchbook dump; apologies for the lack of a scanner.

2016-09-11.jpg
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2016-09-12.jpg
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2016-09-13.jpg
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2016-10-05.jpg
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2016-10-19_1.jpg
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2016-10-19_2.jpg
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2016-11-12-veras.png
First digital painting/colored thing in years. Painted in grayscale and added colors as an overlay, but it looks muddied. I'd start with colors instead, only I still don't have much of a grasp on values and contrast...
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2016-11-14.jpg
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2016-11-15-waybringer.jpg
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Because this post is way too long, I'll put my recent Bridgman anatomy studies in the next post, maybe tomorrow.
Last edited by Vii on Wed Mar 22, 2017 9:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Vii's Sketchbook

Postby Vii » Sat Nov 19, 2016 10:13 am

Bridgman studies (Constructive Anatomy) from the past few days. Not sure if I'm using the book correctly, but at least I'm learning about surface landmarks. Did a few 60s gestures, but I think I'll up them to 2-3 min since I'm trying to learn anatomy/proportion.

I've been running into a slightly annoying problem where I keep second-guessing the accuracy of my copies of Bridgman, and since I don't have a physical copy of his book, there's no way to check for sure. Oh well--Bridgman isn't exactly 100% accurate when it comes to proportion, so I guess it's not too big of a problem?

2016-11-16_1.jpg
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2016-11-16_2.jpg
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2016-11-16_3.jpg
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2016-11-17_1.jpg
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2016-11-18_1.jpg
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2016-11-18_2.jpg
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Last edited by Vii on Wed Mar 22, 2017 9:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Vii's Sketchbook

Postby Taylor-Payton » Sat Nov 19, 2016 10:51 am

Wow, this is a really solid start to your SB, Vii.

I really like how well you took in those studies, and your digital paintings will progress naturally as you churn out more works.

It'd be cool to see you throw in more digital studies along with the sketchbook work :D.

And yeah, Bridgeman's proportions are not 100% accurate. It's about interpreting interlocking humanoid parts and planes. He's great to study for that-- So is Krenz Kushart btw, if you google his name a lot of his mannequin/construction pages come up.

As for resizing, it might be a paint but you can load them all into photoshop.

There's also a feature that will automate that process, it's under File > automation. You can play with that to create a custom sequence for general adjustment and resizing.

Can't wait to see how your stuff develops.
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My Sketchboooookkk: http://forums.permanoobs.org/viewtopic. ... 4&start=30
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Re: Vii's Sketchbook

Postby Vii » Tue Nov 22, 2016 9:50 am

@Taylor-Payton: Thanks for recommending Krenz Cushart; his gestures are inspiring :D Also thanks for the tip about Photoshop; unfortunately I mostly work with Ubuntu + Krita, but I'll see if I can try that with another program.

Very short update today. Haven't been drawing much because of a computer science assignment I procrastinated on until this weekend .-. Decided to try more digital painting yesterday but instead of painting something more relevant to my studies (like hands) I bit off a little more than I could chew and tried painting rocks, of all things.

2016-11-21-rock-study.png
Ref + study. The colors are pretty off, but it was getting late and I was lazy .-.
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Being totally new to digital painting, I didn't really know what to do and kind of scribbled things until they looked okay. Also, turns out I am really bad at picking/mixing/blending colors, and texture (sand??) is hard to render.

Now that I'm almost on Thanksgiving break (!) I plan to do a lot more studies, probably with simpler objects...

If anyone has any painting tips, they would be much appreciated.
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Re: Vii's Sketchbook

Postby Will-Marton » Tue Nov 22, 2016 1:32 pm

I like some of the line work in those Bridgeman studies!

Don't forget to apply some of the stuff you're learning as well. :D
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Re: Vii's Sketchbook

Postby Enydimon » Tue Nov 22, 2016 8:43 pm

Welcome to Permanoobs!

I don't think there's a wrong way to study Bridgman, but he very much is just trying to teach you how to break things down into simpler shapes but also explaining the functions of the muscles and what they're doing. Please read those parts too! They'll give you the information to recreate things either without heavily needing exact reference or using reference more effectively because you know what to look for. Your copies don't need to be to scale 1:1, you just need to understand them.

Also regarding learning how to observe and mix colours more accurately, try to learn more about temperature and how paints are mixed traditionally. It'll start to make you think about how much red or yellow might be in your subject, or how saturated or desaturated it is. One trick that I used to help train my eye without resorting to colour picking would be to do the above and then lay down the colour I thought was correct right next to the one I'm trying to mimic to compare. Think of it like mixing paints and comparing the paint you just mixed on the end of your brush with what's in front of you.

In this case, you have the general hue right, but it's far too saturated and that's why it looks off. If you bring the saturation back a bit on the most orange part of the rocks I think you'll get a better feel on how you can make everything else look more accurate.
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Re: Vii's Sketchbook

Postby Vii » Thu Mar 16, 2017 10:32 pm

Edit: @Enydimon: just realised I never replied to you! Thank you for the advice, esp. about color--I found it really helpful! I do think I need to do more construction...
---
Mmm yes nothing like a bump after 4 months of inactivity.

I've still been drawing-ish. Dropped Bridgman, probably because I was frustrated at not knowing how to draw the figure in general before working on anatomy. I think I need to do more gesture/figure studies first or skip to the part about the torso/leg since my anatomy skills are the weakest there. Didn't do much digital stuff (read: none) until tonight. For the last month or so I started actually using ink/watercolor more and it's amazing how much I learned about value from that. Plus read through half of Gurney's Color and Light (things are finally making so much more sense now!).

Also plug for BORODANTE whose videos are really helpful in pointing out the basics and fun to watch too.

Despite not doing digital painting at all my second attempt at painting from reference is coming along much better (also the fewer colors help a lot). Any suggestions so far? The ref seems very bright and so I picked a darker value for the midtone because I wanted to practice values but I think the color's off.
2017-03-16-portrait-study-wip1.png
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For years the color picker has baffled me but no moreee... (I'm still not sure what "chroma" is, exactly. Can anyone explain?)
2017-03-16-hsv.png
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Also some figure studies (?) and portrait thing from the past few days. All from ref. I think I understand more why people say studying from photos is not ideal because depending on the lighting they can look pretty flat :/ I'd go to life drawing sessions but I'm not sure there are any at my college, nor do I have time...

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2017-03-14.jpg
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2017-03-15.jpg
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Studies/drawing from refs is fun and I don't know why I kept drawing terrible anime heads for so long without doing any. I'm surprised I actually still improved despite that. Though to be honest I feel like it's just because most of my sketches are half-assed and I never really took the time to draw an actual thing. Like, the WIP up top took me ~4.5 hours to get to that point (procrastinating on actual assignments, of course) and it's still not done. I need to be more patient, or something. It's easier with studies because there's an actual goal, though.

Is there a wrong way to do studies, btw? I'm not sure if I'm spending too much time on that one painting but I'm learning a lot about how digital painting works so I guess it's worth it so far. I think what I need to start doing is applying what I observed (poses, value, color, etc) to imagination to actually learn things.

Anyway, I don't know when the next time I'll post will be considering my terrible track record with these online sketchbooks but I'll try to keep up with this more, haha.
Last edited by Vii on Wed Mar 22, 2017 9:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Vii's Sketchbook

Postby Enydimon » Fri Mar 17, 2017 3:45 pm

Your reference is high contrast and your current shadows aren't dark enough and should have more red in them (closer to violet). Your highlights/direct light should be more yellow and orange. There's also not any need to make the midtones darker, you'll still learn about value regardless. If you want to study more subtle values I would pick a different reference instead.

If you're struggling with the torso and legs with Brigdman then I wouldn't skip those parts. If you're struggling then it means you have something to learn there and putting it off is just going to prolong the discomfort. Feel free to ask questions here about it when you're having issues and I'll see if I can help.

Regarding a wrong way to study, I wouldn't say that there's necessarily a wrong way to do it but there are ways that are not as effective. How effective something is could potentially be individual. I would say if you learned something from the process then you're on your right track. If you aren't learning or absorbing information then review why that might be and try to find solutions. It can also depend on what school of learning you're studying under, such as ateliers that spend days or weeks on one singular cast drawing vs someone who might only do a study up until they absorb enough information for what they need for a given piece. Studies can be all the way to a complete finish or compartmentalized for specificity. As an example, shorter/smaller studies would be useful when you want to collect information for an illustration piece without spending too much time not working on the illustration itself.

And it's good that you're thinking about application. I think that's one of the best ways to speed up the improvement process.
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Re: Vii's Sketchbook

Postby Vii » Fri Mar 17, 2017 5:34 pm

@Enydimon: Thanks for the crit! I'll see if I can fix up the hues then. I noticed the shadows not being dark enough after I added the shirt and hair, so I'll get on that too. (I still don't know how to draw/paint short hair properly...) Do you have any suggestions for good references for value studies? I'm not still not sure what to look for this sort of thing.

Regarding Bridgman, I actually meant that I should probably skip to the torso and legs sections, since I was trying to go through Constructive Anatomy in order. The section I dropped was the one on hands, which I want to get around to studying eventually but is not very high on my anatomy priorities list. In any case, I put off studying anatomy for long enough and I'm sick of not knowing anything, so I think I might go back to Bridgman soon after I learn more about color + value and such.
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Re: Vii's Sketchbook

Postby Alexander Lidström » Mon Mar 20, 2017 11:37 am

Hey! I recommend doing portrait studies if you want to get less muddy colours. Just paste 7-8 portraits into a psd file and copy them. Skip from one to the next so you come back with fresh eyes. Feel free to ditch the exercise whenever you feel like it (but also feel free to crop one and go super detailed).
Best of luck!
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Re: Vii's Sketchbook

Postby Vii » Wed Mar 22, 2017 9:59 pm

@Alexander: That's a good idea. Do you recommend doing them in grayscale or color? I know color doesn't translate directly to value, hmm.
---
After looking back at my previous posts I realized that the images were definitely way too big and I apologize to everyone who had to scroll through them ._. they should be fixed now.

An update: finished the study. Tried to fix the colors like Eny said but they're still slightly off. I'm done staring at it, though, and I think I've learned all that I can from this. I'm probably not going to go into so much detail for later studies if I'm just going to study value/color.

2017-03-17-rembrant-fin.png
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2017-03-19_1.jpg
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arms.jpg
Back to Bridgman. Arms this time. Supplementing w/ Peck. Going to try imagination -> Bridgman/Peck -> photo ref/study -> imagination to make sure I'm actually learning things.
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2017-03-21-sundoodle.png
Attempt at limited color palette but forgot about value. Should probably focus on the latter first.
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2017-03-22-poses-lo.png
Scribbled poses from imagination. Lines are terrible but was just trying to get some ideas/gesture down.
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Not much studying done this week, got bogged down by midterms and assignments and just drew as stress relief. Hopefully I can get more anatomy and/or value studies done soon. Tbh, thinking about what I still have to improve on (read: everything) is kind of stressful since even though I'm not aiming to do art as a career, I still want to be good, and I never know what to focus on since everything's equally as bad :( Also it doesn't help that most of the art forums I browse are aimed towards a career in art and make me feel I should be drawing 5x as much as I currently am. Sigh.

((At least I'm drawing fewer heads and more bodies. A slight improvement over the past??))

Any suggestions on how to focus/what to focus on would be appreciated. For now I'm just jumping around different topics (color, anatomy, etc...) and I feel like I should settle down on one, or something.
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Re: Vii's Sketchbook

Postby Alexander Lidström » Thu Mar 23, 2017 4:32 am

Colour! Throw yourself at the deep end if you want to focus on painting.
Start with the basics if you want to focus on drawing.

Do one in depth painting for every five loose ones and you'll feel less like you're jumping about.
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Re: Vii's Sketchbook

Postby Enydimon » Thu Mar 23, 2017 8:37 pm

Regarding values, technically anything is a good value reference because everything is made up of them. It just depends on what you're trying to learn. High contrast with big shadows is probably the easiest to start with.

I think just learning drawing fundamentals is the most basic thing you could possibly start with. So anatomy, proportion, sight drawing, values, etc... but I don't think there's anything wrong in delving into other subjects either. You can even designate one topic for one month and change it the next. You can also compartmentalize them too. For instance light and colour are one in the same thing but you can break it down with greyscale value studies to address values independently of hue. For hue you can drop blending and just focus on 100% opacity paintings with a flat brush to make sure you're focusing on it. You can focus on creating illustrations/comics/whatever first and have all your studies revolve around that, which I think is useful for a lot of hobbyists too.

It can be immensely frustrating when you feel like everything has to be improved upon, but sometimes you just have to pick something and go with it.
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