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Art Critique Request-Character Illustrations

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I used to do the glass table with a lamp under it lightbox, but my very handy dad made me the most awesome lightbox ever. There are actually a number of "how to make your own lightbox" blog posts I found online, and I just printed one off for my dad. I'm sure he added his own expertise to it, but if you know someone who is sort of handy, it can be a lot cheaper. I use mine all the time for transferring my sketches onto watercolor paper.
#31 - December 10, 2012, 06:32 AM
THIS LITTLE PIGGY (AN OWNER'S MANUAL), Aladdin PIX June 2017 :pigsnort
KUNG POW CHICKEN 1-4, Scholastic 2014 :chicken

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OddBerryCreations

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Yeah, unfortunately I do not. What are the benefits to having a lightbox for illustrations? I tend to lean more towards digitally coloring them so would a lightbox help?
#32 - December 10, 2012, 12:17 PM

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well, if you work more digitally, a lightbox probably isn't necessary, as you can flip stuff in PS to see what Whibbage is talking about. You can really see where a drawing might be off looking at it backwards! I use my lightbox for tracing sketches onto watercolor paper. I'll scan them first, sometimes I cut and paste to change the composition, or resize things, then print it out and trace it.
#33 - December 10, 2012, 01:01 PM
THIS LITTLE PIGGY (AN OWNER'S MANUAL), Aladdin PIX June 2017 :pigsnort
KUNG POW CHICKEN 1-4, Scholastic 2014 :chicken

http://cyndimarko.com
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Oddberry, you might not need a lightbox.  But you may find yourself needing to trace something onto different paper someday. Should this happen to you, do not spend money on a lightbox. This is what I did:

Get a large picture frame. I just sent out a text to my good friends and within a day, someone had responded that they had an old picture frame they were not planning on using anymore. 

I super glued (or gorilla glued...I can't remember now) the glass into the frame.

When I need to trace, I use four spice bottles to hold up the corners of my picture frame and stick a flashlight underneath. I have a flashlight with a swivel head, but you could also use a one of those touch lights or something, I imagine.
#34 - December 10, 2012, 09:01 PM
If you don't try, you have no chance at all. - Carole King
Every day's a good day when you paint. - Bob Ross

www.tatumhartillustrations.com

If you have Photoshop you definitely don't need a lightbox. Just choose image > Flip canvas horizontally and see how it looks. Also, the liquify filter is your friend  :hahaha
#35 - December 10, 2012, 10:25 PM
Rema - an illustrated sci-fi novel, serialized online at http://remanmyth.blogspot.com

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A trick I use for my traditional work is to hold it in front of a mirror, then hold it upside down to see if something looks off. In PS, you can adjust the size of anything that's off easily. (Not that I've ever scanned a completed piece and fixed it in PS or anything). :duh

Oddberry, I took a look at the Vector Artists you like and their work is great. In addition to looking at their work, it may be beneficial to peruse sites like http://www.childrensillustrators.com/ to see how illustrators who specifically do work for children's books put characters in motion or design a scene. While there are some presentation pieces in illustrating for children, most  show emotion or tell a story or both.

The last work you posted was very sweet.
#36 - December 11, 2012, 06:34 AM
Fur Balls & Feathers & Fins, Oh My! Animals Are My Kind of People
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This is a fantastic thread! I am at the same place in my development as an illustrator as Oddberry--a graphic designer trying to make the leap to illustrator.  Everyone's comments are very helpful. I've put most of the books mentioned on my wish list.

Oddberry, the book that made the biggest difference in my life as an artist is "Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain," by Betty Edwards. Looking at your work, I think you'll find this book mind-blowing. Do the exercises. Really. It's not about the skill of your hand, it's about seeing.

As for copying and tracing, I actually had an art prof give me the assignment of tracing an artist's work I admire, then try to replicate his technique. I chose Tomi dePaola. It was a huge learning experience! And very hard, I might add. Artists have always used copying a master as a tool for learning. Think Renaissance, European art museums, etc.

As for a light box--there's always the starving artist way--use a window. I had a community ed. teacher, whose work  involved tracing her sketches onto paper for inking, who spent hours with her work taped to her sliding glass door so she could keep an eye on her kids when they were playing outside.  Or you can made a work-around for night time by taping a piece of tracing paper to the back of a piece of glass (to difffuse the light), suspend the glass between 2 stacks of books, and put a light under it.

I hadn't seen the Hamm books before. They look excellent.

I'm learning so much from everybody's comments. Thanks, Oddberry, for having the courage to post your work. I'm not sure I'm be up to that, yet, but maybe soon. As I writer I find I learn as much, if not more, from crits of other writers' work because my baby isn't under the microscope.
#37 - December 11, 2012, 07:49 AM
The Art of Story

Jacqueline Buffinet

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I really like her, Oddberry! I agree with Artemesia that I would like to see her "in action". She has personality. And, like Whibbage, I also would like to see her more finished with lines and possibly color. But then that may be because I don't leave my own art alone in that stage. To me the line and color breaths life into it.

I hope you have a digital tablet to go with your Suite! Putting drawings into Photoshop to perfect them is quite liberating, especially once you get the hang of drawing on the tablet and using layers. If you lower your opacity on the first layer enough to fade the lines, you can trace over the best lines on your new layer and modify at will. It took me a while to learn to draw directly onto the tablet, but now I do all of my drawing on it. Before the tablet, when I used to draw with pencil and paper I carefully nurtured every line, over thought it's placement, feared losing it to a worse line if I erased and started over. I sometimes "settled" because I was afraid to mess up the work I had already done. Now I scribble, dash, and draw from blobby lines to finished ones without over thinking it. It has really changed the way I approach drawing even when its with pencil and paper. It may seem daunting at first but drawing on the tablet is really is worth learning.

The lasso and move tool is great for adjustments too, btw. Just remember to duplicate your layer before altering it so you can go back to your starting point if you need to.
#38 - December 12, 2012, 11:20 AM

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Jacqueline, your instructions sound so fun they are making ME want to become an artist! :dr
#39 - December 12, 2012, 11:38 AM
Verla Kay

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OddBerryCreations

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Yes ma'am, I do have an awesome Wacom tablet and while I have wanted to learn to draw on the tablet, there's just something about drawing with pencil and paper I can't do without. I intend on adding color to all of them but this week is finals and things have been a tad bit on the rough end. The end of the semester is tomorrow and after that I intend on working on my vector art. Digital art is something I've never tried but always wanted to. So many possibilities. And one of the very first things I learned was to duplicate the starting layers so that if you messed up, you could go back. You read my mind Jacqueline!!  :grouphug2:
#40 - December 13, 2012, 03:03 AM

OddBerryCreations

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So I just had to come and tell you guys that I've been quite busy recently. With recent tragic events and sick children, being creative has been my only outlet. It's therapy afterall.  :grin3

But what I wanted to tell you was for my website, I did some SEO and used some webmaster tools to find out where I stand in the world. Well, I've gotten some visits and I've gotten quite a few clicks. What was the most interesting...is the most link hits...came from this place. Out of all of the other places I have my website posted to...you guys took the time to go visit. That made me smile and miss you guys all over again. You guys are just awesome!!  :thankyou :grouphug2:

The semester finally ended (YAY!!) and so now it's time for holidays. I'll keep in touch and let you know how the drawing is coming along. Woot!!  :yeah
#41 - December 20, 2012, 10:09 AM

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