A simple realism piece that will be going with 4 other animal portraits into one larger square. The main issue I’m having is from my lack of painting skill, I’m not entirely sure on how to approach patterns (in this case, stripes) in fur without it looking just softly ‘painted’ on. I guess a lot of it has to do with texture, but this is a problem I’ve had since I began colouring in general. xD
Critique by Lady Serpent (Ares)
1. First impression:
Realistically accurate! The lines here are natural and detailed. The fur colouring is nicely directional which sets you up nicely for finishing the image properly.
2. What do you like about this image?
The colours are varied and flow naturally; they’re well-blended. The eyes are sunk in just enough to be realistic, and they’re currently quite simple, but they’re powerful in such a face. Great linework! Very realistic.
3. Is there something you don’t like?
Only that it is currently unfinished and floating in space; I assume it’s only in a partially-finished stage so there’s nothing particular here that’s unlikable. Unless you don’t like tigers, and then I guess there’s not a lot here for you. But who the hell doesn’t like tigers?
4. What do you think the artist can improve upon? suggestions?
As you’ve already mentioned, you’re not sure where to go with putting lines and fur detail without it looking ‘painted on’. I had this same issue when I was learning to paint traditionally; I would honestly suggest trying to do some higher-contrast colours to get it to look less pastel-colored and more sharp. (Darker black shadows; whiter bright highlights in well-lit areas.) For stripes, a small brush in a dark color, with just a little bit of opacity (maybe 80-90% or so? Depends on your personal preferences), doing individual fur lines in the direction of the fur works wonders. To block in the stripes beforehand to get a feel of their placement, you can take a solid black on something like 10% opacity, make it large and pressure-sensitive, and just block the areas in gently where you’d like to put stripes. Then take the smaller, harder black brush and draw over the gently shaded areas in many little fur strokes, exactly like individual strands. Hope that gives some idea! Stripes are great, because as soon as you take even a poorly-colored image (which yours isn’t of course) and add sharp black stripes to it, it really brings the image to life. If you don’t like that method of furring and you’re looking for something softer, you can continue with the same shading techniques you’re already using for your basic colors, just sharper, but you don’t get the detail that way.
Stripe/Darker Area examples
I’ve attached an image of the light stripe blocking example (if you even need more stripes; not sure if you were planning on it), as well as the individually-drawn fur line example, albeit I’ve rushed it so it doesn’t give you much anyways; hopefully just a good idea of what I mean to say. This last one has some areas darkened (rather hastily as I don’t have a lot of time to put into showing it, but I hope you get the idea). It just sort of shows how more contrast (darker shadows and lighter highlights, instead of lots of pastel colors) will make the image pop more. You’ll have time to do a much better job than my quick mess, I’m sure. I hope that helps!
Originality/creativity: I don’t believe in this category, especially for animal portraits. 🙂
Color scheme: Looks like it’s going in the right direction, but the pastel colors could be sharpened with more contrast (drawn in, not an automatic setting) if you want a stronger image; otherwise it will perpetually look too soft/unfinished. Don’t want to rate it unfinished. 🙂
Overall Composition : Shape looks great! Colour scheme looks great. I guess I’ll actually give this one a number value — 2.5. Probably end up a 3 when it’s all finished.
Sam’s 2 Cents
I really like this, I think its looking really good so far. While I do draw a lot of animals I don’t draw many tigers, so I don’t think I can offer much here. Anyways I think that Lady Serpents pretty much got this thing covered xD