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Please Critique: Even Love Reaches In Coldly

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  • Please Critique: Even Love Reaches In Coldly

    Okay, what the hell, I'll break in this new forum by allowing you to beat me up a bit. I'm looking for help on my newest Elric piece. I recently posted it to the Image Gallery. It is entitled "Even Love Reaches In Coldly". I thought it was finished, but then I realized it sooooo wasn't!

    Here's the deal: I want to print the final version, mount it, and send it to Mike as a gift -- a thanks for everything his art has done for me. Of course, I want it to be perfect, so I ask for your help. Please [broken link]go have a look, then come back here and tell me how I can make it better.

    It does not matter to me whether you are an artist or not; I'm interested in what non-artists think as well as artists. I just want to make this one as close to perfect as possible before I call it finished and send it to Mike.

    That said, I reserve the right to forego implementing whichever recommendations I see fit, for in the end, it's my art. Do hope you understand.
    Last edited by Rothgo; 04-24-2010, 05:05 AM.
    "Wounds are all I'm made of. Did I hear you say that this is victory?"
    --Michael Moorcock, Veteran of the Psychic Wars

  • #2
    I wrote when you posted the link to it some time back that I liked it. I really, really like the use of color and the background landscape.

    The portrait of Cymoril has grown on me since I first examined it. The Elric depiction is suitably odd. There's something about the modeling of the hands and his left arm, though. Do those parts look a bit stiff? The articulation of the left arm strikes me as slightly unusual: the left deltoid is noticeably developed, but the muscles of the forearm seem rather smooth, almost as if covered in a layer of subcutaneous fat. This may well have been intentional, and furthermore, you probably don't think it matters (or is accurate).

    Never mind. It's fine.

    Is there some significant change you have made in this version over the original? I'd like to examine it on the basis of any changes.

    LSN

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    • #3
      I know. I always sound hypercritical, even during appreciation. It's a good piece of work, PWV.

      LSN

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      • #4
        Hey, I appreciate your comments, LSN. I, too, think the left forearm could use more definition. When I think of Elric, I certainly don't think of subcutaneous fat. :P

        Originally posted by LSN
        Is there some significant change you have made in this version over the original?
        Too many to note and I wouldn't want you to see the original. Dee saw it... and, sadly, remembers it. I'll have to live with that, I guess, but I'll not show anyone else ever again! ;)

        My own observations on this version, which I need to act on before the final is a reality:

        I need to either move the ear higher or remove it entirely, that much is certain. The chainmail needs a shadow at the forearms so it doesn't look like it's skin-tight. And there's something wrong with Stormbringer's hilt. Not sure if I can get Elric any more sardonic, though...

        Things people might potentially find as error:

        I realize Cymoril had darker hair, but I tried all sorts of hair colors and liked this the best.

        I have no idea on which finger Elric wears the Arctorios Ring; I put it where I thought it looked cool.

        Yes, there's just one row of runes down the middle of the blade. Again, I thought it looked cool that way and was slightly different than every other deptiction of the Black Sword.
        "Wounds are all I'm made of. Did I hear you say that this is victory?"
        --Michael Moorcock, Veteran of the Psychic Wars

        Comment


        • #5
          I'd love to see you give some scenes from The Ice Schooner or The Black Corridor realisation, by the way.

          I'd like to see Dee give The Black Corridor a try, too, but suspect The Ice Schooner wouldn't be right for his style.

          LSN

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          • #6
            Hi there, War Veteran. Well, you asked for input from non-artists, and here you have it. I'm about as artistically mute-blind as they come. Having said that, here are a few off-the-cuff observations:

            First: I really liked it. Good job with the landscape and the faded Cymoril in the sky-background. My other comments are only about slight, almost invisible stuff:

            Definitely tuck in the ear a bit, but don't lose it. Actually might want to make it seem slightly flatter so it doesn't look like it sticks out.

            Yes, the mail could do with some depth-shading, or perception, or whatever that's called. Especially on the upper left arm.

            Stormbringer's hilt, especially the handle as it is cradled inside of his hand, could perhaps do with some shading, or texturing. As it stands, it looks slightly two-dimensional. I appreciate that the blade is black. And probably the rest of the sword. But ALL jet-black dark including the handle?

            Finally, you might want to add some slight shading or a hint of some creases on the fabric at knee-height on Elric's right leg. Just to make it look slightly less stiff.

            Cymoril is perfect. Except...maybe slightly (just slightly) chubby complexion?

            Sorry, these comments make it sound as though I am being quite ungenerous, when I actually think it is really quite an effective piece of work.
            Hope this helps.

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            • #7
              Ahem, er..the legs? I mean it looks like he would fall...maybe it's just me.

              Comment


              • #8
                Ahem, er..the legs? I mean it looks like he would fall...maybe it's just me.
                Yup thats true, also the right hand dosen't seem to be holding the grip of the sword, the fingers don't curl around it. Unless the gaurd of the sword is supposed to be off balance it needs changing.
                The left arm looks extremly tense probably because of the way the fingers are held. I always imagined the limbs to be thinner though and maybe Cymoril could be just a little more faded.
                appart from those minor adjustments I have got to say, thats pretty classy, decent stuff.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Thanks all, these are all very helpful observations. It's good to hear from others; I look at my own stuff for so long creating it that I think I have a hard time stepping back and viewing with a fresh eye.

                  So, thanks for all the fresh eyes! :P

                  <ZombieHomerVoice>Mmmmmmmmm, fresh eyes!</ZombieHomerVoice>

                  I must say, MWM people are very gracious with their comments. They understand the difference between 'critique' and 'criticize' which is helpful and very nice. I occasionally post my work at art communities where the critics are much less forgiving and way less friendly. You get good advice, but at the cost of a small amount of blood and ego.

                  Originally posted by mordenkainen
                  Ahem, er..the legs? I mean it looks like he would fall...
                  >_< Doh! I was afraid someone would say that. *sigh* I'm going to have to tackle that 'no feet' thing, aren't I? *looks out the window thoughtfully* No way around it is there? Breaks certain rules of portraiture, doesn't it, showing that much of the body but stopping before the feet? Krep. Maybe I can do a Frank Frazetta 'fade out' thing at the bottom...

                  http://frazetta.ragnarok.no/images/conanprelim.jpg
                  "Wounds are all I'm made of. Did I hear you say that this is victory?"
                  --Michael Moorcock, Veteran of the Psychic Wars

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    PVW, I have had my very own fantasies about how Elric, Hawkmoon and the rest look. Maybe most of us do so. I even used to cover up the concretisations cover designers put on the book cover, some better some worse. I wanted free rei(g)n for my own imagination, I am not sure if I want to pitch them against your or other talented people's manifestations. I have similar problems with the idea, the inevitable idea, that somebody has to play these parts in a future movie. Probably Cymoril will always look to me much like my beloved Bizi (who was my girl-friend when I first read these books in the '70s). Poor, brave old Bizi died four years ago of cancer at the age of just over 40, and I'm not sure if I want her face replaced by your or anybody else's fantasy. Excuse, I hope you understand if I don't take part in the critique. In general, however, I find it important to try out as much as possible, good luck my friend!
                    Google ergo sum

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      L'Etranger, your comments are well-taken, my friend. I understand completely.

                      A person at work told me Elric's face didn't look like Elric, but rather looked like Michael Jackson. 8O So, you know, I realize not everyone sees the same thing or has the same idea of what Elric and Cymoril should look like.
                      "Wounds are all I'm made of. Did I hear you say that this is victory?"
                      --Michael Moorcock, Veteran of the Psychic Wars

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by PsychicWarVeteran

                        Originally posted by mordenkainen
                        Ahem, er..the legs? I mean it looks like he would fall...
                        >_< Doh! I was afraid someone would say that. *sigh* I'm going to have to tackle that 'no feet' thing, aren't I? *looks out the window thoughtfully* No way around it is there? Breaks certain rules of portraiture, doesn't it, showing that much of the body but stopping before the feet? Krep. Maybe I can do a Frank Frazetta 'fade out' thing at the bottom...

                        http://frazetta.ragnarok.no/images/conanprelim.jpg
                        Er, no....the problem IMO is in the position of the legs...lack of balance. Both legs are in a backward position in relation to the body's axis (huh...trying to be clear in english usually leads me to that type of sentence...) ...Anyway, you know martial arts so you must know what I mean. He has no balance.

                        Re: L'E's comments: the facial features work out just fantastically for me.

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                        • #13
                          About the balance and leg position, I remember thinking it appeared as if he were walking down a very steep downhill grade -- not *precisely*, but that's in part what it looks like.

                          LSN

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by L_Stearns_Newburg
                            About the balance and leg position, I remember thinking it appeared as if he were walking down a very steep downhill grade...
                            That's what I was going for. I must rework it so others besides me know that's what I was going for. :)
                            "Wounds are all I'm made of. Did I hear you say that this is victory?"
                            --Michael Moorcock, Veteran of the Psychic Wars

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              sorry :oops:

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