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Art by Lamp [nsfw]

LampLamp Registered User regular
edited July 2015 in Artist's Corner
Hey guys. Worked up the nerve recently to actually finish a couple of illustrations. About a year ago I buckled down to work on figure drawing and after a while I had a really hard time forcing myself to finish anything that wasn't a figure or portrait. Anyway, I'm hoping to be more active around here so I'd love any feedback you guys can give me. I'll try to keep this thread updated with new figure drawings and other stuff too!

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SpaceMooseBrocksMullet
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Posts

  • NakedZerglingNakedZergling A more apocalyptic post apocalypse Portland OregonRegistered User regular
    love it!

  • LampLamp Registered User regular
    New painting.

    OMEQAhX.jpg

    BrocksMulletjjww
  • nocuddletimenocuddletime Registered User regular
    These are great. I feel like they could benefit from a bit more refinement though. Maybe some better edges, outlines or lighting. Keep it up!

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  • LampLamp Registered User regular
    edited January 2014
    New painting, my old DnD crew in an encounter with a troll. Would love to hear any crits or feedback :D


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    Details viewable here: http://brettdraws.tumblr.com

    Lamp on
  • ScosglenScosglen Registered User regular
    I think this is a pretty fun composition, and you clearly put in some good effort referencing all those muscles for your big ogre man. I did a quick little paintover because it seemed like there was a tragically missed opportunity to really push the atmosphere and focus the composition with some more dramatic lighting.

    lampo.jpg

    The first thing I did was slather most of the scene with a mid brown on a Multiply layer, to push the values down and give some room for our stars in the center of the composition to stand out. The brown color has the added benefit of getting some of those reds and oranges into the shadows to help communicate that dingy tavern atmosphere. Some slight re-painting was done on the two central figures and the space around them to reinforce and comply with the single "theater" light. Some simplification of the muscle detail on the Ogre's back was done both for lighting and compositional reasons, I might even have gone further. This was mostly done to make sure that there was not too much concentrated detail fighting to pull attention away from the true focus of the composition.

    I substantially repainted the Ogre's hand because it is so out of place compared to the rippling arm that it's connected to. Hands are angular things primarily defined by bones, barely concealed by a glove of skin and tendons-- and this is especially evident in a tightly gripped fist. So the "Michelin Man" hand is not just anatomically unconvincing, but is conceptually inconsistent with what we expect from a hand in the middle of a tense arm-wrestle. (This critique is also largely applicable to the Dwarf's little sausage fingers too.)

    I've done a little bit of work to better differentiate the material qualities of the Dwarf's costume. What's the Dwarf's sleeves or pants made from? Leather? Cloth? I can't really tell, the texture and specular qualities are basically the same as the Ogre's skin or the yellow tunic. I gave it a little brushwork to suggest chainmail, just to demonstrate. The Dwarf's helmet in your painting has material qualities that read really more like plastic. Metal objects should have fairly tight transitions between extremes of light and dark, and will have sharp specular highlights.

    Hope this is helpful.

    tynicIrukamageormikeNightDragon
  • LampLamp Registered User regular
    edited January 2014
    Wow, thanks Scos! It hit me that the troll's hand did look pretty ridiculous so I went and repainted it from reference (and referencing your paintover, too :D). Definitely a huge improvement. I'm a little torn about the lighting. On one hand, you are certainly right that I should push it a little bit more. But my intention was for the tavern to be decently lit. Narratively, I'm not sure it makes sense for a tavern like this to be TOO dark. I'm also hesitant to hide the background characters in the shadows, since part of the intent of the piece was to show their personalities. That said, I went ahead and bumped up the contrast a decent bit. I would love to hear some second opinions from anyone though! I also agree that the clothing textures need extra attention...


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    tapeslinger
  • LampLamp Registered User regular
    edited April 2014
    Some new stuff!

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    These next two are illustrations I did for my company, to accompany a story on Internet security (I work as a technology writer.)

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  • LampLamp Registered User regular
    edited July 2014
    Some new stuff! First, a couple of studies.

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    Next is the Slow Loris of Highgarden.
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    Next is an almost complete repaint of a piece from a few months ago... realized that the value composition was ridiculously dark and cluttered. I am SO much happier with the colors and values in this one. Still have some cleanup to do on it though. Scroll up to my last post to see the old version.

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    Lamp on
  • Angel_of_BaconAngel_of_Bacon Moderator mod
    Question, what are your stylistic aims with your work?

    I ask because currently there's kinda this weird mix between relatively realistic touches such as with human facial features and some of the lighting, but then that is paired up with very simplified body contours and set design, but which then isn't really exaggerated or pushed in a way to suggest you're going for a particularly 'cartoony' design look...so I find it difficult to suggest anything to you critique-wise either way, not being able to really suss out where you're trying to go with your work in the future.

    Do you have some artists you'd consider influences or have qualities you'd like to capture in your work? It'd be easier to say something useful with a kind of ballpark aim in mind. If you're wanting to end up closer to, for example, a Carter Goodrich, suggesting things that would take you closer to say, a Jon Foster look might still be informative, but it might not be as applicable as you'd like.

  • LampLamp Registered User regular
    edited August 2014
    Oh wow, Bacon, I didn't even notice that you had commented in my thread! To be honest, since I had gotten so few comments previously, I forgot to even check. So if I had to name one artist whose work really heavily influenced me in recent years, I'd have to point to Daniel Lieske... In other words, most of these pieces were indeed intended to go for something on the cartoony spectrum. I am starting to see what you mean about the stylistic inconsistencies in my work. To be honest, I've really struggled a LOT with trying to figure out how to paint, and I got stuck in a rut for a long time where I was working in a really stilted way -- meticulously maintaining dozens of layers and working on individuals elements by making selections and using soft brushes. Perhaps that also helps explain some of the simplistic set design. Anyway, this just was not working for me whatsoever and I only recently started to break free from this and try to paint more loosely. If i had to name one artist whose work I WANT to strive for now it would be Alexandre Diboine .

    I hope that this new piece reflects a step in the right direction and I would be thrilled for any comments or critique.

    qwbhnv3rxzwp.jpg



    Lamp on
    Tinkles
  • LampLamp Registered User regular
    edited October 2014
    Actually shot some reference for this piece. Hopefully it shows. I really struggled trying to invent this lighting scenario, though. Would love to hear some feedback from you fine folks.


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    Angel_of_BaconNightDragonBrocksMullet
  • LampLamp Registered User regular
    I also just realized that it's been one year since I started this thread. Last October, I decided to cut out the figure drawing and studies and really dedicate some time to cranking out some creative work. Even though my work is kind of all over the place, I feel proud of the progress I've made since then. I cropped together two images to show the kind of character I was calling "finished" at that time, vs. where I am now.

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  • jjwwjjww Registered User regular
    Oh wow, these are cool :) Love the 'kid stealing the apples' one!

  • m3nacem3nace Registered User regular
    edited October 2014
    Your rendering and lighting has become super slick dude. However I'd love to see you do some more figure studies, specifically constructing characters in perspective. Also, looking at the snake piece you could also do with some more gesture drawing, where you really just focus on pushing the energy and mood of the pose because let's face it, if you're a tiny green person with a sword standing in front of a snake, chances are you wouldn't stand with your sword like that.

    m3nace on
  • ChicoBlueChicoBlue Registered User regular
    I think that you might be under using the light that is being cast on the table. Those two strips are white hot and will be bouncing a whole lot of light around, especially up into the lady's dress. The urn will be catching some, as well, and depending on how much glaze is on that ceramic, the lights might even show up like subtle mirror reflections near its base.

    Speaking of the urn, the hot highlight on its side is the highest area of contrast in the image because it is sitting on top of the near black of the woman's dress. This makes the eye go to that area first, and not to the hand or the woman's face which are probably your focal points in the image.

    Overall, though, I think it's an interesting image and it is super exciting to see your progress.

    Iruka
  • LampLamp Registered User regular
    edited October 2014
    Yes! Thank you so much Chico. After having a few days of distance, and reading your comment, it was very easy to see that I needed to bounce some light around in there between the woman and the vase. This obviously needs a bit more TLC (I'm really struggling with inventing the light on this vase.....) but I quickly painted in some colors and values on the front of the dress, and pumped up the contrast around the woman's face, and toned down the contrast around the vase (and a little bit everywhere else). Does it look like it's on the right track?

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    Lamp on
  • ChicoBlueChicoBlue Registered User regular
    That certainly is looking a lot better. The bottom of the urn is sort of fuzzing in with the table a bit, but that could probably be fixed with a hard-edged brush and a stroke or two of of darker colour.

  • MightyhogMightyhog Registered User regular
    Interesting to note your connection between cutting out strict study and focusing more on finished pieces- I feel like that's the decision I'm facing right now! It's terrible to always be "preparing to begin," too scared to start something and dreading the idea of pushing it, plussing it, polishing it and calling it done when you know it isn't. Your progress is a treat to see. Light and color I've got no business critiquing (maybe It's a bad sign that I like it!), but concerning the background figure in the vase piece I think m3nace's advice applies here as well: it seems built on a poor gesture. I wonder if the easy way out is just bending what's straight: buckling the knees, raising the other hand, which hangs awkwardly. I usually hate the sort of advice that begins and ends with "go more obvious," but the pose doesn't leave much to be read into. You put more effort into the face- not that that's so terrible- but what would you see if you hid the face? ...It's been a month and maybe you've put a lid on it, addressed the issue already, etc... but just something to consider.

  • LampLamp Registered User regular
    edited April 2015
  • LampLamp Registered User regular
    edited April 2015
    Also, here's two years of improvement. Spring 2013 to spring 2015.

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    Lamp on
    BrocksMullet
  • IrukaIruka Registered User, Moderator mod
    Your painting skills are way up, for sure, the anatomy feels a little under realized though. Are you working from reference on these?

    The girl has the most issues, proportionally. Her head seems a bit large, her bust seems lopsided rather than in perspective, her feet dont seem grounded. Seems like a lot of things that either reference can fix or using better reference can fix.

  • LampLamp Registered User regular
    edited April 2015
    Hey Iruka, thanks! I am seeing all the issues that you are pointing out.The girl was definitely referenced less than the male character, for sure. I'm stupid -- I always struggle trying to paint things from imagination, but I've been realizing more and more this year how much trouble I can save myself by shooting a couple of simple reference shots with my phone camera. I was having a TERRIBLE time trying to paint (and repaint) the light on the male character's face over a few days, but after I held a lightbulb up to my face and shot a photo with my webcam, I banged it out in like thirty minutes.

    Anyway, here's another new thing that I've been working on. I revisited the dwarf vs. troll arm wrestling scene that I posted in here about a year ago (which you can see up ^^^ there on this page). I liked the concept, but I knew that I could do it better than before. Not sure that it's completely finished, but I need to step away from it and come back in a week or so.


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    Lamp on
    Xaquin
  • tynictynic PICNIC BADASS Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited April 2015
    The last two pieces, you've gone to pure white for your lighting, which it's kinda unrealistic - very few light sources produce a true white. But I guess what worries me is the highlights on the subjects - even if you do get a pure white source, to be bright enough to totally overwhelm the local colour when reflecting off a surface, you're looking at some serious intensity which (I think) would produce more ambient bounce, higher contrast, and sharper edges on the cast shadows. So the overall impression is as if you've fucked up the levels on a photo in post-process, which is probably not the look you're going for.


    It's not an issue I'm seeing in your earlier work so I don't think it's a habit or anything, maybe just reaching for something and not quite getting there yet.

    tynic on
    tapeslinger
  • LampLamp Registered User regular
    edited April 2015
    Interesting, thanks for the feedback Tynic! The idea I was going for in both images is that the environment is quite dark, and so I am attempting to key my values up so that I have more range in the darker areas (where the light is not shining).

    So for example, I could key my values darker, like this, so that I have more color and local value where the light is falling, but everything on the dark side is basically lost in shadow:
    fe3b5iatgxvj.jpg

    Or I key my values up so that my lights become blown out, but I am granted a great range of value and color in the dark areas (this is similar to the reference I shot for the horned character holding the glowing orb):
    jdg3h8cn6dia.jpg

    I think maybe the issue with the arm wrestling scene is that the overhead light was originally much brighter and more intense, but then I toned it down toward the end without properly readdressing the light on the characters. I went ahead and amped that light back up a bit, and toned down the light on the characters. Doe sit look more natural this way?

    t4xai3jozu2u.jpg

    Although, that light perhaps appears weirdly intense for an overhead lighting fixture like that, so I think probably the better solution would be to go in and repaint the light on the center characters so that it fits with the dimmer overhead light. I would love some additional feedback from you folks.

    Lamp on
  • bombardierbombardier mr. mully Vancouver, BCModerator mod
    That level of bright looks like what you'd get from a spotlight on a stage, not a 40W overhead bulb. Whether or not the effect is 'accurate' doesn't make it more aesthetically pleasing. Photos with overblown brights or darks don't look good, so the same would go for illustrations or paintings. A camera sees all the light from a whole scene at once, but as your eye travels around a painting or an actual scene it will adjust to the level of light of whatever you're looking at, so the foreground characters would still be visible while you look at them, but the main subjects wouldn't be so overblown while looking there.

    tynicProspicience
  • IrukaIruka Registered User, Moderator mod
    edited April 2015
    the whole painting is an improvement on the original drawing, so thats pretty cool.

    The guy looking at us is a huge distraction though. All the narrative is going on at the table. When you block out his face, you look at the lizard and then refocus on the the narrative because your natural inclination is to check out what hes looking at. With the horn dude looking at you, your instinct is to engage him, which is why its great for portraits.

    If its confusing what I mean, just look back between these two:
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    Cover one, see where your focus is, cover the other, try to focus somewhere.

    I think you can fix this just by repainting his face looking at the action, though. We just have so radically different styles I think it would look weird if I attempted it.

    Edit: I actually don't mind the lighting so much, compositionally I understand why you chose it, If you want to accomplish a high contrast, you would probably benefit from a studying a little Rubens, or someone with similar darks. You are getting deep into painting so you'll need to make choices that aren't just based on what your camera tells you about reality. Taking reference is great, but so is having a mirror up by you while you paint.

    If this were a more stylized piece you may get away with the light as you have it now, but it seems a little more based in reality than that.

    Iruka on
    tynic
  • LampLamp Registered User regular
    edited April 2015
    That's a really good point, Iruka. You're totally right. I might come back to tackle the face of the horned guy again.

    I tried to repaint the troll character and change up the lighting situation a bit this afternoon. I don't know if it's on the right track or not, though.

    rbt4ofo1ifja.jpg

    Thank you guys so much for the feedback!

    Lamp on
  • MabelmaMabelma Registered User regular
    This image is looking freaking amazing! The troll is starting to look wonderful too and I think the dwarf is perfect as it is in terms of refining the actual paint, as for the horned guy, I agree with Iruka, but instead of taking it off maybe you can have one of the characters look at the viewer rather than lose that whole idea completely.

    Have some time, check out my blog
  • LampLamp Registered User regular
    edited April 2015
    So I had to take a break from that tavern scene, I'll revisit it in a week or so with fresh eyes. In the mean time, I started working on a new image, and have produced a rough color comp. I also posted in in the doodle thread, but I figure it can't hurt to put it here as well, in case anyone has any feedback before I dive in to really work on this.

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    Lamp on
  • SeveredHeadSeveredHead Registered User regular
    i really like how you do such ambitious stuff, you got some balls on you man, maybe do some stuff with only greyscale to get the lighting/comp right? and then worry about color later

  • EncEnc A Fool with Compassion The Land of Flowers (and Dragons)Registered User regular
    edited April 2015
    Maybe do a sketchover moving the face to the next pillar gap over with the ogre looking straight on (for him) to increase the tension.

    Sort of akin to the old "hobbits hide under tree roots" Howe painting (or the movie scene if you are more familiar). The face the threat is not facing the heroes increases the fear it will turn and see them, pulling the audience in.

    It might work a bit better (or not!) depending on what you are going for.

    Enc on
    Guns make you stupid. Better to fight your wars with duct tape. Duct tape makes you smart.

    I make Encounter Maps for Pathfinder and D&D! Check them out here: https://falleron.com/
  • LampLamp Registered User regular
    edited May 2015
    Bouncing around on a couple of different projects right now, including that giant attack piece. This started out as a doodle, but I kept at it for a couple of days.

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    Lamp on
    SeveredHeadwhoreray
  • LampLamp Registered User regular
    Morning head study.
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    whoreray
  • ChicoBlueChicoBlue Registered User regular
    That nose might be just a bit too long, and the way the bottom of it is built sort of makes it look like a nose that is being viewed in profile, rather than a nose in 3/4 view.

    There are a couple of spots on the side of her hair where there is just suddenly a 100% black brush stroke or two, which seem out of place. In the photograph, even the darkest parts of her hair don't go all the way to complete black.

    The way you are following the form of her face with your strokes, especially on around the cheekbone area is lovely, though. Keep at 'er.

    Tinklestapeslinger
  • LampLamp Registered User regular
    Right on both counts. Thanks Chico!

  • LampLamp Registered User regular
    edited May 2015
    Will probably continue to tinker with this for a bit but I'm close enough to calling it done that I wanted to share. Based on the color comp I posted up there ^^^ a few weeks back.

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    EvilCakeNappuccinoacadiaDversed
  • LampLamp Registered User regular
    Also, dear lord, I need to quit it with the dark interior scenes and paint something in the freaking sunlight.

  • LampLamp Registered User regular
    edited May 2015
    I've never really painted foliage before, so this was a struggle, but I started to figure it out as I went I think? I really need to do a LOT more of these... Also I'll probably spend a bit more time on this one tomorrow.

    sfujnnjbesiq.jpg


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    acadiaF87beckerskullsIrukatynicNightDragonMightyhogBrocksMulletbombardier
  • joshofalltradesjoshofalltrades This is the water, and this is the well Drink full, and descendRegistered User regular
    edited May 2015
    I'm not an artist and couldn't critique my way out of a nonexistent paper bag, but I read this thread on a whim and just wanted to say that it's really super amazing to see how far you've come in a single page. You've got some really creative ideas, too; I don't particularly go in for fantasy art but I feel like you've got a good mind for art and a shitload of potential!

    I guess what I'm trying to say is

    ilovelamp_fullpic_artwork.jpg

    joshofalltrades on
    The horse is the white of the eyes, and dark within.
    acadiaBrocksMullet
  • LampLamp Registered User regular
    I finally went back to life drawing after a year long hiatus, and had my Surface Pro 3 in tow. I was a little nervous because I've only ever used charcoal pencils at figure drawing, and in fact I've never tried painting a figure from life at all, using physical or digital media. But I've been painting on my SP3 at home for a few months so I figured that would be fine. The one issue I did run into is that it's a little bit hard to paint precisely with the tablet balanced on my knee; I feel much more control at a table, with my keyboard for shortcuts. But I have a decent program that lets me use touchscreen keys for shortcuts. I will say that being able to resize elements of my drawing, reposition the drawing on the canvas, and flip the canvas to check proportions are all such a relief compared to traditional media.

    So all that said, this is my first shot at it. It was a three hour session, but with long breaks so it amounts to maybe two hours of drawing and painting, no time to really tackle the hands and feet for example. Next week I'll hurry up the drawing so I don't have to rush the paint so fast.

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