I completed my first creature and I’m not mad at the result – but the point was/is to improve my skills – so I can’t expect my first attempt to be completely brilliant because I’m working on new subject matter, and actually MULTIPLE new areas are involved in this process.
Not only am I doing figure work, but the creatures don’t really exist in nature, and I’m incorporating photography into this so it should be photo-realistic (that’s a lofty goal). Add to that the fact that I’m working in Photoshop (more on that later because the jury is still out) and this is kinda hard – but also so rewarding!
So here’s my little creature first draft – it’s a meditating faun sitting outside his cave. He really doesn’t “sit” into the environment at this stage – but rather sits on top of it from his hands upward. I think sitting him on that piece of wood worked out well, but the colors seemed off and no matter how hard I tried to adjust the colors on the creature and make them more in line with the background, it always looked off.
Plus those shadows…not right at all….so I revised and this is draft number two.
I learned that I’m really rather timid with my shadows – and a little to bold with my highlights…but in this version I’ve lost that nice “sitting on the log” effect because he’s just too dark. I gained that nice dappled shade effect on his feet. And his jawline bothers me – like a lot. He’s also a little green and that really wasn’t the tone I was hoping for so there will be version three coming soon.
But I learned some things doing this and that’s the whole point. To broaden my knowledge. I’m still really enthusiastic about this project, so I’ve started a second critter. This time a hiking frog. I’m going to take two days off from my meditating faun and then tackle him again. I’ll post the results when I’m done.
UPDATE: It’s been a week since I completed my first faun attempt, and I finally have the finished product at a stage where I like it (but I might move it again so that white branch isn’t so prominent).