Monday, December 8, 2014

Digital Painting -- Final: Fantasy Portraits

Digital Painting - Final: Fantasy Portraits

Title: Digital Painting - Final: Fantasy Portraits
Medium: Photoshop CS6
Scale: Each piece is originally 5" x 5"

Notes: We were given free reign over what our final project was to be.
In the vein of Baldur's Gate fantasy portraits, I decided that it would be really awesome to go ahead and try and turn some of the fellow students in class into characters that I would attribute to being in that realm of fantasy.

Top-left is Britney Boswell, turned into an Elven Archer.
She wanted to be an elven something so my natural instinct was to turn her into an archer.
Originally I had a background included in this piece, but when I went back to looking over them as a whole, I decided against it. Since none of the others had any sense of backdrop, why would I include one here.
There are a few snags on this piece though that I didn't notice until critique was given.
A) The bowstrings are a tad on the thick side.
B) The fletchings of the arrows look a bit too thick and not... feathery enough.
C) Some people didn't like the fact that she wasn't looking where she was aiming, I personally like it because it feels like it shows a ton of confidence in her archery skills.
D) The bow's design feels a little unresolved. If you look at the design of it, it doesn't really read as a very sturdy bow. Maybe adding more to the base structure of it could help.
Overall, I really like the way this turned out. I think that the multiple light sources and color schemes help to push the eye all around. The color palette is very harmonious.

Top-right is Brittany Moore, turned into am Elven Swordswoman.
It was an almost immediate response here... I just hear this yell across the class, "I want to be a chaotic-good ELF!" Ask, and ye shall receive.
My choice to go with swordswoman was generally simple. I wanted to have a melee fighter alongside the ranged fighter. With the way it is designed though, I kind of consider this design a half-elf, but... meh, I'm not going to nit-pick.
About the only critique that I remember from this piece was that the hair on the left side of the face should have been blended a bit more into the backdrop.
I have to admit, this is my favorite of the bunch, mainly because of how life-like the eyes are.
But I also have to admit that it wouldn't have been as kick-ass without Lane Brown's input. That guy is a badass!

Bottom-left is April Rodriguez, turned into a Demoness Courtesan.
She gave me the choice on this one by sending me two images. I could have gone either way with this piece. Good or evil. The other version would have been an Angel or something akin to that type of holiness. This one turned out to be kinda unanimously the favorite for the class. It must be those glowing eyes...
The only critique that was really given was about the horns. They felt like they should have been pushed back some as to not compete with the foreground elements. 
Everyone seemed to respond mostly to the way the hair and cloth were rendered on this one. Mental note: Paint like this more often.

And lastly, bottom-right is Misa Dowdy-Cannon, turned into a Squid War-Witch.
Initially I had an idea pretty quickly that was a bit more simplistic. It was just to place her as an evil mermaid type character with throat gills and scales. Things got a bit more extreme as I went...
The main critique was about the color band on the edges. They suggested to either do them more and let them fade out, or take them out altogether.
Somewhere along the way I just started to paint and everything felt like it just fell into place like this. The squid elements manifested in the middle of class and I just continued on with it because of the uniqueness of the concept. Everyone seemed to respond to this one too, but I think it was mainly because of how different and ... creepy it was.
Again, I have to thank Lane Brown for his incredible input. He helped turn this piece from okay to awesome.

There you have it... four fantasy portraits based on photos.
This was an important project for me because it was finally a chance to express my creativity while still using reference taken by myself. 
Ultimately, this was a great project and I would like to do more portraits just like this!

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