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Critique: Want to improve, looking for advice

neocmiri

Member
So I submitted my newest art not long ago www.furaffinity.net: The Princess' Bath by neocmiri but I never get feedback, ever.
This lack of feedback or any help to let me improve often demotivates me, then I eventually draw again and the cycle continues.
I want to improve even despite of my (likely bad) skills, and limits of the Procreate app (where the best brushes are behind paywalls I can't afford, or simply don't exist and the creators made it difficult for me to try and attempt to make them myself). If anyone can give me feedback, I would very much appreciate it, thank you.
 

TyraWadman

The Silent Observer
I would say to keep practicing at anatomy/perspective. Not super dynamic action poses, but something other than front and 3/4 views. Almost all of your pieces feature someone looking off to the side with near-identical faces/expressions.

It does look like you might have traced over photos of women for some of your pieces, because the heads don't match the bodies. Not bashing you, but rather, your Bunaroo Species Clothing Idea pic looks better than, say, After the Wedding in the sense that the head matches the body a little more.

If I look back at the Princess' Bath, the body looks okay. The head matches fairly okay, but I would suggest looking at the neck. It does look a little too short.
The tail has a line going through it and it looks like you forgot to color some of the outline in black.
Fingers look a little sausagey. If their fingers are supposed to be long and round, perhaps try making the hand size slightly bigger? If not, then shorten them a little and give them more bend.

I'm guessing that white texture is supposed to be steam? Depending what software you use you could easily create the illusion of steam by putting a separate layer of white over top and blending/blurring it with another brush. You can even lower the opacity, or set your eraser to 50% opacity and gently stroke over the area to create holes. I only say that because we can see the repetition in the brush/texture you used and it just ruins the effect. It also doesn't match the rest of your style. Or... now that I look at it again, you could just do what you did for the clouds, but not all cloud-like shapes. XD

Do not be discouraged. You can make all kinds of awesome stuff with a basic round brush. You just gotta know how to work the brush settings to give it the effect you want.

And anatomy! As much as it sucks, sometimes reading a book or two on anatomy and learning to draw animals can give you a major boost!
 

neocmiri

Member
I would say to keep practicing at anatomy/perspective. Not super dynamic action poses, but something other than front and 3/4 views. Almost all of your pieces feature someone looking off to the side with near-identical faces/expressions.

It does look like you might have traced over photos of women for some of your pieces, because the heads don't match the bodies. Not bashing you, but rather, your Bunaroo Species Clothing Idea pic looks better than, say, After the Wedding in the sense that the head matches the body a little more.

If I look back at the Princess' Bath, the body looks okay. The head matches fairly okay, but I would suggest looking at the neck. It does look a little too short.
The tail has a line going through it and it looks like you forgot to color some of the outline in black.
Fingers look a little sausagey. If their fingers are supposed to be long and round, perhaps try making the hand size slightly bigger? If not, then shorten them a little and give them more bend.

I'm guessing that white texture is supposed to be steam? Depending what software you use you could easily create the illusion of steam by putting a separate layer of white over top and blending/blurring it with another brush. You can even lower the opacity, or set your eraser to 50% opacity and gently stroke over the area to create holes. I only say that because we can see the repetition in the brush/texture you used and it just ruins the effect. It also doesn't match the rest of your style. Or... now that I look at it again, you could just do what you did for the clouds, but not all cloud-like shapes. XD

Do not be discouraged. You can make all kinds of awesome stuff with a basic round brush. You just gotta know how to work the brush settings to give it the effect you want.

And anatomy! As much as it sucks, sometimes reading a book or two on anatomy and learning to draw animals can give you a major boost!

Yeah I did trace some photos in the past, I have a pose figure now which was used for more recent pieces. Not sure if I have anatomy books, I'll look into it though. The fingers advice I'll take into account, maybe try to fix this one and reupload, though if not I'll carry it forward.
The steam is a paintbrush on procreate, but there's no actual steam effect brush, and I can't make my own. I think I used a space nebula brush with half opacity to do it. The black line through the tail fluff was supposed to hint the fluff is thin, guess I didn't do a good job there, any advice to improve it?
As for only doing front and 3/4 view, right now I struggle to position the eyes if I draw any other way, I somehow always do one eye twice as big as the other. I am trying to break out of this trait, I need time though.
There's so much I want to discuss and ask, but I may have to come back to this as its 2:20am as I write this. As it stands, there's no reference sheet to give different facial expressions or views because I struggle even doing one of those (running out of space rather than just being unable/unwilling to do one)
 

TyraWadman

The Silent Observer
Yeah I did trace some photos in the past, I have a pose figure now which was used for more recent pieces. Not sure if I have anatomy books, I'll look into it though. The fingers advice I'll take into account, maybe try to fix this one and reupload, though if not I'll carry it forward.
The steam is a paintbrush on procreate, but there's no actual steam effect brush, and I can't make my own. I think I used a space nebula brush with half opacity to do it. The black line through the tail fluff was supposed to hint the fluff is thin, guess I didn't do a good job there, any advice to improve it?
As for only doing front and 3/4 view, right now I struggle to position the eyes if I draw any other way, I somehow always do one eye twice as big as the other. I am trying to break out of this trait, I need time though.
There's so much I want to discuss and ask, but I may have to come back to this as its 2:20am as I write this. As it stands, there's no reference sheet to give different facial expressions or views because I struggle even doing one of those (running out of space rather than just being unable/unwilling to do one)

No worries! Just get back to me later if you want to! Tis the convenience of technology after all!

As for implying thin hair, one method would be to lower the opacity of the color you filled inside the tail? That way the line is still behind the actual tail. Quick, gentle/thin strokes of the brown color you used would also work, assuming you have a brush that changes line weight depending how hard you push.

Not gonna lie, eyes are hard. I ALWAYS have to spend extra time fixing the eyes, even when they're facing directly at the audience. One of them is always bigger... asymmetric can look good, but it usually depends on the style, too... You're right. Take your time, practice and try not to get discouraged. Your effort will start to surface the more time you put into understanding the anatomy, software, and of course practicing...

Again, get back to me whenever. I am jobless thanks to Covid and in the process of relocating. I will be on daily. :D
 

Saokymo

Art Cookie
The single best advice for improvement is to practice every day (or as often as you can manage) and to never give up despite feeling discouraged. I know that’s not the advice you want to hear, but it’s the simple truth behind mastering any skill.

In terms of specific advice, I second the call for focusing on anatomy & perspective studies. Keep using photo references when you can, but DON’T TRACE THEM - you’ll learn so much more doing things freehand than if you just trace contours & outlines. Yes, your first drawings will suck. That’s okay! Keep making more drawings and you’ll have something amazing before you know it.

As far as positioning & sizing features goes, try lightly sketching skeleton guidelines first. For faces, I usually draw a vertical center line indicating where the character is looking and then a horizontal line to show where the eyes fall. Once those are in place I can add in the eyes and facial features while still keeping everything in general perspective. The same practice can be applied to bodies, too - drawing a center line of motion for the spine, or adding contours to the chest to better visualize volume, etc. As long as you keep your guidelines light (or on their own layer) they won’t detract from the rest of the sketch, and you can erase them when you’re done.
 

Saokymo

Art Cookie
And another tip regarding digital brushes - you really don’t need all the fancy special effects brushes to make good art! They can certainly help save time for specific effects, but I guarantee every effect can be recreated using a basic round tip.

I don’t know if you’re using a tablet, but if you are try playing around with some of the pressure settings. Changing the opacity/flow will let you paint semi-transparent effects; changing the width will let you make tapered strokes, etc. Experiment with different settings to see what suits you best - there’s no right or wrong way to make art! As long as you’re satisfied with the effort, that’s all that really matters. ☺️
 

MainHammond

Former Big Toasty Cinnamon Bun
Why is your character so angry ?

But besides that it's not bad.
I like the background but I don't get where's the light coming from.

But I agree with Tyra, keep practicing anatomy and persepective.
JustSketchMe

This is a good app for referencing.
As the cookie said, use them as a reference, don't trace them.

But the most important is to keep practicing, enjoy the process and be proud of your work.

If you look at my FA page, you can see I'm just an aficionado, but this place has really encouraged me to keep practicing and I feel like I've improved my skills thanks to them.
 

zentt

Dragon Puncher
Want to workshop a piece with me? I’m no master, but I’m decent and I can probably guide you through making something you’ll be happy with.
895D8BD7-98AF-4A85-B1E3-10A5574B0334.jpeg
 
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neocmiri

Member
No worries! Just get back to me later if you want to! Tis the convenience of technology after all!

As for implying thin hair, one method would be to lower the opacity of the color you filled inside the tail? That way the line is still behind the actual tail. Quick, gentle/thin strokes of the brown color you used would also work, assuming you have a brush that changes line weight depending how hard you push.

Not gonna lie, eyes are hard. I ALWAYS have to spend extra time fixing the eyes, even when they're facing directly at the audience. One of them is always bigger... asymmetric can look good, but it usually depends on the style, too... You're right. Take your time, practice and try not to get discouraged. Your effort will start to surface the more time you put into understanding the anatomy, software, and of course practicing...

Again, get back to me whenever. I am jobless thanks to Covid and in the process of relocating. I will be on daily. :D
Thing is I did lower the opacity, the line is on a different layer (scenery lines). I'm not sure what else I can do there as its at 50% opacity. Overall I'm looking at the piece with your feedback and trying to decide how best to adjust it, the hands may take some time though.

Why is your character so angry ?

But besides that it's not bad.
I like the background but I don't get where's the light coming from.
She's not supposed to be angry, this is the widest I've drawn her eyes. Perhaps its just the manga-style? I did try her with normal eyes but it didn't look right, at least for now.
And your right, the light is supposed to be from the sunset which is on the right following the sky gradient. Perhaps I've placed the shadows wrong too? I've never been very good at shadows but I keep trying because maybe one day I'll get them right.
 

Sugarygulp

Active Member
Draw draw draw. I know it can be really discouraging when a piece that you worked hard on doesn't quite get the attention you hoped for, but don't let it discourage you!

Just keep drawing, and definitely experimenting and going out of your comfort zone. It's also helpful to find artists that inspire you and study their art.

I think you have a decent grasp on anatomy, so just more practice can help you hone it. And also, it's incredibly helpful to always find picture refs of the pose you're doing and study from them when you draw.
 
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