|| Cold Coffe || Getting serious with caffeine in my system
Hey Folks!

I joined Crimson Daggers quite a while ago but never really got involved in the community, I think now it's a good time to start posting shit, getting to know other people and share the struggle and shit! :)

I'll be mostly posting studies and doodles since that's what I'm doing right now. I'm looking for general feedback ( what do you feel is consistently failing in my stuff) mostly although any crit will me more than wellcome!

Anyway, as a first here are the latest studies I've been doing these past 4 days, some self-motivation progress drawings, some studies, some brainfarts, basically very disperse stuff, nothing digital right now because my PC decided to retire and my laptop is an utter pieceof shit.

Hope this is the begining of a long and happy friendship!

[Image: Warmups001.jpg]
[Image: Warmups002.jpg]
[Image: Warmups003.jpg]
[Image: Warmups004.jpg]
[Image: study001.jpg]
[Image: femalefacestudy001.jpg]
[Image: Studiessample.jpg]
[Image: femalecharacterstudy001.jpg]
[Image: brainfart003.jpg]
[Image: brainfart004.jpg]
[Image: brainfart002.jpg]
[Image: CrimsonCritsdrawalong.jpg]

I did these two last week because I felt like I'm not improving at all and was really down so maybe they would make me feel better, but it made me feel worse since I wanted to be far better by now when I did these. :(
[Image: Sketchremake2.jpg]
[Image: Sketchremake.jpg]
Really nice looking figures! You should try to do some nose studies since most of your noses look broad and masculine.

Woah, great start, loving the pen control.
Got any digital stuff?

Hypnagogic_Haze: So true man, I really am stuck with the same kind of tough looking guys, I'm planing to fix that by dedicating august to just face studies, cause they're really needed! Thanks for dropping by and the advice man ;)

rafa zanchetin: Glad you dig man, the pencil stuff needs to be cleaner but I hope I can eventually do them as clean as you! hehe. I'm gonna try and work in PS tonight, see if my computer doesn't crap itself, for now here is some studies I did a couple months ago when my big pc worked.

[Image: EdgeStudy02filter.jpg]
[Image: EdgeStudy-1.jpg]
[Image: sintitulo3.jpg]

And some more pencil:
[Image: 1922504_10201924609425071_6814142259784657606_n.jpg]
[Image: Selfportrait.jpg]
Tonight's stuff, I decided to fix the issue with my ram crashes on the laptop in the only way I know, painting with crashing non-stop and see if Ysus Chreist takes pity on me. After a super crash on my laptop where I had to remove the battery and unplug it to restart it, the isssue seems to magically have dissapeared, allowing me to work all night long on PS! :D

So, I did a few female studies and a paintover of the knight sketch, just a WIP, cause I just suck at doing stuff from imagination, and I'm not even delving into color yet...

Anyway, the chicks face studies took a REALLY long time ( about 1,5h each, except the bottom one that took about 40 minutes cause I was tired and tried using a broad brush size to get it over with). You guys have any tips to speed up a bit? Like some excercise or something? I'm really fucking slow for everything lately. Sad to say that this 3 things are all I had time to do from 22:00 to 6:30 ( with some few coffe+ tobacco stops ,of course) , which is really fucking sad.

[Image: femalefacestudy002.jpg]
[Image: valuestudy001.jpg]
[Image: CrimsonCritsdrawalongpaint.jpg]
awesome work , i really love those traditional sketches. about working fast. all of that is just through experience, youll get faster the more you get familiar at what you draw. technically speaking sketching with a sole purpose of simplicity and capturing the ref with large shapes. so i could suggest being lose sometimes with the studies kinda in a gesture drawing way.

Regarding working fast, there are a few things that can push you in that direction, though the larger part of it is just doing a whole lot of work to get the experience down. Once you have done something a few hundred, a few thousand times, etc. it gets a whole lot quicker. Things that I have found helped with speed:

1. Setting time limits and trying to improve what you can do in that limit.

2. Big brushes - mainly regarding painting/rendering, big brushes definitely add a hefty time saving in blocking things out.

3. Working small or zoomed out.

4. Controlling your strokes. This will probably slow you down at first, but in the long run it is a massive time saver. Slow down and try to pay attention to why you are making a stroke or series of hatching lines, and imagine how you will do it. I think the catchy term would be "Speeding up by slowing down."

5. Lots of gesture drawing and life sketching (sketching people when you are out and about in particular).

I noticed that the hatching on the head sketches is pretty scribbly looking, so it may help to slow down on the rendering stage and really pay attention to how the hatching is meant to be conveying the form of the face. The visual measuring looks good and seems to be pretty accurate on your drawings, both in terms of your line drawings and your sense of form/value - the faces have a strong sense of likeness, and the traditional stuff especially has a really nice volume to it. Really liking those figure studies especially.

Keep up the good work, I hope to see more from you!

foxfire1345- Thanks! :) You're right about loosening up a bit, a go gestural, I have started an hour of 30 second gestures from posemaniacs today and I intent to keep it up, as of now they suck but I trust it'll pay off in time. Thanks for the feedback ;)

clockodile- Woah! So much great feedback! It's all so true man. The time limit is something I'm trying to enforce but for some reason I get stressed and start to get really sloppy and lose focus, I certainly am gonna try to work on that because I need to learn how to deal with time pressure if I wanna make it into the industry :P .

The big brushes , zooming out and stroke control are really a priority for me right now and I'm doing my best to apply them, although I'm having a real hard time applying that when in the "drawing mentality", pecially big strokes, my values come out week or shallow, I'll definately work on that soon. And gestures are becoming part of my daily routine cause it's really a week spot of mine and it helps me training with the time limit deal.

You're right on the spot about the female portraits, very sloppy rendering, sometimes I just lose focus and start going nuts and the result is that kind of failure haha I'm really concerned with thinking smart more when drawing and less recklessnes. Overall man, AWESOME advice, thank you so much! :D I'll try to apply everything in the coming days, to some extent I did a lot fo what you said in tonight's still lifes and will try to keep pushing it.

So, tonight I had a "bad drawing day" so to speak, I felt really out of focus and my lines where just too sloppy to bear it, and for that reason I decided to do color studies from pictures ( unafortunately I can't have a setup in my current place) I have color picked because I still don't know shit about color, and I feel color picking and analising the properties of the color zones and their values helps me to start getting a grasp on how it works. Anyway, I did these two, the apples took 1 hour and 45 minutes and the skull took like 2 hours ( way harder than I thought) also did an hour and a half of gesture spaming, but not gonna post it cause it's just not interesting at all to watch.

[Image: stilllife002.jpg]
[Image: stilllife001.jpg]

Well, had a couple of complicated days, the power switched off in my town ( advantages of living in the middle of nowhere) and thus I lost an entire night of studies cause candles aren't great to light up your drawing pad.

Anyway, I decided to keep focusing on color studies because I've never done them before and thought that I might learn something from them. and I feel I have learned a few things, curiously, about values and also about how saturation works and shit, so I'm gonna keep it up. I've also experimented wuite a bit trying to understand how to produce nice drawings and focusing on why and how line-values work and in which combos.

I have a few doubts and maybe someone can clarify them for me so I'll drop them here:

- When doing color studies, is color picking at the begining a good idea for a starter? I've been doing it with these but I'm not sure if it's more helpfull to try by eye.

-Is it a good idea to try and do some paintings from imagination after the studies? Or is it better to focus on keeping it up until you understand it better?

I played with the levels after the fact in the firs one and on the other two I played with the levels in the ref and then just painted it with no tweaking whatsoever.
[Image: colorstudylvls002.jpg]
[Image: colorstudylvls.jpg]
[Image: colorstudy003.jpg]

Tried a movie still from dexter with hard brush , freaking hard as hell.
[Image: moviestillstudy.jpg]

A shity sample of what I'm doing with drawing experiments, nothing more than this cause they're mostly this ugly and they're more intended for personal understanding than anything else.
[Image: brainfart006.jpg]

Hey, really great start to your sketchbook, I totally like what I see so far! The brushtrokes in your recent colour studies already look really great.

About the colour picking thing, I don't know if there's a wrong or right method, however I think it's better to actually try and "guess" the right colour or use knowledge from colour theory. I guess if you pick the colour and think about why it's this colour it's also good, most important is probably that you don't pick the colours mindlessly. What I do when doing colour studies: I paint and try to pick the colours only by eye, but sometimes, if I have the feeling that something is off, I try to figure out what is wrong by picking the colour from the original and comparing it to the colour in my study, like this I also mostly see common problems, like: usually tend to mess up value etc. for example. I never pick the colour from the original to apply it directly to my study though.

I personally think doing paintings from imagination is always a good idea, you could try and apply directly what you've learned in your most recent studies and it's always a good opportunity to check on what you've already learned and where you still need to work on. Also, it trains your imagination along the way.

Keep up the amazing work, I'm really curious to see more from you (:


Cyprinus: Hey man glad you dropped by! Thanks for the advice, with the color study I'm basically picking as little colors as I can that make the mayority of the shapes read and check out their properties on the color selection menu, specially focusing on their value and saturation levels, and trying to get as much as I can out of it. Lately I'm learning that many values are darker than I thought and that has been a consistent problem with my stuff prior to starting these studies, so I guess I'm getting something out of it :) I'm sketching a few ideas I have for personal works and I'll try to get them done along next week, they'll most likely suck though. I'm diging your progress too man, you're headed to a real sweet place! :)

So, today I did another color study and a birthday gift for my grandma, funny how the very simple virthday drawing took me way longer than the color study ( about 2,5 hours). I have also kept experimenting with drawing and mark making and I think I've learned a few things, I'll upload some of them on my next post cause right now I'm too tired to scan/edit/upload them.

[Image: colorstudylvls004.jpg]
[Image: FelicidadesBuba2.jpg]

Having a couple of slow nights. Worked on a selfportrait from life, but the structure came out wonky as fuck, I constantly change my head's position and I had to keep reworking the proportions all the godammned time. I have decided to , at least, do one study without color picking at all, like this one, for every one with color picking that I do because this has taught me how bad I am for seeing hue levels and local chroma. Also I did a study from a 3d render from a super talented guy from cghub ( no color picking but it's no big deal, most of it is B&W :P

Also, a couple of sketches I did yesterday trying to improve my mark making. Overall I realised that my facial structure is weird as fuck and totally lacking, so I'm gonna focus on that next week I think. FOr now I wanna keep up with the color studies. I'm also giving a shot to hogarth's books, but for now I don't feel it's helping me much so I'll try to be patient.

[Image: colorstudy005.jpg]
aww man, I fucking hate how off the face is.

[Image: colorstudy006.jpg]

[Image: brainfart007.jpg]
[Image: pencilstudy001.jpg]

Cypinus pretty much covered your questions I think. The only things I have to add for them are that, when I do colour studies, if I am really stuck at the beginning, I will pick a few colours to check the sort of range of the source - but won't put any of them down, and will reset the picker to white before doing any painting. It is also helpful to go back and check stuff if it looks off, either by comparing with the picker or pasting the original over the source and turning it on and off. (If you ever feel dependant on the colour picker, doing some life studies with stuff on your desk will help break the habit too.)

As for imaginative work, absolutely! Doing lots of imaginative work is essential for ingraining information, learning how to use it and developing general picture-making skills. (Not to mention discovering weak spots.) Plus you seem to have good observational skills, everything is pretty accurate, so hoisting up your ability to do imaginative stuff is probably a good idea at this point. Not doing enough imaginative stuff is probably my worst habit, it is so easy to get caught up with studies.

Good work with these latest studies. The form transitions are looking great on the statue one in particular. As for facial studies, if you want to get some grasp of underlying structure, I suggest having a go at sketching some skulls. (Free photo pack here if you don't have a skull.). It might help to do some quick sketches of people in photos (or yourself in a mirror) and sketch the skull in over the face, to improve understanding how it affects the visible structure too. Hogarth's approach is pretty good for heads I think, but try other sources if it doesn't click - not everyone gets on with his stuff.

Your pen/pencil control is really nice and clean, and your figures look really awesome. I suggest if you are doing studies and want to draw something from imagination afterwards, try to keep it in the same topic as the studies. You will learn faster that way, but that is only my share :) Keep it up!
clockodile : So much great feedback!!! Really man, thanks a lot, it has helped me out tons ( specially the skull refs). Totally great idea about the color picking policy, I'll try that out in the next photo studies, I think it is really a great way to go about it. I have sketched a few imaginative things but I think I'll be increasing the ratio because I still do way more studies than personal stuff and I don't wanna stiff up. I have tried Hogarth's method and Loomis, but they really don't work for me, I get lost in perspective and I end up making a mess, so I'll be finding a mix between systems and my own personal way to do it, I think it will help, that and the skulls will get me where I want I think, I just need to keep burning my brain for a couple weeks hahaha.

Again, thanks a lot for the in depth feedback man, really appreciate it :D

AngeliquevdMee: Thanks man! Good idea about keeping the topics to study/ invent close so it's easier to relate them, I'll try it soon! and thanks for dropping by too. :)

So, I have used clockodile's linked refs to study the skull and I think I'll stick to that for a while.
I have mainly drawn them with pencil and simple rendering to get a grasp on how the perspective distorts and their main planes, trying to stay between simple-complicated to further my knowledge without making it too hard to remember. Also did an experiment which was painting with color using the B&W ref and trying to make up a palette and see how I could integrate diferent hues in a limited value range. Sadly , my lapto is on fire and my wacom glitched out, so it was like using MS Paint, and thus I gave up 30 minutes in hehe. Btw the reference drawings took around 20-25 minutes each. After that I did many rough quick sketches to familiarise with the planes and structure.

[Image: facestructurestudy001.jpg]
[Image: facestructurestudy002.jpg]
[Image: colorstudy007.jpg]


Couple of "thinking nights", not so much practice, and moore trying to figure out what makes something appealing be that way.

I've basically been doing quite a few of these, studies of the palettes from guys I like like Kolesov, Mccoy, Bumskee, etc. I basically color pick the main colors and analize their properties, how their hue, value or saturation influence the way they're perceived and the most prominent "base tones" basically the ones you can use when you don't want an area to be too dominant, etc. learning quite alot, but it takes tons of focus. I think I'll be doing more of these:

A sample based on Mccoy's awesome stuff
[Image: Palettestudy001.jpg]

A speedpainting that was all but fast, basically repainted many times to see what would work etc, also helped me realise how much work I still need in foreshortening and proportions , gonna do some of those real soon:
[Image: SpeeppaintStudy001withtweaks.jpg]

Exercise from Ctrl+paint:
[Image: ctrlaltpractice001.jpg]

And a "portrait" I did of my best friend, trying to make him look more badass than he his by outting him into a "warrior" type of deal costume and setting, took like 4 hours or so ( yeah, I'm slow as fuck):
[Image: MelonWarrior.jpg]

Anyway, hope everyone is inspired and woking hard, cause I'm slacking a bit more than I should, so KICK MY ASS and get me back into intense mode :D

Everything is looking great man, perhaps try to tone down the saturation a bit on the shadows? You might like it, or maybe not, haha.
It dosn't seem that you're slacking though, studying everyday and with multiple pieces, but it is hard to be 100% productive everyday for consecutive days. :(

If you want to do more of those skull studies, maybe you can somewhere get a cheap real (fake) skull? That's a lot more challenging than drawing from photos but also more rewarding, learning-wise. I really like your pencil lines btw.
Heh, 4 hours is not really slow imho! It's a nice painting of your friend, I like the cyan/orange contrast, especially with his face lit from below. I just find the high shoulder/shoulderpad a bit irritating, not sure whats going on there, form-wise, and if it is sitting too high or if that's part of the armour.
Foreshortening is haaaard, yeah D:

Keep it up!

SketchbookDeviantartArtblog | Portfolio
Every feedback is appreciated!
rafa :Totally right about the saturation thing man, I'm still struggling a lot with finding the balance with saturation and color properties in general. I get lost in hue balancing and saturation and values and all that stuff. My brain is still overwhelmed hehe, I guess it'll improve with practice.

Lyraina: Thanks for dropping by! I wish I coul get a real skull or something "real" to reference heads from, but I live in the middle of nowhere ( just getting an internet cable demands a 2h trip on the bus to get somewhere where they would sell such high tech ) so I really don't have a choice for now :P And yeah the shoulder is disturbing, I used a samurai armor as a reference, but it's just the arm-wrap without the shoulder-plate, so it looks kind of weird, and it really needs to be fixed to make sense, maybe I'll rework it sometime soon. By the way I love your stuff :D

Been having trouble with power AGAIN ( I can't explain how happy it makes me feel to live in such rudimentary conditions T.T) so I lost the chance to do the color studies for one day. I've been working on foreshortening, curiously I think I kind of have discovered the secret to it more or less. I started with some reference and I didn't like the results cause I didn't feel I was learning, so I decided to do a bunch of drawings from imagination and try to figure out what to overlap and how, focusing mostly on the foreshortening effect rather than proportions.
And I feel I have a better idea on how to create dynamic or interesting poses rather than stiff shit.

This is the only page I had reference for:
[Image: ForeshorteningSheet008withref.jpg]

These are all the experimenting thing, took about 3-15 minutes each, depending on complexity, to know what I was going for I went with a consistent theme on each page more or less ( like a mage with a staff or some dude firing guns, etc.):
[Image: ForeshorteningSheet007.jpg]
[Image: ForeshorteningSheet006.jpg]
[Image: ForeshorteningSheet005.jpg]
[Image: ForeshorteningSheet001.jpg]
[Image: ForeshorteningSheet002.jpg]
[Image: ForeshorteningSheet003.jpg]
[Image: ForeshorteningSheet004.jpg]

Also tried to give a shot to a still life with a really fucking borind theme ( what I have in a part of my desk) and decided to make all photo real and shit. After just doing the setup and realising that the amount of detail it would require would take far too much time, I gave up and thus it looks like shit:
[Image: stilllife003fail.jpg]

A doodle I did with candlelight after my power went off:
[Image: Sketch002FUCKINGPOWER.jpg]
And another doodle I did when I felt I had a good grasp on foreshortening:
[Image: brainfart008.jpg]

Oh, and last one a painting from imagination of a druid I'm trying to setup,for this one a did the sketch of the dude and the basic background first, and for some reason this method gives birth to a really non flowy and very bad looking type of painting, any tips for how to work on this method would be appreciated. Also any tips on establishing colors without looking oversaturated as hell, like it is the case with this one:
[Image: Sketch001.jpg]

That's it for today, I'll be back with more soon :)

Fuck yea man! I'm feeling those gestures, real good!

I have the same problem with still life paintings, it's like I have 2 modes (probably have more for work stuff) where one is the one I like and it's the style I have, and the other is me trying to do a realistic painting. Once I start a still life I just turn off my own style and try to create a photo and that might be the bad thing?! I don't know I might try giving it a go again but with a bit of twist on it, where I still learn from it but don't bore my balls off.

As for the last painting, it might be more of a problem of value, the druid is in the same value range as the background making it hard to separate them. And/Or you could try to start with really desaturated and a more dark value for the objects, like some of these gifs from the master :


Hope it helps man, and keep rocking!


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