Eyliana CC 1 Wip Thread
So I'm gonna try this, it will be a challenge and I'm not sure if I'll have time to finish it. But I'll give it a try!

I choose the design a character for the house Negrea. Since the motto is 'Spring is coming', I associated that with hope, new life and a light theme. The house has not taken a part in the struggles in the realm and therefore war hasn't touched them yet. The character I'm gonna paint is the high lady or her daugher, not sure about that yet.

The high lady has a regal like appearance, she gives hope to her people and radiates that. Her daughter grew up in the peacefulness of the house. She is a bit dreamy, curious of what is outside.

I added some pose sketches and composition things. I'll have to explore a bit more.

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Interesting! I definitely want to see more!

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Cool idea! Getting curious aswell.

Thanks guys! I did some more work today. I think I'm going for the high lady, since it will be easier to incorporate the design elements of the house in her clothing.

The first scene is her walking down the stairs where some kind of problem is happening, so she needs to display authority. I think the stairs will be outside.

The second is in the her place in the big hall, both the lord and the lady have their own kind of conclave designed from wood and their house symbols where to sit on formal occasions. Although I have a hard time imagining the rest of the composition/scene around it so I think I'll pick the first one.

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Doodled a view more things. Trying to come up with a composition and lighting for the scene. Found it hard to simplify thingsand being oke that not everything needs to be accurate  in the thumbnails.

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I think you could try adding some other elements such as statues or vases.

Keep this up :)

Yeah, I was thinking on a vase with flowers or a beetle fountain or something to make it more related to the house.

Thanks :)

Walking down the stairs is a good idea! Will there be some fretwork on the banister or nearby? Not sure I imagine a beetle fountain the way you do, hope to see it! Or the vase :)

Modelled a stairs to get a sense of the perspective and then played a bit around with different angles and compositions in photoshop. I ended up rotating the canvas, to make the figure bigger so it will be easier to paint later.Other then that I blocked in some really general shapes with my touchpad mouse (I don't have my drawing tablet at my parents), so don't pay too much attention to that. The white blobs are going to be vases on the wall to break the boring wall surface. And I was thinking on adding flowers or a bush in the right corner, something with a darker value but not a boring wall.

I would like some feedback about the height of the figure. I noticed that I found it quite hard to place the figure on the stairs and determine how tall she should be. I basically said, a step is 15,8 cm in the model cm, so a woman of 1,6m is about 10 steps and than added a bit more because of perspective.

[Image: test_by_eyliana-d9w6u51.jpg]

Using 3D always helps me to visualise a scene better, really cool workflow to play with.

I think it's difficult to tell at this stage if it's she's right height. Perhaps if you add more objects in there to compare with?
Sorry, it's almost midnight already but anyways, here is my advice, as promised! I started doing a little thumb for myself to think myself into your design problem but then it grew and grew and grew... but now at least I've got a whole demo to talk about :D

You said that you'd also appreciate advice on the process etc. so I'll start with that. I started out by blocking in a rough set of stairs in sketchup (because drawing and designing stairs by hand is a pain and takes forever) and then started designing on top. The design needs to have a beetle in it so i started with that (he's on the banner at the top of the stairs) Then I mapped out my associations of spring into useable visuals and made a moodboard with birds, a bonsai, nouveau art metalcraft, the arch of constantine in rome (for the corinthian pillars and general details), peacock feathers and lingerie with floresque motives. All of those found their way into the design.
I like your idea with the stairs, so I used that in my demo aswell, although mine are only slightly curved. I thought these would be easier to make a composition with and they are generally easier to work with than those pesky spirals :D I saw you did your own 3d stairs already, cool! Just don't jump straight into painting with value, that's just one more ball to juggle on top of the drawing aspect and the designing, composing and storytelling...
Storytelling! You said you wanted her to descend down the stairs in a stern and gracious manner. That's a cool idea, but what else would be happening there? Just someone walking down the stairs isn't a very captivating story on it's own, but you can add to that! I remembered the painting "L'Eminence Grise' by Gérôme which already has someone on stairs in it, so I let that influence me heavily (steal like an artist, right? :D) I borrowed the poses of the bowing people to tell a similar story. The three courtiers that I added are all below her in the composition so they make her appear more powerful. Also, they all directly point at her with their bodies, which helps to center the composition on her as the most important figure. The trees and the little 'halo' are doing the same job.
You said you associated spring with an "idea of hope, new life, and something regal/honest" So that's what I tried to get across with the design of the architecture. There is no roof, so sunlight can come in all the time and the trees are growing directly next to the structure. The corinthian pillars and the nouveau art handrails help to bring the organic aesthetic from the trees to the man-made objects. Her dress is made of peacock feathers and bird wings (probably a bit hard to see, i drew pretty quickly :D) and she also has a tail that's like a big peacock feather. These elements are meant to establish her as both a figure of importance (because hey, if you look like a peacock you are the center of attention) and tie her in with the motif of spring.
I also used the golden ratio and fibonaccio quite a lot to quickly organize everything into pleasing size relationships and positions. The color palets that you chose make sense, but be careful, green is the hardest color to paint!

I hope you (and maybe some other people :D) got something out of this! I did learn a ton making this and had a lot of fun!

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@ Bjork; Thanks! And 3D is sure helpful, especially with complex architecture and playing around with how to position things.

@Jan; Oh wow, I didn't expect that! Really awesome. I feel like getting to work right away, really inspiring, but first I have a work day ahead of me. Most important aspect out of your demo is I think that she needs to have a reason to walk down the stairs.
In my head I had a story of that she was walking down to meet and unpleasant emissary or other nobel, and therefore the calm, regal appearance and display of authority. But one character and environment was already quite challenging, so I left it out. But I'll rethink this.

The demo sure gives a good insight in adding components and I'll try to give that another shot today/tomorrow. Thanks a lot for taking the time ^^

Wow, Jan that's nice! (just a short crit - heads are too small and it might be a little too high fantasy, but otherswise you did awesome job)

Good luck Eyliana, you've got some nice support so feel the pressure haha :)

yeah I might have gone a little too crazy with the design language for it to fit into the original series, but cut down the elven ears and boom it's no longer so fantasy-ish :D i thought they were nice pointers to emphasize that the courtiers are bowing down and they somehow just look cool on the lady :D anyway, I'm glad you could use it!

@Jan, thanks for taking the time to do that in depth demo!

@Eyliana, I  would highly recommend, especially given the shortness of time that you keep things compositionally very simple. You don't need multiple figures or lots of perspective work to get across a character...it's all in the pose and design really. Keep the environment context simple but relevant.  I find simple bold compositions tend to work better than very complex ones. You had the right idea with your thumbs...so I would say to keep pushing in that vein.
Check out these awesome examples from Cynthia Sheppard.

[Image: astrocal_2017_capricorn_final_1__by_shep...9q6h60.jpg]

[Image: 001-spectacular-digital-art-cynthia-sheppard.jpg]

[Image: karen-memory-by-cynthia-sheppard.jpg]

I used one of your thumbs (the very first one haha!) and the figure you drew to do this real quick, so it actually is all your comp, just from your various elements. You can apply your design work any way you like to fit your needs if your comp is strong. And in response to a statement you made earlier about your thumbnails not needing to be accurate, and I tend to disagree. They can be very simple even abstract, but I think they should try and be fairly accurate to the general POV and proportion, scale of the forms, otherwise you aren't really looking at the problems that doing them is trying to address.

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@Elyana hope to see how far you push your image! I really like your idea with the stairs!
@Amit great piece of advice, as usual.
@Jan awesome, I like your drawing style! There might be some reason for small-head proportions, so I think that's ok, but maybe the arch is too low for that girl.

Thank you all guys! I had some nice ideas for the direction of Jan, but time wise that would be very hard to manage.

@Amit; Thanks for the feedback and examples.You are right about the thumbnails. This whole designing an illustration thing is very new to me and juggling so many things at the same time is challenging.

I ended up doing something fairly easy and doing the sketch digitally because it offers more freedom. Now back to traditional stuff. Still want to try some colours before starting the actual painting.

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Great work! Glad to see you applying feedback. Push it :)

 YouTube free learnin! | DeviantArt | Old Folio | Insta
A few more things. Did some more light studies and tried some colours. And the final lineart. Time to start painting!

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Hey! It's coming along great ^^ good job with the stairs - hard to draw that stuff so solid in a limited space! Good luck with the painting - I wish I was as brave to do mine traditionally too : ) if you didn't get too far along already, you could try making the green mix for the inside planes of those cutouts in the stairs a little cooler each one you go back to get the feeling it's receding in space more. Looking forward to see it finished!

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