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..::Without The Lights::.. by themandii ..::Without The Lights::.. by themandii
Watch all the torches go out
One at a time
The world gets darker every night
Cause I see it all
Without the lights



First WIP process:
GIF:. Thief WIP by themandii 


Last time I painted this OC, December 2014:
  Graham Portrait (Updated) by themandii       




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:icontubi4:
I guess, to start, i have to warn that i am not the best critique or artist, but i will give it my best try.

To start of, the piece is good but it has some faults. To start of with the good, i do find the brush work good, the glowing red aura does draw the eyes and at a first and a bit distant glance it looks very good. Now the things that are not necessarily bad, but i do feel are good. The design of the character himself is not that original, yes he does have elements that make them undoubtedly unique, but as a whole...he is still a dark elf with white hair and ear piercings. And the neck. Now maybe i need to brush up on my dark elf physiology, but i think that the neck a bit to long. I have no idea about where the lighting is coming from (or even if there is suppose to be lighting or if its just some darkening with the brush to make some sort of outlines). And the last thing is that those daggers. NOW THIS IS MY PERSONAL PET PEEVE, but i am 90% sure that they where copy pasted and their all to smooth looks really are a eye soar since they clash with the brush work with everything else.
While it has a lot of small and insignificant faults, i do thing that there is a lot of promise of talent and for future better works from this artist, but this is just good.
PS. Please do hate me to much and i am sorry if you find my "critique" as a bunch of gibberish. :dummy:
What do you think?
The Artist thought this was FAIR
6 out of 6 deviants thought this was fair.

:icons-k-sama:
Hey there, here because you requested a critique and I was feeling generous today! So while this is an elven character, I'll be basing my critique off of human anatomy, since I don't know if your elven race is supposed to have differences outside of the ears or not. Since you want to be serious as an artist, I'll be looking at anatomy, lighting, the background, overall composition and creativity, and I'll try to give you pointers in making your art more visually appealing. Let's start with the stuff I think you did right.

So pairing all of the darker colors with his light hair brings a lot of attention to his face, and him being off-center helps with this. His hair is the first thing you notice, followed by his face and ear. I also think that your anatomy on the chest and neck area is really good and the lack of outlines works well here since you used shading as a substitute. It makes the piece look clean and soft. I also like the detail of his facial hair and eyelashes.

Moving onto some criticisms, I think the tattoo looks a bit out of place because there doesn't seem to be any shading on it, despite its placement. This makes it seem like it's not actually a part of his body. I also think that the lines throughout his robe mess with the cleaner look of your piece. Using actual wrinkles on his clothes would've been a good idea and could've given your piece the extra details that pieces need. Because of the lack of wrinkles, it looks a bit lazier than the rest of the piece, like you were hurrying that part along because you preferred to draw the face, chest, and hair. The fact that the wrinkles don't affect the patterns on the shirt also gives this piece a lack of depth that a piece without outlines can really use. Adding to that, the fact that there are seemingly random dark and light lines strewn throughout makes it difficult to pinpoint a source of light.
That's probably my biggest criticism of this whole piece: the clothes aren't nearly as good as the rest.

Speaking of lighting, I do think that the piece could do with a more defined source of light. The hair in particular looks rather flat and it's hard to distinguish where the lighting is coming from. Somewhere above him nut to the right (our right), I would think, but as I said, it's hard to tell. Define your light source in the very beginning stages of your art and study the way light hits objects (whether you're looking reference pictures online or you're just observing it in real life, it works), and try to implement what you've learned.

I personally feel like his eye is slightly too close to the front of his face, but that could be because of the bangs (which makes it look like he can't see anything. XD). I also think that his head is just a bit too wide, like the back juts out just a smidge too much, but this could be due in part to his really small facial features. Just some slight proportion errors that make it hard to pin down exactly what the problem is. His left shoulder seems to jut out too sharply and the slope of his shoulder is much deeper than the right.

Personally, I don't care for the bright red outline around him, though in this sort of case it would be necessary to keep from having the dark background and his dark skin muddled together, which would make the details hard to see. The outline doesn't add much to the piece outside of this. You could fix this by using complementary colors in your background instead. Or you could work on creating actual backgrounds, which can make your character stand out more and give your piece more personality and charm. The background doesn't even have to be detailed -- could be a part of his castle or bedroom or wherever he tends to be. Or if you're going to stick with backdrops, try to bring focus into your character, rather than making it all one solid color. The knives you have are difficult to see not only because everything's so dark, but also because the background is a mostly solid color with a few smudges here and there.

As for visual interest, this piece is very straight forward and doesn't have much visual appeal outside of the character's design, which makes it overall a fairly average piece -- one that most people would probably glance over in group folders and such. Try moving the viewer's eye to a slightly different angle or perspective; give your character some kind of motion, or even more of an expression. I can't at all tell what kind of character he's supposed to be and if I hadn't read the tags, I wouldn't have even known he was a king or an assassin. The side view is a rather boring view, and this is exemplified by a lack of emotion and personality. Visualize your character, think of what emotions describe him best, and use that to your advantage in the beginning stages -- a picture's worth a thousand words (and this critique is, in fact, over a thousand words long), so have us get to know him through visual cues alone. Practice with some intriguing perspectives, have him posed in such a way that would suit him or the tone of the piece; just generally have him doing something to grab the viewer's attention.

For the star ratings:
Vision; 4 stars
The semi-realism of this does look rather nice, as do the colors of the character himself. I had to deduct a point due to the lack of an overall tone, however.

Originality; 2.5 stars
There are numerous pieces on dA about elven species and this piece seems to be adrift in that sea. There's nothing to make him stand out in particular, and I didn't get any characterization out of him, be it from the piece itself or your description, so that lands this pretty low.

Technique; 3.5 stars
Your technique is pretty consistent aside from the clothes and it does lend itself to decent pieces of art. I had to deduct points for the bright, out of place red outline, but I do like your soft art and detail of his face.

Impact; 2 stars
I kinda feel like I might be rating this a little too high, but the composition here is good and I have to give you points for that. The lack of visual intrigue is what really hinders this piece; there's no interesting angle or expression or pose, which makes this pretty low.

I could probably go on, but I think I'll leave it at that for now to let you digest it all. Sorry if anything came across as harsh or if it was all a bit too much; I just figured since you want to improve, you need an honest, in-depth review. So while this piece has good foundations and overall looks good, there's plenty of room for improvement and many, many ways you can make your pieces more visually interesting. Study up on things like the Rule of Thirds and motion in composition -- even if this things are meant mostly for photography, they're invaluable pieces of information for any artist.

Hope anything I've said here helps!
What do you think?
The Artist thought this was FAIR
4 out of 4 deviants thought this was fair.

The Artist has requested Critique on this Artwork

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:iconthebuttergoddess:
TheButterGoddess Featured By Owner Feb 7, 2017  Student Digital Artist
The overall composition is good and the shading is wonderful! However, the green and white clash a bit and the head is MUCH more detailed than the rest of the body which upsets the balance a little.
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:iconthemandii:
themandii Featured By Owner Feb 7, 2017  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thank you for commenting! I can definitely see what you mean there. Not sure if I"m going to play with this painting anymore but I will definitely keep it in mind for future works <3 Thanks again <3 
Reply
:iconbuttsensei:
ButtSensei Featured By Owner Feb 7, 2017  Professional Digital Artist
WHAT A FASHIONABLE SHIRT HE'S GOT THERE MMMM
Reply
:iconthemandii:
themandii Featured By Owner Feb 7, 2017  Hobbyist Digital Artist
THANKS A TON THERE, FRIEND

but seriously, thanks for stopping by <3
Reply
:icontheraspberryquill:
TheRaspberryQuill Featured By Owner Feb 7, 2017   Digital Artist
This is awesome! Especially love the hair and markings.
Reply
:iconthemandii:
themandii Featured By Owner Feb 7, 2017  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thank you so much my dear <3 
Reply
:iconsolsilvr007:
SolSilvr007 Featured By Owner Feb 6, 2017
He really came out amazing ^^ You did a really good job with the details
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:iconthemandii:
themandii Featured By Owner Feb 7, 2017  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Haha thank you! (And thanks for the non obligatory comment :P)
Reply
:iconlon3nightwolf:
Lon3NightWolf Featured By Owner Feb 6, 2017
Lovin' the face and the cloth. <3
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:iconthemandii:
themandii Featured By Owner Feb 7, 2017  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thanks dear <3333
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:icongymnosophist:
gymnosophist Featured By Owner Feb 6, 2017  Professional Writer
:D  :heart:  Very cool...
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:iconthemandii:
themandii Featured By Owner Feb 6, 2017  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thanks so much!! 
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:icongymnosophist:
gymnosophist Featured By Owner Feb 6, 2017  Professional Writer
You're dearly welcome... :D: :heart: 
Reply
:iconkratoslegacy94:
KratosLegacy94 Featured By Owner Feb 6, 2017  Student Traditional Artist
Nice!!!!
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:iconthemandii:
themandii Featured By Owner Feb 6, 2017  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thanks!! 
Reply
:iconblank-muse:
Blank-Muse Featured By Owner Feb 6, 2017   Digital Artist
His face is very pretty.
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:iconthemandii:
themandii Featured By Owner Feb 6, 2017  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thank you ♥ He thinks so too ;3 
Reply
:iconblank-muse:
Blank-Muse Featured By Owner Feb 6, 2017   Digital Artist
lol
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February 6
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