@tyson-ranes Excellent, very helpful critique! Thank you so much. Before I dive into a piece next time, I'll try to set up values more intentionally... your example shows me how much further I could have pushed things.
I think most of what I wanted to say has already been said by @stringfellowart. 1 thing that I would add though, is that the branches you have sticking out of the leaves/fur and around the leg don't really feel like they have been integrated into the design with a great deal of thought. There are too many variations in the branch types and each are constrained to one area, perhaps choose one type and build that into the design slowly (I recommend the reddish berries as they would make a nice color variation with the green.)
I too need to work on values, i now find myself asking the question "have i been brave enough with the values" when adding colour to a piece now. And by that i mean could i make the darks darker/lights lighter?? Whats great with digital is that you can play with that and not have to start from scratch like you do in Traditional lol
Just be 'Brave' try things out and see what you like the looks of.... oh and take breaks! If you get to that point again where you stare at it too long, maybe its time for something else (in my case, its time for bed)
Looking great! I would just like to see a little of the curve on the top of his head. The "& more" sign is looking a little too much like a hat because of where he sits underneath it. It cuts off the top of his head at the same point on both sides. And one of the spikes from the mine looks like it is impaling his head at the same spot creating an odd tangent where the corner of the sign meets it. Could you also maybe add a hint or two of a foreground element. Especially in the lower left? Part of the top of a steel barrel, or some other nautical oddity? Maybe not, just a thought. Looks great overall, though!