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!
I like the framing on this, and what a sweet moment! I say paint in all the leaves, maybe some acorns to break the shapes up. It is your Slowvember piece after all. Then later you can play around with the blur to see if it adds a nice effect or not. You could make the foreground in shadow and throw some dappled sunlight around the characters to add light to the focal point. With a frame like that though, you don't really need it. As long as the characters are brighter than the foreground people will naturally focus on the characters. Are you familiar with Marco Bucci? He has some excellent painting tutorials that may help. Look for him on you tube or facebook for his videos. He also did a class for SVS.