Feedback wanted



  • Hi. I'm fairly a new artist and am trying to teach myself illustration and animation. I've been taking art seriously for around a year now. I recently completed this art piece yesterday and would like some criticism on it. To be honest, I feel a little disappointed in it since it doesn't really feel that lively or dynamic. Any feedback on it would be highly appreciated.

    trash_coon_by_toonydays_dej8dqi-pre.jpg

    Thanks in advance.



  • @Toony-Days I think it’s pretty good! It definitely has a more animation feel to it like a classic cartoon. My only advice would to maybe add some shadow s here and there right now everything is sort of flat. Maybe darken or lighten the background or foreground to give it a bit more dimension.



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  • @Asyas_illos Thanks! Though, I don't think not having shadows is necessarily the problem. I heard that animators/illustrators have to be great at draftsmanship skills, which is like making things look very three-dimensional and solid even without the use of shadowing. I do think that my artwork looks kind of flat, but I also think there's an underlying problem such as construction.

    Can I ask, do you think it's the character that looks flat, or are you talking more about the atmospheric perspective as in the background receding into the distance?



  • @Toony-Days I think you could make it more dynamic by really pronouncing the emotion of the raccoon's pose. Is he feeling protective of the pizza, or just happy to find it?



  • He's mainly happy to find it, but also feeling protective. How can I improve the pose to really show that? I feel like I struggle with this part. @Matthew-Oberdier



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  • After looking at some of your other work I think it looks fine, I didn’t mean to derail you from your style, you have a solid thing going, you’re a cartoonist and that’s exactly what I see. So the only thing I would say at this point is composition wise I would remove that tree coming out of the raccoons back, if it’s not serving a purpose I’d say pull it.



  • @Toony-Days Hi , I'm throwing a new thing in there...I keep looking at his tail. It is so smooth and long that it's reading more like a lemur. If you look at photos they aren't so long that it would drop down the edge of the trash can and there are fewer dark stripes, more equal distant. Perhaps it could taper and curl up a bit towards the end. I love his facial expression!



  • @Asyas_illos Not a problem.

    I agree with the composition part. I feel like I need extra work on it in general.
    For the style, I still think it could have looked more three-dimensional. Others have said in the past that my work is often flat looking, and that I need to work on things like perspective and so on.

    Although I didn't include any shadows, I think it could help for me to have at least implied it, like in the thickness of my linework or the individual colors.

    I do want to be able to add shadows eventually because it would look nice, but from what I've often heard from people, I believe I have to work on getting the forms to look 3D enough before adding them. But there's a possibility that I could have misinterpreted it somehow.

    Thanks again for the feedback. I appreciate your help and advice so far.



  • @Larue Thanks!

    I just noticed that about his tail too.



  • Have you taken any of the courses at SVS? The beginning courses in the curriculum could be really helpful to you if you haven’t already taken them, basic perspective and how to draw everything are good places to start!



  • @Toony-Days you could try acting it out, or looking for reference. Like this 02661DE7-F079-4C1A-A449-212EE434BD3B.jpeg



  • @Matthew-Oberdier Thanks, I'll try that next time.



  • @Asyas_illos I have in the past, and I've checked out mostly the foundational courses like perspective and so forth. But I think I have trouble applying them in my work more than just learning the theory of it. For instance, I still have trouble visualizing ground planes and placing objects within that space correctly. And I also have trouble drawing imaginary things in different angles, as opposed to drawing something strictly from observation.

    I was wondering, would you happen to know any good perspective drawing exercises to improve drawing things from imagination in 3D space? For instance, do you use 3D grids when you're practicing perspective or applying it in your work?



  • @Toony-Days you know, I am the wrong person to be asking that, really. I am a mostly self taught artist apart from high school classes over 15 years ago lol, and I’ve only been doing classes from svs since last November. perspective is one of the things that still throws a kink in my chain! I am lucky enough to be able eyeball my needs to make it believable but it’s almost never actually correct. Sorry pal. Maybe @Joe-Koz or @Braden-Hallett can help you here they have excellent perspective in ther artworks.



  • Maybe it would help to show another piece of trash either in the garbage can or on the ground to tell the story.

    When I saw his face I thought he looked almost like he was "smiling for the camera" because of his smile and pose. Looking at similar pictures to the gesture you're telling here could help a lot.



  • @Asyas_illos No worries! Thanks for the links though. I'll check them out



  • @Toony-Days really cute character, and you have a nice cartoony style. Really nice shapes, as that's giving your character "weight" -- it looks like a creature who has mass and that grounds it even without a shadow.

    Some feedback to consider:

    • Are you doing any initial gesture drawings or "drawing through", as @Will-Terry recommends in several SVS classes? That might help some of your shapes look more natural -- for example, the raccoon tail, where the head and shoulders meet, and the background (the shrubs seem to stop at the raccoon).

    • Have you tried a few different color comps to see what color palette puts the focus on your main character and helps tell the story? Using similar grays in both the raccoon and trash can do create a giant focal point, but almost look like one character. Because the values are so similar with the pizza and background, and because it's mimicking the shape of the bushes, it gets a little lost.

    • What is the story you're telling in this piece? The raccoon looks guilty -- why? Who is he looking at? Is he supposed to share the pizza? Would expanding the composition to include another character help tell the story? Would changing the placement of elements in the composition improve the story?

    Nice linework and for just a year in, you've got some impressive skills! Really looking forward to seeing more of your work!


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