Can you tell what's going on in this scene?

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    Hi guys! After way too much time away, I'm wanting to do a fairly simple drawing to get back into things. I quickly worked up this idea from something I saw before Christmas. It doesn't matter so much what's in the window, because it will be a bit bleached out and the boy is the focus, but can you tell what's going on here? And does it read well? (I may make the coat darker, but I want the boy to have some bright color on him somewhere.) Are the values ok? Do I need more of the second figure and can I do that without having to make the boy too small? I wanted to get your fresh opinions before moving on. Thanks!

    0_1547210758260_Boy licking window 2.jpg

  • I see a small boy kneeling down looking tough a window.It reminds me of the type of viewing window you would get in a zoo.I also see his mum standing behind him. So if this was your intention it seems clear to me.

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    The first thing I noticed was the boy and the window. I thought maybe he was licking the ice off of the window of a door. The lady near him is not dressed for outside, so then I got a little stumped as to why he would be dressed for cold, and she not. Maybe they are both inside and he wants to go outside, but is hiding from others? Or maybe they are both outside, she is walking by and he is looking in a shop window that he is interested in? I love the classic feel!

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    @juliepeelart That was a good catch about the mom. I drew her quickly and should have added a coat. The checks on the skirt were about clarifying the form and I only thought about the discrepancy later.

    @DOTTYP and @juliepeelart Maybe instead of telling the whole story now, I'll use your critiques to clarify the drawing, because it should be clear without my explaining it! The main thing I was concerned about when I posted was the behavior being clear despite seeing the child from behind--or did I need to change the angle?--but I want the mom to add a certain minor element as well.

    I always have this problem when I start to draw children looking into or out of windows! Which side and which angle?! Thank you!!

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    Definitely! I love the boy’s pose

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    Ok, so here's a slightly more refined value study. I changed some of the values, but they're still in flux and could change again.

    Now my main question is, what kind of impression does that hand coming from above give? Does it help the story? Can you tell what the story is supposed to be?

    Thank you for your feedback!

    0_1547307365630_Boy licking window values.jpg

  • The hand to me is both a bit distracting, but also says "what the hell are you doing" (coming from a mother of a 3yr old....)
    I will say, on this version he doesn't seem flush with the glass??

  • @lauraa Looks like he's about to get grabbed. Maybe in trouble? Or maybe he scared her cause she just noticed someone is next to her?

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    Ok, what's going on here is that I saw a little boy start licking a shop window while his mom was distracted. He was looking at something inside, which at the time was probably a display or Christmas decorations but I changed it to food for the upcoming carnival season. The next moment, she realized what he was doing and rather over-reacted out of fear or disgust. I saw the scene while walking down the street with a friend, and the moment we got out of earshot we both burst out laughing because the whole thing was so typically curious and oblivious kid and worried mom. But to me, the most interesting part is the kid's visceral interest in the window and what's behind it. The fact that kids get foiled at carrying out such things is secondary.

    @NizhoniWolf Ok, out goes the hand! I decided for myself that it's too menacing. Perhaps just showing and adult turned in the other direction is enough to give the idea of distraction. And thanks, I will work on the flush-with-glass part.

    @ThisKateCreates As you can tell from what I wrote above, you are partially correct, but I did decide that the hand is giving an interpretation to the story that is a bit too frightening and I'm going for innocent curiosity.

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    @lauraa that’s a very interesting story! I wonder why the kid did that.

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    @nyrrylcadiz I can only think it's just that thing where kids want to put everything in their mouths!

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