January Contest WIP - Fox on Stilts

  • SVS OG

    This is pretty rough and scribbly with lots of work yet left to do... but i am wondering if the image is working for anyone? is there a story coming through? The SVS rabbit was kind of a cheeky place holder for the farmer while i sorted out the composition..but i think he has grown on me πŸ™‚ Any feedback is always very much appreciated!!

    small fox.jpeg

  • SVS OG

    I love the style of it! (I'd almost want to leave it as it is.) And I love the fox character. It all works as a story. What needs more to be resolved is that the two characters are facing in the same direction, have the same posture, and perhaps the rabbit's gaze could be a bit more directed, like the fox's is. I kind of want to turn the fox's body more toward us and have the rabbit be stooping to examine the prints, but there are other possibilities as well.

    I look forward to seeing this develop!

  • @Kevin-Longueil I too, really love the style of this piece. At first glance, it did not immediately register the story. It took me a sec to gather that this story is about a wily fox who is sneaking into the rabbit's henhouse and stealing chickens and is trying to fool the rabbit by disguising his tracks.

    I agree with @LauraA that the positions could be improved. I feel a tension that the rabbit going to see the fox at any second. I would almost rather have the fox more hidden (not from us but the rabbit), Maybe have his back up against a tree or something. I like Laura's idea of having the rabbit hunched over looking at the ground.

    And again. I LOVE your line work and rendering. I cannot wait to see how this story unfolds. I think you have one of the better takes on the story prompt.

  • This is looking great! The fox and the chicken design and execution feel spot on to me. I agree with the others that the rabbit should be more engaged with the tracks.

    Really beautiful work!

  • This is really nice, both the drawing and the story! The only suggestion I have would be to make the tracks a little more obvious coming from the hen house.

  • This totally works for me. I love everything about it. If this were my illustration I would leave it rough and scribbly. I might face the rabbit towards the fox...maybe looking down towards tracks, but besides that I think you're nailing it. Good work!

  • SVS OG

    Thank you all for your kind words and feedback!! This is very helpful to me πŸ™‚ I'll keep chipping away at this with your thoughts in mind - Thank you Again!
    @LauraA @chrisaakins @Ryan-Ehrenberg @deborah-Haagenson @j-sienkowski

  • SVS OG

    I think the rabbit's pose is working better? - more engaged with the tracks- i keep flipping him back and forth but always end up liking him facing away from the fox.(could still change though) I keep taking the shotgun out too...not the most children's book friendly item - (laughably?) I have tried to make it as nonthreatening as possible with the way it is being held. I does seem to fit though? A lot left to do, adding trees, snow, shadows and such. Thank you again for the feedback πŸ™‚

    Untitled_Artwork 6.jpg

  • @Kevin-Longueil for what it is worth I like the shotgun! This version reads a bit cleaner and really shows the progression of the fox cunning the rabbit.

  • SVS OG

    I really like the rabbit's puzzled expression, including the finger at his mouth! And the gun doesn't bother me, especially because it's not a super cutesy illustration. I mean, we have a fox that's going to eat a chicken, it's not like this is a completely violence free story anyway!

  • Love the style!
    Also like the expressions, not just the puzzled look on the rabbit, but also the look on the fox's face that says "I'm getting away with my scheme!"
    The thing I would suggest changing is adding some bushes/trees behind the fox in order to make block the rabbit's view of the fox. I mean, if I were the rabbit and just turned 45ΒΊ to the right, I would have the answer to what took my chicken right away, and could pick off the pilfering predator in a LoonyTune fashion that would make Elmer Fudd proud. So covering the sight lines might be something to consider.
    Otherwise I think it looks great and look forward to seeing the final product! Are you planning on adding more colour, or keeping the cool pallet?

  • SVS OG

    @nickTabor @LauraA @Josh-Schouwstra-0 Thank you for the quick feedback!- i will leave the shotgun and stop worrying about it. I am glad the expression and pose of the rabbit seem to be working better!

    Josh, i totally agree about the trees, i had just taken them out temporarily to sort out the important elements - i should have mentioned that in my post πŸ™‚

    Thank you all again!

  • SVS OG

    I really like this and I think the rabbit's expression is a real improvement. My only suggestion is that when you put the trees back in, maybe you could have some of their branches breaking across the middle or do something to join the two halves of the illustration. Marco Bucci talks about looking for the Z in a scene which helps move the eye around the painting. Other than that, I love this and I especially like the style of it.

  • @Kevin-Longueil This looks great. I was considering a stilts scenario with a hedgehog - the springy kind! The one thing I would say is that chicken looks like he's about to squawk and give the game away. A chicken gag? I think if he didn't have a shotgun then the fox wouldn't be sneaking away from a rabbit. Farmer rabbits realistically would carry a shotgun.

  • SVS OG

    @demotlj Thank you for the feedback! - i think you are right and i agree that the trees and shrubs can really help guide the eye through the composition (or not if i do a poor job of it) - I'm really glad to hear that you (and some other folks) are liking the style!
    @sigross Than you for the feedback Si! I like your logic on the shotgun - I'm thinking that gagging the chicken might be going a tiny bit too dark - definitely a laugh out loud moment though πŸ™‚ i look forward to seeing your springing hedgehog!

  • I like the style and the expression of the characters. I think the comments about line of sight and using the bushes etc to guide the viewers eye are great points. The only thing I'd suggest is maybe altering the perspective slightly so it's from a higher POV. I'm just thinking the fox is up high on stilts. I also don't have a problem with the shot gun. I can't wait to see this piece develop. Great work!

  • @Kevin-Longueil I probably won't do the springing hedgehog as you've nailed the stilts scenario here. I have another idea brewing. πŸ˜‰

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