January WIP from thumbnails to color study (critique requested)


  • SVS OG

    Reality check time! After 2 days of working out the details of thumbnail 2, I've established the story and characters a little more, and done a first pass at color.

    I've only done animals as people once, and I've never done snow at night, so this is going to be a challenge! Here are my questions:

    Does the story make sense?
    Does it matter that I don't really have the foggiest idea how to foxtrot? (I researched it, but finally decided that an interesting pattern was more important than an accurate one.)
    The perspective has a slight 3-point splay, seen from above at an angle. Does it make sense?
    The scene is going downhill, but I want it to look like it is meant to, not like it accidentally ended up that way. This stage has been one long battle with establishing things in space. Does it work?

    I just need to feel like all these spatial technical details are established before I can really think much about details and lighting. Thank you for any critique you can provide!

    January contest thumbnails.jpg

    January contest foxtrot 2.jpg


  • SVS OG

    @LauraA Beautiful drawing - everything reads well and the story comes through - i love the texture too (it looks like lithography crayon to me) Very nice!



  • @LauraA I think this is great! I feel light and happy looking at the foxes dancing. I find it interesting how our minds go in such different directions when coming up with an idea. I'm wondering if those are other foxes in the trees? I'm not sure why?


  • SVS OG

    @Kevin-Longueil Yay! I have been trying to get a lithography effect for ages! Today it came almost accidentally while I was messing with color overlays. I almost don't want to do much more, but the drawing at least needs to be clear.

    @deborah-Haagenson I'm glad the foxes look whimisical, because that's what I was going for--the serendipity of happening upon something that sort of belongs to its own world. And yes, those are other foxes, hiding from the hunting hound! The idea is that the others have seen him but this one couple is so into their dance that they haven't noticed him yet. Also, the couple running behind the trees should look like they're on all fours. I like the idea that yes, they're dancing foxes, but when people see them, they change back into regular foxes! Or maybe they're half civilized, half wild. And that's why I need to define the drawing more. I know it's hard to tell from what I've got down right now.

    Thank you!



  • @LauraA I agree with everyone, great texture, whimsical foxes, my one thing is the tail sticking out of the bottom right hand corner. It's very distracting and keeps grabbing my attention. Also love the colors



  • Beautiful! I love the texture and movement. I agree about the tail in the bottom right...that bottom corner could make a great spot for the text? Looks great so far though!


  • SVS OG

    @Meg-Clayburn-0 @KaraDaniel Hmm, now that I think of it, you're right about the tail. I did it to establish the space and that there were other couples dancing, but it's an awful lot of contrast. I'll look at other solutions. Thanks, just what I needed to see with a fresh eye!


  • SVS OG

    I took your suggestion, @KaraDaniel, and added some text. I also refined the background characters a little and moved a tree to work on the spatial effect some more before getting into the final version.

    1. Does it work?
    2. Are there too many brown spots/characters in the background? See version below with fewer foxes. Thoughts?

    Thank you!

    January contest foxtrot revisions. psd.jpg

    January contest foxtrot revisions 2.jpg



  • I think I like it better with more brown spots/foxes, I feel like when there are singular spots of brown my eye stops on them more rather than feeling like it keeps my eye moving with more brown spots? If that makes sense?
    It's really nice, sweet concept and the tracks swirling around really help the swoopy feeling 🙂



  • I love the movement and the light in this image, and the expression on the dog's face. I want to know more about the other figures behind the trees.



  • I think removing the bottom right tail left a nice space for the text. I like both images you have shared! My only critique would be that the foxes and the dog look like the same brownish color on my screen so at first it wasn't super clear to me that Will was a dog. But I love the texture of whatever brush you're using. It's looking really wonderful.


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