February Prompt "Nightfall" Please Vote

  • Hello fellow SVS friends -

    I kindly request your humble opinion on which of the following Nightfall pieces you find more interesting.

    Thank you for taking the opportunity to vote 🙂

    Option 1
    Nightfall 1.JPG

    Option 2
    Nightfall 2.JPG

  • @Jeremy-Ross This is beautifully painted! I prefer the painting of the 2 characters with the balloon. In the first drawing, the character is placed close to the edge of the painting, and facing outward, which makes me automatically look off the page. Although this could work in a book, where the readers' eyes are directed toward the writing on the next page, I don't think it's working in this instance, where you want to keep the attention on the artwork.

    Also, the second image shows 2 characters interacting, which definitely tells more of a story. I'd love to know why 50% of people voted for the first option... (?) I will say, the balloon does seem a little out of context. Why is the ladybug holding the balloon? Trying to go to the moon? What details could you add to further push what you're trying to convey? Like I said, they're both beautifully painted, but ultimately the purpose of illustrating in SVS is to tell a story, right?

    Thanks for sharing - I love your work!

  • Hi @Kaela-McCoy, thank you so much for your feedback! On the first piece, I was looking for the lady bug to simply be present with the full moon; however, it felt like something was missing.

    On the second piece, I wanted to tell a story of ladybug gifting a balloon to his love. Initially, I was thinking to go all pink, just different saturation’s and values, but then I thought, how about introducing just one extra color to harmonize.

    Now I’m thinking how to convey the story a little more. Thanks again for your feedback!

  • @Jeremy-Ross Oh, that's super cute! Maybe if the balloon said I ❤ you, or was shaped like a heart? That would help give the impression that one was giving the balloon to the other. Is one ladybug male and the other female? If so, the coloring could be different, since in nature, the males are more of a saturated red. If both are male or both are female, you could do something extra to add to that story, too. I would also think about how this is all significant at night, since that's the prompt. I'm just trying to think of all of the suggestions the judges have had in past critiques 🙂

  • Hi @Kaela-McCoy, wonderful feedback and greatly appreciated!

    Perhaps it’s difficult to see easily, but the male is more red and the female is more pink; however, I’ll explore further and look forward to resubmitting.


  • For me, they are both nice, and almost look like they belong as a set- sort of like a short comic panel. 🙂 They both imply different stories, and would probably be appealing to people based off their mood. The second one does pack a little more of a punch and is probably marketable to a larger audience.

  • I like the idea of having two characters interacting but the balloon is quite distracting. It might just be the colour. Could it be a moon balloon or something maybe? Like, the lady loves looking at the moon and so the guy has got her a balloon of the moon so she can take it wherever she goes ❤

  • @Jeremy-Ross I like the second one better because there's more going on but as others have said already, you can probably develop a better story? I'm not the most experienced or best critiquer tho 😁
    However there is a podcast on developing your concept/idea. It probably was from last year in August or September. It really made me think a lot more about the concept. It's a good one to listen to! The podcast came about after the judges noted so many similar concepts for one of the summer contests. I think it was summer vacation gone wrong so they followed up with that podcast. You can also watch the summer vacation gone wrong critique arena , might be good to watch that first IF you have time. The Judges are big on concept so it's worth spending time on. 🙂

  • Hi @TessaW, As always, thank you for your candid feedback! I like my original idea the best of the ladybug enjoying the moon in solitude.

  • Hi @Coley, you are correct! I remember that episode and agree that a good story is king! Appreciate the feedback too! It’s crazy how the balloon robs the attention!

  • @Kaela-McCoy, here’s an attempt at heart-shaped balloons, but I’m still drawn to the original. Go figure...

    I tried different color variations and saturation and thought this shade of blue was less distracting.

    Nevertheless, all the feedback and voting is much appreciated! This community is really great!


  • @Jeremy-Ross I think if you just go with your original #2 and just put a heart on the balloon it would get the message across. Cute idea.

  • @KaraDaniel I agree!

  • Moderator

    Yes, there is much more inherent storytelling in the image with 2 bugs. I agree the new blue heart balloons are a bit too much. Simple, tiny shapes contrasting with the lovely texture of the leaves and the gorgeous simplicity of the moon might be your best bet. I think your instinct regarding value and saturation for the color of the balloon is right, though--it may not necessarily be the right hue and scale, but you've done a wonderful job of indicating texture and shape simply and clearly and in keeping with the organic sketchiness of the rest of the image. Lovely work!

  • Hi @Coreyartus, well said! Thank you so much for your feedback and candid opinion.

  • I really like the second one, maybe if you tried just a single small heart balloon instead of a bunch? Or the ladybug has a balloon and flowers? Or it's an "it's a boy" balloon? 😂

    I kinda liked the simplicity of a single balloon but I agree both options are a little ambiguous storywise.

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