WIP - June Contest - Critiques Welcome!

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    Hi everyone!

    I wanted to share my progress so far on this month's contest with Bongo and Clyde. Any critiques/thoughts before I do some clean-up and move onto the next stage? Please, feel free to get nitpicky.

    Still not sold on Bongo's face, so I'll probably play with that a bit more. I'll be attempting a paper cut-out style with this one, so we'll see how it goes.

    Also, does Bongo's branch immediately look fishhook-shaped? Or did you only notice it after I said something, lol. The hook-shape stood out more when I initially sketched it with Bongo behind the branch, but as I was filling it in, I realized his pose looked better in front (which covers up a lot of the branch's shape).

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    This is lovely!!! Such a gorgeous start!! I didn't get the idea that the branch was a fish hook right away, but I'm not sure that's important in my opinion. It's very subtle but completely obvious if you spend time looking, and I wonder if that's not something magical that illustrators actually strive for... I feel the illustration is completely effective without seeing it right away, and it's actually fun to discover it later on right under your nose. I love that!

    I wonder if Clyde might somehow look more like an alligator, maybe? I'm struggling to figure out how you'd do that, but he sorta reads like some mysterious monster river frog right now. To my eyes, anyway.

    I love the values and can't wait to see the hues you select! This is really clever! Cool!!

  • @miranda-hoover this is great! I love the fish hook as is. I agree with @Coreyartus about discovery. I disagree about the alligator. I think he totally reads as alligator. I love so much about this. I can’t wait to see it finished.

  • Hi, i thinks a great idea and values are good, nice monkey! To me though it feels like the crock is right up in the fore ground, and that he wouldnt be able to see the monkey who is a good 20 foot behind him.

  • I love love love how you framed Bongo with the branches and leaves. I'm so excited to see this in color! I agree with @Coreyartus that Clyde doesn't read 100% as an alligator. I think the most recognizable characteristic of alligators are their long noses, and it's not totally visible with this crop.

  • Hi @miranda-hoover, the hook is very clever, love it! That stood out to me before reading your commentary. I love the shape language of the trees and plants and values, well done.

  • @Coreyartus Thank you! That's really nice of you to say.
    Ah, yes, I was definitely struggling with Clyde's design yesterday--It seems I keep drawing giant, angry toads instead of alligators, lol. Thanks for pointing it out, I'll keep working on his design.

  • @chrisaakins Thanks ☺

  • @gavpartridge Thanks!
    Haha, I was scared someone was going to say that; he does look like he's right up against the camera. I'll see if I can push him back a bit... maybe decreasing his contrast will help some.

  • @baileymvidler Thank you!
    Yeah, I've definitely given myself more of a challenge by leaving out his snout. Thanks for your input! I'll try pushing his design a bit more.

  • @Jeremy-Ross Thank you! ☺

  • @miranda-hoover This is so beautiful! Such a great composition. I do have a few suggestions:

    1. I agree that the alligator can be pushed back a little to include the snout. Currently, Clyde reads as being zoomed up in the foreground as opposed to a large creature directly under Bongo. So it seems unlikely that Clyde would be able to see Bongo in his field of vision. If he is pushed back, it would look more possible.
    2. Bongo's legs could be made a little thinner. They look a tad muscular for his tiny body.
    3. I'd also try drawing Bongo's other arm probably reaching out to the tip of the hook.
    4. I think the main thing you need to change in the monkey's face is the nose. Don't color in the nose dark because then it looks like a dog's nose. Just leave it the same color as the skin and draw in the nostrils.

    This is really cool. I love how you've shown the depth with the trees! πŸ™‚

  • @Neha-Rawat Thanks for the tips! I'll try making those changes tomorrow. His nose has been bothering me, so that's super helpful. Thanks!

  • I love the style! Super cute characters and composition. I think people have already mentioned the only thing I would change, which is to maybe show a bit of Clyde's snout to show that he's an alligator, but I also like just the eyes peeking in so I'm torn. Definitely worth trying to see how it looks though. A TINY bit more of a snout would probably keep that balance πŸ™‚

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    @miranda-hoover Really nice piece!! The thing that keeps catching my eye is that the monkey's foot is a human foot..I don't know why this keeps grabbing my attention - he does not need to be accurate ...but i wish he had a more thumb like big toe πŸ™‚

  • its cute. i would maybe put it so that the crocs eyes are above water? just my thoughts that it would look nicer that way.

  • Omg so cute! I love the character design. Can't wait to see it finished.

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    @miranda-hoover this is awesome. I love the composition of it. I also like the branch, it reminds me of Moana and I love that movie.

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    @miranda-hoover This already looks gorgeous and quite finished. Doing a paper-cut style will bring it to another level. The fish hook is something I sensed, but only got when I read your question (I think:). Composition is solid and elegant. Design of the the alligator--maybe add some details to ensure it's truly an alligator and not a hippo, for example.

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