Which thumbnail? SCBWI Night Sounds



  • I did a super exciting thing and signed up for a portfolio review during my local SCBWI chapter event coming up in September! It’s my way of putting a deadline on the portfolio revamp I’ve been meaning to do, and I plan on doing some contest pieces and using the ideas as a launching point for portfolio pieces. The prompt for this is for the SCBWI monthly contest “Night Sounds”

    My original concept was “cricket concerto” but when I was playing with things I found this baritone frog that I fell in love with (though I may go back and do cricket concerto at some point). I’ve done a lot of playing around with it and have landed on these three perspectives (they’re sort of half way between a thumb and a comp)

    0FE55DAF-31CB-481C-BDFE-06E19C7168ED.jpeg

    I’m not sure which of the three is working the best. I like 1 because it’s got more of a chance to show a “full house” with the mice audience members but I’m not sure it’s working. 2 and 3 are from a very similar camera angle. I tried to get more audience members in 3, but it just felt too cluttered so I settled on just one family of mice. Maybe 2 is working the best? I’ve been staring at these too long ahaha.



  • I like both the first and second one. I prefer the composition of the second one, but the first may give a better sense of a performance. So i will give you my opinion on both.

    The first one i think you could use the mountains better to frame the frog, much like the second one. You could also add a foreground element to try make it look like there is a crowd all around him.

    In the second one i feel like there are some little perspective issues. Mice are usually smaller than frogs i think, but the mice are right next to the camera so they would probably look nearly the same size. Similar thing with the bugs, they don’t seem in the same perspective/camera angle as the frog.

    All in all i really like the idea and style and can’t wait to see the finished piece.



  • @korilynneillo This is a really neat idea. I think I'm gravitating the most towards 2 and 3. The perspective is more interesting to me in both 2 and 3 than number 1.



  • @Jacy13 @Luca-Salvatore

    Thank you so much for your feedback!

    I agree that there were perspective issues in 2, I’ve messed with it a bunch and gone ahead and did a proper comp - I agree that it’s probably the one working the best!

    Here’s no value (still need to nail down my characters/do some really great line work)

    alt text

    And then with value. The “light”ning bugs as my primary light source.

    alt text



  • @korilynneillo It's looking great! I like the dramatic lighting going on with the lightning bugs. Really adds to the atmosphere in the piece 🙂



  • I wanted to stop by and thank everyone for their imput on this!!

    I ended up switching the values around a little bit in the end - the lighter sky didn't give it as much "oomph" as I would like, and I think having it darker ended up framing the frog character much better. I 100% almost quit this piece, I got so frustrated, but I'm so glad I stuck with it to the end!

    Opera Frog


  • SVS OG

    @korilynneillo Hi! may I ask where do you find the scbwi prompts? I can seem to find it on their website. thanks.



  • @Nyrryl-Cadiz It's ... really unintuitive trying to find them! I haven't found this month's yet.

    Last month, I found it using their hashtag #scbwidrawthis and I think it may have been at the very bottom of the monthly newsletter?

    I haven't gotten a copy of the newsletter for this month yet, and it wasn't in my regional newsletter. Hopefully we'll hear something soon about this month's - I really need to get it scheduled in since this month's so busy!


  • SVS OG

    @korilynneillo I totally agree. I also think they need to revamp their site. It doesn't seem to be user friendly in my opinion.



  • @korilynneillo This turned out beautifully! Great job on persisting with it and seeing it through to the end - I’m inspired 😃



  • @Lovsey

    Thank you so much!! This painting felt like one big “ugly stage” until I put the stars in. I’m so happy with how it turned out in the end! (But hope that the next one spends less time in the “ugly stage” lol)


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