Another image for you to practice your critiquing!

  • This isn’t really for anything so feel free to loosen up and practice your honest critiquing. Thanks for your time and honesty. Much love. ONE!


  • Puh, quite dark. Really dark actually. Does not ring Oz for me. Hair reminds me of Maleficents Horns.

    The Idea of of Dorthy in the middle being grabbed by the storm is good. I´d add some more interest in the background, by including the dog, some other figures and things.

    If you went for the black and white, because her world is black and white in the beginning, I would gradually bring some colour and light into the painting to symbolise, her transition from one world into the other.

    Hope that helps 🙂

  • There's the other side to critiquing, which is learning how to ask for a critique.
    Questions I like to ask so that I can explain what I'm looking for (from Art & Fear, but there are a lot of ways to ask):

    1. What am I trying to achieve?
    2. Did I achieve it? (most likely other people can answer this, but if I haven't at least tried to answer it myself, that and question 1 helps me ask for specifics)
    3. Was it worth it? (nobody can tell you whether it was worth it, but if, let's say, you are doing it to explore certain subject matter or a new technique, then you can say it was worth it, and people will know to comment and help you on that)

    Even though you say the image is not for anything, it seems like your image must have a particular market that is NOT me. It's hard to just jump in and talk to you about the technical aspects, which are fine, when I feel that the image is misogynistic. To turn Dorothy into a heavily made-up woman wearing girlish clothes, sexualize her, make her helpless, and then put a dead look in her eyes, achieves that perfectly.

    It sounds like I'm mad, but I promise you I'm not. It happens to be a really clear example that maybe it's not going to help you if you're not specific when you ask. This is some kind of conception of Dorothy that has nothing to do with the Wizard of Oz in any form I know, so you should at least explain if it's something entirely different.

    Suggestions on how to critique in another thread were for teachers of art. I'm not a teacher, don't plan on being a teacher, and none of the people on this forum are teachers except for the svs instructors. I can't be expected to respond in that way, and can only respond in terms of being a fellow artmaker that happens to be working on the same character, and then possibly as part of a market that you're going for. So you see, I can easily be honest, but have a feeling that this is not what you were hoping for.

  • @dafoota I could see this concept working as a poster for a grimdark tv adaptation, but it looks a bit anachronistic for the book. The twister is a very cool dynamic element, but her size and her undercut hairstyle are confusing to me. Is she a giant? Is this a modern-day version? These are the questions this image brings up for me. Adding more identifiable Wizard of Oz elements would probably help .

  • @Aisleen Thank you for your insight.

  • @carolinebautista Thank you for you insights. My intentions were NOT in anyway misogynistic. I actually thought i was making her more modest covering up much more than what female characters wear (from my perspective). As for the dead look i was looking for more of just awe from her current situation. I did my own character design with the hair to mix it up a little.

    As for what I am looking for from critiques was just that people who are willing to respond with honest and healthy criticism. As for right now I am working to get better with artwork and recognize that the students here at svs is probably the closest thing someone at my level can get to professional criticism.

    I’m really here to improve. I don’t plan to compete in any market as of right now. Just trudging through to find nuggets of wisdom in my pursuit. I’ve been through enough to know how to filter through the good and the bad, which is why I like situations of honesty without plagued with selfish ambition.

    Thank you for your time and patience. i am extremely grateful for your honestly and your insight. Much love. ONE!

  • @amiklo Thank you for your time and patience. It’s true I did not consider the period for the book. I can see why it looks anachronistic. I was going for a more abstract approach to symbolize the conflict between the twister and my adaptation of Dorthy. I love all the honesty and thank you for your insight.

  • @dafoota ok this makes so much sense. I did go back and forth about what you might have been trying to do! But you see, you didn't specifically say what you were working on in this cover when you asked for the critique, and you have the technical skill that what I saw seemed to me to communicate something fully intentionally and confidently. None of us are in complete control of the messages in our art, so I thought that what I read as disempowering a female character might have been standard in places where fan art is exchanged. That's why I talked about market. Fan art has a whole visual language I'm not familiar with. I'm coming from the place of reading the book to my child, and not understanding why the visual representations of Dorothy she can come across are adult versions and keep thinking of how to explain it in terms of other works of art, like the movie, where Dorothy is an adult.

    It can also be a healthy thing to point out something uncomfortable that you don't want a talented illustrator to be unaware of as they show their work to others, so hopefully you can see that point of view as a big benefit of this forum. It really matters to me where YOU want to take your art, not just what I think of it.

    I guess what you can also take from my honest reaction is that you have the technical skill to communicate a powerful idea. And that is a good thing that we all need. I would not have written what I wrote above if you didn't have really good technical skills that show you know what you're doing.

    So now that you've explained I can give you my honest critique instead of an honest reaction! You might want to decide who you want Dorothy to be in this story as a character because the makeup doesn't really fit any of the stories I know and takes me right out of your image. Then see how your idea of the tornado twisting around her will fit into these things about her character. The visual is a really strong one so I hope you see it through. Compositionally, it might work better if you zoom out. Maybe try showing how it's lifting her. In the book, the tornado changes her life for the better, so i think it would help to decide how Dorothy feels about it (she was scared at first, but then grew relaxed like the look you were going for) and make sure her whole body gesture fits. If she's awed, she might not be so tense, she might be more amazed and watching this tornado around her.

    Anyway, thank you for listening and responding, and thank you for taking the time to show us what you're working on. And I apologize if I offended you because I did not mean to.

  • So just my 2 cents- for what it's worth, since the discussion was brought up- I didn't find it misogynistic. Could it be read in a sexual manner? Sure. But I find the character to be believable to what some women like to wear, and as humans I think we can call relate to the imagery of feeling powerless to an overwhelming force.

    Her styling, color palette, and moment you've chosen seem like you are angling for a modernized retelling of the Wizard of Oz, for an older audience. Because of the size relationship of Dorothy and the tornado, this moment looks more symbolic, or that the tornado is interpreted as a sentient force.

    The biggest critique for me is that I'm not really feeling her pose- especially her arms. It feels a bit too neutral and doesn't tell me a lot about this moment. How much do you plan out your pieces? I think this one could have benefited from pose/gesture exploration. I'd love to see any thumbnails if you have them.

  • @carolinebautista Much respect! Thank you thank you thank you for your time and patience. I am in much gratitude. To share a little bit about me for the last 2 years i have been working on anatomy and the technical approach to art. I believe i am missing a lot of the other side of art. Like: the language of the poses, the emotion behind the art, the emotions and composition of the piece.

    There is no need to apologize though i am grateful for your compassion. I did not give any perimeters to the critique mainly because I always am searching for the honesty from people that isn’t influenced by my words.

    Even you reaction carried good insights and lessons for me to learn. In addition, your response. I am beyond happy no matter how tough it can appear. Can you really have the easy with out the tough? Anyways...over the internet is always difficult to understand other. Like is said in the other post it is how i take what you say.

    I cannot thank you enough. Though I considering being less cryptic and more open to what I am looking for. I know i need to make a better transition from comic fan art to children’s book art. I agree that there could be a wiser approach to this image for parents to sit down and read this to their children.

    Those of the things i need to learn to consider in my creating process, which is another reason I am grateful for your honest response and reaction.

    It’s all love from me. Much love! ONE!

  • @TessaW Awesome! Thank-you for that 2 cents. I will value it greatly. I was going for a more symbolic approach and was considering background images.

    Your comment is a great reminder for me to do more planning. I actually progressed and made thumb nails this time. One of the tornado and Dorthy and the other of the witch overlooking oz. SN: I still have so much to learn. You are spot on about the arms. As the artist is just didn’t see it which is why i love hearing the feedback. When i look at it I’m drawn to an area but cannot pinpoint what it is exactly that i do not like. Hearing it from others helps me see it better.

    As for thumb nails I’ll check but I think i deleted them to give me more layer space.

    Thanks again for your honesty and insight. Much love and respect!

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