Looking for some feedback

  • Hi,
    I'm new to the forums, so hopefully I've posted this in the right place. I'm in the middle of a picture and I can't quite decide how to proceed and I'm hoping some feedback/critique will help. Here's the picture:


    This is mostly watercolor with some pencil. I want to put this guy in shade with some dappled sunlight. (I've never tried to paint dappled sunlight before, which is one of the reasons why I'm pausing.) I think that I'll need to do a wash of blue over everything to make it look more like he's in the shade. I'm also worried that the tub is starting to look like it's floating.

    I'm really liking how this picture has turned out so far and am afraid of screwing it up. Please help me not do that.

    (Side note, is there a forum tutorial/intro that I can look at, so far I'm finding the forum a little overwhelming.)

  • @Jewels hi! The bear is super lovely, I really like his bodylanguage ❤ for your process, if you are unsure how to proceed and are worried about making mistakes with the shadow colors maybe it’s useful to do some experiments. ( if you can also work digitally you could open your photograph in photoshop or procreate and try some colors for the shadow - or if you only work traditional maybe you could make a copy of your original and use this as a way to make some bold color tests 🙂

  • @Jewels It's a charming bear! To stop the tub from looking like it is floating could you perhaps add some grass stalks around the very edges of it to show it is "grounded" and perhaps add a bit more of a shadow, depending on where your light source is positioned? Agree that it would perhaps be best to play with it digitally if you have the ability!

  • Hello @Jewels, welcome to the forum ☺ I’m fairly new around here too and there doesn’t seem to be an introductory tutorial on how to use the forum but that is a good idea because it is a bit of a learning curve getting used to the layout here. There are a couple of threads with new people seeking help at the moment in the General Discussion section (select it under the ‘all categories’ menu at the top right of the page). They are called, “How can i view this forum normally?” And “forum interface issues” (sorry I don’t know how to link them for you!) Other than searching for the information people are already sharing or asking your own questions in a post, I recommend exploring all the buttons and menus to see what they do and tinkering with your settings in your profile.

    As for your artwork, it is looking lovely! It’s such a sweet character and peaceful scene, it makes me want to know more about him/her 🐻 💘
    I’m at a similar ‘stuck’ stage with a piece I began for an art class last year, coincidentally also a watercolour of a bear. The problem is that I rushed from a thumbnail study to final before properly working out the problems. If you haven’t already done small studies before this stage you can either count this painting as a practise so that you can make decisions more freely without fear of ruining it or perhaps pause here and go back to smaller studies to fix the problems if you don’t have the option of working on it digitally.

    The shadow of the bathtub would be darkest right at the base where it touches the ground without that it will seem to float.
    In my opinion there is too much of the same tone of green in the image, I think introducing more colours in the shadows would help give more tonal variation and depth but you will need to test this in some colour studies because it probably won’t be easy to get the first time!
    I haven’t done it yet but I know there is at least one SVS light painting class and I know Aaron Blaise has some great light painting videos/livestreams on YouTube, he mostly works digitally but he does paint a lot of dappled light over lions so you could learn something useful about how to cast tree shadows over an animal 😊

  • SVS OG

    @Jewels already looking great. I love your watercolor texture. It's definitely something you can't replicate digitally.

  • Thanks for all the feedback and suggestions.

    I've already taken the picture into procreate and started playing around a bit. I'll post the updates here for anyone who might interested.

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