Open Critique Day

If you have an illustration, HM or otherwise, that you would like to get a critique on from me (or from anyone else who wants to chime in!), please leave a link and any details you think pertinent in the comments below.

Please limit the critique requests to one illustration per person. Thanks!

31 Responses to Open Critique Day

  1. Danny Beaty says:

    Behold, my friends, COLOSSO, THE MECHANICAL MAN!

  2. Jake says:

    This one has gotten some good attention, but it seems like there is something missing to it.

  3. Jeff Hebert says:

    Jake (3): Wow, that’s fantastic! The water effect is outstanding, all of the little touches you applied really pay off, from the gradient on the underwater portion to the vertical scale-down of the ripple effect. Just a great, great way to do things, I am impressed.

    I like the general character design as well.

    If I were offering possible changes, the one thing that jumps out at me is that the figure’s gender is ambiguous. Which, given that it’s a fish, may be exactly what you want. But the eyes and lips seem feminine with that jaw shape, while the torso and arms are more masculine. That’s a little confusing.

    Also the torso armor is kind of big and clunky, it doesn’t look very streamlined or appropriate for swimming. I think something tighter or sleeker might make a more forceful impact.

    Finally, a minor tweak would be to move the figure’s right hand a bit, right now the thumb overlaps the water line AND the bottom of the armor, making for a visual traffic jam right there. Rotating it down a bit to break up the confluence of angles would be better composition.

    A fantastic, really cool effect all the way around though, I really like it a lot.

  4. Vampyrist says:

    Here is one of my characters called Plasm, he is a hero who can become liquid metal, I would like to know your opinion of him and what, if anything you would change about him.

  5. MScat says:

    I decided to try my hand in one of the contests on here so I designed a road warrior character. I didnt know how I did so i wanted to get some feedback on my design. Please tell me what you think. Thanks

  6. Fyzza says:

    I’d like to get some feedback on this guy i also entered
    for character contest 35.

    and here’s the link to the bike in spiration.
    I used the front view for the inspiration, but you might like to see the others as well.

  7. kingmonkey says:

    Hey, I’ve always been interested in refining my cartoony-type sketches. Take a look at this Minion and let me know what you think.

  8. Jake says:

    Thanks, Jeff!

    I always knew there was something a little off with that right hand, but I could never figure out what was wrong. I hadn’t even thought about his gender being an issue. I was going for something otherworldly.

    I agree the armor is clunky for a merfolk. I’m somewhat reluctant about removing this because that was literally the item I started with. Everything else came as a progression of that, oddly enough.

  9. Jeff Hebert says:

    Vampyrist (5): Nice job on the effects, the sword arm in particular looks great. The basic character design itself is solid too, you can’t go wrong with silver and black. The background also is convincing, I like jamming the two walls together to make a corner.

    I don’t think the leg melting effect works as well as the arm does, but I don’t have any good ideas on how to make it better. It’s the calves in particular that look sort of pasted on.

    If anyone has a suggestion on improving that effect I’d love to hear it, I think it’s a great idea that could probably be tweaked to be better.

  10. Jeff Hebert says:

    MScat (6): I don’t think it would be proper for me to give feedback on a character for a current contest … that seems like an unfair advantage somehow for the people who have also entered, but don’t have the chance to get the judge’s opinion before the contest is actually over. Hope you understand … if you want to post a non-contest character, go for it.

  11. Jeff Hebert says:

    Fyzza (7): Same commet as for MScat, number 13 just above. I don’t think it’s proper to judge an entry for a current contest. Hope you understand.

  12. Jeff Hebert says:

    Kingmonkey (8): I like his target logo a lot! That’s pretty funny — these guys are basically for target practice anyway, you have to respect an evil overlord who acknowledges it so openly. I wonder if the backs of their uniforms say “Shoot me!”

    In terms of overall drawing, I think the baggy pants are skewing the proportions of the figure, and it’s hard to tell if what looks like his crotch is really his crotch, or just the bottom of the pants. Because if it’s his crotch, it’s awfully low, giving him a super long waist. In any event, the ambiguity is kind of off-putting. I’d probably also broaden the shoulders some, he looks a little undersized for an effective minion. I mean, granted, their whole purpose in life is to get the stuffing kicked out of them by the hero, but still.

    Fun drawing, though, keep it up!

  13. Jeff Hebert says:

    Brian (10): Is that for the current contest? Sorry, I should have specified — I can’t give feedback on characters in a currently running contest, it wouldn’t be fair to the other contestants. And if I accidentally do, then see the same character when it comes judging time, I’d disqualify it.

    If it’s not for the contest let me know and I’ll take a swing at it.


  14. Jeff Hebert says:

    Aaron (11): I can only do one per person, if you would, please pick the one you want to submit for the critique and we’ll focus on that one.

    Of course if other folks want to take a crack at them all, go for it, the limit is just for me.

  15. MScat says:

    I can completely understand thanks!

  16. Brian says:

    @ Jeff
    i did a different one for the contest. this one was just playing around with a guy with lots of guns.

    this is the same link

  17. Jeff Hebert says:

    Brian (19): Ok, cool.

    This guy does indeed have a lot of guns! I wonder if they chafe his inner thighs … great, now I’m thinking about another dude, who’s heavily armed, and what his inner thighs are like. I need a beer.

    My favorite part, oddly, is the way you’ve turned that rifleman insignia into a necklace. That is really cool. And I think it’s a little touch that helps turn this from potentially an eye-rolling kind of thing (“Geez, could he pack in a little more hardware?!”) to a lot more fun and interesting.

    I’ll be honest, the bristling-with-weapons-like-a-porcupine character model isn’t a favorite of mine, but that’s a personal preference so I’ll just set that to the side. My substantive critique would be with the face. For some reason the features look really washed out and flat, compared to the rest of the coloring. Partly it’s that he doesn’t have any hair on the sides, up from under the ball cap at the sides, making it look like his head/face is kind of exposed, and partly it’s the solid-color black eyes, and partly I think it’s that the secondary color on all the facial features is the same as the face.

    Another minor tweak I might make is to change the line color on all the hair elements (hair, beard, and sideburns) to a dark yellow instead of black, I think that would help lessen the washed-out effect. The black with the other pale colors is too harsh, for me at least.

    Again, though, love that necklace, that’s a really masterful touch!

  18. Jake says:

    @vampyrist: I think you could fix the legs by placing another one of the “drippy backplane auras” in front of the legs and scale it down slightly. This should give the illusion that the legs are coming from the puddle. I think this piece is a little hampered by their not being a separate calf option. You could always mask to an insignia and put the insignia behind your background if you want to go the extra mile. Looks very cool!

  19. Brian says:

    thanks Jeff faces are the hardest part for me but I cant Mask every person 🙂

  20. Rhinoman says:

    Hey Jeff! This is one of my entries from the “Cavalier” contest. I have just started entering the contests but have been using HM since the very beginning. Any feedback would be greatly appreciated! Thanks in advance!

  21. Jeff Hebert says:

    Rhinoman (23): I remember him! I think the reason I didn’t choose it as a finalist for that contest was that he just didn’t quite seem to fit the mental idea I had of the character. I think it was the plethora of weapons, combined with the cyborg head — it seemed too “Terminator” for what I was going for. It’s a good character and design, though, it all fits and works together well. It just wasn’t quite what I wanted for that particular thing.

    The only suggestion I’d have would be to try using PNG as the format instead of JPG, the image is a little pixelated in spots (like around the gun), which happens with JPGs sometimes. Oh, and also I wasn’t quite sure what the gold helmet looking thing on the ground by the portal was.

    Otherwise, though, a good job!

  22. Jeff Hebert says:

    kyle (24): I like Ms. Muffet a lot! She’s got a strong sense of personality and character, and all the posing stuff you did works great. I like the dress and top a lot, the hairstyle’s perfect, and the simple black web in the background over white is perfect. Definitely one of my favorite ones you’ve done.

    The only minor thing I can think of might be the different reds in the boots versus the dress, it seems like they ought to match for some reason. But that’s more a personal taste kind of thing, and like I said, very minor.

    Definitely a winner, like I said, one of my favorite ones you have done so far.

  23. Rhinoman says:

    Thanks Jeff. The helmet looking thing was the device that opens the portal.

  24. Aaron says:

    crap it keeps showing the wrong one

  25. Matt says:

    I’m not an amazing artist, but since me and my friend had ideas for a micktake of pokemon comic, and since I am currently no longer at school I made this last night like I said I’m not an amazing drawer but please say what you think.

  26. Jeff Hebert says:

    That looks great, Matt!

    And with that, I close out this week’s Critique Day.