Open Critique Day #21

It's time once again for another Open Critique Day!

If you have a HeroMachine illustration or another piece of artwork you've done that you'd like some help with, post a link to it in comments along with your thoughts on it -- what you think is working, what you're struggling with, etc. I will post my critique of the piece, hopefully giving some tips on how to improve it.

Of course everyone is welcome to post their critiques as well, keeping in mind the following rules:

  • Make sure your criticism is constructive. Just saying "This sucks" is both rude and unhelpful without giving specific reasons why you think it sucks and, ideally, some advice on how to make it better.
  • Each person should only post one illustration for critique to make sure everyone who wants feedback has a chance.
  • I will not critique characters entered in any currently running contest, as that doesn't seem fair to the other entrants. You can still post it if you like for the other visitors to critique, but I will not do so.

That's it! Hopefully we can get some good interaction going here and help everyone (me included!) learn a little bit today.

133 Responses to Open Critique Day #21

  1. Malfar says:

    I entered him in a cyborg contest. This is Aquandroid, half-atlantean, half-machine.

  2. Jeff Hebert says:

    Rozenstal (1): I like the basic design of the costume, and the lighting effects are great. The mask and hair are good as well.

    I think for me, the pose is off-putting. I’m not sure why someone would be standing like that, with the arm off to the side and the wrist limp, and the leg on the same side also up. There’s no way you’d be able to keep your balance like that, for one thing, and for another it just looks kind of … weak. I’d be hard-pressed to take someone standing like that seriously.

    But the character design itself is good, so you’re most of the way there.

  3. Jeff Hebert says:

    Malfar (2): I love the head and chest pieces, they look great. A very menacing and thuggish kind of a look. The name’s great, too — Aquandroid is clever.

    For me, the main problems are the coloring and the background. Specifically, the line color of the flesh is at odds with the black line coloring of the accoutrements. It sets up a harsh contrast that ends up making the flesh look washed out. I’d either keep the skin line color black, or color the chest and helmet pieces’ line art something other than black so it’s not so contrasty.

    And the background needs to go — it flattens out the entire piece and makes it almost look like he’s hanging in a shadow box or something. I get that it’s supposed to be water, but it ends up looking like wallpaper and really flattens out the whole thing.

    It’s a cool looking guy, though.

  4. unknownblackpaper says:

    I mainly post this for the sake of what little of my ego was left to me and for hopefully some general comments. I work hard on this image, constructing the face in a way so it was not the typical full profile.

    Just want to know if I got it right, or was there anything else I could improve upon

  5. Danny Beaty says:

    Hi gang! This is my redo of “L”, whom we saw in the last caption contest. Since (to my understanding of the character) the L stands for “Laser”, I put a laser on his headband. I also kept most of the original colors, ditching only red. Oh, and he no longer looks like Reagan. to the best of my knowledge no one holds the rights to this character or any of the other “Super Hero” characters.

  6. Panner says:

    Rozenstal (1): Cool! I like the general concept here, the highlighting is really good and the yellow in the eyes make them stand out a lot.

    What I’m not so fond of is his elbows. Or rather the lack of them. I know making elbows is thankless work, but it’s worth it in the end, it makes the figure hold together much better.

    I was also thinking, the belt really doesn’t stand out at all. If it was me, I’d make it just a little darker, enough to distinguish it from the surrounding colors.


    Malfar (2): That’s something you don’t see every day, an aquatic cyborg. Anyway, I really like the color scheme here, it leads the thoughts to ye olde diving suits, and diving bells, which were often made of brass.

    I think the fish body needs a little work though, it comes across as a bit flat. The first thing I’d do is get rid of the patterning on the fins. You can do this by adding another identical item right on top of the body, but removing the pattern and setting alpha 1 to zero.

    To give the fish body a little more depth, maybe you could give it some highlighting on either side. Ugh, I’m no good at this, but something like so… (Not this one Jeff)


    unknownblackpaper (5): Beautiful! Very well done, I like it a ton. Great composition and color selection.

    The only thing I’d like to point out is her earring. At this resolution, its lines are blurred out, and it comes across more like a red spot in her hair. My advice is to try a different earring, or to just remove it – I don’t think it’s necessary.

  7. Doornik1142 says:

    Dream Weaver

    I’m concerned that it looks too busy. I liked the idea of the smoky thing intermingling with the cape when I made it, but now I’m not so sure.

    I also have this character if anyone else wants to critique him


    The colors seemed fitting given his backstory but in hindsight they seem rather drab.

  8. Worf says:

    @unknownblackpaper(5): I think you nailed her face. It looks really good. I was wondering what that red spot on her hair was until I read Panner’s comment above and I agree with him, either change or remove that earring. The only other thing I’d change is that deep black line where her upper right leg meets her hips. That is usually a much smoother transition.

    Otherwise you’re all good. It’s a very effective picture.

  9. Panner says:

    Danny Beaty (6): I like your remake of this ‘mister L’, I think it looks better than the original. The color scheme is recognizable and the patterning works well.

    I must say though, I don’t buy the laser on his forehead. It looks more like what it actually is, a green dot. It doesn’t look bad or anything, it just doesn’t say ‘head laser gun pew pew’. No, if you want to capitalize on adding laser, I suggest some kind of laser gun, laser sword, laser eyes, etc. Subtlety is fine and all, but sometimes the concept needs to be as obvious to the viewer as raptor in the fridge.

    Oh, and one more thing, I think you’re missing a color or his right (my left) hand!

  10. Kytana says:

    After a long time i have watch He-man and She-Ra and i was wondering that the strange colors me at this time donΒ΄t disturbed. First of all Bows heart.
    So i changed it a little bit with HM3. Here a the result.

  11. TOOL says:


  12. Jeff Hebert says:

    unknownblackpaper (5): Love the setting, the wolves, the sky, the ground, the outfit, and the basic pose. A really nice illustration all the way around.

    The only bit that puts me off a little is her head/hair. It almost looks like her head is too far over to our left. I know the hair’s necessary to hide the connecting parts that don’t really match up, but it has the effect of visually severing her head from the body.

    Her shoulders are also a bit broad and mannish, at least the one on our left.

    But those fairly minor things aside, it’s a really good illustration, nice job!

  13. Jeff Hebert says:

    Danny Beaty (6): Danny, it’s a solid image, but the design still looks a bit bland. The laser on his head ends up suggesting more of a mining lantern or one of those military night-vision rigs. I like the blue chevron and shoulder pads, but I feel like somehow the blue elements in the lower body don’t really tie in.

    I’m not crazy about the hex pattern in the yellow. I get the concept that it’s some kind of super-material, but due to the limitations of how patterning works in the program, it kind of just comes off flat and more of an overlay (which, granted, it is) than really a part of the costume.

    The general idea of the logo is interesting, but I think I’d like to see how it would look with the letter merged into the surrounding yellow circle, though I suppose that might be a bit too “Legion of Super-Heroes” logo-ish, maybe.

    Finally, just from an overall illustration standpoint, in general I am not a fan of the “Up against the wall” setting. I’d lose it altogether so you can focus just on the costume design, instead of risking losing the viewer’s attention in the surroundings.

  14. Jeff Hebert says:

    Doornik1142 (8): I love the way the energy/smoke effects start out in front of her and then curl around the back of the cape. I would definitely keep that, it’s awesome.

    Frankly, I think the basic design of the character and the composition are very good, but that the coloring is where you’re being let down. In particular, the extremely bold and vivid colors of the smoke/energy dominates the character, making it very difficult to separate out where she ends and the effects begin. As a result she gets pretty much lost in the clutter.

    I’d turn down the saturation of those colors quite a bit, toning them back to the point that you can see the figure clearly. That might mean changing the colors completely, or it might just be a matter of dialing back the alpha to, say, 30% or so on all three colors. But they’re way, way too dominant as-is.

    Like I said, the character herself is great, it’s just the color that needs work. And color is hard, believe me, I know!

  15. Anarchangel says:

    I’ve used this pose several times now and it’s always looked okay to me. But for some reason it looks kind of off this time. Am I imagining things? Does it look as awkward to anyone else as I think it does (besides the floating thing I mean) or am I just over analyzing things?

  16. Jeff Hebert says:

    Kytana (11): Yes, that bow definitely works better than the He-Man version. Except for the cape corner layered on top of it!

    The hand pulling back the string is also not quite right. I think when you draw a bow, the back of your hand if facing outward from the head, with the palm/thumb resting against the cheek. It shouldn’t be in a fist with the hand rotated palm-down like this. I know there’s not a perfect hand for this purpose in the program, but I think maybe the trigger-finger one (with the back of the hand OUT) would be a better choice?

  17. Jeff Hebert says:

    TOOL (12): The first thing I’d do would be to turn off CapsLock πŸ™‚

    Regarding the actual illustration, I LOVE the taller guy. The green energy effects are the perfect color and treatment to pop against the black clothing, and whatever you have going on in his face is great. The floating bone staff is also cool, although I’d nudge it over to our right a few pixels so its bottom edge doesn’t intersect with the floor circle, or move the circle over/enlarge it a bit to get the same effect.

    I’m not as keen on the rock-assistant guy. I think his general design isn’t as strong as the main figure’s, and he ends up distracting attention. He’s so big, and he’s breaking the plane of the energy circle, so he lets the viewer’s eye follow suit right out of the illustration. Personally, I’d leave him out completely. If he’s integral to the concept of the character, find a way to minimize him somewhat (make him smaller, make the gray darker, something to allow the main figure to dominate)

  18. Fabien says:

    Executioner :

    A kirbyesque character with his hoverthrone.

  19. Panner says:

    Doornik1142 (8): Dream Weaver: Nah, it’s not too busy, I love when there’s lots of stuff going on! The more, the merrier, I think the saying goes.

    Anyway. I think you’re going to have to make a choice here – the cloak or the aura thing. They clash really, really badly, especially as the aura covers the cloak in some parts, but vice versa around the shoulders. Personally, I’d keep the cloak, but that’s just my preference.

    An alternative could be to reduce the alpha of the aura a lot, and give it a more discrete color. Play around a bit and see.

    Panopticon: I have to admit, I’m really gushing for designs like this, where almost everything is greyscale except a few details of red. However, I don’t think you get the full potential with the current coloring. If you want the character framed, go with red on shoulders, hands and feet; if you wish the focus to be the outfit, go with red on the visor and insignia; and so on.

    The ‘color currency’ here is absolute premium, and you need to distribute it only to the places where it does what you want.


    Kytana (11): Well then, I’m completely unfamiliar with the character, so I don’t know anything about the source here. Not that I need to, because it looks good either way! I like the colors, the background (those clouds are great!), and especially the face. With that said, there are actually a bunch of things I want to comment on.

    First off, the bowstring sort of gets lost in his cloak at the lower end of the bow. Not sure how that happened, but it can’t be very practical.

    His boots are (almost) the same color as the rock he’s standing on. It looks a bit jarring, I’d try changing one or the other.

    The moon is a little too aggressive, it almost looks as if it’s in the foreground. I suggest removing its line color, or picking a color other than black.

    Last, but definitely not least, there’s a big problem in the composition here. The way the background meets the figure makes it look like he’s sitting on the mountain ridge. That definitely needs something done about it, preferably just moving the background a bit up or down.


    TOOl (12): Oh wow, that minion is great! Very creative use of items! The smoke effects look fantastic and the whole impression is very sinister.

    There are a few problems with colors though. The necromancer is wearing a cloak which happens to be the exact same red color as on the minion, which makes it hard to make out what’s going on behind him. Likewise, his gloves have the same color as the minion’s skin, which makes it blend together a bit (though not that badly).

    I’d also try reducing the size of that dagger a bit. With the dark colors on his clothes, that dagger dominates a good part of that figure. Making it smaller, and maybe even changing the belt to something more discrete, would make it steal less focus.

    Lastly, his upper lip is really large. I like his face overall, but it really is big.

  20. Trekkie says:

    ‘In The Shadows Behind You…’

    I’m thinking that her right forearm may be too big. The shadows don’t seem to look completely right. Suggestions?

  21. Jeff Hebert says:

    Anarchangel (16): First, neat character and cool illustration. I like it.

    Second, yes, the pose looks a little off. I think mostly it’s due to the length of the torso versus the length of the lower legs, exacerbated a bit by having the same blue columnar shape in the cape that blacks the blue columnar shape of the torso. That makes it look even thicker and longer, making the legs in comparison seem even shorter.

    So, fairly easy fix — make the blue behind the torso darker, and make the lower legs longer. Done!

  22. Jeff Hebert says:

    Fabien (20): Love a good hoverthrone!

    I also find myself intrigued by the warthog head mounted on the front fender. Combined with all the purple, I would be completely nonplussed by this guy, whereupon he’d have no problem shooting me in the face.

    I don’t think the colors are working, for me, anyway. The purple is so bright and vivid, and there’s no way to differentiate between the purple of the chair and the purple of the costume. It ends up flattening the torso completely so he looks like it’s just a pair of arms and a head sitting on a padded chair back.

    The lips also need to be a different color. That vivid red against the vivid purple kind of hurts my eyes.

  23. Panner says:

    Anarchangel (16): Ah yes, I’ve seen this one before, it’s neat.

    Could it be because of the cloak? You know, it’s the same color as the rest of the clothes, so might interfer with the perception.

    I’d also like to point to the head. His neck here looks really long. I know, he’s not an ordinary human, but still. Additionally, the long neck plus lots of big clunky things around his neck and shoulders makes the chest muscles look a bit like breasts, since they appear to be lower down. The last part is not a big problem, it’s just something I’ve noticed.


    Pesky (18): Nice shading and coloring in the face, that looks very telling! And I think shading is what you might want to look more at for this picture.

    See, you have built-in shading on sleeves and cloak, plus home made shading on the boots and hat. The shirt and pants though, have nothing. I think the shirt looks fine anyway, it’s supported by shadows, but the pants look a bit flat. I’d try adding some linework or shading in a few places.

    Also, I definitely think you should reconsider the location of the background. If you center it behind the body, it should give more focus to the character, and the cloak would give a cooler, more dynamic feel. At least, that’s my theory.


    Fabien (20): Haha, oh man, that boar head is too funny! Also, nice use of lanterns.

    What I think needs some rework is the colors. See, the throne is purple and orange, and his armor is the same purple and yellow. I think it would work better if you changed to another shade of purple as well, that would give a better distinction while sticking to the same color theme. Secondly, I dislike using very dark colors since they make black lines disappear – as apparent here with the beard and shirt. It all blends together into a big black blob.

    And another tiny thing, a picture like this you’ll definitely want to save as .png, that’ll save you all those artifacts on the armor.

  24. Jeff Hebert says:

    Trekkie (22): First, I like her look, her colors, and her outfit. Very nice. The setting is also good, you have a cool spaceship kind of vibe going on.

    I do agree both that the forearm is too long, and that the shadows aren’t quite right. You have very sharp, industrial type lighting going on in the right half of the scene, and suddenly a big fuzzy, undefined shadowed area on the left. It almost looks more like a fog than shadows that would be cast in this very angular, metallic environment.

    I think maybe if you kept the top half of the shadow area the same and figured out some way to make the bottom half much sharper and confined to a line matching the floor tiles, you’d be good to go.

    It’s a neat concept, though, and like I said I like her a lot.

  25. Malfar says:

    Thanks, Panner! That’s really helpful!

  26. Kytana says:

    Thx for the critique, but i see i have my text string lost and the saves are all cleared. But thanks, i try it when i have more time on i second character… and next time i post he-man.
    @panner: thanks, your right. This was a little bit ro quick creation from my side. I have not see the mistake with the cape and the mountain. But the pose is the same as the cover. Only the background not and i try it looks like a comic.

  27. Doornik1142 says:

    TOOL (12)

    I love the creepy hench-creature. What pieces did you use to do the blood spatters?

  28. Doornik1142 says:

    Jeff (15)

    I’ll try that. Thanks.

  29. Panner says:

    Trekkie (22): Nice picture, that background is really effective, especially the cable at the head. The figure is well done with great colors, and I love your choice of hip guards.

    I’d say you’re right about the forearm, it looks way too big. Should be an easy fix, just shorten it down a bit and rescale stuff to match. And while you’re at it, I don’t fancy the color on the gun, it sort of looks like you forgot to color it. It just doesn’t fit very well when the rest of the character is grey and blue.

    The shadow looks off because what you have in the picture is a darkness source instead of a light source. Just look at it, darkness is radiating out from that back left corner. If you want it more realistic, you’ll need to use light sources instead, which will unfortunately take a little longer to add.


    Malfar (27): Awesome, good luck!


    Kytana (28): That sucks, it’s such a pain in the ass. However, you’re really good at this, you could probably redraw it from the picture if you wanted. And as I said, I like the background a lot, very good job on it.

  30. Doornik1142 says:

    Okay, new version of Dream Weaver, now with 60% less eye strain!

  31. Panner says:

    Doornik1142 (32): I think that’s a big improvement, the smoke is more blurred, which makes it much easier to separate it from the actual figure.

    Looks good!

  32. Rosco says:

    First, here’s number ten in my Croquet Pin-Up calender, Miss October:

    Second, when I posted Miss September two contests back a lot of people didn’t like the choice of green as her basic color.
    First, the Catholic school I knew best had the girls in green and yellow plaid skirts, so that’s prolly part of my inspiration, but also, there’re only six croquet colors, so I used each one twice, once in each half year, so it’s not a conflict that March (St. Patrick’s Day) was green, and so was back-to-school September.

  33. Frevoli says:

    okay you might remember The Rust Rider.

    I made him for the kirby contest and he was one of my favourite ideas.

    Unfortunately I can’t enter him for this week (although he is a pretty cool robot cowboy) but I was thinking of redesigning him anyway (as I think my heromachine skills have much advanced since)

    So being friday, I thought – why not get some peer review too.


  34. Fabien says:

    I’ve remade my Executioner character with contrasted colors. I’ve used two different purples.

  35. TOOL says:

    Yeah I accidently left on caps. My job calls for some text on forms to be in all caps and forget to switch back and forth. I wanted it to resemble the character from Diablo II but with a me style. I wanted him to have the summoned blood/bone golem as a henchman but I can try and fix that, I see the point of bumping staff over thanks. I’ll try and make the poison dager smaller. I thought about incorporating a shrunken head but decided to just go with energy around the hands. I wanted to keep a dark and crepy color scheme but I do see that the colors blend a little. Zoomed out I guess the “wrinkles” around the upper lip do make his lip look big LOL. The blood trick was from clothing and weapon items that have splatter on them then I colored the blood and set the other colors visibility to 0% and moved blood around to where I wanted it. Glad you guys liked it for the most part, I have been experimenting with different positions or use of items in other ways then what they were originally used for.

  36. Panner says:

    Frevoli (34): Do you mind if I ask why you don’t enter this into the contest? It’s such a perfect fit!

    Whatever the case, you’re thinking about redesigning it, you say? Well, in my opinion the concept is great, all the pieces are there and the result is great. One thing that isn’t very obvious is the thrusters on the horse, I had to think twice before realizing what they were (“are those binoculars?”). One solution would be to draw the character in flight, with flames and/or exhaust coming from the thrusters, that would sell it very well.

    I understand why you went with non-black line color on the arms, they look a little flat otherwise, but why the rope? It looks really odd, and doesn’t give any clues as to why.

    And speaking of the arms, that left hand (my right) has problems. The other robot parts are very obvious, which makes that hand stand out as what it really is – bones. I very much suggest exchanging it for proper robot parts, even if it takes some work to get it right.


    Fabien (35): Oh yeah, that works better. It makes a lot of difference with just a slight change of color.

  37. maniacmick says:

    here’s a grindhouse inspired poster scene, “Girl with a Gun”

  38. Frevoli says:

    Panner (37)

    It’s one of Jeff’s rules – entries can’t be submitted to more than one contest (although does that apply to redesigns too?)

    Yeah I was never sure about the thrusters, I might either go with your suggestion or just drop them.

    With the rope I was tring to make it look more technical, like some sort of space engery rope… does look a little odd, doesn’t it?

    Yeah, the robot hands weren’t really gripping the gun so I tried something else… probably have to reexamine that one

    thanks for the feedback – all good points

  39. Asder says:

    Last time a posted an image from my elements collection and i got some tips to improve it and thatΒ΄s the result.

    Old version

    New version

  40. Panner says:

    Rosco (34): October: Oh yeah, that’s a nice theme! Hits the concept home and gives great color contrast.

    A funny thing here is that it took me a really long time to see the belt. It was all just so dark, I didn’t notice it. I’m not sure that’s a problem, but you might want to make it a little brighter if you want it to be noticable.

    Another thing is her right (my left) shoulder, it’s quite high. That’s all natural, of course, but it makes her seem a bit tense. While relaxed, the shoulder just sort of hangs off of the collar bone.

    Final thing, the hat gives a nice shade to the face, but not to the hair. That is easily remedied by masking something that’s black with 25% alpha to the hair.


    maniacmick (39): Heh, that’s a movie I’d watch! I think this works very well as a poster – it’s simple with no unnecessary details and it conveys its message effectively. I especially like the faces in the background.

    I think you’ve picked very fitting fonts, but I don’t particularly like their locations. We read from top to bottom, and left to right. Your texts here are located in the top right corner and bottom left corner, so I don’t know which one to read first.

    Let me go on some more about the text. The first three lines – “Tormented”, “Beaten down”, “Out for revenge” should probably be the same font size, and aligned around their center. That makes the look less like very fragmented text, and more like a list. And I’m not sure that the “She is the…” should be such a large font. It seems like that line doesn’t so much to sell the movie, or at least not as much as the rest of the text.

    Moving on, the only other thing I’d like to point out is that all three wounds are identical, and it looks a little artificial. You might want to try rotating, resizing etc. to make it more natural.


    Frevoli (40): Ahhh, that makes sense. I think if you redesign it enough it should probably be fine, but don’t take my word for gospel, now. Either way, best of luck with the remake. It’s a neat concept, and you have a really strong base to build on.

  41. Jeff Hebert says:

    Rosco (34): I like her coloring and overall look. Definitely a nice addition to the group. I’m not as sold on the one foot being further back, something about it doesn’t look right. I think it’s that her hips would need to be rotated a bit for this to work properly.

    Also, her right (our left) shoulder seems a bit too large and far over to match.

    Other than that, nice job!

  42. Jeff Hebert says:

    Frevoli (35): Very nice! I do think with some “updated” tweaking it could be an excellent image. I’m not quiet sure why he would have bloody wounds on his torso if that part is robotic but the basic concept and execution are very good.

  43. Danny Beaty says:

    Hi gang! I took some very good advice and redid my L redo. I replaced the forehead laser with wrist-mounted lasers, the face and hair are completely different, the L insignia is different, and the pattern was eliminated from the yellow parts and placed on the chevron. I also changed the background. Here it is, I hope you like it. Please feel free to critique.

  44. Jeff Hebert says:

    Fabien (36): Much better! Even that subtle color difference is very very helpful.

    Doornik1142 (32): Also much, much better!

  45. Frevoli says:

    Jeff – if I redesigned Rust Rider, would it be eligable for entry into this weeks contest?

  46. Jeff Hebert says:

    maniacmick (39): Excellent main character, cool concept, and neat touches throughout.

    I’d agree that the font treatments need to match, and also that the natural progression as a reader is from top left down to bottom right, going left to right and top down. I thus didn’t immediately get the connection between the text on the left leading into the title; I’d move the left stuff up higher and maybe make the title a splash along the bottom, like you’d see in a real movie poster.

    Neat illustration, good job!

  47. Jeff Hebert says:

    Yes, a redesign would be all right.

  48. Jeff Hebert says:

    Danny (44): Much better! The only part that could maybe still use some tweaking is the belt — I can’t believe I’m saying this, but some pouches or something to give it a bit more presence would help it.

    All the changes you made were good, though, this is a much stronger illustration and design.

  49. Panner says:

    Danny Beaty (44): Those wrist lasers work better, that’s a nice improvement. I’m a bit worried about the pattern, it’s sort of invisible on that solid blue area. Remember, blue is the darkest color, subtle things don’t show up as well.

    Also, I must say, I think the background you picked here is superb. It complements the yellow without conflicting with the blue, and the hue is calming and inspiring. I’d go so far as to say that this background alone conveys that the character is a hero and not a villain.

  50. mercwithamouth says:

    so first time here in a while. what can i improve?

  51. Jeff Hebert says:

    merciwthamouth (52): Very nice! Cool, brooding, menacing type of character.

    The one thing I’d recommend you work on is where the horizon line hits the tops of the boots. Either the horizon or the boot tops need to move so they don’t intersect — it confused the relationship between the two very different planes.

    The fact that they’re both the same color makes the effect worse. They definitely need to be at least different brown tones, preferably with the darker one applied to the ground. That’ll help pop him out from the environment.

    But other than that, great!

  52. mercwithamouth says:

    thanks was trying to figure out what was feeling so off. thank

  53. Captain Kicktar says:

    BTW, good job keeping up with us!

  54. headlessgeneral says:

    This is my character angel if she were a ninja. The swords and mask are energy constructs. What I’m wondering most about is the black part of her costume. I have some highlights in there but don’t know how visible or effective they are. Any other comments are welcome also.

  55. Worf says:

    @Kytana: Here’s something you could try for the archer’s hand:

    It’s two “trigger” hands with the second one masked to show only the extended finger. I’ve left the circle insignia visible so you can see how I did it.

  56. Panner says:

    Asder (41): Ah, this picture, I remember this one. And, man, you’ve done a lot of work on it!

    Now, I really love the old version, but I have to say the newer one is even better. All the black and the darker colors make the picture a lot more sinister and less cartoony. And it fits the name Darkness better. I particularly like what you’ve done with the face and hair, it’s more nuanced than the old one.

    One problem with the recoloring of various items is that it’s now hard to see what is skirt and what is hair, since they share colors. I’m not sure what to do about that, maybe try brighter line color on the skirt, that might work.

    Regarding the energy effects on her hands, I suggest you rotate the left one 180 degrees. Right now they are identical, which is a bit jarring. And as an added bonus, the dark spot which right now appears to be located between her breasts gets rotated away to a non-problematic area.


    mercwithamouth (52): Now, that’s what I’m talking about, awesome picture! The fire effect work well and the eyes are effective.

    I don’t like the color on the boots though. It’s the same color as on the sand, which makes them blend in very badly. Alternatively you could make the cloak hang down lower, to show the distinction.

    Personally I’d make the bandages on the hand a little darker. They draw more attention to them than they have right to. And grey or bright brown color should do the job.


    Captain Kicktar (55): Ah, mega-high resolution. I love it. There’s good stuff here, a nice, clean character with a purpose.

    I find myself wondering what his robe actually looks like. It’s spread apart wide and tucked into the belt, but when it comes out beneath the belt it goes all the way around the body. Is there a large hole cut out in the chest?

    I like the simple color scheme here, really shows that you don’t need every color of the rainbow to make an interesting character. I would, however, like to add some color to his boots for framing purposes. His upper body is neatly framed by the hood and the brown sleeves, which means his white pants and shoes sort of fall out of view. If the shoes were the same brown as the rest, I think they would complement the image better.

    Normally I suggest using a background with white clothes, but I don’t think it’s needed here, and I know you don’t like them anyway!

  57. McKnight57 says:

    Ok, here’s a pic of my main characters from my upcoming comic. You may recognize McKnight from earlier Open Critique Days, but this will most likely be the final version. The one on the right is the youngest, Frank Marion or Law Man. He is the grandson of McKnight (Michael Alan Colt or MAC), the central figure who happens to be the leader and founder of Hero Corps. The figure on the left is McKnight’s son, Overlord (Alexander Marion), the main villain of the series.

    And here is the link to the commission I got back yesterday of these three, with the actual setting in the background.

  58. Panner says:

    headlessgeneral (57): Now, that’s daring cut if ever I saw one. Are you sure that’s practical for a ninja? Ah well, it’s not always about being practical.

    I like the background you’ve chosen here, there’s a lot of gradienting going on and the colors resonate well. However, that background doesn’t work out very well with the transparent blades. Most of the swords appear opaque anyway, since the background is white, so the impression given by the transparency is defeated. Not sure what to do to fix it.

    One tiny detail, you see how elements in the background cut into the yellow line enclosing them? That can be taken care of by just adding another circle on top of all the background, with color 1 and 2 at 0% alpha. It’s a tiny thing, but something I usually do, so I thought I should point it out.


    Arioch (60): Such a fitting name you’ve chosen, that guy truly is a brute. I’m liking this a lot, the spikes are neat and the background does a good job of making them stand out.

    The obvious detail to point out is that the picture is cropped. I don’t care if the background gets cut off a bit, but here we’re talking about his hair and toes. It does the picture a disservice, and I don’t like it.

    I’d also like to talk about his face a bit. He is essentially a big blue bulky badass, but the face doesn’t really match that description. The eyes and ears are perfect, but I’m not so sure about nose and mouth. The nose seems really flat, maybe you can shade it a bit with the dark blue color. The mouth just seems a bit too… civilized, I guess. That can work as a demon mouth, but I find it fitting better for a suave, suited devil’s advocate that this brawler. If it was me, I’d try a mouth with big tusks, or with huge sharp teeth.

  59. Worf says:

    @Frevoli: If you want to keep the rope the only way I see it really working is using a bit of masking to make the hand “hold” the rope. Something like this:

    I’ve left the masking triangles so you can see what’s going on. There are two arms, the second one masked to the upper triangle so that it only shows the thumb. Also there are two ropes, the second one masked to the lower triangle so that the space inside the hand can be filled by the rope.

    Hope that helps.

  60. ajw says:
    Dark blue
    Wanna know if he looks like a strong character design and what could be done to improve him.

  61. Kaylin88100 says:

    Pesky (18): I honestly don’t think there’s much to improve here, that’s maybe why no-one else has commented on it yet. I love the shadows, they give a real sense of depth to the clothing. One thing I will say is that the hair and the lips have very similar colours and this looks a bit off to me. Don’t know if there’s a reason for that, in which case feel free to keep it, but think about it.

  62. Kaylin88100 says:

    BTW Pesky I would love to know the backstory (cause I’m thinking there HAS to be one) to your brilliant character

  63. Kaylin88100 says:

    Worf (58): That’s a really good tip, I might use that myself.

  64. Panner says:

    Kaylin88100 (63): Well, there’s a pose I haven’t seen before. I think you’ve done a good job with it, I can only guess at the effort needed to puzzle together that skirt.

    My first question is, the picture is called ‘Pirate Girl’, right? Yet, the only thing I see that makes me think of pirates is the eyepatch. The swords are japanese, and together with the mask they make me think ninja rather than pirate. I suppose you could change the swords to cutlasses and give her an old flintlock in the belt, but you might want to keep the katanas.

    One thing that doesn’t look very good is her elbow. Making elbows in angles where they’re not supplied is a bit of work, but it’s well worth it, and it soon becomes second nature to add them.


    ajw (64): Wow, that’s great! Is this a strong character design, you ask? Are you kidding me, this is awesome!

    The thing I like most is definitely his covered face, that just makes the whole thing instantly 20% more badass. the current pose looks decisive and determined, and he has a neat utility belt thing going on.

    One thing I don’t like so much is his right (my left) sleeve. If I’m seeing everything right, it’s covering up way too much of his hand. This gives the impression that he doesn’t work with his hands, like some beuru… bureu… burue… paper pusher. When clearly this is not the case.

    For more suggestions, well, personally I always like a good riot shield. That shouldn’t be too hard to add, and it effectively shows that he’s used to being on the front line, so to speak.

  65. Worf says:

    @Kaylin88100(63): First let me say that I like the idea a lot. Now a few problems:
    First, the left leg/skirt. If the skirt is below the knee on her extended leg, it should be at least there on the other one. It looks really weird and while we’re at it, it looks as if her left leg is way longer than her right one. Also, for that lower leg, it would be better to use a forearm or try to hide that knee line. It makes the leg look really weird.

    My other problem is her left elbow. Those lines really don’t work there. Maybe you should try this:

    I’ve used the already bent left arm in body-female and masked other stuff to make the lines work. In this case another bent arm (the right one in this case) masked to the circle so that the shoulder line works. The other red line you see is a triangle with an extended forearm masked to it so that you see the lines inside the arm.

    Hope that helps.

  66. Myro says:

    I can’t complain too much, I did get an honorable mention on one of my other submissions. On the other hand, this is the one I did more work on this one. Infinity Girl from the Legion of Superheroes contest.

    Like to see if I can polish this one up a bit. I liked the character so much when I was creating her, I wanted to introduce her into my RPG campaign.

  67. Worf says:

    @Kaylin88100(67): You’re welcome to it. I wouldn’t have posted it if I had issues with it being used. And it’s just a slight improvement on Jeff’s great work (also a hint that we need a hand like that in HM3 ;))

  68. Kaylin88100 says:

    Thanks Panner and Worf for your comments and help, I’ll try and fix the elbow now

  69. Worf says:

    @headlessgeneral(57): Awesome picture. I only have one problem with it and that is, her breasts looks as if they’re going to pop out the first time she takes a step. You might want to go a bit higher on that top or a deeper V so that you avoid that wardrobe malfunction. πŸ˜‰

  70. Panner says:

    Myro (70): Love it. This kind of comedy in art is so refreshing and adds a whole new dimension to a piece. Well, that’s what I think anyway.

    I think this is a great work, but if there’s any problem here then it’s probably the zebra effect, that you can’t see where one ends and the other begins. The best example is probably with girls 1 and 2 (from the left). Girl 2’s right (my left) upper arm is pretty much indistinguishable from girl 1’s torso. Same thing goes for pretty much the entire upper body of girls 2-4.

    I’m personally not very fond of this (or at least not good at it), but in animation they usually modify the colors of things that are supposed to be further back. A little darker, a little duller. If you think it will defeat the purpose of the picture, you could instead simulate a spotlight aimed at girl 3, and use that as excuse to make the other girls darker (with girl 1 being darkest). I dunno, I’m just brainstorming here.

  71. Danny Beaty says:

    I’m back!
    @Jeff: I took your suggestion about the belt and yes it does look better. Thanks to you and Panner for your helpful critiques!

  72. Kaylin88100 says:

    Myro(70): I think it’s quite good and I can see what you mean about a lot of work, but I can also see why it didn’t make it to the Honourable Mentions.
    Maybe I’m being picky, but there are a lot of tiny niggles in there that on their own wouldn’t matter, but together they detract significantly from the image.
    First, the darker colour on the purple areas looks too dark to me, not close enough to the lighter colour. If there’s a reason for that you might want to have a darker shade on the white areas as well to balance it.
    Second, on the one that looks like the others are driving her to distraction (I assume she’s the original one), the arms of the ones on either side sort of blend in to her top. Adding to that, the one on her left (our right) actually has her arm UP, so it shouldn’t be down there at all. (Okay, that is a slightly bigger niggle) If you put one of those arms in a different position (i.e. delete one of the extra arms on the right-hand one) that should help.
    Third, the lines at the original’s shoulders. None of the others have lines separating arms from torso, but she does. It kinda takes away from the “identical” thing. Maybe cover them up with insignias, it’s quite easy.
    This list may seem a bit depressing but you’ll notice I’ve tried to give ways you could fix the problems as well.

  73. maniacmick says:

    heres another movie style poster , He’s on a mission from God to remove sinners from this world. He’s Rev. Jones

  74. headlessgeneral says:

    First of all, Panner, thanks for everything, and not just the help on my character but for your help with everybody. I learn so much going through these open critique days and reading all the great advice given by you and Jeff and everyone else who helps out. I’d also like to thank Worf for all his little tips and diagrams of things I would never think of but can definitely use. Thanks guys.

    Ok, now back to Angel. That cut was pretty ridiculous wasn’t it. I fixed that. Also fixed the background outline, upped the alphas on the swords, changed the mask to match the swords better, and lightened up color 1 on all the black parts to stand out better.

    Updated Angel.

  75. Fabien says:

    Arioch (60)

    Good character but the belt would must be slightly decalate to the right. The part with the red frame will be on the shoulder and the belt is on the the green toga and not on slight decalage.

  76. Kaylin88100 says:

    maniacmick (77): Like the concept but the text is a bit hard to read, could you make it less tall and thin? Maybe change the colour as well to something that stands out more. There might be a reason for brown rather than any other colour, but if not maybe think about changing it.

  77. Worf says:

    @headlessgeneral(78): UH! Pretty! Great improvements!

  78. ajw says:

    thanks panner I think a riot shield would be a great addition!

  79. Vampyrist says:

    Here is my entry into the cyborg entry, a cyborg whose skin has actually started to grow over the robotic parts.

  80. Myro says:

    Thanks Panner (74) and Kaylin (76).

  81. Panner says:

    maniacmick (77): Heh, another nice poster. Carving out a niche, are we? Anyway, it’s overall very nice, but there were a few things that bugged me.

    First, any reason that tree is brown? All the other background is in greyscale. It doesn’t look bad, it’s just different than the rest. And speaking of color, I recommend trying out different colors on his shirt and jacket. A slight difference is enough to identify them as separate items.

    Second, you’ll probably want to decide whether to put the text in front of or behind the character. Behind definitely makes the character pop more, but in front of is more readable. the “He’s coming to” at the top of the picture is behind the shoulder but in front of the hat, which looks a little off.


    headlessgeneral (78): Ahh, think nothing of it bro! In fact, I must say the exact same thing as you. These friday nights teach me more about art that all the commercialized, overformulaic art courses in the world. And I can put that knowledge to very good use since I have friends that draw, a sister that draws and a neighbor that paints.

    So, about your picture, I like it. I mean, they’re not big changes, but that top looks a bit more… reliable. Sometimes it’s fine to pick appearance over function, but one should take everything in moderation.

  82. Kaylin88100 says:

    Vampyrist (83): Can’t see anything wrong with it, what would YOU like improving?

  83. Vampyrist says:

    I didn’t see anything wrong with it, I just wanted to hear any improvements if possible.

  84. Kaylin88100 says:

    @Vampyrist: It’s not wrong as such, which is why I didn’t mention it before, but it might benifit from a background. Even a shaded circle or oval would add a bit of depth to it and make the character look bolder and stand out more. Alternatively, you could actually build a setting round him to put him in context.

  85. Panner says:

    Vampyrist (83): I remember this picture, I was struck by how cool the skin effects look. It must have taken some serious effort to produce all this.

    So, what don’t I like? I’m not too fond of his cyborg eye, that it doesn’t line up with the organic eye. I mean, there’s really no reason it should line up, but symmetry is and always has been appealing, not least when it comes to facial features.

    What more, I’m not too fond of his cyborg leg, for a number of reasons. It looks very bulky – like, extremely so. It makes me wonder how he gets those pants on. Or maybe he never takes them off, I’m not sure which is worse. Also, while the other cyborg parts are quite detailed and nuanced, that leg is pretty much just three blocks of paint with a minimum of linework. It’s a different art style than the rest.

  86. Arioch says:

    @TOOL: Love the necromancer.
    The beastie is cool, but, IMO, would deserve its own picture.

    3 problems with the necromant:
    – The dagger is too big. You should make it smaller. If you can, I’d advise you to have part of the guard go over the belt, to reinforce the idea that it hangs there. Like I did there:
    – The belt feels wrong. Like it was just copy-pasted there. Maybe changing the dagger will correct it. Maybe you’ll have to change its color.
    – There’s something wrong with the staff. If feels as it stands on its own, instead of flying… Maybe put it a little higher and to the right, I dunno.

    @Panner: Thanks.
    I know about the crop, but I’ve been unable to change it πŸ™
    Good catch on the nose, I’ve changed it πŸ™‚ Thank you πŸ™‚
    The mouth is on purpose: Although physically a brute, he is civilised, too. He’s a magus with troll blood, hence the mix of brutish physique with clothes, magic aura on the hand and staff. The mouth is supposed to reflect his inner self.

    @Fabien: I’m sorry, but I don’t really understand you πŸ™

  87. Jadebrain says:

    Here’s a brainstorming picture for the costume of one of my friend’s characters. It’s not the finished product, as I’m going to eventually draw the character by hand. Anything that can be done to make it better? Remember, this picture is just to brainstorm ideas for the costume, so I know the pose is bland and uninteresting.

  88. Captain Kicktar says:

    Panner (59): Not sure what his robe is like, I’ll have to think about that. I made the boots a slightly lighter brown, it seems to work. And it’s not that I dislike backgrounds, it’s just that there are never any good ones.

  89. Fabien says:

    @ Arioch : a drawing is better than an explanation :

  90. Jeff Hebert says:

    Captain Kicktar (55): A three hour wife-inspired chore lunch will absolutely destroy the whole “keeping up” thing. Oh well.

    I like this one in general, with the only hesitation being the all-white lower body.I get sort of a “Saturday Night Fever” vibe from it … It seems like maybe if either the shoes or the pants weren’t both white it would help break it up a little. Or maybe if the robe were longer, going at least to the knees, that also might work.

    Good job though, he looks good except for that minor thing.

  91. Kaylin88100 says:

    Jadebrain (91): I’m getting mixed messages from this character. Overall, and at first glance, she seems to be a pirate, but certain things, like the high collar on the cape, and the red and black colours of said cape suggest something different.
    Also, I’m not too sure where the blue bits around her waist are coming from, there isn’t any sign of them above the belt so it’s a bit confusing.
    Another thing: the skull. Why is there a skull on her chest? Now, there may be a perfectly good reason for this, but when I think of pirate + skull, I usually think of an insignia on the hat.
    Finally for now, I like the idea of writing on the sword, but remember that most people read left to right, so you might want to flip it over. Again, if there’s a reason, just ignore this.
    Hope at least one of these is helpful.

  92. Jeff Hebert says:

    headlessgeneral (57): I don’t see highlights in the black parts, but that’s actually a good thing — the all-black look totally works. In fact I think, along with the background, it’s the strongest part of the composition.

    I like everything else too, with the one exception being the mask. I don’t get “energy construct” from it, so it ends up looking like it’s a transparent real mask, only with the middle part less so. And that looks a little off, to me anyway. I mean, part of the reason ninjas wear those is to hide their identity, which makes a see-through one puzzling, you know?

    Anyway, other than that, I love it. Great composition, cool character, and excellent use of the black fill in the body portions.

  93. Jeff Hebert says:

    Worf (58): Nice! That looks awesome.

    Arioch (60): I like the head a lot, and the cool horn on his arm. In fact the basic figure is great, very powerful looking.

    I personally am not a fan of the background, it overpowers the figure and is distracting rather than enhancing. I’d either take all the alphas on that way down, or lose it altogether.

    Similarly, the colors on the figure I think need some attention. I like the blue skin with green clothes, but then the orange overstrap and red glow start to clash. I’d use two different green tones on the clothes and go with a brown for the strap with less red in it, so you don’t get the conflict of the red slash with the green clothes.

    I’d also choose something different for the energy effect around the hand. The simple gradient has too sharp an edge to read as energy, looking more like an actual physical disc.

    He’s a mean looking dude, though, I like him!

  94. Panner says:

    Arioch (91): That makes sense about the mouth. I suppose he needs to be well articulated to cast hard-to-pronounce spells and such. The role of reflecting the inner being is usually delegated to the eyes (being the windows of the soul and all), but I think the mouth works fine.


    Jadebrain (92): Hum hum, brainstorm you say? this should be interesting.

    First off, I think there are too many colors here. Having a solid and narrow theme gives a much stronger impression than one without focus. I’d drop yellow and blue. Speaking of color, I’d really like to see some black on the boots. There’s a lot of black around her head, and I think some is needed around the feet to anchor her.

    That chest strap definitely needs to be below the skull. The skull is a big feature, and you want to shown it. Maybe give it eye glow or something to further add focus.

    Personally I always like to add pouches around the belt or chest for healing herbs and/or spell components. It’s up to you.

    The cap you’re using now works so-so, but there are alternatives. In Headgear-Fantasy, on the second to last page there is this steel mask with stuff sticking up. I really like using that one for female warriors, since it works very well with all kinds of hair. It does, of course, block the face, which you may not want. I sometimes draw the character without the mask, and then just add it beside the head.

    If you think the legs need some accessories, you can switch belt to something simpler and then add a long loincloth. It might be a bit too much here, but worth a try.

    And there’s always the old go-to for fantasy warriors, facial tattoos!


    Captain Kicktar (93): You’ll have to make good ones, then! It takes a while, but they can be reused when finished.

  95. Tuldabar says:

    I was just wondering if ANYTHING could be done to improve my smuggler here: I’ve had him in open critiques before and I still want to see if there’s anything I can improve. Thanks!

  96. Jeff Hebert says:

    McKnight57 (61): The commission looks great, congratulations! I hope you were pleased with it.

    I like the HM version, too. They all look quite distinctive and well conceived. So to speak. The only thing I’d tweak is how the figures are positioned and sized. McKnight, for instance, appears to be standing on the right-hand guy’s foot. I find myself wishing they were not all in exactly the same height on the same plane in the same pose. Some variation there, even something small, would help separate them out, I think.

    They do look good, though, don’t get me wrong! Group shots can be tough to arrange is all I am saying.

  97. Jeff Hebert says:

    Kaylin88100 (64): I applaud your willingness to take on a tough task like this unusual pose, but unfortunately for me, it doesn’t quite come off. The big problem area is the legs — the way they’re positioned, a skirt wouldn’t look like that. She ends up looking as if she’s sitting in a chair and we’re getting the Sharon Stone view. The pieces of the leg don’t quite fit together either, so you’re left with what appears to be a big divot taken out of her thigh, for instance.

    So, yeah, I’m having a hard time getting past all of the pieces not quite matching. Sorry bud, I know this took a lot of time to put together and as I said, I applaud your courage, but it doesn’t quite work for me.

  98. Jeff Hebert says:

    ajw (65): Dude, that’s awesome! He looks great, I love the gloves and the mask. All the little accessories are perfect, too.

    The only bit I’m not 100% sold on is the hat. I know it’s a traditional police hat, but it’s so TALL. I dunno, maybe a slightly older, lower style? Or a motorcycle police helmet, or SWAT visored one, or something?

    Otherwise, totally rockin’. I am impressed!

  99. Jeff Hebert says:

    Pesky (18): Dude, so sorry I missed yours on the first go-through! Just an oversight, I assure you.

    However, as someone else said, there’s not a whole lot to improve on here, she looks fantastic. That’s one meter maid who could give me a ticket and thorough frisking any time! I love all the colors and item choices, I think you really nailed it.

  100. Jeff Hebert says:

    Myro (71): I thought it was a cute idea that was pretty well done, but a few things did bother me. First, she’s so close to a Triplicate Girl kind of character, it seemed a little redundant.

    Second, the face of the figure on the phone seemed strange to me. Like her mouth was way too low and big. And her forearms seemed way too long.

    Finally, I think maybe the overall composition is just a little too static. They’re all lined up, there’s nothing going on in the background, the costumes are all very linear … the poses are dynamic and they’re doing interesting things mostly, but in aggregate the overall design of the panel comes off as stiff.

    Hope that makes sense. I did think the character had whimsy and interest, but it didn’t necessarily translate into the image, which ultimately is what gets judged.

  101. Jeff Hebert says:

    headlessgeneral & danny beaty, both very good updates!

  102. Jeff Hebert says:

    Vampyrist (84): I thought this had a cool, creepy vibe to it that you don’t often see in cyborg images, for which I applaud you.

    Honestly what kept this one from a spot as a Finalist for me was the robot leg. It’s just so much bigger and clunkier than even the rest of the robot parts, it bothered me.

    Otherwise though I thought it was very imaginative and well done.

  103. Panner says:

    McKnight57 (61): First off, wow, that commission is sweet. I’m gonna have to look through the gallery some day.

    It’s a nice group shot you have going on here. That cloak on the middle figure is quite effective in shutting down color blend between the figures, smart move. The problem can be found close to the bottom of the picture, at their feet. There are pretty much feet all over the place, without rhyme or reason. I think there’s also a bit of red cloak in there.

    I guess you could move the middle character down a bit to make more space, but I actually say you should try to just remove the feet completely. Mask all legwear and cloaks in such a way that they don’t emerge below the middle figure’s cloak, and claim that they are resting their feet on a rock, or whatever. Feet are a problem? Remove the problem. That’s my motto.


    Tuldabar (100): Haha, this is the first time I’m seeing that bartender, and it’s quite a sight. You’ve been working on this pic for a while, and it shows. Let’s see if I can comment on anything here.

    Well, I noticed there’s a bit of shirt sticking out of his right (my left) shoulder. Easy masking to take care of that.

    Also, when I saw the back of the chair, I spent several seconds wondering what it was. I think it’d be best to do something about it. You could either remove it completely (not so fun) or extend it downwards so that it connects with the chair seat in sight. The color connection should make it obvious what’s going on.

    The design on the character himself looks great, but I have to wonder why he has one red pouch while all the other comparable details are white. Are they color coded so that he doesn’t accidentally pick the wrong one? Not a big deal, it’s jsut something that stood out to me.

  104. Jeff Hebert says:

    Jadebrain (92): My first reaction is that there’s a lot going on, particularly in terms of color. The name that came to mind was “Gypsy Pirate”.

    As for brainstorming … I don’t know, I’d have to know more about what you’re going for, what she’s supposed to be, etc. Which I’ll leave to the other folks here as they’re way more imaginative than I am anyway, and I have a crapload of catching up to do on the critiques πŸ™‚

  105. Jadebrain says:

    @ Kaylin88100 (96) and Panner (99):

    Yeah, I forgot to mention the theme of the character: She’s a vampire pirate (vampirate?) named Calypso. Other than that, though, I haven’t really asked my friend much about the character.

  106. Jeff Hebert says:

    Tuldabar (100): Looks pretty good overall. My only quibble is with the colors — there are sure a lot of them, and they don’t always work together to support the composition. But it’s not awful, just maybe not quite as good as it could be in that regard.

    The other thing is minor, but the perspective on the buildings you see through the window is off. They’re drawn as if you’re on the ground looking slightly up at them, but in this scene they’re at eye level, so they look a little weird.

    Otherwise, nice job!

  107. Kaylin88100 says:

    @Jadebrain (110): Yeah, that makes sense. To really bring that across why not add some fangs? That’ll avoid confusion in the future. I think fangs is one of the last items in Mouths, there’s only 1 fang but you can duplicate and flip it to get both.

  108. Jadebrain says:

    @ Kaylin88100 (112)

    I actually did add fangs… I guess they’re too small to be seen at that resolution, perhaps?

  109. Panner says:

    Jadebrain (113): The fangs are actually really small, it’s not just the resolution. I normally crank them all the way up to 150% size, at least in y-dimension.

  110. Jeff Hebert says:

    OK folks, I’m going to call this one closed a bit early due to the holiday weekend. Many thanks for the great images and positive, constructive feedback, you’re the best!

    For you United States folks, have a great Independence Day Weekend! For the rest of you … well, have a great Fourth of July Weekend, since everybody gets one of those!

  111. Danny Beaty says:

    @Jeff: Have a great 4th, and thanks for all the helpful suggestions!

  112. Myro says:

    Thanks Jeff (105). I think between yours, Panner’s and Kaylin’s suggestions, I should have enough to work on. What I might end up doing, since I’m not restricted from Photoshop on this, is maybe make some dummy copies of Infinity Girl, and the assemble it so that it no longer looks like four of them lined up, but rather those four are the first line of a mob of Infinity Girl duplicates.

    Happy Canada Day to any of my fellow countymen, and a happy Independence Day weekend to our neighbors down south.

  113. TheNate says:

    Here’s a character I’ve been playing with – sort of a female Green Hornet-type pulp character in her hideout.

    Note I had to print screen and crop – for some reason, when I tried exporting the gun rack by the car kept disappearing.

  114. TheNate says:

    Shoot – didn’t see it was closed. My bad.

  115. Worf says:

    @TheNate(118): That just means Jeff won’t comment….
    First off, great setting. The Green Hornet-type hideout really comes through. Now, I gotta ask, is she supposed to be a somewhat older woman? There are some lines on the face and her skinnyness (not a word, I know) read as an older woman (at least to me). Also her left foot appears to be in front of the dress. And last, she looks a little flatchested… maybe layering an extra set of breasts on top of the arms….

    Don’t get me wrong I think there’s lots of potential there. It’s just that sometimes details really bring it to another dimension (as I’ve learned through my own experiences on OCDs)

  116. TheNate says:

    Actually, the lines are a veil – I tried to get the folds but they didn’t come out right. But I see what you mean about the

  117. TheNate says:

    … chest. A different arm pose may work there too.

  118. wierdrocks says:

    This is a character I’m trying to develope for a western. She’s in charge of all of the local saloon showgirls, which explains the gun. The first version is the first one I came up with, the second I created after many people told me her design was too busy. Then I decided to change her pose. I am now officially sick of looking at this thing. Someone tell me which version is better.

  119. McKnight57 says:

    Jeff (101) & Panner (108) Thanks for the comments from both of you. I do love the look of the commission, best $30 I’ve ever spent (at least in the last year or so.) Anyway, I do need to do something about the feet, or i could just place something like a vehicle in front of them and be done with it. The problem is doing that and negating the background of the commission. I’ll work on that in the next few weeks, most likely posting on the next Open Critique Day.

  120. logosgal says:

    wierdrocks (123): I definitely like the first two better than the last one. The fan in the hair is kind of confusing, and her lower left arm looks to me like it’s in slightly the wrong position for how wide it gets near the elbow.

    Of the first two, it’s a slightly tougher call, but I think I’d go with the second one. I like the bubble-boa thing—though I think that given her pose it might look more natural flipped the other way—and the purple gloves look a little weird to me without giving them any sort of ending or cuff after the wrist. And I agree that it is a simpler design. I will say that for both of those, I probably would have chosen a different hand for the one holding the fan. Maybe one that’s closed a little instead of being open flat.

  121. McKnight57 says:

    I decided I would use the beach setting and lose the capes on the new image, also bringing McKnight up in front a bit more. Also changed the color of his armor trim.

  122. Arioch says:

    Thanks to all for the input.

    I love the reverse orbs, but, well… πŸ˜€

    So here it is!

  123. Vengeance says:
    just wanted a little input on this pic , but looks like I am a dollar short and a day late

  124. Vengeance: Yeah, I had a busy week, too. Really like Earth Mage. Might want to consider creating a grass look on the floating rocks. So it looks more like she ripped the floor from the forest, not just grabbed some stones.

    USA 1 – Columbia 0 at 12:09 !!!

  125. Vengeance says:

    Thanks Atomic Punk that looks great

  126. logosgal says:

    Vengance (128): I like this picture, too. I especially like how you’ve given it a cohesive but still varied color scheme.

    I thought the green and brown lightning was a little confusing at first; now that I look at it more closely I think it’s showing her control over the floating rocks? Maybe it would be less confusing for me if it was coming from her hands (or maybe her head). You might also want to have them create some sort of field around the rocks, because at first I thought they were just falling. (If they are just falling, you might want to turn them at more varied angles to show the chaos of their path.)

  127. wierdrocks says:

    @ logosgal (125) Thanks for the advice.

  128. Asder says:


    Man sorry for been late to thank you for the observations, my compuerer died and i just got a new one today. And to make it even worse all my savings are dead too, so iΒ΄m having a huge argue with myself about remaking the image.