My full-time (non-HeroMachine) job might keep me from actually getting to these before this evening, but it's time 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 guidelines:
- 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.
(You can buy the shirt at Zazzle!)
Hugh the Tree, primarily concerned with the center area, not sure if the belt works.
King In The Mauntain
Hey y’all! This is an image I created a while back and I’d like to know what you guys think
Superbat versus Spider-Hulk!
Think I’ll get sued?
Not any more.
Restricting myself to just that, I’d say it doesn’t quite look like the wide edge of the belt (to our left) goes behind the coat. It looks like its edge lines up with the edge of the coat so their relationship to each other is a little confused. However it’s a little dark in that area for me to see it clearly so I might be off.
Parodies ARE protected by law, Jeff.
Very nice! I love the breastplate, that’s a great effect. The armor looks great too.
My only suggestion for improvement would be to introduce some small color variation in the golds of the armor. With only the two shades used throughout, it flattens it quite a bit, especially in contrast to the neat interior effect of the breastplate.
I’m not saying throw purples and reds in there, I just mean maybe making a somewhat darker shade of the bright yellow, and a yet darker shade of the darker yellow, and using them, for instance, on the sleeves that come from beneath the shoulder pads and/or the shoulder pads themselves with the knee greaves, that kind of thing.
He looks good, though!
I love japan. And i love japanese legends. My favourite legend is about Kutisake Onna. Woman with carved mouth. She wearing mask and asking “am i pretty” If talking “no” she killing you. If you talking “yes”, she showing her mouth and asking again. If you again talking “yes” she makes your mouth looks like her. If you tallking no… Killing.
Sorry for bad english, btw.
Good evening everybody (in here 5 pm.)
So i want to ask critique for this picture. I personally love the theme, and the composition, but something in her face is not correct for me. Any advice is welcomed.
Sine Nomine – Born of a Dragon
Then do it on your own site. I’d rather not have the headache.
I thank you for respecting my wishes on this matter.
Hey, looks great! Lots of visual impact and drama (in a good way). I appreciate the nice touches, like the glow on the interior of the wing from the fire in his hand. That’s some nice attention to detail. I like the armor design (especially the helmet) a lot.
My only critique would be that the interior gets a little dark for me. Maybe if the interior wings were lighter, that would set off the body more. Right now they seem to both be in such shadow that they meld together a bit. And the design of the figure is so nice I’d like it to really “pop”.
Otherwise, though, it’s a great design and a cool illustration, well done!
Okay, I’m going to try my hand at critiquing here. First of all, it’s a great picture, the colours work together and the detail is very good. My only problem is with her eyebrow. Next to all the detail of the rest of the face and character, there just seems to be something slightly off about it. I don’t know, maybe if you made it a bit more ‘eyebrow-ish’ by making it a bit thicker nearer to her nose? Other than that though, no problem, it’s very lovely.
I hope that was okay.
Very nice! I’m glad to have the story with it so I know what she represents.
I sound like a broken record today, but with her skirt and the alley all in the same basic shade of gray, the image seems a little flat. The viewer’s eye should be drawn to her, but as it is the alleyway seems to have the same weight and importance as she does. Also, the letters are a little hard to read.
But I like her, and I like the story. It’s mostly composition and color that I’m working with because the basic stuff is all there and good.
I agree with Trekkie, it’s a very nice image, with a good touch of emotion and empathy. The hand with the dragon, connected to the woman by the flow of hair between them, is an excellent compositional technique, it helps bind them together in the viewer’s eye.
The colors are also very strong. The green and black background serves as a nice canvas to let the bright colors of the figures pop.
I also agree with Trekkie that, for me, the main area that could use some tweaking is in the eye. It’s too big for me, but I understand that in an anime style illustration that’s normal. So that’s up to you, just a personal preference thing for me.
I think having the eyebrow and the edge of the tattoo both so close to each other and in the same basic shape is a little confusing. I’m not sure which to read as an eyebrow for a moment or two. And the black eyebrow is the same width from front to back, which is not how it would look — the end closer to the nose would be wider typically, narrowing to more of a point as it arches around the eye ridge and closer to the viewer.
Otherwise, this is a really good one!
Thanks Jeff! The character was one of the first one’s I ever created with hero machine. I’m happy with the way my new version turned out.
Just for fun if anybody is interested here’s the before and after:
BEFORE – http://i979.photobucket.com/albums/ae274/capttravis/Warguycolor.jpg
AFTER – http://i979.photobucket.com/albums/ae274/capttravis/WarBirdFinish.jpg
Thanks, Trekkie, I like seeing other folks contributing thoughtful critiques! Multiple perspectives can be really helpful. I’m not the final word on any of this stuff, it’s just my personal reaction to it.
I appreciate you jumping in, and you made some great points!
@Trekkie and Jeff.
Thank of you two. Yes the eyebrow is a little bit too weak and not positioning well. And i check more carefully the eyes is much bigger than what i want. Ok if i arrive home i remade that part.
I too like japanese legends and that one is both creepy and cool. I like the character too. I agree with Jeff about the colors. Your attention should be drawn to the woman’s mouth since that is the best part of the character. Otherwise it is a great image and I love how ghoulish the mouth and face look. Good work
That is an awesome effect you got on that breastplate. I’ve tried pulling off that effect on some of my characters and it doesn’t look as good.
*Recon Hood is floatin but to show so the viewer can picture what he looks like with and with out it on while not havin’ two photos
Cool work. I like it. Very nice.
Is it sonic screwdriver in his hand?
I like the concept and I think the pose mostly works well. The main area of concern for me is the pillar or wall against which he’s leaning. The bottom runs off the edge of the canvas, and yet he’s supposed to be leaning against it. That would mean his feet should be about at the same horizontal level as the base of the column or wall or whatever it is, and yet they’re not. So he seems to be floating, too.
Lol no it is a non active lightsaber
Alrighty then thanks
Hello guys. My project for about a week was the cover for another one of my fan fictions. I was wondering if it would be ok to post it.
Assuming it’s in line with a PG-13 rating, go for it!
Thank you, I thought I would ask first. I forgot that hero machine tends to auto align a little too far to the left so the alignment is off but all in all I think it may be one of my most impressive pieces of work. My one question would be that because the armbands and arm-wraps are masked you see the lighter lines of her arms and I don’t know how to fix it.
Just made “Guess What’s Next” game with HM, actually this isn’t use English langugage.
Very nice! I like the outfit design and the overall composition, nice job.
The arm color by the bands doesn’t bother me. But if you wanted to fix it, I think you could probably use one of the arm bands that are skin tight, but don’t have any internal “black” lines. Then turn color1 and color2 to completely transparent, set linecolor to your desired tone, and put it on top of the body. That way you see the top item’s linecolor while the middle is transparent, allowing the wraps to show through.
Neat! I don’t really understand what it is but it looks fantastic.
I used 13 Breastplates, you need to mask the insignia on as many BP’s you need, and then mask more BP, on the Insignia to make the Shadows and lights effects of the BP applay on the insignia.
hope I helped.
IDK if there are any ICP fans here but i was wondering what you think of my jokercards?
and Original album covers
Please Let me know what you think and what can be fixed I enjoy being constructively criticized
It doesn’t drive me nuts like the alignment being off dose but it’s one of those things. Thanks for the advice, I will try that out sometime.
I think the eye is a little big, even for Anime. The facail line either has to be darker or lighter too. The dragon, background, and the position of the ear are perfect. I also love the interaction
I don’t know, this guy seems like a real “DRIP” (lol). Someone tried to revamp Aqua-man?
I only do one of these, so I took the first one listed. He looks good, if a little plain. Nice colors and a clean design, though.
I don’t quite get this one, to be honest. I mean, he’s kind of cute, but then you have the dark sky and somber mood … I think I might just not be the target audience here.
Love it! Great pose, great items, perfect coloring, all coming together for a solid composition and a cool design. The only thing I might tweak is where the tail comes out of the torso. It’s a little … well. Suggestive. Maybe nudge it over ten or fifteen pixels to the right?
I worked on it for the redesign contest.
Cute! My only comment is that I think her hands are on backwards — the thumbs in that pose would be on the far side of the hand from the viewer’s point of view.
Yeah, thanks. In earlier version she hold a weapon in her back.
Apropos earlier… i must beginn my next entry. I am always beginn too late…
first time posting a link…fingers crossed! haha 🙂
Well done! Both on the link posting and the image itself. It’s a really nice character design, with a solid color palette and a cool pose. I like the general concept as well.
My only minor critique would be that I lose his right hand a little, being black on black basically. Not a very big deal, it would probably even be fine if you just left it that way, but it would likely be stronger if it were addressed somehow.
thanks Jeff when you see the right hand you mean the one closest to his face right?
From the Soldier contest
I think I may have yellowed the photograph a bit too much.
No, the other one — HIS right hand, to the viewer’s left. Over his thigh.
oh ok thanks again! 🙂
I had posted this a couple of weeks ago, but due to it being your birthday, you ended the OCD earlier than I could post. Since I’m not home right now, and thus I have no access to my latest drawing, I figured I could re-post this drawing here. Anyway, here are my concerns, copied and pasted from OCD #40.
“Here’s a finished version of my previous picture, now with a name for the character. You’ll notice I completely redid the sword, in my attempt to add visual majesty to the picture, and I also tried harder to make her face look less like a human’s face with a muzzle tacked on. One thing I’ve had trouble with throughout the making of the picture has been the general area around her right shoulder – I really do need more practice on the female form, especially with how the chest interacts with the shoulders. As for the problems specific to this final rendition, I do believe I’ve gotten sloppy with my ability to shade fur, and my lack of decently-sharpened pencils certainly isn’t helping; for example, you almost can’t tell that her left hand has fingers, even before the scan-induced detail distortion. In addition, the hilt guard looks far too large to be practical; I tried experimenting with using the same general shape repeatedly, which wasn’t such a good idea in retrospect. Any other thoughts?”
McKnight mentioned the obvious problem with the sword’s hilt, as well as suggesting that the feet could be smaller; though the foot size was intentional, the hilt guard is a problem which really got out of hand and which I’m not entirely sure how to fix properly. Anyway, here’s the link.
Wildcard, a mercenary with split personality disorder.
Had several difficulties with this representation: most interested in what you can tell me about the human diver and the foreshortening problem.
this is jason who is a notorious criminal and below is a vigilante design
Just some quick uniform designs for a story that’s been running around my head the last several days. It’s the Commander and First Officer of one of the earliest extrasolar planetary colonization projects in the 23rd century.
@PunkJay – Thanks i know the eye is big.
I remade Sine Nomine. Only a few changes. Remade the eyebrows, masking the tattoo and remade the eyes.
Here is a character who turned out well, but if he can be improved in any way, I’d like to know how.
This is Verrada. He is a shade, a hybrid of a living being and a dead soul which becomes one immensely powerful being. He is one of the smartest and one of the best swordsmen of the shades.
I posted a different version a few weeks ago, but here is Lightning Pug in a much less ridiculous costume. The colors are borrowed from the seal and flag of Naples Italy where the character is originally from. He has the same basic power set as Ultra Boy from Legion of Super Heroes. 4 powers, though he can only use up to 2 at a time. Speed, strength, invulnerability and flight. He was the inspiration behind the founding of Hero Corps and his bar caters primarily to the capes and tights crowd. The reason I went with spandex for this one is that, well…it was the 80s and 90’s when he was active. Obviously not known for the greatest of styles. Anyway, here he is, Lightning Pug. http://fc08.deviantart.net/fs70/f/2012/179/4/4/lightning_pug_by_mcknighthc-d558niw.jpg
Harlequin? I wouldn’t have guessed it, but the eye does look better–with the face outline being as thick as it is, maybe the headpiece should be thicker? Some gems & metal work comes that thin, but it might give the headpiece the illusion of weight, particularly if the bottom is a pixel inward from the top relative to the skin. You may want a separate study to try it out and not risk this beauty!
Jadebrain? that hilt would look less vicious if the claw was bas-relief, but it might fix the problem of size. The shading is the hard part of bas-relief.
AlphaAR? Is that a SuperTear? If it is, I wonder if the features would look better floating inside it. . .
DEVIANTART is full of delays–I may get to fewer of those–sorry.
Could use some help with this one.
Mr. Dino! Standard arrow from quiver move is 1rst 2 fingers or thumb & first finger over the shoulder, pull straight up out of quiver remotely like tossing upward from shoulder. Then simultaneously rotate arrow in air to bow with wrist and arm over–not from the side. For the extra point, try to make the other arrows look pulled out a just a bit by friction.
McKnight? I like, but I want to see objects disturbed by his motion–paper flying, ‘propstacles,’ etc.
Vampirist? The tats at the elbows confuse me a little–not sure what to suggest. Action pose mid-chop to distract?
Odio? I would turn her tat parallel to the arm.
Logosgal: Nice–um–Is he surprised at his promotion? That suggests a good story–if not, use eyes where the tops of the iris are hidden.
Um, we can go with that, sure. Actually, that’s more just sloppiness on my part: I noticed it right before I exported from HeroMachine and was too lazy to fix it. So yeah, we’ll go with the surprised hypothesis for now. 😉
Patrick? hm has facial hair closer to the medium and props, etc, closer to the originals if you want them–good representation so far. I think the jack-in-the-box effect was done recently in the pop quiz with the clown collar.
alvascus? I’m interested to know about the backgrounds to these puzzles–I’ve enjoyed the ones I’ve solved so far. Could you IM me a link on the forum inbox to check out other examples of this style?
Okay, okay, here’s the Commander on a less surprising day:
This picture was part of a design for a team. The pictures ended up more of an experiment in layers, textures, and transparencies in the background and foreground than the actual costume designs.
ok here goes something this is one of the old ones I made
Looks like the 10th Doctor without his hatred of guns.
Here’s my latest one. I did a bunch of horse-riding characters, and this is the one I spent the most time on.
Now, it has a few problems that I can immediately note, the first one being that the foot placement is slightly off and that the saddle doesn’t look very realistic. I might fix those at some point, so let’s not focus on them.
Love, love, love the image, but I agree that it’s too yellowed. Great job, though, the characters each has a distinctive personality and they look like a great team.
First, the drawing is really nice. Good character design and a solid general design.
Having said that, I think you’ve identified the major issues with it. The pencil work definitely looks rough, exactly because your pencils must have gotten too dull, making the figure look muddy.
If you want to keep this analog, get some tracing paper or a light box and resketch it with the original as your guide. It’s a strong design and character, there’s no point in trashing it and starting over just because the rendering got a little out of hand.
The hilt I would also agree is way out of proportion. The solution is fairly simple, though, just make it smaller by at least half.
I always enjoy seeing your hand-drawn illustrations, thank you for sharing another one with us!
For me, the main issue with the illustration is that with the different colors, the design looks chopped up and disjointed. Granted, he’s got multiple personality disorder, but visually it doesn’t look like a cohesive whole.
Thanks for sharing it!
First, cool image. It’s a fun concept well done.
I had trouble even finding the human diver. I assume it’s the silhouette swimming figure at the bottom right, no?
For me the problem isn’t foreshortening, it’s the general proportions of all the stuff. The creature looks huge, but for that to be true, the net with the VW bug in it would have to be at the end of an enormously long arm, very close to the viewer, while the diesel truck in the other tentacle would have to be very far away. Then that doesn’t make sense with the size of the human figure.
Then I’m not sure what is going on between the net and the creature. Is that another jetty of rock? Or something else?
Basically it’s confusing as to how big the figure is.
but I like the personality and the basic design of the illustration.
By the way, less than an hour after I posted Lightning Pug on DeviantArt, I found this fan art of the character had just been posted. http://fc07.deviantart.net/fs70/f/2012/179/9/7/micro_oc_lightning_pug_by_everydaybattman-d5591l9.gif
Not only did I know of the artist that did it, but he was on my watch list. Somehow one of my characters deserved fan art. Imagine that. The awesome thing is that he’s even animated and he added a bit of flair to the boots that I didn’t think of but still like.
I love the pop of red color at the tie, weapon, hilt, and hat. I do wish I could see more of the character, but the black line and black color2 against the black background essentially make that part of him invisible.
Very good Golden Age type of character, though, I like it a lot.
I like it all except for the shoes. I just don’t see sneakers with laces having much value on a spaceship.
Good job, though, very neat!
I’m digging the purple and black! Cool looking character design too. I like the tattoos.
I find myself losing the purple sleeves though, I think they’re a little too transparent. And I find myself wondering if the black of the tattoos is too harsh for the rest of it, kind of overpowering the costume and the clothing.
But maybe not, it might be fine as it is. Good job!
I’m never quite sure what I should do with these, since they’re not your work and I hesitate to offer a critique of someone who isn’t here and who isn’t named Rob Liefeld. So I’ll say it’s a good illustration, of a cool costume design, but that his right shoulder (to our left) looks a little odd and I would probably want to untuck his arm a bit.
Good costume design and colors. Bad technique on the mechanics of the bow and arrow. She’s holding the bow in the wrong place (should be along the dark gray handle below where his hand is), and I don’t see how she’d have grabbed an arrow from the quiver by the middle of the shaft.
In other words, I like her but the details of the mechanics need work.
Love it! Beautiful background, costume, effects, and attitude. Spot on!
Nice! I like it very much. No real comments for changes, I think it looks pretty darn good.
The first impression is that it’s a really good design. Very authentic and cool looking old fashioned knight.
My main issue is with the colors — everything’s basically in the same two colors and it makes it a little hard to separate out the knight from the charger.
Good job though!
OK folks, OCD is over! Thanks to everyone for participating!
I only offered this one up because I hadn’t uploaded the HM version yet. I will pass along the critique as usual.
Aaaaaand I missed it again. well, I had quite a busy day anyway.
wow! those guys are so creatively created!
Dude! Very awesome! I like how he is poised to fling that fireball and just lovin those color mixtures. Excellente!
thanks for jason i wanted him to be part of the shadows as in being an assassin
I love the concept, but there’s too much black. Perhaps you could try making his shirt red and his tie black and lighten the background so that he stands out more. Or you could take a leaf out of Moon Knight’s book and use the red as your base colour so that his enemies can see him coming. Think of it as symbolising danger or blood.
I know the idea is to make him blend in, but black on black is too hard to see. When I’m creating vigilante characters, my rule of thumb is to use black as a base colour only, so that the brighter colours pop.