Friday, January 16, 2009

Totem pOWL

--------------------------------- UPDATE Below

Ok, my first of several rough drafts; more to follow tomorrow.

I moved the owls in the middle but I'm not sure if I should incorporate the moon or not. Also, do the branches on the lower left side look too much?

--------------------------------- ORIGINAL POST Below

Wow, what a week. I was sick for two weeks, my monitor died two days ago, my semi-broken scanner's usb got thrown in the trash by mistake yesterday, and today - another car clipped my rear bumper as the driver was pulling out of the parking space. I was parked and trying to phone-order take-out lol.

Whew. Anyway, since my last post about owls was *meh* I decided to try to draw more owls for practice. I added the moon in photoshop because it only occured to me as I was cleaning up the terrible scan from my other crappy scanner. Does the composition work? I had originally wanted to make it super simple (and may still) with textures for trees, but I'll see how it shapes up. I'm going to try to be smart and print out the line art and color different copies and see which you guys think is best.

~ kris


sara.b said...

My goodness Kris, thank God you're safe and sound from all of that. Sheesh. What a week is right! Yuck.

I like the concept of this new owl project and like the composition. Doing the research on owls really paid off, they have great character and feel very believable. My only concern is the tree. Although I think it's a great idea, I hope it's not too big being in a battle for the viewer's eye. You could consider using different colors other than the typical brown for your owls too...that would make them stand out.

I'm looking forward to seeing where you go with this, it's adorable. :)

Carmen Keys said...

Good gracious, I hope things start turning up for you!! :( That all sounds horrible.
I sure love your owls and their roundy-ness. Especially the little one on top, I like how his feet come out in front of him!
To me the composition seems heavy on the right side.... I'd almost want to make the tree branches coming from the other direction to balance it out. I am not sure what that would look like though. I think what it is, is that the image appears to separate into two nearly equal columns if I squint and I guess I would want it to break up a little more. If that makes sense!
It's a totally cute idea though, the totem pole of owls and I love these little characters. :)

Carmen Keys said...

Just had another thought.... what if the moon were smaller and crescent? That might help the balance without changing the tree.

marikris said...

Hi, Sarah, Carmen! I agree with you guys about the tree and the left and right side split in the image. I will resketch and move the owls a bit more towards the middle and see how that works. The trees I won't color so boldly I think and I'll use softer colors for the background. I'll crescent the moon but at first, I was stumped on which way the moon should crescent. I'll keep the side it's facing now and see how a smaller one affects the balance. I think it will work!

I hadn't considered coloring the owls anything but brown, but I'll do several color copies since I like that idea! I wish I had a laser printer instead of an ink jet one, since Copics and ink jet paper kind of suck together lol.

Isaac Marzioli - Freelance Illustrator said...

So. I just got here. So I'm going to comment on the revised owl thing. I love the owls! Very cute characters! I'm a sucker for big eyed circley characters!

I can see where someone would be concerned for all the branches coming out of the left hand side of the page - I guess color would help balance that - it'd have to be darker (right?) on the right hand side...

My only thing is just how uniform the owls are...I can see a totem kind of thing going with them - which, of course, if that's what your'e going for then you can ignore what I'm going to say next - but I feel like one or maybe more (?) could be a bit more off would make more of a dynamic composition by varying up the spacing of the characters. Or even if all of the owls are slightly off center...

Anyhow - that's all I could think of.

They're terrific owl characters!

marikris said...

Isaac, I'll resketch and see how that looks. Updates forthcoming soon ^_^ It's like playing "jenga", but with owls lol.

Tiddly Inks said...

I like the updated version....Your owls are adorable and you did a great job or making them much more realistic, yet cute. I love the third owl's expression. I don't however like the owl flying in. It gives it some movement, but I think he should be coming from way up high, kind of out of the corner maybe, or not there at all. He makes it an even number of owls and I seem to prefer odd numbers when possible. I think the tree still needs to be doing something else...maybe multiple, but very skinny trees that are in the background, maybe shaded darkly, with light colored and whimsically shaded owls.....I really love their shapes and expressions, so I look forward to seeing what you do with it. :)

Tiddly Inks said...

I totally got engrossed in the owls and I forgot to say, I am glad that in the end you are okay, and I am so sorry you had a rotten week. :) I hope the next one is better.

marikris said...

Thank you, Christy! In a way, I am glad it was *this* week that was rotten, and not next week when my new semester starts -_- Starting the new school year on a downer ~ I shudder at the thought...

I'll move the little owl around and see...or maybe I'll add another owl as well so that it looks like they're trying to land and make the totem pole...

sara.b said...

Hey Kris,
Ugh, I'm late again. But here are my thoughts:

I like the shape of this illustration, the rounded edges, etc. And how the owls are in the center, but I agree with Christy about the top owl..but it may be because of the tree.

What's off about the tree to me is one, the branches on the left are almost completely in line with each owl. And there are branches on the left, but really no branches on the right. Trees go up like a mushroom then flow down from the center (at least that's how I see them), and some trees do have branches coming out of the trunk, but those are mainly evergreens.

My suggestion is to take out the branches on the left or make it feel like we're higher in the tree and take out some of the trunk. Skinny up some of the branches too. Most trees if you look have maybe two or three "arteries" and everything else is pretty skinny stemming out from those.

Make sense?

Here's hopin for a better week this week and can't wait to see what you come up with from here on this wonderful pOWL. ;)