Friday, March 13, 2009

Elephant in a slightly new style

trying to develop a faster painting process in photoshop. I did this one in a morning...not sure number of hours, but I tired to move quickly....some proportion issued and antaomy, but I think it shows the weight and looks pretty solid. Crits welcome.


Anne Jewett said...

Looks great.

One day huh, I'm jealous!

One Q? what is the big guy looking at or talking to?

Tell me story.

marikris said...

Nice, Steve. I love digital that doesn't look digital. Great textures here, and the elephant looks really volumetric. One thing for me is that he looks like he's slightly floating, or that he's not precisely on the plane of the ground. I'm looking at it enlarged, at where his feet touch the ground. It could be just the effect of cold next to warm colors, though, that is giving me this illusion.

Anyway, it's a fantastic job. Add an extra 10 stars for being only a morning's worth lol ^_^

Isaac Marzioli - Freelance Illustrator said...

just in one morning eh? Looks really really good! I love the texture in the body of the elephant and the ground. I think the grass is looking a little like the grass brush (but with better gradient than I can get on it)...and I only say that because I use the grass brush.

Speaking of grass - You can see the grass attaching to the dirt, and that feels like it needs more attention. Like grass shadow (subtle) or maybe a different type of ground plain that grass would grow on (that would be less like the path)'s a small thing.

Also - i agree with the above comment - about a story...what IS the elephant looking at? But adding another creature or some other element in there, suddenly it's not just an elephant standing...but a picture telling a story. In the San Diego conference I attended was that editors wanted to see interaction - because they want to know that you can illustrate the story with (possibly) multiple characters. Another step to this is to do another picture with the elephant that resolves this picture. Or something like that.

Anyhow - it's a strong piece...I really like your textures!

pete said...


Very nice character and I think your faster process is definitely effective! I like the sky...seeing varying hues, from reds to greens and yellows, always looks fantastic when its done well!

Something about the wrinkles in the trunk seem too much to me. I see tons of wrinkles there, but fewer around the rest of his body...although I like the way you applied the wrinkles. Maybe he could have more of them around his hip joints, neck line, etc.

Sara once gave me a great suggestion about my use of black in my work. Essentially, the black line jumps out strongly in front of every other color when its used alone. I think I see that happening here. I'm no Photoshop expert, but is there a function that could change that black linework to an umber? That might help him "land."

I agree with the anatomy issues...seems like his sternum/chest bone (do elephants have sternums???) should be lower in the front so that it rounds into his belly more.

It sounds like I have lots of crits but I really like this and am very jealous of your speed. This is great for one morning's work! Very impressive.

Steve Harpster said...

Thanks for all the comments. The more I look at it the more problems I see but there is something in the style that I kind of like. Yes I did use the all too often used grass brush. I just wanted to knock in the grass quickly to get some foreground in there. And he is floating a bit. If I built the ground up around his feet and the shadow I think it would fix this.

Hope to load my next one early this week.

wendyo said...

I'd say fantastic for a morning!
I do agree with many of the earlier comments. I also think the more quick illustrations you do like this the better they will work out so keep it up.