Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Pioneer girls: UPDATED 6/24

Thanks everyone for your great suggestions! I tried to use them all, and I think it made really good finishing touches for this.

A Letter From Brother

I thought I might run this by y'all before I call it "done". It was supposed to be for last week's Illustration Friday but wound up being more time consuming than just a 3-day painting! I saw by my current publisher hunt that it would behoove me to have more historical type pieces in my portfolio.
So I'd like to see if there are areas in this that I could improve -- can't really make huge compositional changes as this is in traditional media, but certainly tweaks. Thanks!


Patti said...

This is really sweet. I like the composition. The cat reading the letter is a nice touch. I am wondering about the hand of the little girl in front. Is it to be resting on the table or up? I think you really captured the Little House on the Prairie look well.

pete said...

Another home run, Sara! Nice work.

I like the soft shading across the girl's face and the attention you've paid to detail (tendrils of the hanging plant, quilt, portrait, braided rug, etc). My favorite part of the drawing is the way you handled the tree and birds in the window. That effect is truly awesome. It just feels like a sunset... in Kansas...where I live! :)

I think it looks complete. The only thing I see, and it may be due to the scan/photograph, is that I cannot tell what's going on with the cat's rear leg anatomy. The black is pretty heavy and I can't see much. It definitely isn't something that sours the piece - just something that jumps at me.

Do you photograph or scan? Just wondering...

marikris said...

Hi, Carmen! I remember some time ago you were working on deepening your shadows, but the soft/light coloring is just so your style and I don't see the light shades here as needing more depth. The shades look just right to me.

I agree with Patti on the little girl's left hand by the table top. It looks like there's some missing color between her fingers (it looks a little webbed because of it) and even though I think her hand is not *on* the table, I can see where that can be misconstrued. Or vice versa lol.

Also, are the hanging lavender flowers actually resting on the back wall, or is the bouquet slightly away from it?

And lastly, and this may just be my monitor because it's not exactly calibrated, the back of the letter can probably use a little bit of shading just so it's brightness is toned down a very little bit. Just a little more hint on the folds so it retains its form a bit more, perhaps.

But absolutely awesome job - the window scene and the minute details on that beautiful rug specially. You are just so good at patterned fabrics, too!!

<3 Kris

Carmen Keys said...

Hey thanks everyone! Your comments really helped, hopefully this looks a tad better.
Pete, I scan my paintings. That's cool that it reminds you of Kansas! Since you live there, I take that as a good sign. :)

pete said...

Oops, in my previous email I called you Sara. Oopsy daisy!

The changes look great!

Christy said...

Hi Carmen,
I think this time period suits your style very much! The new version is lovely and I think the changes made it perfect. This is one of my favorites of yours. It should definitely be in your portfolio. :)

Isaac Marzioli - Freelance Illustrator said...

This is great! Sorry I couldn't be there for the first round....I like the look and the details.

And all the overlapping shapes really add a lot of depth to the piece. Terrific stuff! And great touch with the soft hint of trees and birds out the window. Great job!

sara.b said...

Wow Carmen, you have blown this out of the water. It's gorgeous!!! I personally, too, don't feel you need to push your shadows a whole lot. I simply adore the softness you create in your watercolors...I have a difficult time holding the shadows and contrasts back...and wish I could. The colors, the shapes, the composition! Wow, the composition is beautiful!

Agreed, this has got to into your portfolio...possibly your next postcard? hummm? ;)