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One more for the Refuse pile. ^_^;;; - Disgruntled Artists

About One more for the Refuse pile. ^_^;;;

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Well, I've given up once more, but in case anyone's rolling their eyes and biting their tongue, I'm not really here to whine and moan. I got to a point an awful long time ago where I can accept that some (most :P) of what I create won't get to Epilogue worthiness. I'm okay with that, though I do feel like a bit of a lo0o0zer for being unable to add to my little gallery. Only a little, though. :D

I'm really here to talk philosophy. If you want, you can attribute this post to the explorative ramblings of an unschooled artist, as here I stand with a Bachelors of Science and no formal training since high school.

Here's what I've been pondering:

Perhaps it's the sign of a bad artist, but when a painting looks just like I wanted it to and is correct on a technical level, I stop. Period. I'll only stretch so far to please others, which I consider to be the 'right way' to go about my craft. I dunno... do you guys agree? Is your personal art supposed to come out how YOU want it to be or how the 'EXPERTS' want it to be? Is it ever okay to draw the way YOU want to instead of the way the 'RULES' say you should?

If anyone has thoughts on the matter, I'd be really interested. I feel sometimes like the 'professionals' out there lose track of art being for the sake of the art instead of for the sake of the bottom line - the customer's money.

Or maybe... I'm just highly opinionated and stubborn. ;)

Current Mood: contemplativecontemplative
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Date:March 13th, 2004 10:15 pm (UTC)
Critics and experts die...If you are lucky, your art will survive for generations. What’s fabulous today is crap tomorrow, and what’s not acceptable professionally now, can years later be classic.

Unless you just want the money and to fit into what is perceived as marketable, then I say work an image until it is as correct as your mind’s eye says it should be. I find that often I THINK I have achieved the exact look I wanted, but if I am seeing it too fresh, my mind can be playing a trick on me and hide the imperfections. I go back and fix old works all the time, most artists do, the trick is to know when something is done and when it’s still open for possible improvement.

BTW...how about a link to that image?
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Date:March 13th, 2004 11:09 pm (UTC)
Oops. Silly me. Of course, the image isn't a big secret. You can find it in my personal gallery, here. Like I said, I probably won't be changing it just now, but if anyone has some insight into what Epilogue might be finding to look 'unrefined and lacking detail', I'd welcome your advice.

Thanks. :)
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Date:March 14th, 2004 04:57 pm (UTC)

Ok here goes.

Well you asked us to look and see if we saw anything that Epilogue might have found needed improvement so here goes. It's a very nice picture and I liked the background and the way it accents the figure. The pose is nicely done also. I love the coloring and how darkly hellish you made the piece look. Also the detailing in the banister is wonderful.

But it looks to me like your picture is fuzzy at the bottom around the draping gown. Both the floor and the gown pleats need sharpness and more refinement since the railing and everything else is crisp but not the drapes and the glow on the floor.Why is the gown folds on the floor glowing btw? The wings also look a bit odd like they are a rush job and incomplete. Hope this helps you some and you don't think I'm trying to be nitpicky or anything. I just see things different than most and those items I commented on are the same things they picked on some of my rejected art for this same reason.

I agree with you regarding Epiloque, I too have quit trying to get a piece accepted by them again and I refuse to believe it is because my work is inferior or so bad that it can't make the cut. Not at least, until they stop having art accepted that is far inferior to some or most of the art they reject. When they begin to improve this and even out on what is good art and what isn't then maybe I'll consider them again.
Date:March 28th, 2004 07:19 am (UTC)
Oops you said you weren't planning to change it. Didn't see that until I wrote this, so eh... for next time maybe? Anyway, it's a good piece. Keep arting! :)

What I'm seeing is an awful lot of red with very little contrast in your figure. It's fine to have a lot of red, but the amount of contrast you've given the railing and her dress makes you kind of expect the figure to pop a little more.

What you may try doing is making the figure a little lighter red. Add some oranges in there to give her a more vivid look, or white if you want her paler. In the shadow areas, definitely add some green. Not enough necessarily to make the shadows turn green, but it will dull the red there and give some contrast. Right now the bluish purple is the same value as red, so the shadows glow rather than recede. Complementary colors make shadow areas recede, giving more depth to your image. This applies for her wings as well.

You may consider not having such regular pleats of hair. It looks like the style used for computer games, which the detail of the border and railing suggests is wrong for this piece. Try finding some photos of hair and use them for reference. Pay attention to how pieces of hair fall, where highlights go, and stray strands of hair. These are some of the little nuances that make hair look more "real".

The dress (sheet?) also, I can't tell what you were going for there. Is it supposed to be translucent so that she has no body? That's kind of what it looks like, but you may want to vary the translucency some so it doesn't look so accidental. Right now I keep looking trying to see her lower body, but it's not there, and there seems to be no reason for it. If it didn't look like it was just on a separate layer with transparency turned on, I might expect it to be intentional.

Anyway, that's the nitpicky way of saying your image has a lot of inconsistencies. I'm not sure what resolution you're working at, but if the reason for the lack of detail on the figure is the size she is on your screen, increase the resolution and/or size of the piece. You can reduce it later, and the extra effort will show.

Now, I know that was a lot of negative stuff. I'm better at finding problems, because that's what I usually do on my own work. But I will tell you what you are doing right, to the best of my ability.

I do like the concept of this piece. You're setting up a good mood here. Red can be a little overwhelming, but the gold accents you've set up give it a brightness, and you have plenty of variation in the red background. You've also set up a good path for the eye. The figure is well off-set by the lighter area of the sky and that gives it good balance.

I'm glad you're not taking it personally that Epilogue didn't accept this. As long as you like it, that's really all that counts (unless you're doing it for money, and then getting paid is what counts, hee). Epilogue certainly isn't the be-all and end-all of Teh Art. They're just one juried art gallery on the web.

As for stopping on a picture, I think that's what every artist does. A piece of art is never finished, just abandoned. There will never be a perfect piece of art that cannot be improved some way, but you'd kill yourself trying to fix everything. Sometimes it's best to just acknowledge that it's not there yet, but you'll get it next time.

To me, there is art for art's sake, and then there is art that pays the bills. Art for art's sake is a luxury, art that pays is a career. I have no qualms about painting whatever the hell the other guy wants, as long as he's paying me enough. Thus is the power of having money for art supplies and food (but mostly art supplies). But doing art that other people want is no reason you can't do art for yourself. And it doesn't mean you've lost sight of anything - it means you have a marketable skill.
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