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Anacybele

Ana's Art Returns!

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My tip for Photoshop is to leave layers as-is and then go under file and look for "Save for Web...". Select that when you're done your picture, and you'll get a plethora of export options like a temporary resize option, compression quality, options for saving transparent pixels for gif and png formats, and exporting animation if you are making an animated gif. If you need to do something like editing levels or adjusting hue/saturation/lighting of the entire picture across multiple layers, duplicate your project and save it under another name. That way if you regret something, you can always fall back to a previous version of your picture. Even if you're not "serious", it will save you a lot of heartbreak if something goes awry and you lose a lot of hard work to some negative permanent change you made, and it allows you future flexibility too.

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My tip for Photoshop is to leave layers as-is and then go under file and look for "Save for Web...". Select that when you're done your picture, and you'll get a plethora of export options like a temporary resize option, compression quality, options for saving transparent pixels for gif and png formats, and exporting animation if you are making an animated gif. If you need to do something like editing levels or adjusting hue/saturation/lighting of the entire picture across multiple layers, duplicate your project and save it under another name. That way if you regret something, you can always fall back to a previous version of your picture. Even if you're not "serious", it will save you a lot of heartbreak if something goes awry and you lose a lot of hard work to some negative permanent change you made, and it allows you future flexibility too.

Ah, that's a very good idea. Thanks!

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Okay, new sketch! I had a dream not too long ago about an unknown alicorn pony in the style of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic, so I decided to make her a new pony OC. She wasn't named in the dream, so I gave her one: Princess Starlina. :)

Starlinasketch_zpsa43afbc0.png

Princess Starlina is the cousin of Princess Celestia and Princess Luna. She is younger than the former, but older than the latter. Starlina used to live in Canterlot with Celestia and Luna, but she was banished from Equestria for misdeeds that she did not actually commit. However, Starlina's powers as a princess still remain. While Celestia has powers over daytime and the sun, and Luna has powers over the night and the moon, Starlina has power over stars and space. She made the stars shine bright at night and summoned a meteor shower once a year for ponies all over Equestria to see. Starlina also made the stars revolve around the universe and form different pictures (constellations) in the sky. With the stars constantly moving, the ponies would see different pictures during different times of the year.

However, one day, an unscheduled meteor shower took place and the meteors trashed a good chunk of Equestria. Naturally, Celestia and Luna blamed Starlina. Starlina swore that she had not caused it and some other force had done this, but her cousins didn't believe her. And so, they banished her to another dimension. Luna took over her duties of moving the stars, though the yearly meteor showers were no more, as they too much reminded ponies of the disaster that Starlina had supposedly caused (and then of course when Luna turned into Nightmare Moon and was sealed inside the moon, Celestia took over the duties of both princesses). Eventually, a rumor started and said that if Starlina ever found a way back, she would bring with her a curse that caused meteors to hit Equestria at least once every year.

For over a thousand years, Starlina has wandered in her prison, hoping to return home one day and try to regain the respect of her cousins and the other ponies. And soon enough, she does find a way back...

Whether or not Starlina succeeds in redeeming herself, however, is a story for another time. ;) I know I made her body a little too long, but I can fix that in Photoshop. Same with the cut off tip of the tail. lol

Edited by Anacybele

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No comments? Oh well, I have a new sketch. It's another character concept for my FE fic, Dawn of Darkness.

Louisesketch_zpsf5e110e2.png

As the drawing says, this is Louise. I named her before I knew FE7's Louise existed though. xP Anyway, this Louise is the younger sister of King Wencelis, the last guy I drew, and the crown princess of Talgria. Unlike her brother, she would be playable if this story was a game, and her starting class is Princess Talgria. As you can see, though, she is equivalent to a Falcon Knight and rides a Pegasus. However, there are a couple differences between her and other Peg knights. For example, Louise can not only use lances and swords, but magic as well, making her a flying magic user. I like the idea of a flying unit that can use magic, so yeah. I added a tome at Louise's belt. Hehe. Anyway, also unlike a Falcon Knight, Louise can't promote automatically. She needs a special item in order to reach her third tier. I won't reveal what it is though, as that would be spoiling it. :P:

Like her brother though, Louise doesn't smile much and isn't an extremely happy person. Though unlike Wencelis, the reason for this is completely unknown, even to other characters. Eventually, however, Louise finally reveals the shocking truth. Despite her secrets, however, Louise is also shown to be a curious woman, as she is interested in learning more about Ike and Tellius. She also tends to have outbursts, like when she screams at Leyon for embarrassing her when she finds him moronically talking in his sleep right in front of the other knights (quite a LOL scene too. XD).

EDIT: Oh, and don't worry, she's wearing leggings. lol

Edited by Anacybele

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Woah... she looks like.... Helene... Well her hair does

Oh did you come up with her appearance through a splice? That would explain it x3

All I can really see for now is that maybe you should add a line here:

26sxK.png

When I first saw that part I was mixing up the lines and thought her legs were drawn to be super super skinny x3

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Yeah, I came up with her appearance partly from a splice. I really should've changed up the hairstyle some. But she has Eleanora's face in the mug I made and a different hair color at least. lol

And actually, I left out that line because that leg is viewed from the side...just about.

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The hair and the earrings and that whatever jewelry thingy on her head~

Yeah I can tell that's why you left it out but I don't think it's turned enough to leave it out of sight... But it doesn't really look like it's turned... enough? Guess the red line could be placed a little bit to the right but it does look kinda incomplete without it, anyway.

I guess it's not too big of a deal though...

Though I also kinda noticed that with that poofy part of the glove on her left (our right) arm it looks like it sticks out too far. It certainly sticks out much further than on the other glove at least XD The angling of that arm could use a bit of fixing as well imo. The angles don't all really agree with each other. I wish it didn't require a lot of explaining though because that is just something I'm bad at =<

Or wait but are you willing to make any fixes if I tried showing them to you or are you wanting to move to something else? To fix that arm it would require a lot of erasing/redrawing x3

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The hair and the earrings and that whatever jewelry thingy on her head~

That jewelry thing came from Eleanora, actually. But I see what you mean. xP

Yeah I can tell that's why you left it out but I don't think it's turned enough to leave it out of sight... But it doesn't really look like it's turned... enough? Guess the red line could be placed a little bit to the right but it does look kinda incomplete without it, anyway.

I guess it's not too big of a deal though...

Eh, I'll throw in the line anyway.

Though I also kinda noticed that with that poofy part of the glove on her left (our right) arm it looks like it sticks out too far. It certainly sticks out much further than on the other glove at least XD The angling of that arm could use a bit of fixing as well imo. The angles don't all really agree with each other. I wish it didn't require a lot of explaining though because that is just something I'm bad at =<

Or wait but are you willing to make any fixes if I tried showing them to you or are you wanting to move to something else? To fix that arm it would require a lot of erasing/redrawing x3

I really don't feel like having to erase and redraw too much more, but show me anyway. Maybe it won't be as bad as I think. lol

Edited by Anacybele

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Okie dokie here is what I'm thinking so far

anaarm_zpsbf62a7f0.png

I tried keeping it close to the way your arm was. With your arm it kinda looked like a bendy/curvy arm so I tried to make it look straighter. Also rather than jutting out to the side, I think the poofy part of the glove should look more like it's coming around the arm. I think maybe that curve I did with the yellow was exaggerated though x3 The skinny red line next to the green is to show how I think the trim would look. The light green is showing the part that's going behind the arm, to try give you a better picture of what I'm aiming for with the shape of the poofy part.

Um... dunno what else to try explain but any other input from anybody else is more than welcome because I could be wrong on how it should look like~

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Well, what I was trying to do with the slight curvyness is use foreshortening. That is to say, because of the angle Louise is standing, her left arm appears to be shorter than it really is.

I like what you did, but now it looks like her elbow sticks out too far. I really appreciate the help though, I do. :)

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It won't look like that for real though, being curved like that to be shorter. Bones couldn't curve like that xb

Heehee, if it looks like it sticks out too far, then bring it in~ If you bring it in though, in return it'll probably make the arm below the elbow (ahhhhhh don't remember anatomy teerrrms) point more upward than sideways/diagonal the way you have it going, since there's still the body that the arm has in the way. I actually wonder if I should have pointed the elbow out a bit further

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you apply techniques well but your art lacks personal flair in my opinion.

I don't understand what you mean. Also, it sounds hurtful.

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I believe he means your art looks generic. That you do not have your own style.

Oh. Well, that is true, I don't exactly have my own style. But that's because I haven't found one yet. I guess THAT is because I do too much fanart, but hey, I enjoy drawing in the styles that I use, and that's what matters to me.

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There's a lot of focus on the trim details and including certain elements that mark your characters as fan characters in Fire Emblem, but the characters are stiff and lack a "human" feeling to them. They're human characters but they lack energy. I think the vectored pony Starlina worked better for you, having a graphic look that doesn't really rely so heavily on three-dimensional anatomy, and if you reworked the colours to be more dynamic (ie ditching the pure black body for a dark blue or purple, making the brushes you used for stars less obvious and with better scattering) it would actually be pretty good for what I see coming out of the MLP fandom.

Drawing fanart and copying pieces of art you like is the way that almost every modern day artist starts. There's nothing to be ashamed about by saying that you picked up your "style" from some place that isn't your own head. I certainly can attest to Fire Emblem, Zelda, Golden Sun, Ragnarok Online, and Inuyasha as my own top 5 influences. I just got better by drawing a lot, drawing from life, and taking advice from other people who could objectively look at what I was doing and criticize my work with fresh eyes. I'd encourage you to keep doing what you're doing, and just look for opportunities to get better.

To help bring in some energy into your human characters, I do recommend a book called Action! Cartooning by Ben Caldwell. It's not necessarily in the style you draw in right now, or will ever draw, but if you can find it at the library or book store or on the internet, it's a great resource to drawing more lively human characters and it breaks down cartoon anatomy to the barebones essentials. There isn't any other how-to-draw book that I've ever found as informative or useful for learning the basics of posing and expression. Of course, the internet is rife with tutorials as well, so have a look around. Art is all about learning and experimenting with new material all the time.

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There's a lot of focus on the trim details and including certain elements that mark your characters as fan characters in Fire Emblem, but the characters are stiff and lack a "human" feeling to them. They're human characters but they lack energy.

I don't understand what you mean by this. Geez, so many people confuse me in here. xP

I think the vectored pony Starlina worked better for you, having a graphic look that doesn't really rely so heavily on three-dimensional anatomy, and if you reworked the colours to be more dynamic (ie ditching the pure black body for a dark blue or purple, making the brushes you used for stars less obvious and with better scattering) it would actually be pretty good for what I see coming out of the MLP fandom.

Well, of course, the MLP: Friendship is Magic art style was easier for me to use than the FE: RD art style. Also, I didn't use a brush for the stars. I drew one and then copied the layer.

Drawing fanart and copying pieces of art you like is the way that almost every modern day artist starts. There's nothing to be ashamed about by saying that you picked up your "style" from some place that isn't your own head. I certainly can attest to Fire Emblem, Zelda, Golden Sun, Ragnarok Online, and Inuyasha as my own top 5 influences. I just got better by drawing a lot, drawing from life, and taking advice from other people who could objectively look at what I was doing and criticize my work with fresh eyes. I'd encourage you to keep doing what you're doing, and just look for opportunities to get better.

I figured as much, but there's also the fact that I simply prefer drawing fanart using the style that the media I'm doing fanart of originally uses. For example, if I'm drawing PoR or RD art, I use the Tellius art style. If I'm doing MLP: FiM, I use its art style. And so on. I feel like this better shows that I appreciate these styles, not just that I like the media.

To help bring in some energy into your human characters, I do recommend a book called Action! Cartooning by Ben Caldwell. It's not necessarily in the style you draw in right now, or will ever draw, but if you can find it at the library or book store or on the internet, it's a great resource to drawing more lively human characters and it breaks down cartoon anatomy to the barebones essentials. There isn't any other how-to-draw book that I've ever found as informative or useful for learning the basics of posing and expression. Of course, the internet is rife with tutorials as well, so have a look around. Art is all about learning and experimenting with new material all the time.

Thank you, but I'm afraid I can't get out much and have no way of going to a library or anything. And you're right, I'm not really interested in most cartoon styles. But next time I'm at a book store or library, I'll take a glance at this book. If I find it.

Edited by Anacybele

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Well like I said, the internet is full of resources and for all the junk that's out there, there are a lot of gems too.

Anyway, you are too caught up in details. When I say "trim" in this context, those are those gold bits you see on the armor and clothing. You spend a painstaking amount of time placing them and placing mechanical-looking curves, carefully cleaning up lines as you go. Or that's the impression that I get. The lines have little variation in thickness. The pose itself has very straight shoulders and hips that most people don't have unless they're seriously forcing themselves to stand straight. As a result everything looks stiff and it lacks dimension. You want her to look formal and have good posture because that's her character, but your linework leaves her looking flat and lifeless.

[spoiler=Some example stuff]

ana-loiuse.jpg

This is super rough but there's a lot of natural flow to the curves and the pose was slightly altered to make her legs less visually confusing. The details aren't really that important compared to structure, the flow of the lines, and the pose itself. Part of the liveliness is because my own style has to convey a lot of motion in a still picture, but even the official art of some straight standing poses has sway in the hips and shoulders.

sephiran-breakdown.jpg

Of course, having loose lines comes from practice and experience and I'm not saying GET BETTER RIGHT NOW, because no one improves overnight. But try scribbling some shapes and draw fast and loose and you'll get better. Try loosely breaking down Fire Emblem art into shapes (print stuff out, trace over guidebooks if you have them, etc), since you like the style.

You can disregard my advice if you want, but drawing fast (like 30 seconds start to finish fast) is going to help you grasp structure faster and you'll have more flow, like writing as fast as you can during an essay to the point where your letters blend into a single loopy line.

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Heh, I kind of get the feeling that people like picking on you, Ana, which makes you a little defensive.

I say to keep doing what you enjoy and experiment whenever you feel ready to challenge yourself.

I find action scenes, even if I'm not good at them, fun to do, especially if it's a messy sketch and stuff. It makes me practice confidence in my lines.

I pretty much would tell everyone to just practice with pen/ballpoint pen though since you get better at not "messing up" as you keep doing it.

It seems like you're really itching to make a fight scene or kissing scene (I base this on intuition lol). You should just try to do it!

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Prax, I said I'd look for that book, didn't I? I'm not defending anything. But I agree, experimenting is fun and I do it every so often myself. For example, I'm doing so with more brushing in my shading as I'm coloring my sketch. I still use the dodge and burn tools for some things, but I've also added plenty of brushing this time.

Also, you're close, lol. I've been wanting to draw a wedding scene with my FE: Awakening Avatar and Frederick. :P:

Anyway, you are too caught up in details. When I say "trim" in this context, those are those gold bits you see on the armor and clothing. You spend a painstaking amount of time placing them and placing mechanical-looking curves, carefully cleaning up lines as you go. Or that's the impression that I get. The lines have little variation in thickness. The pose itself has very straight shoulders and hips that most people don't have unless they're seriously forcing themselves to stand straight. As a result everything looks stiff and it lacks dimension. You want her to look formal and have good posture because that's her character, but your linework leaves her looking flat and lifeless.

[spoiler=Some example stuff]

ana-loiuse.jpg

This is super rough but there's a lot of natural flow to the curves and the pose was slightly altered to make her legs less visually confusing. The details aren't really that important compared to structure, the flow of the lines, and the pose itself. Part of the liveliness is because my own style has to convey a lot of motion in a still picture, but even the official art of some straight standing poses has sway in the hips and shoulders.

Of course, having loose lines comes from practice and experience and I'm not saying GET BETTER RIGHT NOW, because no one improves overnight. But try scribbling some shapes and draw fast and loose and you'll get better. Try loosely breaking down Fire Emblem art into shapes (print stuff out, trace over guidebooks if you have them, etc), since you like the style.

You can disregard my advice if you want, but drawing fast (like 30 seconds start to finish fast) is going to help you grasp structure faster and you'll have more flow, like writing as fast as you can during an essay to the point where your letters blend into a single loopy line.

Um, I don't mean to sound defensive for real, but I try my best to focus on EVERYTHING important about drawing a character concept art, not just details. I'm just saying. And of course I clean up my lines, I don't want to leave a sketch looking messy and lazy. Also, I don't see how your picture has anymore life in it than mine. Not to mention that you made her look a lot younger than she's supposed to be and put her in a less mature looking pose than what I was going for. I also wanted those details I added. I also don't appreciate people messing with my pieces without my permission, even if they don't do it directly.

Also, I started coloring my sketch a couple days ago, so it's too late to make any major changes.

And thanks, but I can't draw fast. My work always looks like shit when I do. Honestly, I wish I could work quicker, but it never benefits me.

I appreciate you trying to help me, but I'm afraid nothing you've said would really benefit me at all. Again, however, I appreciate the effort.

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(Love the amounts of helpful advice that comes out of this thread~)

Ana, I wouldn't worry about 30 second drawings coming out terrible, or even if they're just bare stick-figures. The main thing is that you're learning how to identify and render a dynamic figure's bare essentials, with the result that you can use the same experience to your polished drawings. Dunno if this stock photo site's been referenced but it's worth giving the exercise a try. http://artists.pixel...figure-drawing/

(Edit: grammar)

Edited by Lenh

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(Love the amounts of helpful advice that comes out of this thread~)

Some of it was helpful, I agree.

Ana, I wouldn't worry about 30 second drawings coming out terrible, or even if they're just bare stick-figures. The main thing is that you're learning how to identify and render a dynamic figure's bare essentials, with the result that you can use the same experience to your polished drawings. Dunno if this stock photo site's been referenced but it's worth giving the exercise a try. http://artists.pixel...figure-drawing/

(Edit: grammar)

If I can figure out how this thing works, I'll try it out. Thanks.

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