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A lot of drab colors might not be the true colors under the brightest light, or make them look faded. The brightest light will show the true boldest color, even if that true color is a drab color, but not all colors should be drab. Some of your art shows hard shading from a hard light and give it a look of depth which adds 3D, that 3rd dimension of depth. It is good to step out of that 2D world sometimes to show perspectives in a 3D world rather than a flat image squashed between 2 layers of glass.
When you go from that flat non perspective world into a 3D world there is much more than up, down, left and right. There is vanishing points in the distance, and a world behind you that you might need to imagine, because it will be reflected in a glossy or mirrored surface. When the sun in behind you in this world you create, you can see everything in front, but if there is something tall behind you, it can cast a shadow over you. You might even imagine your shadow on the ground as you see this world you create.
What this does to the character is create shape an lighting controls what you see, including when the light is in front and all the character shapes are just dark shapes with dark trees with shadows on the ground in front, because you don't see anything but dark shapes in the sunset. Most of the time the light needs to be in front to see the front of anything.
With lighting there is glossiness to mat finished that looks dull and soaks up the light without reflecting anything. This might be something you could be interested in going, because it shows in your art than you like to show depth sometimes. A soft brush can give you a softer blend, but it don't mean this causes it to look softer, just more rounded. A metal painted ball has a soft blended shape showing the light on one side where it is more to one side while the other side shows to be darker, and the darker it gets going towards the outer edge the more rounded it looks.
If you are interested in adding a shape to the characters that shows depth, to look more 3D, then you might want to practice with the soft edge brush. Paint inside of a shape with black to create the darker color of the shading. Then use a soft brush to add a shape you can work with by painting in a color you want it to be. This creates a rounded shape. The shading gets darker as it curves around, and if you want to take away some of the darker edges, you just paint more color around the outside edge to resemble an angled edge, like painting a shield that looks flatter.
Everything you do effects the shape like adding more paint with a smaller brush to add smaller shapes in the middle, or a large brush to add a larger curved look. You can create a globe and paint a dark soft spot in the middle to make it look more like the shape of a doughnut. Darker is deeper and more color is pulling forward. If you can imagine that, then you can create 3D shapes.
That kinda sounded like you were saying the same thing over and over. I personally doít like softer edges in cartoons as you can mess them up easily. This just seemed like a lesson on making 3D objects. Which I know how to do decently well...traditionally that is. Itís simply something that terrifies me because Iíve seen it ruin pieces time and time again. Maybe Iíll try again soon, though I also just tend not to do much shading To begin with. Iím confused about the drab colors though. 2 of those pieces were pretty colorful, the other four were just more dark for a tone kinda. Edgy and bleak
I have seen art that makes olive drab look bold in a camouflage uniform, that looks like they used a real life uniform for a reference.
Photographs normally are dull, because the midtones can throw in too much color. To get an image to look more like real life and not have that pale look, photographers uses HDR programming.
It is normal for artist to build up a history with many things they see with images online that are not good HDR images, or what they remember is not the bold colors but the colors that cover most of the image with a shaded color from most areas that have low lighting.
It is hard to learn the actual colors of things unless you spend some time to look at real life, and try to be amazed by the colorful world in the spring, and not through images.
It is like if you learn art from other artist, you not only learn what they did right, but what they do wrong, and it might look right to you, because there is nothing in real life showing it looks wrong.
You might be doing that a little, but there are artist that has very pale or dark and dull art, from never really looking at real life. They are too focused on their art to notice anything but their art. I was like that and I spent 2 years looking at real life, and when I started painting again everything needed to look right from what I knew about real life, and my art took a huge step forward. I was better at lighting while I was avoiding it before.
You can adjust the contrast on your art to see if it looks a little better, and then you might see what I think it could be. Maybe at first it looks like it is too much, and later you change because of what you notice in real life.
I still donít get it completely. Half of my art has a filter on it because it looked nice to me. I know that in some cases colors look completely different when placed differently. Like a pinkish color may look yellow in a darker setting, but itís still pink. I donít do that type of thing, I just use basic colors. Which I think is fine, in some cases it looks better though to use yellow looking pink
Well, right off the bat, you are far more talented than people I know who have been cranking out art for years. You have a style that can easily be marketed as stickers, shirts, or easy commissions. Your figures are full of life, and very cutesy, which can also make it harder to have darker themes because of how gosh darn adorable they all are.
Your linework is very great! I like the sketched look to the lines, which again gives it that adorable look.
The octopus is my favorite, it is so uniquely done, and yet I can see them as a mascot for some ramen noodles, easy peasy! All of your subjects are uniquely created, with their own personalities and vibrancy, it is refreshing to see the normality of anthros be broken to give way to some more interesting characters!
All in all, your art is pretty stellar from the first glance and has a great market value if you ever are thinking of selling some of it as merchandise. There is a small habit of not giving them more of their own facial expressions, which helps define the character further and bring out more personality than just through body movement. There is so much cheer and happiness in just about all the figures which is not a bad thing! However, I would like to see more expression, than just the one.
The expressions in the first art piece with the goat lying backward and is peacefully resting is a very interesting design that does not exactly fit the scenario happening, however, the facial expression breaks the mold of the other three subjects, and I can see it being recycled into a more fitting scene.
Lovely work! I was tickled surprised! I hope this helps!
You’re right about the facial expression, I guess I do tend to like happy faces and open mouths. Never really noticed. Here are a few with different expressions, though two of them are old-ish around oct 2019
Now see THESE have some expressions to them! I love the crying face in the third piece, and that little girl in the second just looks so unpleased lol. These ones blend that adorable with a twinge of sass that says there is more happening beyond the subjects. Even the priest with his smug expression seems like a guy I wouldn't totally trust, and the goat just looks so much more adorable with his little angry face! Mind if I follow you? Your art is great!
Also, to give content to the heart ripping pic (because lots are confused by it), it’s actually based on an anime scene where two characters do the same thing. They also don’t display any signs of pain in the scene