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Dave Hotstream
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Orientalist Dreamscape. The castrating baby from the first painting in the video is back and this time he brought friends. I took the soldiers from a painting by Sir Lawrence Alma Tedema because I really liked the device of using their shields to separate them from the background. 
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Here's my Junk Pile!
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So here's my "Spectacular Ruin" redo, I ended up doing it twice and can't decide which is working better (or if either of them are at all).I drew the one on the left first, hated it, drew the one on the right and decided I liked the first version better and then changed my mind again. I been struggling with this one, y'all. STRUGGLING. I tried to pay attention to grouping and resting spaces and especially to level of detail in foreground vs. background and I think this is what Miss Justine meant about cramming so much new information into your head at once that it just explodes into a big mess on the page until it resolves itself. I'm gonna walk to the corner bar and have a beer now :-/
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4/10/17
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So I thought I'd do a Cave of Wonders for the first organizing assignment. I tried to really Bernie Wrightson the hell out of this by packing in as much detail and line work as I could, and tried to organize the details in natural-looking groupings: the crystals in the foreground and middle ground, the dark rocks in the background, and the flock of bats at the top. Then I tried to make them recede into patterns so the dwarf figure in the middle ground could really pop against that big white crystal (aka the visual "rest area").
Oh also I tried to do a little Frazetta thing on the cave behind the bats by just suggesting it with some soft ink wash instead of drawing every little detail of it like I would normally have done. 
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Ok here's my picks for drawings that just aren't working.

1. Ian Churchill. I was eventually able to sort of figure out what's supposed to be going on here, but it took some effort. The figures all just sort of blend together into one big mess. The weird thing is that all the line work and ink is super sharp on the individual characters but it's done so similarly on all of them that they become indistinguishable from each other. There's not a single place for my eyeballs to rest here so they just keep bouncing around like "wait, whose foot is that?"

2. Art Thibert. I don't even know where to start with this one. What the heck is all over the flying guy's chest? Is that armor or did he spill his lunch on himself? Is he even flying or is he supposed to be standing on whatever that is in the background? Also what the hell IS that in the background? Also it took me five minutes of staring at this mess to realize there are actually two other characters here I didn't even see before. See if you can find them, I'll wait. And what is with the weird texture on the jacket of the guy who's being decapitated? It looks like it belongs in a different drawing. Oh wait, I just now spotted a fifth character.

3. Whilce Portacio. All I can think is that the person who drew this finished it, shrugged and said "Eh, maybe it'll make more sense once it's colored." Some of the left half is almost readable, except that Iceman almost completely disappears in the rendering of the water because the line weights are all exactly the same. Over on the right I honestly thought there was one character with two heads. There's no negative space to define them, no variation of scale, just these two poor ladies being smashed into each other. Oh yeah and then Colossus is down at the bottom maybe getting kneed in the groin by a giant robot leg or something? idk
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3/29/17
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Wait, so the homework is to look at awesome art and talk about how awesome it is? Yes please. I'll do my "bad" drawings in a separate post.

1. Alfredo Alcala, from an early 1970s Planet of the Apes comic. There's a lot going on here but the three figures on horseback stand out immediately because of the way they are dramatically silhouetted against the relatively open and lighter area they are standing in. The angle the debris falls in from the bottom left to top right also helps to frame the characters. And then there's that "telescoping" effect that leads your eye into the landscape to whatever is waiting over that hill, between the framework of the ruined buildings.

2. Al Williamson, Flash Gordon poster. I picked this one specifically because it's a great example of something I'm struggling with: using atmospheric perspective to create depth. The details on the mountain/castle in the distance is less defined and has much less contrast than the rocks and plants in the foreground. Also that mist effect in the middle ground is basically a layer of nothing but it really works to create depth as well as a sense of mystery about what's out there on the mountains of Mongo. The arrangement of the figures on that rock pointed towards their destination is a great visual device but also creates a narrative—we know just where these guys are headed. And Flash Gordon framed by the white shape of the moon makes him the most important thing in the image, and that empty/negative space just makes all that amazing detail on the rock the characters are standing on pop even more.

3. Jack Davis. What's great about this one is that it shouldn't work but it does. There's no composition to speak of, just a tight-packed cluster of characters. The contrast is cranked up so high that every character feels separate and distinct. The textures on Frankenstein's furry vest and Dracula's cape and the mummy's wrappings are all different enough to give each monster its own personality visually. And there's pretty much no background (or foreground for that matter) but the shadows around the characters still create a sense of solidity and depth.

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3/29/17
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Here's my pre-video "spectacular ruin". On to the videos!
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Ok y'all, here's my post-video landscape. I do think I got a good bit more depth into this one, watching the videos really turned a light on in my brain about how to approach a landscape. I tried to work in as much detail as I could as well, but to me it feels kind of overworked and cluttered now... I'd love some feedback!
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Hi everyone, I posted this yesterday but I think it disappeared? Or maybe I just didn't post it right? I'm bad at computers. Anyway this is my pre-video landscape. Sorry if it's showing up twice now.
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