Thursday, August 23, 2007
Shadows define form. That much should be obvious, really. The silhouette of an object has a certain sense, right? It has the shape, but it's a flat container. On the other hand, a picture with just two colors, one for light and one for shadow, can give a good sense of the form, the full shape of the object in three dimensions. If you want to define the shape of an object in a painting, cast a shadow across it. The boundary between light and dark gives a picture depth.
And this is why you, or rather I, can get in a lot of trouble doing shadows from imagination. I suppose it's the next step after being able to do outlines from imagination, and it takes the process to a new level of difficulty. Mistakes in judging where shadows will fall will make the picture look wrong. For example, see above.
Some of the shadows are OK, but some of them feel wrong. I might be able to bluff my way through, but a good reference would have saved me all sorts of trouble. The problem is that I come up with these pictures from my head, and then have to try and find reference that works. Unless I can take a picture with the right pose and lighting myself, it's unlikely I'll find one that matches closely enough to use.
So anyway, that's my big problem right now.
Another problem is the way the two parts (the two characters) clash. Somehow they're not coming together in that proper giant floating head way. Maybe this is the design. Maybe it's the way the colors have turned out so far. Maybe it's even the shadows (which are part of, or related to, the design). I've got to figure it out. I hope I can figure it out.