Monday, November 11, 2013

The Dryad and the Traveler

During school, I said that after graduation I would produce a personal piece every two weeks. Snort. Lately it's been more like one personal piece per season. This is partially because I've been busy working on commissions, so it's not all bad. Anyway, here's my personal piece for fall.

Actual size!

I drew this tiny little doodle in my sketchbook the other day and I liked it. So without further planning or thumbnails, cue forboding music, I started the digital painting.

As I worked, I started to feel the piece sliding downhill. I couldn't figure out what was wrong, although I knew it probably had to do with my lazy lack of thumbnailing. I considered giving up, but instead posted the WIP to the Team Awesome Facebook group for feedback. There the ever-amazing Wylie Beckert gave me some extremely helpful tips, and even did a little paintover for me. She pointed out that the composition was suffering from too much centering and empty space, and the dryad's pose needed tweaking.

I implemented her suggestions and felt hope return to my cold, cold heart. From here on the painting went pretty smoothly.

Besides Wylie, I must also give credit to Hendrick ter Brugghen, whose masterful "Flute Player" painting I shamelessly copied for the man's hand positions.

And a process GIF!

Moral of the story: do your thumbnails and listen to your art friends.


  1. I'm so glad you forged ahead with this - it turned out absurdly awesome! Love the added storytelling with the flute, like he's charmed her out of the tree, and the rendering is beautiful.

    1. Wylie - thanks so much, I'm glad the flute thing worked! This piece came out well because of your help, seriously.

  2. The composition is definitely stronger. Nice piece! But I have to say, I love the gesture of the guy in the original thumbnail. Gorgeous.

  3. Really gorgeous! You've done a great job of capturing a moment in time... I think all the changes you made were definitely for the best. Good job on producing some personal work; keep it coming!

  4. gorgeous *-*... as a fan of fantasy books this is paradise for me :3


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