I was waiting until the end of the year before submitting this, but it's almost that now, so here it is!
I tried doing the 12-picture one that everyone does, but I quickly found that it didn't really represent my artistic journey this year at all... I've done very few actual 'finished pieces', you see, and instead each month has been more about exploring many different things. As a whole, the year has been about finding my style, discovering a direction, and doing studies to refine my skills. I'll go over what I included in each month, and why!
The year began with one of the very few finished pieces I did! I learned from it that I hate doing lineart!
I also did painty studies of landscapes and animals from photos (I should do more of those), and I think this might have been where I started designing my 'Miasmon' properly for the game of the same name I've got in development!
I decided here to draw WOLVES, which is a compulsion I've had on and off for a while now... but I didn't stick with it for very long. I did however discover some painting techniques while doing so, particularly in regards to colour, such as using striking contrasting colour schemes, or just exaggerating subtle colours that I saw in photographs for a more interesting result.
I also drew more animals! Those wolves and big cats all used reference photos though, so I can hardly claim that they were 'mine' as such, unfortunately!
Finally, I was experimenting with faces, trying to find a style to use... but didn't get there. Interesting though how that face there has many of the techniques that I ended up using at the end of the year.
I came up with the character Caoimhe here (who'll feature in something I'm currently working on), and painted a character for perhaps the first time, maybe? It's something I'd go on to do a few more times later.
Was this also where I decided to refine the design of Alora Fane, and to use that world for my games? Maybe! I drew all the races; the Mhandisi are shown there. It was an interesting study of clothing styles!
I also did some painty portraits of MARDEK characters, which was a completely different direction to the figures... I should have kept it up, but didn't!
I did however keep up with the Miasmon designs, though they were becoming more refined and stylistic at this point!
I think that this was the month that I started work on Alora Fane: Creation, then called DreamQuest! Much of the month was devoted to that, and I came up with looks for the races in the first panel there... though I deviated from that style quite quickly, to the cutesy, chibi sort of style seen in panel two! The third panel is Alora Fane's logo, which barely registers as 'art' in my mind, yet I suppose it was something that took time and design work and such.
I also painted some nude women from photos, though didn't add them to my gallery because I didn't want to be seen as the sort of person who focuses on stuff like that! Also, it's so frustrating how apparently a single, subtle nipple would make this MATURE and SHOCKING and ugh, and yet covering it up with a tiny black star somehow makes it completely fine. Grumble.
I kept changing my direction, and wanted to draw DRAGONS here... but that didn't last long either, and the one thing that did come of it looks awkward to me!
I also came up with the character Fianait, who's very similar to Caoimhe, and did a 'character sheet' sort of thing and proper thought-out costume design for perhaps the first time ever. Which was interesting and new to me! I also experimented with facial expressions using that character, and did some really rather terrible landscape paintings that were much worse than those in January! Pfft!
It was this month where I probably did the most Finished Pieces! I decided to do full finished painty pictures of all the characters I've ever made (or at least the ones I could remember and who were worth drawing), and I think I did three, maybe? Four? There they are in the first three panels. I think I learned a LOT from them, and it's a shame that I didn't continue doing them regularly, because I feel it could have refined my techniques a whole lot.
The fourth panel is from Catharsis, my experiment with webcomic making. I've wanted to make a webcomic for AGES (I still do!), but I could never come up with a concept I was happy with... I thought I was onto something with Catharsis, but it didn't last beyond three strips. So much for that! Still, it was really interesting and I learned a lot.
I was rethinking my direction for Miasmon, wanting to make it cuter! So that first panel is the same Rabbish from January, but the style is obviously quite different! I think I've toned it down a tad now, though.
The rest of the month was mostly about FACES, and trying to refine my understanding of them. I learned about features like noses and eyes in particular, from doing tons of tutorials and watching videos and doing studies and such. Much work!
I also drew characters again, experimenting with styles. I consider Cerise there (third panel) a failure, yet I think Emela (fourth panel) is my favourite piece of the year.
This was a fairly dry and disappointing month, really. I drew faces again, but I completely lacked direction, and was full of doubts and frustrations about my abilities. I drew the faces of Mardek and a generic girl in the first two panels there, each in entirely different styles, but I wasn't happy with either of them. I struggled to fill all four panels with coloured things, so the last two contain fragments of some of the many sketch pages I did. I suppose I did do a lot of those pages, though, so they show that this month was mostly about study! Specifically about eyes, which I was most frustrated with.
This is the month where I went to university! I think the first two panels, and maybe the fourth, are from before that, though? Again I was focusing on faces and refining my understanding without really doing anything finished with it... I did however draw Fianait as a finished thing there, again using a different kind of approach; I don't think I really like the outlines/lineart.
The first two panels are from my imagination, but the third is just a photo reference study that I did in class at university after finishing that day's work, and the fourth is an attempt at drawing a slightly exaggerated version of a photo rather than trying to capture it hyper-realistically.
While at university, doing an art course and having to draw in class, I felt like I actually produced and studied LESS than the rest of the year! And not even because I was socialising, because I was very unsuccessful in that regard! That's probably why I drew less; I was too busy FEELING BAD and lonely and such. Still, I did keep up with the Miasmon designs, which were getting increasingly refined. I did a lot of those, and only two are shown here, in the second panel.
The first and fourth panels are simple studies, first of the values of a crab photo, and the other of my hand from life for a homework assignment thing. Not exciting, but they show the kind of thing that I was doing during that month.
I'd been doing life drawing for the first time at university, so I was doing a lot of studies of NUDE PEOPLE in my free time, which is what the third panel is. I feel like my understanding of anatomy improved from these things!
Mostly university stuff here, and I feel like it's a step backwards in some ways! I came up with another Miasmon for an assignment, where we had to draw it from different views and such, with the intention of modelling it. We didn't actually have to model it because we haven't covered that yet, but I DID model mine anyway (second panel), and several of my other Miasmon too! It was my first attempt doing 'low poly' modelling, and it was rather fun and interesting!
The third panel is some creature design for a game we had to design and do concept art for... though I don't think it's very exciting at all.
And the fourth is a nude woman from a photo reference; a fairly basic values study, nothing exciting. And yet I don't have anything MORE exciting from this month. Sigh!
I think I was getting frustrated here with the lack of arting over the last couple of months, so I decided to try harder! Being home for Christmas helped me focus, and I've got a lot done, even though there was a huge gap around the middle of the month where I did nothing!
I did another one of those painted characters for the first thing in a while, which, while hardly my finest piece, was educational! I also painted faces from photos (second panel) in order to try to cement as much understanding in my mind as I could.
THEN directly afterwards, I actually USED this understanding instead of just resting on it, and I drew a whole bunch of MARDEK character faces which, while far from SUPER IMPRESSIVE, I'm rather proud of because they make it so clear how far I've come in just under two years! I struggled to choose one here to represent the set, but I used Emela because she's already in two of the earlier months, and I can compare them and such.
Finally, at the end of this month I've been playing around with modelling again, more 'low poly' stuff, and made Acorn Nose, who is so cute that it makes me laugh!
If you read all that self-indulgent drivel, then you deserve a medal!!
I may also upload the 12-panel version, though I think it looks really weedy and like I barely did anything all year!
Overall, it's interesting looking at this as one big thing and seeing the kinds of vibrant colours that I tend to use! I feel like I've learned a lot this year, even if it's been one characterised by indecisiveness and experimentation rather than finding a path and really sticking to it... Hopefully by the end of next year, I'll have found the direction that I want to go in!
Oh, and here's last year's!
The whole "Add a nipple and then it needs censorship" thing really bugged me. Mostly because just because something is considered "Inappropriate" means that it must be censored. But honestly, if something considered "Inappropriate" is made, it is not the artist that should do something, but the observer. That's mostly why I do use a rather large amount of profanity in my speech, because if you can maturely deal with something, you can deal with anything really. Which is why I don't instantly look at a person's general age and say "You are that mature", it's all in how you act. If a 12 year old can act like a mature adult, then why is he not treated as one, and vice versa; If a 23 year old acts like a 12 year old, then he is practically 12, and should be treated as such. Hell, I'm 14, and if I act like a mature, responsible, adult, then why am I not treated as one?
I love how you try all sorts of different things and you have a wide variety of different pieces of art. I admire it alot. I wish I could draw as much like that. I wasn't able to make one of those art of the month things because there were some months where I posted nothing at all, and it feels weird to leave a blank panel.
I really like your characters, particularly the nature-y fawn like characters like Acorn Nose and Fianait. I also like the nude paintings you draw, not for any sexual reason, but for the beauty. Alot of people get really offended or awkward from nude art but I think the human body is quite amazing. even though I can't draw humans for the life of me >__<
The fact that you can easily draw caricature characters as well as realistic characters is impressive. your style is in all different forms of art.
Thank you! I'm amazed I had this much art to show, actually, because I often go days without so much as picking up my tablet pen... However, I have tons of free time, so I suppose that's a big factor as to why I can draw a lot.
And I'm glad that you like my characters and stuff! I definitely prefer those kinds of naturey female characters to the macho warriors that many men seem to draw...
And I'm particularly glad that you feel that way about my nude drawings, because I worry a lot that by submitting them that I'll seem like some kind of shallow pervert who objectifies women or something, which will attract lecherous men to ogle them while repelling girls and stuff. I don't draw them for sex appeal though, and I'm glad that you see them in that way!
I can't believe that it has been a whole year since you last drew... Zaffre, is it? (The male character from Miasmon.) It doesn't feel like it.
The amount your skill at art has increased is immense! I don't know what to say other than, uh...Congratulations?
The amount your skill at art has increased is immense! I don't know what to say other than, uh...Congratulations?