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Mr.Fahrenheit
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Quote Mr.Fahrenheit Replybullet Posted: 31 August 2014 at 7:31am
I think you should try making your template in a more skin color, or at least not different colors for each limb.

The way you shaded the legs look like the calves are broken in a pretty severe fashion. There is no planar change where you have put it. Try to imagine each part as a box and shade it accordingly.
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AshCrimson
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Quote AshCrimson Replybullet Posted: 31 August 2014 at 8:51am
Not sure what you mean in the last sentence about shading it like a box? Apologies.

Edit:

Not sure if this is what you meant:




Edited by AshCrimson - 31 August 2014 at 10:14am
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AshCrimson
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Quote AshCrimson Replybullet Posted: 01 September 2014 at 5:50am
Currently im frustrated at the moment with the way my work is progressing; I feel it looks vaguely like what i intended such as the bases looking like actual human beings or at least resembling what could be interpreted as one, but when it comes to the finer detail on them and in general, i struggle.

This is reinforced when i look at other's works, where i feel they're able to capture what they want in a better way, where as mine looks amateurish (which to be honest it is).

I'll confess it's jealousy and envy on my part, i just want my stuff to look good, i've always wanted to make something i'd be genuinely proud off and even though people in this very thread (and others in the past) have told me that i am improving and some of my pieces are good, i feel that they could still be done alot better. In that way, im my own worst critic/enemy.

Not able to post an example of what i mean, but i will eventually when i feel it's presentable and a comparison to what i mean.
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Mr.Fahrenheit
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Quote Mr.Fahrenheit Replybullet Posted: 01 September 2014 at 7:00am
By shading it like a box I mean to like try to visualize each part, like the thigh, as a simple 3d box. Each plane of the box gets a single shade that depends on where the lightsource is coming from.
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AshCrimson
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Quote AshCrimson Replybullet Posted: 02 September 2014 at 7:58am
Tried taking your advice:




The dude on the right is just for comparison's sake.

I'm unsure of what to do with the right arm, i don't want it to blend into the torso's shading, but i am worried it's too dark.

I hope i didn't use too much Anti-Aliasing.


Edited by AshCrimson - 02 September 2014 at 7:59am
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AshCrimson
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Quote AshCrimson Replybullet Posted: 03 September 2014 at 1:01pm


1: Not a massive update from the previous one, but i did try making the waist more obvious. Big one has AA applied to it.

2: More of a big update; tried to make the stomach of the medium one less face-on, made the head rounder, applied more AA. Most notable update for both of them is the deeper shadow below the armpit and the side of the chest.
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jtfjtfjtf
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Quote jtfjtfjtf Replybullet Posted: 04 September 2014 at 6:03pm
Are you doing nude anatomy?
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AshCrimson
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Quote AshCrimson Replybullet Posted: 05 September 2014 at 7:00am
Nah, but because they're bases i put the clothing on after i've got the general body down.

Here's my attempt at a battle-like stance with a two-handed sword (could be swapped for general two-handed weapon):



It's not as detailed as the previous image, but is my attempt at making a less stiff and more, action-based stance.
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AshCrimson
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Quote AshCrimson Replybullet Posted: 06 September 2014 at 11:57pm
Tried my hand at animating an idle stance for the base, more of a practice and getting used to animating larger sprites than anything I'd probably end up using.




I'm finding the jump from animating sprites with 1 pixel limbs to animating sprites where limbs consist of many pixels to be quite jarring at the moment, hopefully it won't always be like that.
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AshCrimson
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Quote AshCrimson Replybullet Posted: 07 September 2014 at 7:47am
Just an example of what could be done with it:



Quite rough atm, hopefully it'll get smoother as time goes on.
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Mr Special
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Quote Mr Special Replybullet Posted: 13 September 2014 at 7:30pm
Right now it looks as if his torso is stretching and then contracting back, like rubber. He's elastic or something. Try making the upper half of his movement less drastic. Only a pixel or two perhaps. Because as of right now he is definitely stretching. Also, with pixelated characters, it's not always about the amount of movement, but how the pixels move within a mass. Focus more on how his body "transforms" on a 2D plane while emulating a 3D space.
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AshCrimson
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Quote AshCrimson Replybullet Posted: 14 September 2014 at 2:43am
Originally posted by Mr Special

Right now it looks as if his torso is stretching and then contracting back, like rubber. He's elastic or something. Try making the upper half of his movement less drastic. Only a pixel or two perhaps. Because as of right now he is definitely stretching. Also, with pixelated characters, it's not always about the amount of movement, but how the pixels move within a mass. Focus more on how his body "transforms" on a 2D plane while emulating a 3D space.


Thanks for the advice, will definitely amend it.

I'm also currently working on my anatomy again, trying to make the medium base look uh, better.

Here's a comparison between the previous version and current one i am working on (the last two have only differences in terms of the right arm):



I:
Broadened the shoulders.
Raised the neck, as it looked like it had none.
Changed the legs,basically made them look like actual legs and tried to show the calves as well.
Changed the feet.
Changed the chest, I felt it didn't look good enough to me.
Changed the arms, tried to shape them like actual arms, unsure if they look like such (I definitely know there is an issue with the right arm however).

My current issues:

I fear the uh, pecs look too much like breasts, but im unsure of how to represent them without there being any ambiguity.

Unsure of what to do with the feet.

Unsure of what to do with the right arm, i know it has to be occluded by the chest, but to what degree?
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AshCrimson
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Quote AshCrimson Replybullet Posted: 15 September 2014 at 10:53am
Tried animating them, just a test:





Tried to make him seem eager, without him looking like he's stretching unnaturally.

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Limes
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Quote Limes Replybullet Posted: 15 September 2014 at 11:00am
Maybe a bit less duck footed and ready to battle instead of weapons slung low.
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AshCrimson
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Quote AshCrimson Replybullet Posted: 15 September 2014 at 3:35pm
Originally posted by Limes

Maybe a bit less duck footed and ready to battle instead of weapons slung low.


This any better?



Made him go onto his feet and made other small various changes. Tried to play around with the lighting etc.

Just a question; is there anything i am doing wrong?
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MrHai
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Quote MrHai Replybullet Posted: 15 September 2014 at 4:28pm
Honestly, I think there's too much movement. I wouldn't change the outline so much. I think moving the pecs' shadow and maybe the shoulders/arms a little could suffice. Also, if you're going for a battle-ready stance, I don't think it reads as aggressive enough. Right now it sort of looks like a bored guard on duty rolling on the balls of his feet. The classic aggressive stance is feet wide, back hunched, head down, arms away from body (here's a (somewhat extreme) example: http://i.imgur.com/DDHOmiH.png).

Awesome effort as always Ash, good to see you going strong.

Edited by MrHai - 15 September 2014 at 4:30pm
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Mr Special
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Quote Mr Special Replybullet Posted: 15 September 2014 at 4:51pm
For the feet, try keeping the ball of his foot on the ground more, like he's on his toes, but not literally going ballerina. Right now it's almost like hes trying to reach something high, rather than bending his knees or "on edge." Also the feet are exactly the same, and would probably benefit from one being pointed toward the viewer, or something similar.
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Quote Friend Replybullet Posted: 15 September 2014 at 5:34pm
i think youd benefit from studying closer other examples of good idle animations.

secondly...put yourself in the character animations you have created for yourself.  imagine you moving in the same fashion as your animations.  it would be ridiculous right? 

Instead, do a little solitary role play.  imagine you are that guy wielding the sword in an idle animation.  feel how your body moves, how you feel mentally...your body language...then try to emulate that with your animations.
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AshCrimson
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Quote AshCrimson Replybullet Posted: 16 September 2014 at 6:20am
Thanks for the advice guys! Tried to update it, to fit the image MrHai posted, as that's what i was sort of going for:



Not sure if i got the feet right. I'm worried i've lost detail on the legs, but i guess it's the price i must pay to animate.
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Mr Special
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Quote Mr Special Replybullet Posted: 16 September 2014 at 11:38am
You've almost got the pose nailed down. Bend the knees more I think and it will look more natural :)
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AshCrimson
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Quote AshCrimson Replybullet Posted: 16 September 2014 at 1:38pm
This is going to sound incredibly stupid, but im not sure how i'd show the bending of the knees. I've tried a couple of times, but i know by my own intuition that it looks wrong.

Edit:



Still feel they aren't bent enough. I think my problem is that i didn't imply there were knees there with shading.


Edited by AshCrimson - 16 September 2014 at 2:11pm
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AshCrimson
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Quote AshCrimson Replybullet Posted: 17 September 2014 at 11:22am
I'm probably spending too much time on getting a single pose right, but here's a non-animated update, as i still feel there's something off about it and that it could be better (as well as to look more like the picture MrHai posted).




Compare to:


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jtfjtfjtf
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Quote jtfjtfjtf Replybullet Posted: 17 September 2014 at 12:31pm
There's a little bit more bend in the knees. Your back leg looks more hyper extended than bent.  In the sketch there's also bending of the torso forward. Your guy still has his chest out which is arcing the back, not bending it forward.
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AshCrimson
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Quote AshCrimson Replybullet Posted: 17 September 2014 at 2:25pm
Thanks for pointing that out!

Made a quick edit with your advice in mind:



1/Blue = Original

2/Green = Update

Tried bending the chest and back forwards, tried making the back leg look more bent rather than hyper extended, shortened the height and made other small edits
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AshCrimson
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Quote AshCrimson Replybullet Posted: 18 September 2014 at 1:47pm
An animated update:



I feel it's improved in comparison to my earlier attempt:


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Mr Special
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Quote Mr Special Replybullet Posted: 19 September 2014 at 6:30pm
It has improved so much! :D I don't think you're wasting your time spending all this effort on getting one pose right. Posing a character correctly is really important in my experience. The line of action in a pose tells you so much about a character and their intentions. I would say with this pose specifically, to get that battle ready feel, it needs to be much more perched and eager.


I did a really quick edit of my approach to achieving this. Sorry it's really rough, and far from perfect. But it might help with the knee difficulty you've been having.

Edited by Mr Special - 19 September 2014 at 6:31pm
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MrHai
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Quote MrHai Replybullet Posted: 19 September 2014 at 7:08pm
Mr Special did a really great edit while I was working on my own, but I'll post mine anyway, along with a list of the areas I altered:



- I moved his entire torso down, and his left (our right) leg further out (when the torso is lower, the thigh had to be longer to maintain proportion).
- I moved his head a pixel lower/shortened his neck
- I moved the arms a little further from the body, bending the elbows a bit
- I 'rotated' his right (our left) foot to face the viewer, and also used shadow on that lower leg to indicate the bent knee
- Finally, I moved the chest shading down a pixel, trying to indicate a more forward-leaning torso
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AshCrimson
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Quote AshCrimson Replybullet Posted: 20 September 2014 at 5:40am
Thanks for the edits Mr Special and MrHai!

I submitted the piece, but i've recieved critique on the awkwardness of the feet and how it looks like he's standing on his toes:



Critique is in the comments here: http://www.pixeljoint.com/pixelart/89019.htm

So i decided to try to redo it, to make it look less awkward. Took what you both said into account as well as the critique and tried to avoid making him stand on his toes and focus more on the bending of the knees and made this:



I intended it to look like the idle animation on IGoRge's wonderful "protecteur" piece:



If you compare you can see it uh, came out a bit different from what i intended.


Edited by AshCrimson - 20 September 2014 at 7:28am
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Mr Special
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Quote Mr Special Replybullet Posted: 20 September 2014 at 8:54am
The legs are getting a lot better. The only serious problem right now with his movement is he is simply moving too much. If you study your reference, you can see he only moves forward by one pixel (I think) and up and down is maybe by 3 pixels total. Yours is moving far too much. Also, I think some time soon the arms will have to be addressed.

Edited by Mr Special - 20 September 2014 at 8:56am
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AshCrimson
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Quote AshCrimson Replybullet Posted: 21 September 2014 at 8:30am
What should i do with the arms?

Also took your advice and made him not move too much:



Compared to my previous attempt:



It looks and feels slower? Although there are more frames in the edit (new frames have him going up a pixel before he learns back) since it looked like he was going too fast without them.


Edited by AshCrimson - 21 September 2014 at 9:43am
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GUNINANRUNIN
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Quote GUNINANRUNIN Replybullet Posted: 21 September 2014 at 1:06pm
I think you might bend his right forearm towards his chest more, with the angle his sword appears to be at, or just turn the weapon downward a bit so he doesn't look like he's breaking his wrist in order to hold it.

E: Hm. Or maybe that's just how I'd personally do it. It just feels like his sword arm is a bit too stiff for him to be getting ready to fight someone.


Edited by GUNINANRUNIN - 21 September 2014 at 1:11pm
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MrHai
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Quote MrHai Replybullet Posted: 22 September 2014 at 5:29am
You are awesome, AshCrimson.

I would like to see a version where you switch the amount of vertical and horizontal movement. I.e. move him up and down as much as he's currently moving side-to-side, and vice versa.
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AshCrimson
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Quote AshCrimson Replybullet Posted: 22 September 2014 at 7:21am
I'll see if i can do that Mr Hai! Do you he's moving to much to the side and should be moving up and down more? Or is it just interest in seeing what an alternative version would look like?

Thanks for the comment as well, GUNINANRUNIN, i've updated it, hopefully the arm looks better this time:



Note: I slightly sped it up just see if it looks any better, or does it look too fast now? I was worried it originally looked too slow.

Does the way he's holding the sword still look weird/like it's hurting him/might break his wrist?

If so i will change it. 

Edited by AshCrimson - 22 September 2014 at 7:22am
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dyluck
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Quote dyluck Replybullet Posted: 22 September 2014 at 8:51am
A little detail.
In IGoRge's "protecteur", when iddling, even when the feet are not moving, the ankles change a little bit.
In this case, in your last iddle, you can change a  pixel or two in the ankles, to change the  angle of the end of the trousers, to make the line a little perpendicular when the leg is inclined.
Do someone else agree this?


Edited by dyluck - 22 September 2014 at 8:52am
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AshCrimson
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Quote AshCrimson Replybullet Posted: 22 September 2014 at 2:18pm
You're totally correct Dyluck; I tried what you said in this edit:



MrHai; i tried your suggestion and came to a medium between the two in the above edit, making both somewhat similar, so it doesn't look too odd (from my perspective at least, i don't really trust myself though).
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Quote jtfjtfjtf Replybullet Posted: 22 September 2014 at 3:43pm
Originally posted by AshCrimson



Does the way he's holding the sword still look weird/like it's hurting him/might break his wrist?

If so i will change it. 


Yes, even if his knuckles and the top of his fingers were facing us it would till be fairly severe.
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Quote GUNINANRUNIN Replybullet Posted: 22 September 2014 at 9:36pm
Looking very cool so far! I'm really liking the direction this animation is going. :D
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Quote MrHai Replybullet Posted: 23 September 2014 at 5:54am
Well, I felt he was moving too much side-to-side. I wasn't sure simply switching the amounts would be a good solution, but figured it would be worthwhile exploring.

I really like the faster animation in your previous post.
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dyluck
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Quote dyluck Replybullet Posted: 23 September 2014 at 9:04am
I totally agree jtfjtfjtf, holding the sword like that looks a little unnatural. To be perfect the sword should be held in a natural power position to quickly allow the character to draw it towards the oponent.
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Limes
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Quote Limes Replybullet Posted: 23 September 2014 at 9:53am
I would expect more arm movement but I think this looks like it has more depth.

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AshCrimson
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Quote AshCrimson Replybullet Posted: 24 September 2014 at 12:11pm
Thanks for the edit limes!

Did a similar thing, but it's upright:



Changed the shield as well. wasn't happy with it.

Dyluck: Do you mean upright or sideways? Or can it be both?
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dyluck
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Quote dyluck Replybullet Posted: 24 September 2014 at 3:21pm
I meant mostly about the wrist position. I think is more natural not to draw the wrist twisted in the stance. It exhaust the muscles in the wrist and makes difficult to hit something, and when seen looks unnatural. In the stance, try to draw the sword more perpendicular to the forearm. Only during the blow it may be twisted to strengthen the blow, but at this scale there's no need to give that much detail to the animation.


Edited by dyluck - 24 September 2014 at 3:24pm
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jtfjtfjtf
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Quote jtfjtfjtf Replybullet Posted: 24 September 2014 at 5:26pm
I agree with dyluck, try putting the sword perpendicular to the forearm. Don't bend the wrist upwards. That's an uncomfortable position. I would suggest since you're doing human anatomy, try to get into the positions you're drawing with your own body. It'll help you feel what is natural and what's uncomfortable. Now, the thumb bones and first knuckle naturally bulge out so having a bump on the top of the hand is reasonable, but if you want to show that the lower part of the hand continues the line of the forearm and everything ends with the  knuckles which are also perpendicular to the forearm. That's for a basic holding pose. If you want a fencing style pose bending the hand downward isn't uncomfortable.


Edited by jtfjtfjtf - 24 September 2014 at 5:26pm
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AshCrimson
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Quote AshCrimson Replybullet Posted: 25 September 2014 at 3:18am
I'm finding it difficult to put much detail on the hand, should i make them bigger? I know they're roughly around the same size as the head when they aren't closed (although maybe just a tad smalller? but im unsure of the size when they're closed and making a fist, etc.

Edited by AshCrimson - 25 September 2014 at 3:21am
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dyluck
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Quote dyluck Replybullet Posted: 25 September 2014 at 5:33am
I don't think the fist size is too big. I think you nailed the size.
But maybe we missunderstod the whole thing: I think both jtfjtfjtf and I see a twisted wrist ending in a fist, but maybe you intended to draw just a fist. In that case you may cast a shadow outline in a darker color betwen the fist and the wrist, and draw a fist more wrist-centered.
:S
I'm not sure if I'm able to make my point, so this evening I'll try to upload an edit.


Edited by dyluck - 25 September 2014 at 5:35am
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AshCrimson
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Quote AshCrimson Replybullet Posted: 25 September 2014 at 9:01am
Something like this?


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MrHai
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Quote MrHai Replybullet Posted: 25 September 2014 at 9:05am
Yes, but I would go darker with the shadow. Impossible to tell the difference at 1x. The shape is better too.
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dyluck
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Quote dyluck Replybullet Posted: 25 September 2014 at 2:39pm
Yes, pretty much like that, but as said, I thing you may go darker with the shadow.
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AshCrimson
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Quote AshCrimson Replybullet Posted: 27 September 2014 at 7:38am
An update on the anatomy side:



Hopefully the arm looks more refined and... actually like an arm this time.
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Quote SuperTurnip Replybullet Posted: 27 September 2014 at 12:45pm
Good update. I think it's a little odd that all your characters have crazy-defined pectorals and no abs.The shading on the stomach is a little odd, too. I did an edit to help me think, and it got out of hand, so I'm going to leave it here for some examples.

Generally, my advice is on gesture. Copying the same legs can sort of work with smaller sprites. Your small characters are great as-is. The bigger you go and the more specific your art is, the less it works. I'd say this size is where you really need to draw unique shins for both legs if you're doing a three-quarters-esque view of the character standing. To me the reason is that it interrupts the flow of power and form that defines the human body, the gesture. Getting the body grounded, and twisting it and flexing it in a flowing way, is vital--one teacher explicitly instructed a class I was in to "make fantastic and extreme shapes" with our own bodies, to understand the forces being applied to us and recreate them more truly. Bottom line is, your character needs to be grounded and move from there! Use your lines to lead into the ground strongly and fantastically.
The stomach thing is luckily simpler. The waist is pronounced by two diagonal/vertical lines at the base of the leg that extend up over the pelvis to the abs. It's clothing that accentuates the pelvis/core divide (at least to me). The groin can be less or more defined. As long as the legs are good that part just sort of works itself out.
Good work, sorry for the wall of text!
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