View Full Version : Crumby Chimp

04-21-2003, 12:08 PM
Hi all,
I've been quiet lately but thought I'd show you what I'm presently working on. Posted over in the Pastel forum too.

It's "Frodo" the current alpha male in Jane Goodall's chimp group in Gombe, Tanzania. I have copyright clearance to use this image as long as I introduce some environment, setting etc such as foliage. . I already have some ideas but would appreciate your input.

The bulldog clip top left gives you an idea of size.
Sorry about the photo . . . taken late at night under a flouro globe and it's blurry!!

Pastels on Canson card.



04-21-2003, 12:51 PM
it's gorgeous crumby!

:D :clap: :clap: :clap:

Paul Hopkinson
04-21-2003, 12:56 PM
Hey snap! I've just posted a Chimp as well!
All I can suggest is a mixture of dark greens blended in the background to suggest foliage. As you say you don't want the background taking the viewers eye away from the Chimp and all of your hard work.
Keep it plain and simple.
Excellent photo you lucky person!


04-21-2003, 01:07 PM
Hey Crumby, its going to be tough coming up with something as right now, it looks fantastic with the background you have got...:)
My monitor is picking up a purple/black as the background-almost eggplant with the same shades carried over into your chimp. I think something along the foliage 'suggestion' that u did in the egret would be equally suiting and not take the focus away. The shades of green would be the perfect compliment to this purple hue Im picking up ...:) Would love to see what u come up with ...:)

04-21-2003, 01:50 PM
Hi! Crumby....missed your posts a lot:D
I wouldn't presume to suggest anything.....whatever you do will be fabulous.
I have watched Frodo grow from an excitable baby...through his adolescent years and now the big boss. You have captured him so well....his personality just jumps off the page.
Well done....it is breathtakingly wonderful:clap: :clap: :clap:

04-21-2003, 04:59 PM
This is wonderful!!! I personally like it with no background!!!
Well done!!

04-21-2003, 05:58 PM
This is suberb!!! Wow. Don't be insulted, but I thought at first I was looking at the photo reference! You have captured so much character in that adorable face!

I agree about a soft suggestion of green foliage, if you have to put in something as they said. Personally, I love it just like this!

Absolutely stunning!!:clap: :clap: :clap:

04-21-2003, 06:17 PM
Holy wow! This is great! I love detail! Can't wait to see what you do with the background.

04-21-2003, 06:18 PM
Hello Crumby!! Glad to see you posting again!!
This is STUNNING!! I love the detail, the expression in his face tells his age. (wisdom)
I like the ideas that have been already mentioned for a background. Can't wait to see the finish.

04-21-2003, 06:45 PM
Beautiful work!!!! Amazing details with pastels! :clap:

04-22-2003, 01:58 AM
Hi again,
Thanks for all the supportive comments . . they really help.

I agree that a soft suggestion of blurred foliage would be great (and that's what I would normally do) but, unfortunately, I cannot as that would be just about a direct copy of the original.

The owners of the photograph said I could use it (for free!!!) if there was "significant change". I asked whether if I put some foliage around him if that would be OK and they agreed.

So now I'm thinking some foliage above with a rock face behind. (see below . .er . .sorry about the lack of photomanip skills!!) The rock wall would have hints of clinging foligae and lichen. I reckon they should now be some foligae lower right too but don't want to "hide" the focal point.

Opinions please??? . . . Thanks in advance.

BTW I'm using this tactic deliberately . .y'know . . . paint the focal point first then do thumbnail sketches from there. For me at least it helps visualize the final product more clearly.



04-23-2003, 05:45 PM
:) This work is very good. Excelent ! I like it as it is, without any foliage.The figure is really interesting, beautifully rendered and needs nothing else.


04-23-2003, 06:05 PM
I love the expression in the chimps face...just wonderful!
I'm not sure I like the leaves being in the foreground...I think they'd look better behind his head and face.

Paul Hopkinson
04-23-2003, 06:34 PM
I agree that using foliage in the foreground would take the viewers eye away from the main focal point. Keep it all behind.


04-23-2003, 07:20 PM
What a beauty! :) I'm sure whatever you decide will be amazing (as usual ;) ) I don't know what the original photo looked like, but my suggestion would be for to take advantage of that beautiful light source you already have going on. If you do a Google (http://google.com) image search for " light forest " it will bring up some examples of what I mean by using the light (only you'll need make it jungle foliage instead of forest of course) sort of sunlight rays breaking thought the leaves kinda thing, keeping Frodo in the spotlight. You wouldn't need a bunch of distracting detail to make it work either.

04-23-2003, 07:33 PM
I love your work, as always! If you do decide to use the foilage, like you have suggested, how about making it a rain storm...water dripping off of the leaves. I think you could add some drama to the piece with the dramatic lighting you already have going and a rain shower.

I am sure whatever you do will be amazing!

04-24-2003, 11:49 AM
Hey everyone,

Thanks for the comments . .youv'e helped me make up my mind as I was having reservations about that big leaf over his head.

After much deliberation I'm going to go easy here coz I don't want to ruin the painting . . . so I've started the rock face background. Just thought I'd post at this stage coz the little bright green moss just above his head is the next thing that I'm doing. They'll be much more of it around the place and I thought I might make the rock look slightly wet (like it's seeping out of the cracks) . mmm dunno. The only other thing I'll add is a few blades of grass towards the base.

I've also brought some detail into his arm below his chin. Further comments are all still VERY welcome.


04-24-2003, 11:51 AM
WOAH...:eek: This just gets better and better!

04-24-2003, 11:53 AM
:eek: jaw hits floor:eek: this was fantastic before, but now the whole piece is just coming to life! it looks so three-dimensional... fantastic job! can't wait to see it finished!

04-24-2003, 12:00 PM
I just knew you would come up with something fantastic.....and you have:clap: :clap: :clap:

04-24-2003, 12:01 PM
Originally posted by crumbedbrains
t, unfortunately, I cannot as that would be just about a direct copy of the original.

No wonder it was so suiting!...lol
I like your idea of the rock as the colour is ideal for the chimp.
But I do find the lines you have included above his head are leading me out of the image. As well, the softer suggestions of lichon is perfect. Im not too sure of the brighter ones. I havent figured out if my eye is being pulled to them becuase I know you just added them and Im checking them out, or if they are too powerful and distracting.. But then again, I could commenting too prematurely...:)

04-25-2003, 11:29 PM
Thanks for the kind comments guys!!

OK it's signed and finished!!
Posted a few close ups too





04-26-2003, 01:53 PM
This is outstanding!! Very impressive work!!!

04-26-2003, 02:50 PM
Wow.....just fantastic Crumby.....I knew it would be.
If I lived nearer to you I would be queuing up at the shop.
Good on ya mate....you did a terrific job again:clap: :clap: :clap:

Crystal Owl
04-26-2003, 06:39 PM
Wow I love what you did!! How do you get the hairs so fine with pastels? Do you scratch them out? Great job! :clap: :clap: :clap: