View Full Version : Guarded Treasure

05-31-2012, 10:40 AM

Title: Guarded Treasure
Year Created:
Medium: Acrylic
Surface: Canvas
Dimension: 24 x 30
Allow digital alterations?: Yes!

Live model in costume and set up to tell a story. Not my favorite choice of subject. There were two souces of light. Main source was from the upper right and a small green light from the center left to add drama.

Welcome all comments on this painting. I personally would have preferred a more subdued background color such a a wood paneled type but I was overruled. Of course I could have painted the background as I liked, but I elected to go along with the group.

05-31-2012, 12:14 PM
Like the figure - very well done - relaxed pose, the engaging view, and folds in clothing and boots. Skelleton looks a bit out of place/is too jumbled up to me, and pity the group wanted this background. Is the map perhaps a bit too distracting? Arnie

05-31-2012, 12:52 PM
Arnie, they voted for it to help tell the story.....As for the skeleton, Fred, we had him around and just decided that he fit in with the mood...

05-31-2012, 01:18 PM
Nice patient job on all the textures. One little thing I noticed was this: at first glance, it seemed to me that the head of the figure leans to the right. It was jarring. Then, as I looked more closely, I feel that you've painted the face perfectly but the headscarf is pushing to the right and this, visually, seems to drag the face with it. So, if you agree, it's an easy fix to alter and center the position of the headscarf. I'm jealous, by the way, of all the live set ups you seem to be getting!

05-31-2012, 04:50 PM
Maybe you can get a group together and pay someone to sit for you for a few hours. Here in the Boca area of Florida we have lots of candidates and we pay them by the hour. Of course you need a place for such a group to meet. I don't know whether your area has enough artists or artists to be to support such. I had a similar situation back in New Jersey before I migrated to Florida. The county supported us and provided a place for us to meet. Good luck and hope you can work it out. It is very inspiring.

05-31-2012, 07:58 PM
Oh we got groups. I'm in four art "leagues" respectively in Austin, Wimberley, New Braunfels and San Antonio. The total membership is over 800. But no group painting gets organized unless one signs up for a workshop.

06-01-2012, 08:57 AM
I love the whole thing, and don't mind the dramatic background colour either. The only distraction for me is the size and brightness of the map. I love the addition of Fred to add some dark humour to the story! Cheers and great work! Debs. =))

06-04-2012, 10:08 AM
I'm disappointed that I got so little feedback on this painting. I'm not looking for praise. I'm looking for ideas and ways to improve my work.

06-04-2012, 11:40 AM
Hey Phil: An ambitious piece that works in a lot of ways. However, I will point out that the lower half of the figure is much too big, proportionally compared to the top. I've cut and pasted the face beside the knee on the right to show the disproportionate size of the thigh above it (and other thigh,as well) and, especially the giant boot beside it. Also, the crotch of the pants is much too far to the right, almost on the right side (from our perspective) of the body. And, when doing something as precise as the map on the wall, might look better if the edges were more crisply precise. Also agree with Bob's observation on the yawing of the head. Hope this helps!


06-04-2012, 11:52 AM
I was going to write what allanom wrote.. so I second his suggestions.

06-04-2012, 03:26 PM
I as well noticed the difference in sizes in the pirate. I like the green and red in the background. High colorcontrast works very well to me. I also like the presence of the skeleton, but on the rightside of it you stopped painting carefully. Just the same it's clear one shouldn't drink (too much) alcohol.:D
The box is painted well, but one line on the front is disturbing the perspective a little. Hope you see what I mean.
I like your painting. It looks like you had a lot of fun working on it.

06-04-2012, 03:56 PM
To help you judge. Here is a photo of the pose. Since our model does move around, there may be some differences in the painting and folds of the clothing. I hope it helps.


06-05-2012, 02:41 AM
Cap'n Jack Sparrow, hella cool. This drew on my monitor and my mouth dropped open and I said "wow" out loud.

(Does anyone still say hella but me?)

I DO like the red background, although it is way too intense, over too big of an area. Pick an area of it, like right behind the cap'n's head, and tone down the rest of it. BTW, you DONT have to paint a background just because it is in front of you, even if the rest of the group does. If you change the color though just pay attention to the reflected light.

The triangular composition armature is very strong, and Fred helps that a lot, so I vote to leave him in. He does need some work on the form of his skull so he looks more like a human skull, and less like a plastic model from the Halloween section of the Party Store. Note, I also have my own skeleton model, and I nicknamed him "Skinny". I got him from a biological supply house and they would NOT tell me where THEY got him. (shivers) Some mysteries are better left unexcavated.

Like allanon, I at first took issue with the shape and size of the pants, then I realized these are pirate pants, and are probably big and puffy on purpose, and the pose just doesn't bring that out very well. He does have a point about the head size, but I chocked that up to artistic license...DC comics draws all of their super heroes with tiny heads, so...sure. why not.

Speaking of super heroes, tgsloth has amazing super power levels of observation. That stuff about the head tilt was very adept. *applause*

I also think the map "needs something". Either more or less map. Or more or less doodle. As is, it kind of competes for attention with other elements of the image.

As for groups getting together for making art, check out Meetup.com. I know here in Seattle there are a number of groups that meet for figure drawing, plein air painting, watercolor painting, and sketch crawls around town.

06-05-2012, 02:54 AM
valiant work indeed
head and shoulders do seem too small, in the photo and in the painting
an unfortunate issue with many cameras and their settings

but i love how you made him look more like johnny
also kind of like the crazzybright red, perhaps it's the canadian flag influence ; )


06-05-2012, 08:31 AM
Maybe if you had posted the ref photo in the beginning, the praise may have been less! I apologise for praising your work, but I felt for a live model work it was darn brave and a good effort! I actually do like your painting. Perhaps I will refrain from comment in future unless I have a big nit pick! Deb. =))

06-05-2012, 11:09 AM
Debzy....We post here to learn and I don't mind praise, but I'm looking for ways to improve my skills. I am disappointed when I get bum reviews, but I hope to learn from them. I do hope that everyone here feels that way.

06-05-2012, 09:50 PM
Thanks for your reply and yes I respect your point Phil and it is my understanding that others woul feel the same way as you do There are often mixtures of both praise and constructive criticism and it is of my opinion that both can be encouraging. Some members are more experienced and can critique more confidently, others may only pick up an odd suggestion for thought but wish to pass comment on what they particularely like about a work. This is just a response to your comment Phil to attempt to explain why I personally gave you praise rather than perhaps ill advised critique. I apologies if I came across a little sharp, my day had been irritable and it may have reflected in my words. No hard feelings I hope. I liked the painting Phil, I recently studied some pirate history and it struck a chord with me. Just the map bothered me as previously stated. I loved the baggy pirate clothes and large boots, and Fred of course. Debs. =))

06-07-2012, 12:29 PM
I have made some of the changes that were suggested here, particularly the background which I felt was to garish. I darkend it and pushed it back. I fixed te bandana on his head. I would like to hear what you think of the changes.

06-08-2012, 03:17 AM
Ok some feedback:
He is unbalanced sitting on whatever he is seated on
The pants are too baggy even for 'pirate pants' the crotch is too low
The boots appear to be quite large, huge feet compared to the rest of the body, or maybe just oversized boots.
Left thigh and arm are not in proportion to the rest of the body
The head is undersized and I think correcting that alone would improve the figure.
I think a right handed pirate would have his brace of pistols belted the other way round so he could draw with his left hand while slashing away with the right, and vice versa - being pedantic I know


06-08-2012, 07:56 AM
Andrew: You provided pretty well precisely my feedback (with alt)--see above. Which was ignored/justified otherwise. Your point: "The head is undersized and I think correcting that alone would improve the figure." is bang on. No matter what a reference picture seems to justify, if things are wrong, they're wrong.

06-09-2012, 10:47 AM
I'm not much on pirate lore. I only painted what I saw. Our model came dressed in this attire and that was our main source. The photo was only a reference to finish what we started with the model. The photo was taken with a Nikon SLR with a 75mm lens. This lens minimizes distortions and is used by many portrait photographers for that reason. Of course I accept your critiques and give them all very careful considerations and I do thank you for them.