View Full Version : Newbie needs help with composition
07-13-2001, 03:41 PM
I've never posted here before, I just enjoyed looking at all the excellent artwork you create. I have quite a lot of drawings and paintings of my own, but I'm too lazy to upload and show them off here. :D
Anyway, I thought it was time for me to contribute something. I'm going to turn this photo of a Doberman into a drawing or painting (I haven't decided yet... any suggestions?).
Since I'm not very good at composing images myself, I thought I'd find some help here. Do you think I can use it as it is? Or should I change something? I'll probably draw the dog without the leash and collar, and I thought about taking away the heaps of dirt on the left side in the background (maybe covering it with grass or something).
Any help is appreciated!
(getting a signature now...)
07-14-2001, 06:32 PM
Have you decided what will be the main focus of this painting - the dog or the landscape?
07-15-2001, 03:30 PM
The dog is supposed to be the main focus. :)
07-15-2001, 05:22 PM
Kerin... first let me preface by saying I am no compositional expert but will give you my instincts. The road bothers me. If it were my composition I would probably lose it. The head of the dog seems to be on the same plane as the trees.. I would adjust that and, it might be nice if there was something in the scene that the dog is looking at. Just some thoughts.
07-16-2001, 06:48 PM
Seems like the most important subject is the dogs expression conveyed by his ears, eyebrows and whiskers. To get that from the pose in the photo would be tricky but you may be able to do it.
I would simplify the composition and close in on the subject like this perhaps, maybe exaggerate some of the expressive nature of the ears.
07-16-2001, 07:34 PM
Great job, Ken! That about covers what I was going to suggest. :D
07-17-2001, 03:41 AM
Thanks very much for your suggestions!
But if I did it like Kenny showed on the modified picture, I would have do draw the dog slightly from below, since the horizon is so low. Is there a way to put the horizon back in the original place and still have the same effect?
(Am I making any sense?)
07-17-2001, 03:22 PM
The reason I moved the background down was to frame the dogs head in the negative space (sky) and with a soft subject like an animal, the perspective still works to my eye.
07-22-2001, 03:03 PM
Okay, here is a sketch. I moved the horizon up a bit, but the head is still in front of the sky. I'm not really happy with the way the dog turned out, but this doesn't have to do anything with the composition itself. Do you think I should change something or leave it this way?
07-23-2001, 11:26 AM
>I'm not really happy with the way the dog turned out, but this doesn't have to do anything with the composition itself. Do you think I should change something or leave it this way?
That's a nice sketch! Do you know why the dog is not working for you? Is it the pose?
Is it possible to use another photo of the dog while retaining the parts of the background that you like?
Sometimes when I am in doubt (most of the time) that my painting will "work" I have to force myself to trust my first instinct that there was something valuable and worth painting to begin with. I try to get the most out of my first painting session and possibly finish it in one sitting. If it works, then WOW. If it does not, then it was an educational experience. Both are valuable to me.
07-23-2001, 03:51 PM
To me the dog looks more like a Greyhound than like a Doberman. Maybe I made the body too long. But maybe I can also leave it this way. I don't think anyone will notice the faults without seeing the original photo! :D
Thanks for your help, anyway. :) I will probably post the result in the Animal/Wildlife forum.
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