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Old 12-24-2015, 10:37 AM
RCharleston RCharleston is offline
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Rough Sketch, 2 Composition Questions

Hi,...First time in this forum/category of WC.

I have two composition questions about this rough sketch for a considerably larger and higher resolution charcoal painting at some future point -- (1) Does the interaction of the "face" (grille/headlights) of the car being overlapped by the seated figure present an insurmountable problem? I sort of like where it's going but my objectivity is lacking and I don't want to set up a situation where the majority of viewers would find this unacceptably "distracting", "bothersome", etc.. (2) The top of the goal post at viewer-left extends out of the top of the image...Would it be better here to plan on taking subsequent versions of this from "square-ish" to "portrait-ish" to include the top (and a considerably larger sky area) or does this seem okay as is? Thanks very much...

Note: Seated figure's hand at viewer left and rear of car at viewer right will be included in future versions (cropped out by mistake on this sketch).
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Last edited by RCharleston : 12-24-2015 at 10:40 AM.
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Old 12-24-2015, 05:06 PM
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La_ La_ is offline
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Re: Rough Sketch, 2 Composition Questions

the car is a little looming, almost aggressively close to the girl [like she was knocked down by it] ... it adds intrigue perhaps to the story.
what confuses me is why there's a car parked on the football field in the first place, which sort of talks to your (2) and why he's seemingly catching the ball behind(?) the goal post.

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Old 12-25-2015, 08:15 PM
Mark Szymanski Mark Szymanski is offline
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Re: Rough Sketch, 2 Composition Questions

My main problem with the composition is the number and strength of the lines leading out of the composition. This is a triangular composition, one of the toughest to do well. The problem with these types of compositions is the apex of the triangle is where the eye is led out the side of the picture without giving a way into the background or explore much. You simply slide out the side.

Several lines leading up, giving a stoic upright formality. The uprights are continued in the girl, and her uprightness echos the verticals in the goal posts. Her legs point out to the same lines as are in the car, which ultimately lead you out of the painting.

The line of the crossbar of the goal posts joins to the shoulder, which continues out the trunk lid. This line is fairly strong.

The biggest design issue though for me is the player leaning out of the painting. Very strong design element here. Legs, body lean, upper arms, general body gesture is unbalanced towards directing the eye out of the picture.

Perhaps flipping the player to the other direction - it would cause the line of the cars to radiate towards him and her rather than lead out.

In any case, you will probably need to figure out how to keep the eye in the painting rather than running out the left side. This triangle with small apex towards the right runs out the side without giving the eye a stop.

Just a few thoughts...

Last edited by Mark Szymanski : 12-25-2015 at 08:21 PM.
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Old 12-26-2015, 10:27 AM
RCharleston RCharleston is offline
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Re: Rough Sketch, 2 Composition Questions

Thanks very much, La and Mark! Breaking up some of these too-prominent-diagonals will be much in mind going further with this along with probably introducing one or two more characters or non-background elements...
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Old 07-31-2016, 08:32 AM
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mhaslewood mhaslewood is offline
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Re: Rough Sketch, 2 Composition Questions

Great advice!

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