17 August 2011 @ 09:51 pm
Because I'm positive I'm not the only one who'll find this helpful.  
mirthalia: Oh, incidentally, I don't suppose you know anyone who does art commissions? I have no idea how to charge for these things so I'm trying to look at how other people do it.
adam: Nope, not personally. Don't you, though?
mirthalia: Yup! Just wondering if you had any to add to the list.
adam: Where're you going to be taking them?
mirthalia: Pretty much anywhere I have an account.
mirthalia: I don't expect to get much right away, if any at all, but I've got plenty of unfinished lineart stuff to work on and a short comic I want to get through.
adam: Right right.
adam: I feel like it's largely determined by time and materials.
adam: Like, if it's a simple ink sketch, something like $10-$15 is probably reasonable
adam: Colour probably bumps that up to the $20-$30 range.
mirthalia: Yeah. One character vs. 2+, and with or without background also affects the price.
mirthalia: But I know there's fairly (?) standard flat rates out there so I just wanted to check that my estimates were in line with that.
mirthalia: Man, I'm going through my old stuff and there's so many notes from my art college instructors saying "More line quality! Better line quality! Vary your lines!" And not a one of them ever explained what the hell they meant by that or what I was actually supposed to do.
adam: Width, largely.
adam: Shape can matter a bit too. The more uniform the width of a line is, the more mechanical it looks.
adam: Well, mechanical isn't quite the right term. Precise.
adam: So there are situations where you want that.
adam: Generally, though, varying line width creates a much more natural look.
mirthalia: That's what I thought it might be, but that's damned hard to get with a pencil on a large sketch.
adam: Nah. Pencil's pretty easy. Just change the way you make strokes and angle the pencil.
adam: Pen is super hard. So you don't use pen for that.
adam: Brushes are best though.
mirthalia: Plus I never know where to vary it. Heavier lines 'nearer' to the viewer to create depth, right?
adam: Plus, with pencil, you can be sketchier, and because none of the lines are ever fully complete, it blends.
adam: Yep.
adam: Not that the difference has to be huge. Close objects don't need, like, big blocky thick lines.
adam: You can also just use, like, more, and achieve a similar effect.
adam: Distant things are just easier to do with lighter lines, because that looks better. And they have less detail.
mirthalia: I always wind up using them randomly.
adam: See, the thing is though, you need to learn to be less precise.
adam: Because you could vary line width like this, but the way you draw, it wouldn't look like this.
mirthalia: Hhh, probably.
mirthalia: When I'm not precise I lose all sense of proportion, though.
adam: S'okay, just practice. You'll get the hang of it eventually.
adam: The main issues your figures tend to have stem from that particular affectation. Everyone is static because you painstakingly figure out where every single detail is.
adam: It's okay to just let some things be wherever.
adam: Most of the time, and for most of the stuff you'll probably want to do, it actually doesn't matter if proportions are exact.
mirthalia: http://mirthalia.deviantart.com/art/Untitled-Hearts-253331430?q=gallery%3Amirthalia%2F28799528&qo=11 Looks like I was experimenting with it more a while back.
adam: So long as they look right. And they can look right while being technically wrong.
mirthalia: http://mirthalia.deviantart.com/art/Christmas-Cheers-253378667 compared to my recent stuff, anyway.
mirthalia: But if the proportions aren't exact they don't look right to me.
adam: Yeah, because you're not used to it.
adam: Like, I dunno, you'd really like to take some lessons from Jing's artist, right? You've said so before. He's a super detail oriented artist, but things are loose.
adam: Actually, personally? I'd recommend just spending, like, a few weeks completely avoiding your standard drawing style.
adam: By the end of even a short run, you'll just understand how some things works.
mirthalia: My standard drawing style not being much of anything in particular other than super even lines. XD But that's a good suggestion, I'll give it a shot.
mirthalia: Thanks.
mirthalia: I've been trying to practice inking with a brush pen more often, too. My hand's super shaky.
adam: Your drawing style is super precise. You focus heavily on angles. Most of the time it looks like you spend at least some of your time actually measuring things just to see how they'll fit together best for you. You draw heavily from manga influences, but not in an action-y sort of way. More in a portrait way.
adam: You have a very clear art style.
mirthalia: Well then, I stand humbly corrected.
adam: See, but you only think a shaky line is a problem because you think lines have to be super smooth.
adam: Ah, I'm not trying to correct you. But you have thought for a while that you don't have a style.
adam: You do. You just see it in other people's work, so you don't assume you have anything distinct about you.
adam: I mean, I assume, since you draw stylistically from manga a lot, which is pretty popular.
mirthalia: True enough, and I'm glad you pointed it out since I've never been particularly conscious of it before now.
mirthalia: I'm trying to think of what I did different for the Order members, since I really like how they turned out.
mirthalia: I don't think I used any reference for them at all, but nine times out of ten when I do that people wind up looking deformed.
adam: They play to your strengths, which is, largely, static and angular.
mirthalia: Ah, since they're pretty much poses for design.
mirthalia: ...Are they really that angular? /headtilt
adam: Oh totally. You don't see it, but that's because you can think of more angular things, and for you, this is normal.
adam: But yeah, the shapes in the fabric, for example, are super angular.
mirthalia: And it's not something I should necessarily try to correct, just be aware of.
adam: Nah. Honestly, I like angularity. I think part of your struggle is you don't recognise what you do, and you kind of repress it because you want your stuff to look like someone else's
mirthalia: Most likely. I think I see that in the Nami drawing I did - Oda's style is pretty rounded, and my lines went crazy precise when I tried to imitate it. And wow did I make her wrists pointed.
adam: Yeah, things come to sharp points. It's not like you can't do round, but when you do, you tend to do very clear circles.
adam: That's something you could probably work on, figuring out how to do roundness in a more varied manner.
mirthalia: Probably because when I try to do curves my hand invariably travels halfway across the page. /has weird motor control
adam: S'okay. Make it into a strength.
mirthalia: And I can't judge objects in space very well, so having more obvious points makes it easier for me to visually space things, I guess.
mirthalia: I'll try!
adam: Like, if you're going to do it, just, like, work with it.
adam: I also suggest removing your ability to fix mistakes, however you choose to practice.
adam: Use ink. Or if you use pencil, don't use an eraser.
adam: Because you learn to compensate better that way.
mirthalia: Right.
mirthalia: Welp, that's my homework for the next week.
adam: Sorta. It takes alot longer than that.
adam: Months at best.
mirthalia: Obviously, but.
mirthalia: I'm starting to seriously consider switching to a part time job. I've barely drawn anything at all since I started working, and I'll never improve that way.
adam: Well, y'find the time where you can.
adam: I'm trying to think of things that have a drawing style that'd fit your natural inclinations better. Like, you wouldn't naturally be a fit for Haruhi Suzumiya stuff, but Gurren Laggan characters would probably come more easily to you.
mirthalia: And Fullmetal Alchemist, right? More shounen style stuff.
adam: Maybe, I can't really think of how that fits together off the top of my head.
adam: Jing stuff, especially the early work, is actually a nice fit for you.
mirthalia: I was originally hoping to do the magical guys thing in a shoujo style, but being that it's basically a shoujo plot told from the perspective of a bunch of guys, doing it in a sharper shounen style might work better anyway.
adam: I actually also think the shapes in Gurren Laggan might be a really good teaching tool for you. They're angular, but they're incredibly vibrant and active.
mirthalia: I also did some fanart for Danny Phantom once and had the easiest time drawing it that I've ever had with anything.
adam: Yeah, I saw that. Because it's all angles. It doesn't even try to maintain realism.
mirthalia: And Okage too. Welp, that belatedly makes a ton of sense.
adam: Well, I mean, let's take those Christmas cards you made into account. All basic geometric shapes.
adam: You're really drawn to Pacific native art lately. All basic geometric shapes.
mirthalia: Awesome. So now I can start consciously building on that.
adam: It's not like you couldn't learn a more naturalistic style. With practice and good references, you could probably draw very natural people.
adam: But you are naturally drawn to angles and precise lines.
mirthalia: Can you think of some good naturalistic styles I could study?
adam: Ahhh, not offhand, no.
adam: You'd want to hunt down people who do stuff you like and find out what they used to draw, and draw that.
adam: But for now it might be better to focus on learning what you naturally do.
adam: As well as experimenting with line width.
mirthalia: I figured, just for future reference.
adam: Since that's actually only going to be a boon.
mirthalia: Almost all the people I really follow have strong manga influences, so. XD
adam: Being able to play with lines enhances your ability to draw like a billion percent.
mirthalia: Duly noted! X
adam: Because, say before, you would effectively only be able to draw a box one way, you can suddenly draw that box like a million different ways.
mirthalia: Gotcha.
mirthalia: http://thefoxsister.com/index.php?id=2
Chira's definitely my current favourite. Yuumei's a close second:
adam: I can relate somewhat, anyway. I don't have the problem with lines, that's been something I could just do for years. My problem is a complete unfamiliarity with people.
adam: And I have the same issue with making everything static.
adam: We'll see about the second, but it's funny you say that about the first.
adam: Since it's basically your art style, just several years of practice later.
mirthalia: Haha. XD
mirthalia: And she's studied Disney and manga influences, so.
mirthalia: Oh man, I just found an old assignment where they had us draw the exact same shape twice and try to use line to make one look like cloud and the other like stone. I butchered it. /stares
mirthalia: But yes, I like Yuumei's style, but I think I like her colouring more than anything else.
adam: Maybe you should try it again.
mirthalia: I will.
adam: Oh, okay. I was gonna say. Her colouring is pretty good. Don't really like her character design, myself.
adam: Y'might want to try and work on some Gunnerkrigg stuff as well. 'Cause he's really good, but in a less detail oriented sort of way.
mirthalia: Yeah, I've definitely liked his recent stuff.
mirthalia: Who else am I following on dA...
adam: It's his expressions especially. He can create a really clear and specific mood or emotion with, like, six or seven basic shapes and lines.
adam: I dunno. Mostly, though, it's momentum. Which you know from reading enough of these things.
adam: But the really basic trick is just to do stuff and not really care whether it looks good or not.
mirthalia: Yeaaah, I need to work on that.
adam: It's not really a thing you work on, though.
adam: You can't practice practicing.
adam: You either do it or you don't.
mirthalia: I need to work on making myself practice.
adam: I dunno. Just set aside some time. You could, theoretically, just log out now and draw for a while.
mirthalia: Doing that tomorrow. Today's for sorting out my stuff. So I can find things like line weight assignments where I'm supposed to draw a cloud as rock. |D
mirthalia: I'm also digging up a ton of pencil sketches I can use to practice inking with a brush.
adam: Okay. Although I do actually think you if you just stopped and did it now it'd probably work better for you.
mirthalia: Once I've got all this junk off the floor I plan to get some in.
adam: Y'okay. But so you know, when people say draw anything, they do mean that.
adam: You don't really need a lesson plan or specific goals or anything.
adam: If anything, for you, that might even be a hindrance, since you get caught up in planning things.
mirthalia: Iiii will not argue that. I have yet to learn the fine art of just sitting down and drawing whatever without getting intensely frustrated with myself.
mirthalia: If I have an idea in my head I can just go, but they tend to come when I'm not around paper. Which is why I've taken to writing them down or thumbnailing them out, but.
adam: Actually, y'know what, I honestly think you shouldn't look at stuff right now.
mirthalia: /hurries with that floor cleaning so I can draw stuff
adam: It's probably better if you just spend a few weeks messing around with absolutely no goal.
mirthalia: I'll see!
adam: That stuff just happens with time anyway. It's probably much more important to just build the habit
mirthalia: Right.
adam: So I guess the important things for you to remember are that you do have an art style, and you should spend time figuring out lines. And draw in a way that doesn't let you fix mistakes.
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