The value of a good critique…

27 Nov

Well, I’m going to vent a little this morning.  I spend a good 3 hours a day, sometimes more, critiquing work for colleagues and students that write to me.  It’s fun, and it helps everyone involved.  Yea, if I were to stop, i’d have some extra time in my day, but I feel that when I need critiques and such, i’ll get them in return because I’m always doing them for others. 

I’m working on a new digital painting piece.  It’s coming along nicely, but I need help with the background.  It has water in it and a very detailed background.  I’ve posted it up in about 5 forums so far, with only 1 critique and the 1 critique I recieved was so vague that it really wasn’t helpful.  So it got me thinking about the way we critique and review.  Doing critiques and reviews does take a bit of time.  At least to do it right.  We not only have to stop what we’re doing to actually LOOK at someone else’s work, but then contemplate whether it works.  Not just visually, but in a useable sense of the word as well.  Will the target market like it?  wait, that means we may actually have to figure out who the target market is supposed to be for! When i critique or review a piece, I want to make sure to point out what is successful, what works, and what doesn’t.  I also try and leave the artist inspired to go forth, not lost and confused.  🙂 You get the idea.  As much as I love the internet, I find myself wanting some face to face critiques where I’ll actually get something helpful rather than a bunch of vague responses that don’t even come close to picking apart the piece I’m wanting critiqued.  So.. here it is..  my current work in progress.. The background needs some more work, the water DESPERATELY needs work and just some other areas to clean up.. but it’s coming along nicely all the same.  Anyone who wants to critique it is MORE than welcome!



One Response to “The value of a good critique…”

  1. anonymom December 12, 2007 at 7:17 pm #

    Well, I am not a graphic designer, so I cannot comment professionally. I found you via a link for “critiques” as I posted about writing critique groups. Yes, find yourself a face-to-face critique partner because who knows what the qualifications are of the person responding to you in an online forum. For instance, I have no formal artistic background, but here’s what I think…so take it with a grain of salt…

    Personally, I feel the water needs multiple shades of blue–the majority pooled around her legs is just one shade and it therefore lacks movement. It looks stagnant, but this is an action pose, so the water should look stirred up, especially considering the rushing water behind her. I also find the blue color of the sky too similar in blue to the water to be of interest. I would like to see some contrast in the sky, perhaps a red glow to enhance the action of this picture. The stones could also be different shades of brown, with some cement-like colors thrown in…they look aged from the context of the illustration but newly carved in the coloring as it stands.

    Overall, nice work! The shading and color on the character is marvelous.

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