With the situation in Afghanistan filling the news at the moment I felt like I wanted to make a scene related to that crisis. This feels like the most ‘artistic’ render I’ve worked on (as in not just modeling something and lighting it, instead trying to make a scene that conveys emotion and tells a story). I had a story in my head that I wanted to try and depict with this image and I am interested to see if people are able to read the story through this WIP render.
I am trying to pay extra attention to my composition and thinking about how the position of the elements in the scene helps tell the story.
In terms of things I am aware need work:
The dirt on the toy rabbit (not sure the best way to do this)
Altering the colour, clumping, and texture of the fur in places to make the toy look like it’s been run over and is wet.
The solider/gunman is placeholder.
I think the lighting could do with some work, maybe a darker setting would help acheive the atmosphere that I don’t feel like this scene currently expresses. Darker scene would make it easier to place emphasis on the two focal points however how would I naturally light the foreground element in the dark?
I like the composition of having one story telling element in the foreground, with a contrasting story element obscured and out of focus in the background, however I wish the toy rabbit could take up more of the frame while still having the background element in frame. I spent a lot of time trying to get the camera setup I wanted before fleshing out the scene but I never got it 100% there. I am also trying to keep the foreground and background elements on opposing intersections on the rule of thirds.
In terms of things I’m happy with:
I think the grass elements look nice and blend well into the ground.
I like my vertex colours texture blending work, I think the pilled up mud on the side of the dirt track looks really good and the way the dead grass casts shadows into the wet mud on the right of the frame.
While it still needs work, I think the toy fur looks nice and for the ‘dry’ parts of the toy, this texture feels believable.
Here is a collage on pureref of my reference and inspiration:
Another concern I have is with the morality of making work like this, work that plays on very real and current emotions. The last thing I want to do is offend somebody or come off as if I’m using other people’s misfortune to gain recognition for my own art. If anybody reading this has worked on an artwork that’s subject could be considered a ‘touchy’ one, could you talk about how you made sure you were creating your work in good conscience and respecting the people that could relate to it. I have considered posting this artwork, when it’s finished, alongside links to ways of educating yourself on the crisis and methods for helping people in the crisis, but then again I don’t want to come off as preachy or pretentious.
That is about all the critique I have for myself, I’d love to hear what you agree/disagree with and what additional critique you feel is needed. Also let me know what story you see in this WIP render, this will help me decide if I need to make any big changes to the composition or focal elements. Don’t hold back, please be honest!