Triboulet : good point , could use stuff besides rocks and leaves … works better now with some random rags and street furniture.
AlinB : Ah yes ! Sherlock Holmes would fit perfectly … but characters are an issue : being an env artist, that’s what i focus on . When i tried to have chars in my last personal still … they weren’t at the same level as the hard-surface parts, and i don’t want people to be distracted by a bad skin shader or similar…
So i thought , if not chars … at least some storytelling element would help , i came up with the idea of the cordon… (like a crime scene, or a contagion zone … ) it’s just a minor element but adds some plot , as well as just phyisically filling some space in the road area , and ,as for composition , it mirrors the curve of the arch above.
I might be cool to push the “plague” storytelling a bit more (… since this still was partly inspired by ‘Dishonored’ ) something like adding dead birds or a horse carcass (as focal point) … but, again, the plan was to make purely an env. and not to venture into anything too new for me.
Side note : i’ve added displacement to the foreground bricks … being those so close up, makes a nice difference to have the detailed silhouette and better shading… (and it wasn’t much work , i just added some subd, a displace modifier an used weight paint to tweak intensity in different areas)
This could be the final render ( still some post tweaks for sure ) you can check fullsize here : http://nizuvault.files.wordpress.com/2013/09/tuning18.png