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Not a beginners question but..

Discussion in 'Courses and Tutorials' started by musicmacd, Feb 13, 2020.


  1. musicmacd

    musicmacd The Createx Bandit Very Likeable!

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    Here’s a comparison of what going “too dark” does for your work. We all do it, pulling back on that trigger is so satisfying it’s hard to resist.
    The trouble with “too dark” is that it leads to higher contrast, which usually leads us to make it more saturated that it should be!
    With a lot of practice and good guidance from Dru Blair, I’ve learnt to slow down and control the urge to spray more than I think! he has a saying - “ you’ll never be sad if you’re too light” and bam it’s sooooo true!

    now I don’t expect anyone to read this and not go too dark! But what I would like this post to do is to plant a seed,
    that LESS is truly MORE.
    AEA450CE-2622-4421-BED8-C80D4290A833.jpeg 5A478D5E-A2D0-4AE5-ADFB-B0407D2CAFC4.jpeg
    Zotilraxx, Rebecca, SiRoxx and 3 others like this.
  2. JackEb

    JackEb The Dragon Hunter Staff Member Admin

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    Brilliant MacD, I’m pinning this one so it doesn’t get lost

    what year was ‘to dark’ ?
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  3. musicmacd

    musicmacd The Createx Bandit Very Likeable!

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    Cool! It really shows clearly what most of us do!
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  4. JackEb

    JackEb The Dragon Hunter Staff Member Admin

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    So what year was to dark?
  5. musicmacd

    musicmacd The Createx Bandit Very Likeable!

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    June 2016
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  6. Mr.Micron

    Mr.Micron Royal pain in the air hose Staff Member Admin Mod

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    Yes I can see that the darker one looks more plastic like on the highlighted areas and not natural where as the lighter one looks very natural.
    Great food for thought.
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  7. crazyvet

    crazyvet Mac-Valve Maestro!

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    This explains 75% of what I do wrong lol seeing these 2 images side by side really helps with understand what to dark really is. Ty for this reminder
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  8. Franc Kaiser

    Franc Kaiser Artist of the Month! Artist of the Month! Very Likeable!

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    Paul, I certainly agree with you, but with a caveat: It also depends on the scale / size of the painting... the larger the painting the more important contrasts get or the whole thing appears boring and flat. I see a lot of work online (i.e., portraits, although not in this forum, mind you!) where the paintings, with whatever medium and method, do not pop because they lack contrast, and nothing that "grabs" the viewer. There is a devil and an angel sitting on every painter's shoulders - "go realistic, don't deviate from what you see" vs "no, make it more interesting and use more creative license"... and it's our own judgement how we want the painting to appear. Having said that, I actually like both your Freemans equally, incl. the darker one.
    musicmacd likes this.
  9. markjthomson

    markjthomson AKA QuickDraw and very happy #nobrushleftbehind Staff Member Admin

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    Hey Paul... you posted the reference... :p Great example! :)
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  10. erwin de pan

    erwin de pan Mac-Valve Maestro! Very Likeable!

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    For most it does indeed get too dark too quickly.
    I used to get the comment that my work looks like it has been washed too often.
    I stayed too light in the shade.
    So it can go two ways.
    I regularly catch myself trying to make it lighter and basically everything around it should be darker.
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