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  1. - Top - End - #751
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    Sean Mirrsen's Avatar

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    Default Re: Ponythread Learns to Draw! Together!

    I think I might just return here for now. I'm not posting rapidfire updates anymore, and while my own thread does a good job of keeping my work catalogued, when there's nothing to comment on it feels a little like posting into a void. Here, it'll at least keep the thread bumped and keep my attention on it should someone else have something I can help with.
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    Continuing with the timed pony sketches, adding them to the same sheet for later comparison. Just two today, on the right.
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    Default Re: Ponythread Learns to Draw! Together!

    Quote Originally Posted by Sean Mirrsen View Post
    I think I might just return here for now. I'm not posting rapidfire updates anymore, and while my own thread does a good job of keeping my work catalogued, when there's nothing to comment on it feels a little like posting into a void. Here, it'll at least keep the thread bumped and keep my attention on it should someone else have something I can help with.
    _____________

    Continuing with the timed pony sketches, adding them to the same sheet for later comparison. Just two today, on the right.
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    Good to have you back! I should have posted in your thread more often, but I often find it hard to keep up with multiple threads and forget... Either that or I can only say that something is awesome and not give any true useful commentary...
    And those are some nice quick ponies. While her front legs may be off, I think Fluttershy looks the most on model.


    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    The Japanese Emperor was fairly consistently divine, descended directly from the god of mountains and a sea dragon I believe? The majority of real power was concentrated in the hands of the Shogun, however. (Fun fact: Shogun means "Great barbarian smashing general")
    I actually thought about having a pony shogun type, but then I quickly figured that the alicorns can all but shoot beams from their eyes. They really are gods, so having another pony in control would be a little silly.

    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    Will do! Problem is that the raw concepts and worldbuilding are kind of hard to provide feedback on because a lot of it is completely backseat to it's actual role in the story.

    The what is always subordinate to the how!
    True that, you could say that I just like making settings!
    I'm dealing with more minor characters right now and their backgrounds aren't as important. However, in time I will get around to actually discussing the Apple family and Rarity's family (whatever their name is, need to think up a name... The "Boutique"? Baah...) and their conflict and Fancy's band aid attempt to fix it will be apart of the prologue.
    I want it to be specific, detailed, and make sense. Something more then

    "These two families hate each other... I dunno, because of something or another..."

    While avoiding the dreaded info dump.

    "Exposition Ahoy!"

    I was doing some light research into the early yakuza, the mafia in general, unions, and guilds to help go through different things organizations/guilds/clans/families or what have you would fight over and which would fit for the story. Even if it is distilled down to a few lines after the fact by Fancy during a truce banquet scene, with most of the actual scene spent showing that the families are still hostile as well as a meeting between Applebloom and Sweete Belle.
    I know to the general reader it won't matter much, but I will always fear that someone out there there will be a odd guy much like me, who will snort and say to himself, "He couldn't even be bothered to think up a pause-able reason for the families/clans to be fighting! Couldn't he do some light research?!"


    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    I'm seeing an exceptionally cool scene where the governor and the Inspector have a delicate social duel over tea, trying to discover how corrupt the other one is and if they should offer or demand a bribe - and if evidence of bribery will be met with retribution.
    That's a great idea for a scene, and I have the perfect place for it in the plot. Originally for the introduction of Pinkie Pie I was going to have her on a tour/inspection of Fancy's mansion, which would be interrupted by the sound of a gunshot caused by a skirimsh between Rarity and a sneaking messenger Scoot and Pinkie rushing to the scene.
    However a tea scene would be better for dialogue and characterization. I can imagine after a somewhat delicate and nice period of time during tea, Fancy offering Pinkie a "welcome gift", to test the waters. Something light and non-offensive to test the waters and which could easily be taken as a pleasantry since she only arrived yesterday. Pinkie, being the extreme non-corruptible zealous sort, basically-
    (╯□)╯︵ ┻━┻
    Well ok maybe not literally but you get the idea. (Then again, according to the meme, the Japanese name is literally "Return Tea Tables" so maybe it would fit....)
    She begins listing the charges Celestia has leveled against the province and which are under investigation. Fancy will deny everything and state that while that may have been true in the past the province is now at peace, non-violent.etc. Only to be interrupted by the noise of the musket shot.
    This way the character and motivations of Fancy and Pinkie are out in the open and out of the way quickly during a short scene change between the main fight scene between Rarity and Scoot. Perhaps with the scene cut happening with Rarity taking aim, leaving the idea and suspense with the viewer only to have it come back to the fore suddenly with the gunshot noise and the scene changing back to the action. And have Pinkie and Fancy showing up after the action has ended, only having the destruction left as evidence.
    Or it could just interrupt the action. I dunno.

    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    Does "Party" in this context mean "Party" in the same context as Equestria? Does she enjoy the stately feasts of court, or is she prepared to risk her reputation by trawling dive bars with the commoners? If so, that would give her a low popularity and high scorn. If so, what would her reaction be? Hide her commoner friends? Try to prove herself despite them?



    So Pinkie is aristocracy? How does that fit with her personality; her base assumptions; her motivation? Does she think palace life is boring, has she been trained in etiquette and formal socialisation? Is she still a slob? Is her show personality there underneath layers of formal training, or has she more successfully integrated the two?



    Is failure to get a laugh from the nobility a failure of the nobility, casting them as enemies/a false path? Or is it a failure of Pinkie - she has to learn restraint and more sophisticated humour, fitting her jokes to her audience rather than assuming lowbrow humour will work for everypony?
    Responses on Pinkie and the backstory.

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    I wouldn't really call Pinkie's family aristocratic. Her family are artisans/craftsponies, well known artisans, but still artisans. Going back to it I would say that her family is upper-middle class, they are somewhat famous (amongst those who truly are into rock gardens) and working on the palace's garden's was a once and a life-time honor. I was drawing on the idea of artisans as being outside of the noble circle of honor, and your question made me run back and double check to see if I hadn't got my facts mixed up on Edo-Japan. Pinkie's family is apart of the Samurai-Equestria's version of the artisan or craftsman class. Even though many pony nobles take part in the arts as leisure activates, to make money by producing an art or craft is generally looked down on as beneath them and dishonorable. They may make their own paintings or small rock gardens, but to actually paint portraits or travel around and design people's rock gardens for pay would be demeaning.

    Pinkie not fitting in with the nobles and bureaucrats was a concept that was developed during the weekend. I realized that I had an idea of Pinkie's relationship with her mentor, but not with her peers at the palace.
    As I have never really worked in a bureaucratic organization, I just asked some relatives to relate their experiences and generated some concepts from there. In a bureaucracy at least nominal based on merit, jumps due to supposed favoritism are general frowned upon as in the case with Celestia and Pinkie. Especially if this isn't do to any true measureable ability, Celestia sees the kind, incorruptible, and straightforward nature of Pinkie and perhaps, even in twisted mirror of Samurai-Equestria, she sees one of the ponies who would be able to weld one of the elements of harmony. However, the power of "heart" cannot be tested and is generally thought of as worthless by more practical types. It will not increase revenue, nor will it dazzle ponies with references to classical literary texts and allusions that sophisticated palace ponies like.
    Thus I figured they would probably be somewhat hostile to Pinkie Pie and then I rolled with it using the first season finale as a guide and also how Pinkie wanted to prove herself as competent in "Baby Cakes". But now that you've pointed out, blanket reactions in a group are bad, some of the palace ponies are probably hostile, some not. However, I believe that most would have trouble taking Pinkie Pie seriously. She hasn't been educated like a true top of the elite and is an outsider of mediocre skill levels.

    As for if Pinkie had adjusted to high society, I can actually see that if given enough time. However, I imagine that Pinkie Pie would have only have been in the palace training for 1-3 years, rather then raised up from a early age like canon Twilight in Canterlot. As a side note, I was going to add a line that she had already got her party cutie mark some time ago, but then I realized I didn't know if Samurai-Equestria had cutie marks. After all, there is less magic and a theme that is developing with these characters is that who they truly are (their passions, loves and wants) are often hidden behind a mask. A outward honest appraisal of who they are really wouldn't work. Besides they wear clothes anyway. Maybe the cutie marks are just extremely private? "Hey baby, what's your mark?" being a common sleazy pick up line.

    Pinkie hasn't been educated to be apart of high society. In human years she would be around 17-20 when she was first noticed by Celestia and entered the palace. Also Pinkie isn't just moving into a common noble society, but the highest of high. This is a society a large step removed from Fancy's noble family and would view Fancy as trite, these are ponies who actually manage to see and speak with the immortal alicorns themselves. They do tend to get a bit snobby and look down on outsiders.
    She would probably find their ways boring, and, after attempts to be their friends and get along with them and being looked down on as borish, generally keep away from them. Still, Pinkie being Pinkie, she probably has a few acquaintances, perhaps fellow Inspectors or Inspectors in training who she is on speaking terms with. No true blue friends or buddies. More like cordial co-workers at best, nice, pleasant, but they aren't inviting you to any social gatherings.
    In my own experience in university and watching different people from different classes moving into a university of an other dominate class (like say lower to higher class) three things generally can happen. The first is that they do their best to act like everyone around them and convert. The second is that they don't socialize and keep to themselves, generally with a vibrant life away from the university's dominate culture. The third that can happen is that person becomes not quite one class or another, they may be too high class for the lower class they left at home, at the same time, they are too low class for the high class people around them at the university. This can be a sense of empowerment, with the person being able to move through both classes with ease, but can also serve as a point of entrapment, not being ever able to truly be apart of either.
    I like the idea of a mix of one and three, with Pinkie having a few groups of drinking/partying/theater going buddies from the merchant, artisan and lower noble circles in the entertainment district of the capital, while at the same time picking up some of the habits and higher ideas of the palace. Such as her faith in the system and a mission to right wrongs. If Pinkie is already somewhat shunned, dismissed, or just not taken seriously, she probably wouldn't bother hiding her travels to the lower quarters. Either that or perhaps it's a open secret or rumor. Of course, Palace security being what it is, it's not like she can take her stallion or mare friends home. Whatever the reasons, Celestia, even Samurai-Equestria Celestia, isn't the type to honestly care and that's the main pony Pinkie cares about. While the security of the palace is tight, it isn't an Imperial City style shut down.

    The parties in Samurai-Equestria that Pinkie Pie likes involve drinking in more humble/common/middle class bars, restaurants, tea houses and the like. Silly, loud and crude jokes and wild (but ultimately harmless) abandon, and a good time for everyone, with little thought of your reputation or standing. The other entertainment that is available and Pinkie likes is theater, kabuki-ish dramas, comedies, puppets, acrobats, and of course, magic shows.

    Because every type of Equestria has magic shows.




    Day 33,

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    A small one, just a Landsknecht head and a Pinkie head, neck and arm. I used Humbug's tip for three circles for the nose. I botched it of course, with making the nose too small and then trying to correct the size without just earsing and starting over so it's quite defined compared to the rest of the cartoon face. Perhaps it's just red from the cold. But whatever, the nose looks better to me at least and I'll be using the method again. So yay!
    Still trying to get Pinkie's mane done right.

    As I sidenote, I was going to make the Landsknecht clean shaven, yet I was oddly compelled to slap more silly facial hair on him...




  3. - Top - End - #753
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    Hey there, pony draw thread. I just drew my first pony sketch. Took me a while, about 30 or 40 minutes. Feel free to critique and demand the bettering of myself. I probably should have waited to color it, or at least figured out beforehand that I didn't have the correct colored pencil for the job...

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    My drawing
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    Thanks to Ceika for the avatar.

  4. - Top - End - #754
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bakuel View Post
    I actually thought about having a pony shogun type, but then I quickly figured that the alicorns can all but shoot beams from their eyes. They really are gods, so having another pony in control would be a little silly.
    No one ever saw the emperor because he was so busy raising the sun every day. Celestia might not actually be in the palace; she could be hidden amongst the common ponies while the shogun - maybe a dragon - keeps everypony from looking behind the curtain.

    Doesn't fit with your role for Celly in the story though.

    True that, you could say that I just like making settings!
    I'm dealing with more minor characters right now and their backgrounds aren't as important. However, in time I will get around to actually discussing the Apple family and Rarity's family (whatever their name is, need to think up a name... The "Boutique"? Baah...) and their conflict and Fancy's band aid attempt to fix it will be apart of the prologue.
    Rarity Belle doesn't sound hateful.

    I want it to be specific, detailed, and make sense. Something more then

    "These two families hate each other... I dunno, because of something or another..."

    While avoiding the dreaded info dump.

    "Exposition Ahoy!"
    What's way more powerful than explaining where the feud started or what it's about is to show it. Have Applejack burn down one of Rarity's buildings in an introduction sequence, drop a cool one liner, and then cut to an angry Rarity. Have a few ineffective Fancy Pants soldiers show up to stop her, but have her demolish them kung fu villain style. We dunno how this feud started, but that doesn't matter - we know exactly where it goes from here.

    I was doing some light research into the early yakuza, the mafia in general, unions, and guilds to help go through different things organizations/guilds/clans/families or what have you would fight over and which would fit for the story. Even if it is distilled down to a few lines after the fact by Fancy during a truce banquet scene, with most of the actual scene spent showing that the families are still hostile as well as a meeting between Applebloom and Sweete Belle.
    I know to the general reader it won't matter much, but I will always fear that someone out there there will be a odd guy much like me, who will snort and say to himself, "He couldn't even be bothered to think up a pause-able reason for the families/clans to be fighting! Couldn't he do some light research?!"
    Someone insulted someone else's momma and then a building got burned down and now the other guy has to retaliate and no one's backing down. Escalation until the airship's on fire and you've lost your hat. Honestly, thinking up casus belli's in feudal Japan is the easiest thing.

    That's a great idea for a scene, and I have the perfect place for it in the plot. Originally for the introduction of Pinkie Pie I was going to have her on a tour/inspection of Fancy's mansion, which would be interrupted by the sound of a gunshot caused by a skirimsh between Rarity and a sneaking messenger Scoot and Pinkie rushing to the scene.
    However a tea scene would be better for dialogue and characterization. I can imagine after a somewhat delicate and nice period of time during tea, Fancy offering Pinkie a "welcome gift", to test the waters. Something light and non-offensive to test the waters and which could easily be taken as a pleasantry since she only arrived yesterday. Pinkie, being the extreme non-corruptible zealous sort, basically-
    (╯□)╯︵ ┻━┻
    Well ok maybe not literally but you get the idea. (Then again, according to the meme, the Japanese name is literally "Return Tea Tables" so maybe it would fit....)
    Do not show restraint when you're doing a visual gag. Have her flip that damn table because that'd be hilarious.

    She begins listing the charges Celestia has leveled against the province and which are under investigation. Fancy will deny everything and state that while that may have been true in the past the province is now at peace, non-violent.etc. Only to be interrupted by the noise of the musket shot.
    This way the character and motivations of Fancy and Pinkie are out in the open and out of the way quickly during a short scene change between the main fight scene between Rarity and Scoot. Perhaps with the scene cut happening with Rarity taking aim, leaving the idea and suspense with the viewer only to have it come back to the fore suddenly with the gunshot noise and the scene changing back to the action. And have Pinkie and Fancy showing up after the action has ended, only having the destruction left as evidence.
    Or it could just interrupt the action. I dunno.
    Depends on the execution, but this could work.

    Responses on Pinkie and the backstory.

    Thus I figured they would probably be somewhat hostile to Pinkie Pie and then I rolled with it using the first season finale as a guide and also how Pinkie wanted to prove herself as competent in "Baby Cakes". But now that you've pointed out, blanket reactions in a group are bad, some of the palace ponies are probably hostile, some not. However, I believe that most would have trouble taking Pinkie Pie seriously. She hasn't been educated like a true top of the elite and is an outsider of mediocre skill levels.
    *Nod*

    As for if Pinkie had adjusted to high society, I can actually see that if given enough time. However, I imagine that Pinkie Pie would have only have been in the palace training for 1-3 years, rather then raised up from a early age like canon Twilight in Canterlot. As a side note, I was going to add a line that she had already got her party cutie mark some time ago, but then I realized I didn't know if Samurai-Equestria had cutie marks. After all, there is less magic and a theme that is developing with these characters is that who they truly are (their passions, loves and wants) are often hidden behind a mask. A outward honest appraisal of who they are really wouldn't work. Besides they wear clothes anyway. Maybe the cutie marks are just extremely private? "Hey baby, what's your mark?" being a common sleazy pick up line.
    This is one of the common justifications I've seen for clothes in Equestria - it adds mystery and allure if you're not broadcasting the fact that you're a baker on your ass. So using clothes and masks as key images will give you a lot of power and a really cool explanation.

    Everything else seems fairly reasonable!
    Nothing but a grim echo of a horse; a shell of an equine concept.

  5. - Top - End - #755
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    Sean Mirrsen's Avatar

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    Trying to draw something every day again, with smaller somethings. I only seem to succeed for short bursts anyway though, so I don't expect to keep it up for long.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sean Mirrsen View Post
    I think I might just return here for now. I'm not posting rapidfire updates anymore, and while my own thread does a good job of keeping my work catalogued, when there's nothing to comment on it feels a little like posting into a void. Here, it'll at least keep the thread bumped and keep my attention on it should someone else have something I can help with.
    _____________

    Continuing with the timed pony sketches, adding them to the same sheet for later comparison. Just two today, on the right.
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    (post deleted and reposted due to forum error... when will we get better forum software?)
    Welcome back! I like your OC on the right there.

    Quote Originally Posted by maximus25 View Post
    Hey there, pony draw thread. I just drew my first pony sketch. Took me a while, about 30 or 40 minutes. Feel free to critique and demand the bettering of myself. I probably should have waited to color it, or at least figured out beforehand that I didn't have the correct colored pencil for the job...

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    My drawing
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    Welcome to the pony drawthread, and congrats on your first step into pony art!

    That's not too bad for a first time pic. Did you draw the structure underneath? That helps with the proportions. Also, needs more curves! Ponies rarely have straight lines on them.

    Quote Originally Posted by Sean Mirrsen View Post
    Trying to draw something every day again, with smaller somethings. I only seem to succeed for short bursts anyway though, so I don't expect to keep it up for long.

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    Ahh, Rarity's mane and tail. Why did they have to be so crazy hard? Still, this looks good!


    Day 102+103. Spent these days colouring Twilight and doing dozens of minor tweaks and edits to the line art. So far, so good. I even added a crude background, but frankly I'm going to scrap it as soon as I can find a decent tutorial on how to draw simple landscapes (know of any?). I'll also be adding shading to this one later.
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    Just call me Diego. Mr. Havoc was my father.
    Quote Originally Posted by SiuiS View Post
    Diego Havoc, one of the hoopier froods I've met, up there with DeLancie.

  7. - Top - End - #757
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    Quote Originally Posted by Diego Havoc View Post
    Welcome to the pony drawthread, and congrats on your first step into pony art!

    That's not too bad for a first time pic. Did you draw the structure underneath? That helps with the proportions. Also, needs more curves! Ponies rarely have straight lines on them.
    Thank you.

    I didn't draw a structure underneath, I probably should have.
    Thanks to Ceika for the avatar.

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    Day... 3? I guess. Brain running on emergency coffee power, cognitive functions deterioriartting...

    Anyway:
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    The comment on the top left was directed more at my general condition and the time at which the drawing was attempted than the expected quality, though not completely so. All things considered... not too bad.

    Bonus points for anyone who can identify the anime.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sean Mirrsen View Post
    Bonus points for anyone who can identify the anime.
    Strike Witches?

    Anyway, looks good!


    Day 104 for me. Tried something different with the shading this time. A harder, cel-shaded kinda thing. Lemme know what you guys think.
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    Just call me Diego. Mr. Havoc was my father.
    Quote Originally Posted by SiuiS View Post
    Diego Havoc, one of the hoopier froods I've met, up there with DeLancie.

  10. - Top - End - #760
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    Default Re: Ponythread Learns to Draw! Together!

    The harder shadows work. They imply harder, directed light though, so you need to consider this direction, and find places where these shadows form to accentuate shape.

    For instance I get the feeling that the far rear leg would have more of this solid shadow as the light direction seems to imply that the closer rear leg would cast this shadow just like the closer foreleg does on the other foreleg. Might be just my perception here though. A little shadowing along the mane could work, as well as around the gun assembly to make it look less flat. Just a little though, the current style you have won't look right if you try to go all raytrace on the drop shadows.

    You can also use the lighter shading on the flat panels of the gun assembly and the undersides of the barrels to make them look even less flat, but that's entirely up to your preference.

    Shading aside, there are two problems I can immediately see that you could look into and/or fix. First, the nostril looks like it's just the one nostril in the center of the nose, it might need to be further to the right at this angle if the nose has any width to it at all. Second, the shape of the mouth is a little odd, but I can't give a specific enough way to fix it. Maybe see if you can give Twilight a lower lip? I.e. so that it doesn't quite taper off to a point like that. Maybe.

    All in all, the picture is looking pretty good. I quite like the HUD faceplate.

    And yes, it's Strike Witches. Ponify everything!
    Last edited by Sean Mirrsen; 2012-04-14 at 02:35 AM.
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    Default Re: Ponythread Learns to Draw! Together!

    Heh, why does this crossover work? I mean, two thirds of the pony populace can already fly or cast spells, why would pony Strike Witches even exist?

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    Suffered a distraction there, but still managed to take less time than on the previous.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sean Mirrsen View Post
    The harder shadows work. They imply harder, directed light though, so you need to consider this direction, and find places where these shadows form to accentuate shape.

    For instance I get the feeling that the far rear leg would have more of this solid shadow as the light direction seems to imply that the closer rear leg would cast this shadow just like the closer foreleg does on the other foreleg. Might be just my perception here though. A little shadowing along the mane could work, as well as around the gun assembly to make it look less flat. Just a little though, the current style you have won't look right if you try to go all raytrace on the drop shadows.

    You can also use the lighter shading on the flat panels of the gun assembly and the undersides of the barrels to make them look even less flat, but that's entirely up to your preference.

    Shading aside, there are two problems I can immediately see that you could look into and/or fix. First, the nostril looks like it's just the one nostril in the center of the nose, it might need to be further to the right at this angle if the nose has any width to it at all. Second, the shape of the mouth is a little odd, but I can't give a specific enough way to fix it. Maybe see if you can give Twilight a lower lip? I.e. so that it doesn't quite taper off to a point like that. Maybe.

    All in all, the picture is looking pretty good. I quite like the HUD faceplate.

    And yes, it's Strike Witches. Ponify everything!
    Thanks for the advice, Sean. This has all helped a lot.

    Added a few more shadows in. I can't believe I forgot to do the gun assembly *headdesk*. Also put a drop shadow down; not sure it's at the right angle for the light source. Come to think of it, I'm not sure what the light source is meant to be. At first I thought maybe I should do a laser or something just missing her, but I'm not sure the pose lends itself well to that. She's not exactly dodging here.

    I knew there was something off about the mouth. After looking at a few refs, I curved the bottom lip around a bit, and also made the far side of her mouth concave.

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    Did I do too much shading on the tail, do you think?

    Wondering if I should make the far side of the visor (where the screen crosses over itself) a darker colour or not.

    Quote Originally Posted by Sean Mirrsen View Post
    Heh, why does this crossover work? I mean, two thirds of the pony populace can already fly or cast spells, why would pony Strike Witches even exist?

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    Suffered a distraction there, but still managed to take less time than on the previous.
    Hah hah, awesome.

    The only problem with this is that, to me, the leg-jet things (whatever they call them in the show) look either too long, or not far enough up the legs. I know you can't really get them all the way up to the thighs like in SW, but it just looks a little odd to me the way they are. I dunno if I'm explaining that well.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Diego Havoc View Post
    Thanks for the advice, Sean. This has all helped a lot.

    Added a few more shadows in. I can't believe I forgot to do the gun assembly *headdesk*. Also put a drop shadow down; not sure it's at the right angle for the light source. Come to think of it, I'm not sure what the light source is meant to be. At first I thought maybe I should do a laser or something just missing her, but I'm not sure the pose lends itself well to that. She's not exactly dodging here.
    The lightsource seems to be a fairly nearby floodlight or equivalent, maybe the sun if it's a clear day, but it rarely gives shadows like that. Maybe it's a camera flash? The shading looks very good, btw.

    I knew there was something off about the mouth. After looking at a few refs, I curved the bottom lip around a bit, and also made the far side of her mouth concave.

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    Did I do too much shading on the tail, do you think?
    Yep, now it's much improved. Shading on the tail is quite fine, though it looks a little solid at the moment. The show uses several darker lines running along the hair to show that it's not a solid object, you could do something like that as well.

    Wondering if I should make the far side of the visor (where the screen crosses over itself) a darker colour or not.
    ...nah. It looks quite fine as it is, even if not exactly realistic. What you should do, however, is the same thing you've remembered to do for the helmet - a specular shine. Add some bright yellowish-white streaks or blotches (depending on what shape you believe it to be) to the visor to show the reflecting light, though take care not to obstruct the eyes too much because the eyes are important and it's better to sacrifice realism than to lose them.

    Also, line up the drop shadow of the closer rear leg to its source.

    Hah hah, awesome.

    The only problem with this is that, to me, the leg-jet things (whatever they call them in the show) look either too long, or not far enough up the legs. I know you can't really get them all the way up to the thighs like in SW, but it just looks a little odd to me the way they are. I dunno if I'm explaining that well.
    Strike Units they were called, I believe, and yes, they won't look quite as well no matter how I draw them. They're made for human legs, and are just too long, proportionally. They'll look downright silly if I make them shorter, so it's a lose-lose. If I keep them long I at least preserve the recognizable look. (and it's not as if I actually plan for this crossover to go anywhere, anyway)
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sean Mirrsen View Post
    The lightsource seems to be a fairly nearby floodlight or equivalent, maybe the sun if it's a clear day, but it rarely gives shadows like that. Maybe it's a camera flash? The shading looks very good, btw.

    Yep, now it's much improved. Shading on the tail is quite fine, though it looks a little solid at the moment. The show uses several darker lines running along the hair to show that it's not a solid object, you could do something like that as well.

    ...nah. It looks quite fine as it is, even if not exactly realistic. What you should do, however, is the same thing you've remembered to do for the helmet - a specular shine. Add some bright yellowish-white streaks or blotches (depending on what shape you believe it to be) to the visor to show the reflecting light, though take care not to obstruct the eyes too much because the eyes are important and it's better to sacrifice realism than to lose them.

    Also, line up the drop shadow of the closer rear leg to its source.
    Gotcha. I'll do some more tweaking tomorrow, and then I'll get back to actually drawing. I did think about adding the shine to the visor, but wasn't sure exactly how to do it. I'll experiment tomorrow.

    Quote Originally Posted by Sean Mirrsen View Post
    Strike Units they were called, I believe, and yes, they won't look quite as well no matter how I draw them. They're made for human legs, and are just too long, proportionally. They'll look downright silly if I make them shorter, so it's a lose-lose. If I keep them long I at least preserve the recognizable look. (and it's not as if I actually plan for this crossover to go anywhere, anyway)
    Yeah, that's what I figured.


    Found this the other day, nice little reference page, figure I might give something like this a try for practice.
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    Just call me Diego. Mr. Havoc was my father.
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    I can use some practice along those lines as well. Lining up the face to whatever expression is supposed to be displayed is surprisingly hard - even when you know what the expression you're going for is supposed to look like.

    Instead of my usual timed practice, Day ... is it 5? Anyway, Day maybe-5 was spent sketching this. Ended up one panel short, because couldn't figure out a pose/expression that'd look convincing for it. This is in anticipation of RD's inevitable Outing today in the Heal/Hurt game. Sketchier than I'd like to do it, but rather short on time. Can't even estimate total time spent, but something on the order of four hours, including three discarded panel variants.
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    This is also a 33%-sized version, I went with "ridiculously huge" for canvas size.

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    Day 106. Firstly, the Power Armour Twilight pic, hopefully now finished, barring anything obvious that needs adding.

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    I'm not sure about the positioning of the shine on the visor, but it's there.

    Wondering if I should also blur the shadow a bit so that it's not as hard.


    And also, real human face practice, take 2. Moderate success.
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    Just call me Diego. Mr. Havoc was my father.
    Quote Originally Posted by SiuiS View Post
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    Quote Originally Posted by Diego Havoc View Post
    And also, real human face practice, take 2. Moderate success.
    This is actually a success for what it is - a sketch layer.

    This type of solid inking will never produce a good looking face. It'll always look weird - solid black laser lines being used to denote more complicated structures of shadow and discolouration. That's why lips always look so weird when you outline them in black - because they're not separate objects, they're just a slight change in tone!

    Once you have a sketch layer like this you can begin painting on top of it. But it's not going to produce a good-looking image on it's own no matter how much time you spent on it.

    Take a look at this picture, or this. Where are the hard lines? What's the difference between lips and the skin? See the discolouration and shadows around the eyes?

    If you want hard lines to look good as a face you're going to have to stylise to a degree. If you want to do realism you've got to understand that something like this is a good sketch layer, from whence you can start applying more complicated shading and paints.
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    I have been drawing, just really nothing to show for it. A combination of experiments with coloring as well as a combination of days when my drawings were just... Off. Like an art block but you can still draw, everything just looks bad. Like your hand got gimped up or something. But I got better. Or at least as as good or bad as I ever was.


    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    No one ever saw the emperor because he was so busy raising the sun every day. Celestia might not actually be in the palace; she could be hidden amongst the common ponies while the shogun - maybe a dragon - keeps everypony from looking behind the curtain.

    Doesn't fit with your role for Celly in the story though.

    A dragon shogun and a slight wizard of oz thing... Can't use it... But that would be awesome...
    But dragons, as well as griffons and diamond dogs as barbarian nations at the gates would be nice. More Roman/China then Japan, but it would be cool. A good reason for all the daiymos to get along besides fear/reverence of the alicorns.

    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    Rarity Belle doesn't sound hateful.

    Thanks! This name is now canon.

    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    What's way more powerful than explaining where the feud started or what it's about is to show it. Have Applejack burn down one of Rarity's buildings in an introduction sequence, drop a cool one liner, and then cut to an angry Rarity. Have a few ineffective Fancy Pants soldiers show up to stop her, but have her demolish them kung fu villain style. We dunno how this feud started, but that doesn't matter - we know exactly where it goes from here.



    Someone insulted someone else's momma and then a building got burned down and now the other guy has to retaliate and no one's backing down. Escalation until the airship's on fire and you've lost your hat. Honestly, thinking up casus belli's in feudal Japan is the easiest thing.
    Starting it with a bang, I'll have to do that scene.

    This is true, a small slight can lead to a ongoing feud. But at the same time, what has me worried is that the Apples are stronger number wise and bringing pure muscle and weight to bare so to speak. So I'm afraid to paint them as the bad guys sense before the truce they are winning and Rarity Belle are losing. And everyone cheers for the smaller one, I want the conflict to be a bit grayer then that. Granted, if Rarity is shooting at Scoot, it'll be hard to cheer for one side alone.
    I read that one of the things that yakazu fought over was stall space in markets. I was thinking that the Apple family would be an amaglation of rural farming families and Rarity Belle would be based in the city proper (Ponyville? Need to think up the name for the city/town), and the conflict would be over the stall space/prices which Rarity Belle largely controlled before the conflict. While Rarity Belle is smaller in numbers it is richer and has the founds to hire people to fight for them. Like Dash and Shy.


    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    Do not show restraint when you're doing a visual gag. Have her flip that damn table because that'd be hilarious.
    Noted and thanks for the advice, drawing wise I need to work on my comedy and action scenes. Two things this project will hopefully help.


    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    Everything else seems fairly reasonable!
    Thank you for the comments! Now that I'm over my art block thing, I'll get back to work on setting and story.


    Quote Originally Posted by Diego Havoc View Post
    Day 106. Firstly, the Power Armour Twilight pic, hopefully now finished, barring anything obvious that needs adding.

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    I'm not sure about the positioning of the shine on the visor, but it's there.

    Wondering if I should also blur the shadow a bit so that it's not as hard.


    And also, real human face practice, take 2. Moderate success.
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    Your Twilight is looking good. I'm scanning my brain for something to nitpick, but I can't find anything major. Cell shading looks good with your stuff, are you going to make this your main shading method?

    I have to agree with Thanqol on the face though.

    Quote Originally Posted by Sean Mirrsen View Post
    I can use some practice along those lines as well. Lining up the face to whatever expression is supposed to be displayed is surprisingly hard - even when you know what the expression you're going for is supposed to look like.

    Instead of my usual timed practice, Day ... is it 5? Anyway, Day maybe-5 was spent sketching this. Ended up one panel short, because couldn't figure out a pose/expression that'd look convincing for it. This is in anticipation of RD's inevitable Outing today in the Heal/Hurt game. Sketchier than I'd like to do it, but rather short on time. Can't even estimate total time spent, but something on the order of four hours, including three discarded panel variants.
    *snip*
    I must say, the the way you draw your wings, makes me jealous.

    Need to practice drawing wings...



    Day 34-35-36,

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    I was working on this one on and off over the last three days.

    Ninja Dash and Shinobi Shy. Colored and with wings this time. Not much to say for this one. The colors aren't the best, but it is what it is. I don't think they'll wear red scarves and stuff on missions but I like red, it adds a little splash to nin dark grayish stuff. I gave Dash a, Shy fights with her fists when she is forced to. She is more of a sneaky shy ninja who people don't notice.



    I was experimenting with more of a painting style of coloring with no success. But today I had a eureka moment when I figured out that if two different colors/body parts are besides each other, then the border should be darker and bolder. It tends to look better. Still, not much, but it was a interesting experiment. I'm going to full around with this some more and then take another stab at that Luna Cake as I think this softer painty style like this would be better for a picture like that.
    Last edited by Bakuel; 2012-04-16 at 12:25 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bakuel View Post
    A dragon shogun and a slight wizard of oz thing... Can't use it... But that would be awesome...
    But dragons, as well as griffons and diamond dogs as barbarian nations at the gates would be nice. More Roman/China then Japan, but it would be cool. A good reason for all the daiymos to get along besides fear/reverence of the alicorns.
    Remember, historically China spent a fair few thousand years being ruled by the Mongols (before they eventually acculturated), and as such Japan regarded China for a long time as a land of savages and barbarians. Mongol China even tried to invade Japan, to be stopped by the kamikazi. The Shogun originally came to power as being the general who conquered the northern Ainu tribes on the Emperor's behalf. Finally, there was Nobonaga's short-lived invasion of Korea. Those have been the few occasions Japan wasn't engaged in GLORIOUS ISOLATION.

    The perception of the world being filled with barbarians was there, but it waned between events. The periods of massive in-fighting tended to come only after they'd forgotten that the rest of the world existed.

    This is true, a small slight can lead to a ongoing feud. But at the same time, what has me worried is that the Apples are stronger number wise and bringing pure muscle and weight to bare so to speak. So I'm afraid to paint them as the bad guys sense before the truce they are winning and Rarity Belle are losing. And everyone cheers for the smaller one, I want the conflict to be a bit grayer then that. Granted, if Rarity is shooting at Scoot, it'll be hard to cheer for one side alone.
    Mercenaries. Which was essentially what most Ronin, and ninja clans, of the time were.

    I read that one of the things that yakazu fought over was stall space in markets. I was thinking that the Apple family would be an amaglation of rural farming families and Rarity Belle would be based in the city proper (Ponyville? Need to think up the name for the city/town), and the conflict would be over the stall space/prices which Rarity Belle largely controlled before the conflict. While Rarity Belle is smaller in numbers it is richer and has the founds to hire people to fight for them. Like Dash and Shy.
    This works!

    Ninja Dash and Shinobi Shy. Colored and with wings this time. Not much to say for this one. The colors aren't the best, but it is what it is. I don't think they'll wear red scarves and stuff on missions but I like red, it adds a little splash to nin dark grayish stuff. I gave Dash a, Shy fights with her fists when she is forced to. She is more of a sneaky shy ninja who people don't notice.
    Idea: Make Dash a Ronin. She goes in big and obvious, bellowing challenges and setting things on fire, as cover for Fluttershy's much more underhanded techniques. Take their personalities to the extreme of either end, thereby covering each other's weaknesses and maximising their strengths.

    The samurai rides out to fight the Ronin, the shinobi breaks into his house and steals the gold, and when she gives the thumbs up to the Ronin on the way out they both cut and run. Making dishonour fun!

    I was experimenting with more of a painting style of coloring with no success. But today I had a eureka moment when I figured out that if two different colors/body parts are besides each other, then the border should be darker and bolder. It tends to look better. Still, not much, but it was a interesting experiment. I'm going to full around with this some more and then take another stab at that Luna Cake as I think this softer painty style like this would be better for a picture like that.
    Ooooooh, I see what you mean. That's a great observation, I'ma practise with it.

    EDIT:

    You know what? I'm mentally invested enough and this is a cool enough project for me to make the offer. Bakuel, I'm prepared to offer full assistance with this Samurai Equestria project; whatever I can offer that you need.

    Probably the most useful thing I can offer is colouring linework; I'm okay at it, and there's probably going to be a lot of it to do. I'm less good at linework and composition, but I've got a decent theoretical grounding to critique from. Whatever else you want that I'm capable of - writing, idea bouncing, samurai movie wisecracks, poor singing - ask and I'll do it; I shall be an obedient vassal in all respects.

    I also understand if it's a labour of love and you don't want the assistance, but I should at least make the offer
    Last edited by Thanqol; 2012-04-16 at 06:10 AM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    This is actually a success for what it is - a sketch layer.

    This type of solid inking will never produce a good looking face. It'll always look weird - solid black laser lines being used to denote more complicated structures of shadow and discolouration. That's why lips always look so weird when you outline them in black - because they're not separate objects, they're just a slight change in tone!

    Once you have a sketch layer like this you can begin painting on top of it. But it's not going to produce a good-looking image on it's own no matter how much time you spent on it.

    Take a look at this picture, or this. Where are the hard lines? What's the difference between lips and the skin? See the discolouration and shadows around the eyes?

    If you want hard lines to look good as a face you're going to have to stylise to a degree. If you want to do realism you've got to understand that something like this is a good sketch layer, from whence you can start applying more complicated shading and paints.
    I think I kind of knew that really. I just kind of, I dunno, overlooked it?

    I'll do something with it soon.

    Anyone have any good brush settings for this kind of thing? I'm using Photoshop CS5.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bakuel View Post
    Your Twilight is looking good. I'm scanning my brain for something to nitpick, but I can't find anything major.
    Thanks! I've got a silly idea for this pic that I'll sort out tomorrow, perhaps.

    I'm debating whether or not to post it on Ponibooru, if only because I'm very wary of season finale spoilers being leaked and if they are, Ponibooru will be covered in them. EDIT: Did it anyway. My filter tags seem to be working.
    Quote Originally Posted by Bakuel View Post
    Cell shading looks good with your stuff, are you going to make this your main shading method?
    I guess so. It seems to work for me, but I might experiment with other types too.

    Day 107. I didn't plan this, I couldn't think of anything so I just started drawing and... it just kinda drew itself.
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    Last edited by Diego Havoc; 2012-04-16 at 05:51 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by SiuiS View Post
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    EDIT:

    You know what? I'm mentally invested enough and this is a cool enough project for me to make the offer. Bakuel, I'm prepared to offer full assistance with this Samurai Equestria project; whatever I can offer that you need.

    Probably the most useful thing I can offer is colouring linework; I'm okay at it, and there's probably going to be a lot of it to do. I'm less good at linework and composition, but I've got a decent theoretical grounding to critique from. Whatever else you want that I'm capable of - writing, idea bouncing, samurai movie wisecracks, poor singing - ask and I'll do it; I shall be an obedient vassal in all respects.

    I also understand if it's a labour of love and you don't want the assistance, but I should at least make the offer
    That would be awesome if you could!
    The one thing the project really needs is a writer/editor, not so much for plot (even though advice and comments would be good there too!) but really I must say again, I can't write natural or even movie grad dialogue worth snot. And I wouldn't even be able to attempt the Apple's accent. Some of the enjoyment of MLP is somewhat in the dialogue, the difference between say Fancy, AJ, and Fluttershy for example, if these difference aren't there the story would lose quiet a bit.

    Coloring linework would also help, but that would be all the way at the end stage. Because it's not going to be a long graphic novel, when the push comes to shove I want to get all the penciling finished first so we can all be sure that the panels and scenes flow well.

    And it isn't that much a personal project, in my mind it's more like practice. Or rather, a trial by fire. I have always toyed with making comics. And I don't want to start with some long epic over ambitious tale that goes nowhere, but a shorter tale with a clear end already plotted. The type of small graphic novel someone could read in a hour or so. Since ponies have occupied my thoughts this past year and I love elseworlds/twisted mirror/what-if-type scenarios and settings, this is the result.
    It would be foolish of me to turn down help or suggestions by people other people for this type of maiden project, which is part of the reason why I threw the concept out there while it is still in it's infancy.

    But I should warn you, the idea is still in it's formative phase. It's like a ghost of a concept. And it's not even follow plotted out yet. I'm afraid that I might lose sight of the goal or something might happen. So for now, I want to keep throwing around and organizing ideas.

    Quote Originally Posted by Diego Havoc View Post
    Day 107. I didn't plan this, I couldn't think of anything so I just started drawing and... it just kinda drew itself.
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    *snip*
    I don't mean to be annoying, but the first thing I thought when I saw that pony was it was straight from the 50s... It's probably the hair, but that *could* also be a leather jacket and white t-shirt. It could be...
    Alright, maybe I'm crazy.

    Day 37,
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    More adventures in painting! Yay!
    Did Applejack drinking. While on a barrel. I dunno. It came to me while I was doing my daily commute and is what I drew and colored when I got home. I think it's much stronger then I my painting yesterday. Mildly pleased with it, I must say painting is fun! And fast!
    Who knew that getting rid of the black linework would be so liberating?

    Then I drew Fluttershy as a shrine maiden. A ugly giant sketch, I don't know why I made it so big. Anyway, the idea is that Fluttershy's day job is as a shrine maiden, I need to write a blurb on Fluttershy and Dash.
    But the problem is, what are these shrines dedicated to? The cult of the alicorns, ala Roman Imperial cult? Or to various natural phenomenon such as mountains, rivers, magic, nature and stuff like that? Or famous dead ponies? Or all of the above depending on the shrine?
    It's odd, I wanted there to be shrines, yet I'm having trouble thinking up an actual reason for them to exist. They already have goddesses in the alicorns. I'm leaning toward all of the above, shrines being like public monuments that rich types people dedicate to something or another to show everyone how awesome they are and the shrine staff just charged with keeping up with it, tending the gardens, animals and whatever.

    Last edited by Bakuel; 2012-04-17 at 01:12 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bakuel View Post
    That would be awesome if you could!
    The one thing the project really needs is a writer/editor, not so much for plot (even though advice and comments would be good there too!) but really I must say again, I can't write natural or even movie grad dialogue worth snot. And I wouldn't even be able to attempt the Apple's accent. Some of the enjoyment of MLP is somewhat in the dialogue, the difference between say Fancy, AJ, and Fluttershy for example, if these difference aren't there the story would lose quiet a bit.
    Sure! Define the scope and limits of the writing you'd have me do, if you would - leave me to my own devices and I'll rewatch my entire Kurosawa collection and write you a novel.

    The other way to do this is as a dialogue writer - you storyboard out the key scenes and plot and I add the specific dialogue to advance the stated objectives. I actually enjoy working under constraints, makes me think more creatively.

    The third option is wait for you to do a draft and then go through with rewrites (i.e. not just commenting on what doesn't work, but actually providing specific examples of how to fix it). This is a touch dubious because dramatic changes in writing style tend to stand out, but should be less obvious in a comic form.

    Coloring linework would also help, but that would be all the way at the end stage. Because it's not going to be a long graphic novel, when the push comes to shove I want to get all the penciling finished first so we can all be sure that the panels and scenes flow well.
    Absolutely. My own linework is rather medicore so I don't have as much to offer on that stage.

    And it isn't that much a personal project, in my mind it's more like practice. Or rather, a trial by fire. I have always toyed with making comics. And I don't want to start with some long epic over ambitious tale that goes nowhere, but a shorter tale with a clear end already plotted. The type of small graphic novel someone could read in a hour or so. Since ponies have occupied my thoughts this past year and I love elseworlds/twisted mirror/what-if-type scenarios and settings, this is the result.
    It would be foolish of me to turn down help or suggestions by people other people for this type of maiden project, which is part of the reason why I threw the concept out there while it is still in it's infancy.
    *Nod nod*

    But I should warn you, the idea is still in it's formative phase. It's like a ghost of a concept. And it's not even follow plotted out yet. I'm afraid that I might lose sight of the goal or something might happen. So for now, I want to keep throwing around and organizing ideas.
    It's a good process, keep the ideas churning until they naturally settle into their optimal state. It is important to chose the key points, the story's themes, early on, though, because everything naturally structures around those. I find three themes is a good rule of thumb for longer stories; a short piece can get by on one or two.

    More adventures in painting! Yay!
    Did Applejack drinking. While on a barrel. I dunno. It came to me while I was doing my daily commute and is what I drew and colored when I got home. I think it's much stronger then I my painting yesterday. Mildly pleased with it, I must say painting is fun! And fast!
    Who knew that getting rid of the black linework would be so liberating?
    I know, right? Painting rules.

    But the problem is, what are these shrines dedicated to? The cult of the alicorns, ala Roman Imperial cult? Or to various natural phenomenon such as mountains, rivers, magic, nature and stuff like that? Or famous dead ponies? Or all of the above depending on the shrine?
    Shinto is great for this. A hundred, a thousand years ago someone builds a shrine for any of those reasons, or hangs a rope around a really big tree, or puts up a giant gate outside a mountain, and then it just becomes part of the landscape. It's actual meaning becomes lost, even to the priests. You can be walking through a forest and find that certain trees have been marked as sacred - who knows why? Maybe that roadside statue is a temple, or a grave, or where an ancient demon was imprisoned?

    Mostly, these things just are.

    It's odd, I wanted there to be shrines, yet I'm having trouble thinking up an actual reason for them to exist. They already have goddesses in the alicorns. I'm leaning toward all of the above, shrines being like public monuments that rich types people dedicate to something or another to show everyone how awesome they are and the shrine staff just charged with keeping up with it, tending the gardens, animals and whatever.
    Shinto's other big aspect is that it's a religion of celebration. The gods must be kept happy - let's party! Let's throw a giant festival with costumes and sake and floats and sake and food and sake! Let's build giant fires so that the spirits can dance along with us! Let's pick up that giant, heavy altar and get a bunch of near-naked men to drink a lot of sake and carry it around town! It's very much a religion of the lower class and the superstitious. There is a lot of sake in shinto.

    Interestingly, a lot of the wealthy - especially the samurai - were far more into buddhism. The buddhist temples were generally far larger and more elaborate than the folklore of shinto. Buddhism is also a lot more dour and grim than shinto; shinto was the religion of marriages and births and holy days, buddhism was the religion of funerals.

    As to reasons why these two things are, well, let's trace the two back to their historic origins - ancient folklore for shinto, and an import from China for buddhism. You don't need to justify an origin for the shinto half of it; that comes with the visuals. It's animism in it's purest sense. Buddhism is more complex, and something of a more organised, political force. Buddhism provides a way for individuals to mentally sidestep their religious obligations to the emperor - perhaps dangerous ideas from the chinese-expy dragons encouraging subtle dissent against the alicorns?

    EDIT: I just realised that the implication of this is that Discord is the Buddha.

    Religion generally didn't dominate Japanese politics in the same way as it did in medieval Europe, so think about if you're going to include it at the same time as you're looking for explanations.
    Last edited by Thanqol; 2012-04-17 at 01:59 AM.
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    Default Re: Ponythread Learns to Draw! Together!

    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    Sure! Define the scope and limits of the writing you'd have me do, if you would - leave me to my own devices and I'll rewatch my entire Kurosawa collection and write you a novel.
    I'm sorry, I think I started doing this by accident. And given how naturally and easily the writing flows, and how long I've spent fighting my brain to get something started, this might accidentally work out as a full length piece. I'm very sorry. I might have inadvertently stolen your idea.

    Here's the opening.

    But! Hopefully the way this particular story will work out will be as something that can co-exist in the same universe as your intended comic, and the two might be able to feed into each other; alternately, the comic could cover one sequence of the larger story. I don't know; I don't know quite where I'm going with this and I want to talk it over with you in more detail one way or another because your eye for worldbuilding is really stoking my creativity for this.

    I'm sorry again. Sometimes this just happens to me. I'll pull the plug if I'm really stepping on your toes here (which means, I'll still write it but just not show anyone); I'll also defer to any story judgements you might have. Let me know what you think!

    (I guess I'm writing fancomic-fanfic here?)
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    Default Re: Ponythread Learns to Draw! Together!

    The proper term is "Recursive Fanfic", I believe.

    And that looks like the beginning of a very interesting story. I can spot no errors, grammatical or otherwise, and I've no experience with chinese/japanese/whatever history and/or traditions, so can't comment on the accuracy of any descriptions. Whether or not it actually is, it seems accurate, so it works at least as verisimilitude.

    Oh, and I've nothing to post again. Biiig surprise there.
    edit: well, except this, but it ain't much progress and I really don't know why I even bother with it.
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    Last edited by Sean Mirrsen; 2012-04-17 at 10:51 AM.
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    Default Re: Ponythread Learns to Draw! Together!

    Quote Originally Posted by Bakuel View Post
    I don't mean to be annoying, but the first thing I thought when I saw that pony was it was straight from the 50s... It's probably the hair, but that *could* also be a leather jacket and white t-shirt. It could be....
    Well... yeah. That's precisely what it was meant to be. Or is there some sort of other interpretation I'm missing here?

    Day 108 has thus far been unproductive. I did do that "Pony faces from different angles" bit, but I'm not feeling very enthusiastic today, so I admit I didn't put much effort into it. Not worth posting :/
    Just call me Diego. Mr. Havoc was my father.
    Quote Originally Posted by SiuiS View Post
    Diego Havoc, one of the hoopier froods I've met, up there with DeLancie.

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    Default Re: Ponythread Learns to Draw! Together!

    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    Sure! Define the scope and limits of the writing you'd have me do, if you would - leave me to my own devices and I'll rewatch my entire Kurosawa collection and write you a novel.

    The other way to do this is as a dialogue writer - you storyboard out the key scenes and plot and I add the specific dialogue to advance the stated objectives. I actually enjoy working under constraints, makes me think more creatively.

    The third option is wait for you to do a draft and then go through with rewrites (i.e. not just commenting on what doesn't work, but actually providing specific examples of how to fix it). This is a touch dubious because dramatic changes in writing style tend to stand out, but should be less obvious in a comic form.

    If the project ever gets to that stage, then I'm sure we'll figure out the best method.


    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    Shinto is great for this. A hundred, a thousand years ago someone builds a shrine for any of those reasons, or hangs a rope around a really big tree, or puts up a giant gate outside a mountain, and then it just becomes part of the landscape. It's actual meaning becomes lost, even to the priests. You can be walking through a forest and find that certain trees have been marked as sacred - who knows why? Maybe that roadside statue is a temple, or a grave, or where an ancient demon was imprisoned?

    *snip*

    EDIT: I just realised that the implication of this is that Discord is the Buddha.

    Religion generally didn't dominate Japanese politics in the same way as it did in medieval Europe, so think about if you're going to include it at the same time as you're looking for explanations.
    I'll keep stewing with the religion.

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    In Equestria asking prayer style religion isn't really needed. The goddesses are right there, Twilight goes batty in ponyville, Spike doesn't need a ritual or prayer, he just writes a letter to Celestia, she shows up after the sunsets and comes down deus ex machina style.
    But, to go a little bit deeper then this type of religion and into the pony mind set, no religious/philosophical/world-view is really needed at all. Pony's are, after all, pretty happy creatures. Not to get into realworld religious/philosophical thought, but it seems to me that for people most philosophies/world-views or what have you center around the fact that life is short and filled with problems. Whether secular/religious, theist/atheist, or what have you, it's always a question of how to build a better society (what is a "better" society is the rub) and dealing with the issues and problems of life. Some are more personal then others, some deal more with society. But all the great philosophies, religions, and what-have-yous of civilization have dealt with what the correct way to go about things is.
    Since Equestria is pretty much a *almost* utopia and whenever they stray from the path of friendship wendigos attack, ponies need to stay happy and friendly or else.
    If a human was transported to Equestria and tried to sell his common ideas about society, whether he be a secular humanist/christian/islamic/jewish/buddhist/capitalist/communist/socialist or what have you he would be hard pressed for any converts. I can imagine if he mentioned the importance of human/pony advancement or love and forgiveness or right and wrong or whatever, he would get some head noddings and agreements. But actually true understanding going on like another human being would? Probably not. And I'm not even going to touch the more economical world-views.


    Since Samurai-Equestria has a lot more problems then normal Equestria and life is harder, I can kinda see ponies turning toward various traditions, religions, and philosophies to make sense of their lives. On a more personal level, you could say that the ponies are less in tune with their world and their place in it. Their magic is more distant, their goddesses, while still there, are more distant as well. Some ponies might turn to the sincerity of various shrine gardens for relaxation, some might follow the codes/philosophies lain down by famous moral teachers (some spiritual and some more secular both types having both sincere and charlatans out for a quick buck), some may follow old traditions (some of the rituals have actually magical benefit, think zap apples, others are just superstitions). Others may prefer to live in the moment. But one way or another, the ponies are more human in that ideas about the right way to live life and order society are out there. And everyone, even if they try to just live in the moment, can't help but be at least somewhat concerned with what is the "correct" way to go about things.

    Since magic exists, some of the shrines may have power or house/entrap deities like Discord. I have to think on this, it will have zero effect on this small story though.



    Quote Originally Posted by Thanqol View Post
    I'm sorry, I think I started doing this by accident. And given how naturally and easily the writing flows, and how long I've spent fighting my brain to get something started, this might accidentally work out as a full length piece. I'm very sorry. I might have inadvertently stolen your idea.

    Here's the opening.

    But! Hopefully the way this particular story will work out will be as something that can co-exist in the same universe as your intended comic, and the two might be able to feed into each other; alternately, the comic could cover one sequence of the larger story. I don't know; I don't know quite where I'm going with this and I want to talk it over with you in more detail one way or another because your eye for worldbuilding is really stoking my creativity for this.

    I'm sorry again. Sometimes this just happens to me. I'll pull the plug if I'm really stepping on your toes here (which means, I'll still write it but just not show anyone); I'll also defer to any story judgements you might have. Let me know what you think!

    (I guess I'm writing fancomic-fanfic here?)
    You stole my idea!

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    Go for it keep writing it! Honestly, I'm happy that a concept of mine could serve as inspiration for you and got you writing again! In a weird way, I actually managed to pitch a concept. That's the first time that's ever happened.

    I don't know if it could take place in the same story though, you use the mane six in a different light then I plan to. Especially Twilight and Dash, I had put Dash as a ninja, and Twilight was going to be a secondary character with Rarity Belle and a foil for Rarity. A brilliant commoner/ accountant/steward/tutor/would-be scholar saving up for the entrance fee for the imperial examinations at the capital.*
    You seem to be planning out a different story, maybe another look at the setting? Another world? Can't really offer any adivice on it, you need to write more of it!
    You can go ahead and put it out for the generally public too, this doesn't really matter. At worst more people will learn about the concept and setting. Some of the thunder, so to speak, would be lost if I ever get out of my hole and finish this project and everyone already knows about the setting and concept, but honestly, it's not the thunder that matters but the actual lightning. As long as I can produce a half-way decent fan product with my current artistic abilities, I'm good. It would be a personal milestone. If that makes sense. Your story has the potential to be great, especially if it's spontaneous. I don't write but the best art generally has some spontaneity. To not publish it for public enjoyment would be sad.

    Besides, I want to see where the story goes.

    *
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    Think introverted anti-social Twilight without the patronage of Celestia. Powerful magic, but afraid to go overboard with showing it as many people react not with wonder but fear and apprehension. Would rather be known by her intellect then by her brute magic strength as some show pony or mercenary. Magic isn't as powerful as it is in normal Equestria, most unicorns only having basic telekinesis and being only able to learn minor spells, more advanced and powerful spells being rarer (fewer people can actually cast them) and located at the capital library under lock and key. After all, the alicorns can't have every single Trixie style magic cutie mark pony getting ahold of powerful reality binding spells.
    Outside of the elite scholars and magicians with access to these scrolls, commoner unicorns with an affinity with magic turn to either show business, or as mercenaries (think using telekinesis to hurl weapons or just tear things up, Psi Hulk smash!). Or they can save their money and set their eyes on passing the imperial examinations and become an official scholar or bureaucrat and work their way up the ranks until they get access. A commoner may not have much hope to ever reach the top from the bottom, but if they are brilliant enough they just might.
    Yes, the Imperial Examinations are more China, Ming especially, then Japan. But as Celestia's government in the capital is nominally based on merit, rather then nobility (even though it doesn't really work out that way) I wanted there to be a system in place for a commoner to rise up in the ranks. Richer nobles can easily bypass some of the examination levels through bribes, patronage/interviews by high official scholars/officials, and so on. I know Japan actually had academic system and things like that, but there is much less info on the schools, universities and so on.



    Quote Originally Posted by Diego Havoc View Post
    Well... yeah. That's precisely what it was meant to be. Or is there some sort of other interpretation I'm missing here?
    Sorry, I typed that one at 1-2 in the morning, my mind was halfway gone. I imagined that referencing the Fonzi outright would get me tarred, feathered and thrown in a river. The other thing I was thinking it could have been would have been a stereotypical yanki Japanese delinquent pony.

  27. - Top - End - #777
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    Default Re: Ponythread Learns to Draw! Together!

    Quote Originally Posted by Sean Mirrsen View Post
    The proper term is "Recursive Fanfic", I believe.
    We need to go deeper.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bakuel View Post
    If the project ever gets to that stage, then I'm sure we'll figure out the best method.
    "If"? I'ma drive you into it with whips and chains!

    I'll keep stewing with the religion.
    General agreement on religious thoughts, but forum rules prevent me from discussing it further.

    Since magic exists, some of the shrines may have power or house/entrap deities like Discord. I have to think on this, it will have zero effect on this small story though.
    Blur the boundaries of myth and reality. Keep outright supernatural elements absent but have them be discussed in the same way as real myths.


    You stole my idea!

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    Go for it keep writing it! Honestly, I'm happy that a concept of mine could serve as inspiration for you and got you writing again! In a weird way, I actually managed to pitch a concept. That's the first time that's ever happened.
    *Deep breath of relief* I'm really glad to hear that. This story's just happening and I can hardly stop it.

    I don't know if it could take place in the same story though, you use the mane six in a different light then I plan to. Especially Twilight and Dash, I had put Dash as a ninja, and Twilight was going to be a secondary character with Rarity Belle and a foil for Rarity. A brilliant commoner/ accountant/steward/tutor/would-be scholar saving up for the entrance fee for the imperial examinations at the capital.*
    You seem to be planning out a different story, maybe another look at the setting? Another world? Can't really offer any adivice on it, you need to write more of it!
    *Nod nod* I am taking a significantly different tack with this; the key elements all came together in my head last night. The core themes are 'Echoes of Friendship' and 'Flawed Harmony'. The first half is going to be smooth and fluid, I know of the powerful centre point and all the emotion and power there and then I can see the story break into a hundred gleaming shards. It feels more like the setup for a series than a story right now. Ah, I can do so much with this!

    I'm nicking my own idea about the Dragon-Shogun back as the primary antagonist.

    You can go ahead and put it out for the generally public too, this doesn't really matter. At worst more people will learn about the concept and setting. Some of the thunder, so to speak, would be lost if I ever get out of my hole and finish this project and everyone already knows about the setting and concept, but honestly, it's not the thunder that matters but the actual lightning. As long as I can produce a half-way decent fan product with my current artistic abilities, I'm good. It would be a personal milestone. If that makes sense. Your story has the potential to be great, especially if it's spontaneous. I don't write but the best art generally has some spontaneity. To not publish it for public enjoyment would be sad.
    Good philosophy and wise words, thank you. My offer of unlimited assistance to your comic remains and will remain open.

    Besides, I want to see where the story goes.
    I do too! It's going to be just as much an adventure for me!

    Yes, the Imperial Examinations are more China, Ming especially, then Japan. But as Celestia's government in the capital is nominally based on merit, rather then nobility (even though it doesn't really work out that way) I wanted there to be a system in place for a commoner to rise up in the ranks. Richer nobles can easily bypass some of the examination levels through bribes, patronage/interviews by high official scholars/officials, and so on. I know Japan actually had academic system and things like that, but there is much less info on the schools, universities and so on.
    The traditional way this happened was a noble paying a smart commoner to be a 'tutor'. They wind up being a vassal/courtier/steward of the aristocrat, getting to ply their trade and letting someone else claim the credit. It's possible to better yourself in life under feudalism, it's only when you want class mobility that things become a problem. The only real way to legitimise it is to marry a noble.
    Last edited by Thanqol; 2012-04-18 at 12:32 AM.
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    Default Re: Ponythread Learns to Draw! Together!

    Hitting Special Effects Failure on this thing... too much glows? Gotta scrap all those lighting layers and do something saner. And maybe refine the whole "rainbow beam chest blaster" concept... too much like Care Bears..

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    In addition, can't choose a fitting background. What would be fitting here?

    And suggestions for a better caption very very welcome, if you have them. What I got doesn't sound catchy enough.
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    Default Re: Ponythread Learns to Draw! Together!

    And of course, the right way to address "too much glow" is "add even more glow".

    At least it's more refined this time. (plus cleaned up dodgy coloring and redesigned the helmet)

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    Any thoughts on it? At all?
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    Default Re: Ponythread Learns to Draw! Together!

    Quote Originally Posted by Sean Mirrsen View Post
    Any thoughts on it? At all?
    I'm sorry, I'm stuck trying to think up a witty caption. My brain is simply unable to move beyond failing at that.

    Otherwise, the only quibble I have is the shape of the chest plate; it doesn't look like it's designed to be shooting lasers. Most other stuff is beyond my ability to comprehension critique thing.
    Last edited by Thanqol; 2012-04-20 at 07:00 AM.
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