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Ron_Jackson
01-18-2008, 11:53 PM
Never did I ever expect to post anything under this thread however, people like Keith Howe and Michael Gan have gotten it through my thick skull that competition is good in many ways. So here we go. This is my first image to post for review. I will admit I have been getting some very sound advice from a respected forum member whom I will not name but leave it to that person if they choose to reveal who they are. I so appreciate the help I have received and have enjoyed working on this image. As you can easily see, the image is now perfect so there is no need to try and find fault to comment on. :) Ha! I'm kidding. It will be interesting to see what others have to say. Remember only one thing, this is still a work in progress. Like Disneyland, it might never be finished. (Ps-Don't bother putting a comp grid on it because the girls are not precisely on that quadrant and I know it but I hesitate to crop this out to put them precisely on that point) Thanks in advance for your comments.

http://i99.photobucket.com/albums/l293/voodoomagic_2006/CloneofGilrsWagonTransparentFlipped.jpg

George_Hawkins
01-19-2008, 12:31 AM
Ron, Just beautiful! All I can suggest is toning down the lightness of the wood cut branch left of center.

George

Ron_Jackson
01-19-2008, 12:41 AM
Good call George! Thanks. I think I was told to do that before and just forgot but I did just now go back and really toned it down in the full res version.

Ron_Jackson
01-19-2008, 12:46 AM
Here is the toned down version.
Thanks!

http://i99.photobucket.com/albums/l293/voodoomagic_2006/CloneofGilrsWagonTransparentFlip-1.jpg

George_Hawkins
01-19-2008, 01:01 AM
Here is the toned down version.

Far superior! Did you move the kids? Looks like they have a place to go - to move in to. I don't object that it's not in thirds, but what if you cropped out some of the large tree trunk on left?

Disclaimer: I am not a judge, but have observed many judging sessions.

George

Cheri_MacCallum
01-19-2008, 01:09 AM
Ron this is beautiful and I LOVE the colors!!! The only thing I would consider changing is the foreground on viewer's bottom right! When I opened this thread that's the first thing I saw! This is really breathtaking!

Jane_Lydick_Staid
01-19-2008, 01:25 AM
Absolutely gorgeous, I wish this one was mine!

Ron_Jackson
01-19-2008, 01:29 AM
Thanks George. Chei Io agree and have toned it down. See what you think about this version. If I can get everyone here on the forum to help me, I might enter and get a merit. Does that mean everyone who helped gets part of the merit? :)

http://i99.photobucket.com/albums/l293/voodoomagic_2006/CloneofGilrsWagonTransparentFlip-2.jpg

George_Hawkins
01-19-2008, 01:35 AM
Ron this is beautiful and I LOVE the colors!!! The only thing I would consider changing is the foreground on viewer's bottom right! When I opened this thread that's the first thing I saw! This is really breathtaking!

Cheri, I am interested. Do you want the foreground lighter from the middle light area graduating lighter as eye moves right? More blended and almost similar to grass a little above?

George

I'll definitely bring your name up for discussion when we as NEIPP trustees with director consider future classes. We meet next month!
Jane, I read your comment! Would you be interested in a class by Cheri? You do not need to answer out on a forum. Email me any instructor thoughts.

George

Ron_Jackson
01-19-2008, 01:35 AM
By the way. Not that it has to do with anything other than curiosity, here is the orginal file I began with. It's always interesting to see original files in major conversions.

http://i99.photobucket.com/albums/l293/voodoomagic_2006/OakTreesOrig.jpg

Jeff_Dachowski
01-19-2008, 02:33 AM
hey Ron,
glad to see you are taking the plunge!!!

This is a striking image. I have a couple of things I would like to see changed just for curiosity before you are crowned!!!!:)

I think I actually would like to see the kids moved further to the right. So that the branch that touches the ground would lead your eye right to the kids.

Also I think the red on the trunk of the tree is distracting. I want to look at the red of the wagon, but my eye finds the large red section first, and I notice the children wagon second. Just my thoughts.

edited to add:
Maybe even take the bottom branch that touches the ground and manipulate it to mimic the arc of the other branches?
Jeff

Cheri_MacCallum
01-19-2008, 02:37 AM
Cheri, I am interested. Do you want the foreground lighter from the middle light area graduating lighter as eye moves right? More blended and almost similar to grass a little above?

No! In Ron's first post the grass was the lightest area in the image and being that it's on the edge, it leads your eye right out of the image. His newer version is burned down in that area and keeps your eye in the image.

Ron_Jackson
01-19-2008, 02:51 AM
Thanks Jeff. Now I toned down the red in the tree and brightened up the wagon a bit to make it stronger. I am not sure how I can move the girls to the right without them connecting with the limb. I felt like the limb gives them a frame and being in the brightest area of the scene, the eye goes right to them. Or, maybe I'm just too close to this thing and can't see the girls for the trees or something like that. I have worked on this image for four years and just now getting it to where I am happier. I probably have painted this thing at least 6 different times from scratch and have never been happy until Keith gave me the idea of adding the red wagon and kids. I'm getting happier with all the help I am getting here.

See what you think about this version. Thanks again Jeff and Cheri.

http://i99.photobucket.com/albums/l293/voodoomagic_2006/CloneofGilrsWagonTransparentFlip-3.jpg

Jeff_Dachowski
01-19-2008, 03:10 AM
Ron,
I took the liberty to print a series of watercolors for myself. Fine! I am just kidding!!!!:)

Actually, here is what I was thinking. Sorry it is a bit sloppy! I am ok if you hate it you won't hurt my feelings.
Jeff

Ron_Jackson
01-19-2008, 03:23 AM
Jeff I see what you mean but I have to say that with this version the white area now is taking my eye away from the girls. Am I just stupid or what? :eek:

Jeff_Dachowski
01-19-2008, 03:27 AM
Ron,
I had an issue with the white area as well and feel it should be a couple zones darker in density. Maybe you can make another branch further down behind them to fill that space?
Jeff

Cheri_MacCallum
01-19-2008, 03:33 AM
Ron this is getting better and better! The more I look at it, I think the bottom right corner needs just a tad more burning and I'm now noticing a small light spot in viewer's upper right corner,that's grabbing my eye! Just some small nit picky things but fixing them will all pay off in comp.

Ron_Jackson
01-19-2008, 03:35 AM
Jeff it's over 900 miles away to shoot that again and move those branches which are huge and heavy and I don't know if the owners would even let me move the branches to fill that space and the trees probably don't have any leaves at this time of year and those little girls are probably in school now and maybe they don't have the red wagon any more and what if New England does lose this weekend then what do we do?!!! :eek: Okay, kidding aside. I see what you mean but I am not convinced that is the right thing to do. For me, it still doesn't seem balanced doing it that way. I am definitely hard headed and it might take a few more attempts to convince me this is the right thing to do. Please don't be offended by my reluctance. I appreciate your help and your input here.

Sandra_Pearce
01-19-2008, 04:34 AM
Hi Ron,

Been very busy all day and this is my first look at your painting. First we need to sign you up for FPP at least before July so you can compete at the FL convention.

I do love your painting. I like the girls in the light. It draws you right to them. I agree with George, I think cropping from the left it removes the bigger element and draws you to the girls in the light. I tried it and I like it better.

Sandra

D._Craig_Flory
01-19-2008, 01:00 PM
Hi Ron;

As you keep working this image I keep getting more and more impressed. You have had some good advice. I'd like to see what Keith and Dave have to say about it. The only thing I see, which would NOT keep it from getting an 80+ from me if I were on the panel, is positioning. Ordinarily I'd bring up that we read from left to right and normally want our eyes to enter from the left and progress to the subject(s) on the right with those subjects facing left. I normally strive to have subjects end up on the 3rd or 4th quadrant or sitting in the bakker saddle on the right. Your subjects are bottom middle left but I like it. So I'm hoping to see what Keith and Dave have to say. I think it works now as is.

George_Hawkins
01-19-2008, 01:16 PM
Hi Ron,

Been very busy all day and this is my first look at your painting. First we need to sign you up for FPP at least before July so you can compete at the FL convention.

I do love your painting. I like the girls in the light. It draws you right to them. I agree with George, I think cropping from the left it removes the bigger element and draws you to the girls in the light. I tried it and I like it better.

Sandra

I'm looking at image again; if my eyes are 24-30" back from my 15" monitor, there is a beautiful "tunnel" effect, and I see real 3-dimensional effect.

As the late Dean Collins said, a photograph (or piece of art) is a two dimensional representation of FOUR dimensions: length, width, depth and at a moment in time!

NOW I am thinking to not consider my option to crop.

Another 2ยข, George

Ron_Jackson
01-19-2008, 01:39 PM
Okay folks. Thanks for all the comments and updates. I am awake and now I will get back to working on this image again. I will post the next revision shortly.

Ron_Jackson
01-19-2008, 02:13 PM
Sandra thanks for reminding me and that means "yes".

Okay. For a radical change, I tweaked the image by burning down areas that Cheri mentioned then I did a slight recrop but then, I flipped the entire image. This was tough for me only because I have stared at this four four years this way and now it's radically different. My brain hurts. However, as D. Craig mentioned and I can hear my instructors at Brooks, I now have light leading you in and dark to stop the eye. So here is the two versions together to get your opinion. Thanks everyone.

THE LAST VERSION BEFORE THE FLIP.....................
http://i99.photobucket.com/albums/l293/voodoomagic_2006/CloneofGilrsWagonTransparentFlip-3.jpg

THE FLIP........................
http://i99.photobucket.com/albums/l293/voodoomagic_2006/GWWImageFlipCropver1.jpg

Tracy_McGee
01-19-2008, 02:14 PM
Ron, this is absolutely beautiful! I, too, have to say I like the girls where they are in the middle of the tunnel of light (but I am definitely not a valid opinion on that LOL). I love the curves and dimension to this! LOVE it!

bob_hancock
01-19-2008, 02:32 PM
Great Image!

D._Craig_Flory
01-19-2008, 02:36 PM
Hi Ron;

Ok, I like it flipped and their placement is close now. I would replace the accent line because it's too bright and draws too much attention to itself. I would select a bluish - greyish tone from the child's outfit on the right.

I don't know if you do this or not. When I add an accent line I don't add it directly to the subject layer. I select that layer and add a transparent layer and stroke that. Then I can lower the opacity till I like it.

You may want to try a hue-saturation layer and lower yellow and then add it back where you want it while keeping the bright yellow green looking less obtrusic.

D._Craig_Flory
01-19-2008, 02:40 PM
Great Image!

Hi Bob;

It's nice to see that you've finally joined ! Bob is a member of PPAofPa and a member of our Board of Governors for those that don't know him.

I'll see you in a few weeks, at the February meeting ... after I give the C.P.P. exam.

Ron_Jackson
01-19-2008, 02:49 PM
Thanks Tracy. If you remember at Imaging when I did my judges critique, Keith said that everything in my portfolio should go loan just as it was. But that's not good enough for me. I want them all to be better so that's why we are working on this image collectively. HA!!! Loan! I wish! I am just trying to work something out that has a chance at a merit.

D. Craig that accent line sucks and I know it. I obviously didn't give it much thought when I selected it. That will be one of the last things we do to this print is choose the final accent line and final placement of the image on the board. I am so grateful for all the input here. I do hope that Keith has some time soon to check in and give us his opinion as well.

I'm liking this better all the time. Hard headed? Yes! Flexible? Given time...absolutely.

Sandra_Pearce
01-19-2008, 03:13 PM
Ron,

You Hardheaded ----------noooooooooway! I love the direction of the painting. The girls are an intricate part of the scene now. They stand out more. I like the crop. A suggestion - Where is all the light on the grass coming from? The trees (beautiful) are massive and I can't figure out where that much light would come from. Think in terms of - if the trees are hanging over the ground, light would be speckled not totally covered. Am I making sense to you? Envision standing under the massive trees how much light would there be? The limbs and leaf cover in the foreground would make shadows. You could paint darker grass in that area to show the limbs and trees don't stop. You have shadow by the girls and you feel the limbs making that shadow. The bright green at the base of the trees needs to be darkened. My opinion Ron, basically it is your work and you know what you are trying to portray.

Sandra

Ron_Jackson
01-19-2008, 03:50 PM
Okay. Here is the latest version. I actually moved the girls forward toward the camera and gave them more shadow underneath. I added some new shadows and highlights in other areas and I changed the line color.

http://i99.photobucket.com/albums/l293/voodoomagic_2006/GWWImageFlipCropver2.jpg

Sandra_Pearce
01-19-2008, 03:55 PM
Ron,

I like the changes. The darker grass next to the trees looks good. I have a wedding this afternoon so I will check tonight. The wedding is taking me away from my painting today. Have been working on one since Sunday in between real work. You are doing a great job.

Sandra

D._Craig_Flory
01-19-2008, 04:02 PM
Hi Ron;

Much better accent line ! You are soon ready for title ideas. I'll throw this out: : "The Journey" / "The Meadow Caper" / "Our Little Red Wagon" / "Off on an Adventure" / "Exploring" .

Ron_Jackson
01-19-2008, 04:06 PM
Thanks Sandra and D. Craig. Nice titles too D. Craig. I am hoping that Holly might take a look for a title idea as well. The only thing that came to my mind was "Into The Light" but that's pretty weak.

Heather_L._Smith
01-19-2008, 04:17 PM
I love the image flipped, Ron!

What about "To Grandmother's House We Go" (all I could think of when I saw this was "over the river and through the woods, to Grandmother's house we go..."

Beautiful job, Ron! It's amazing to see the original and then to look at this!

Ron_Jackson
01-19-2008, 04:28 PM
Thanks Heather. I am trying. That's all I can say is I am trying. It's been a long road since that shot was taken four years ago as nothing more than a snapshot as you can tell by the original. And, it was film.

Keely_Deuschle
01-19-2008, 05:00 PM
Ron,

This is such a beautiful image. I absolutely love it! It's such a learning experience, too, watching the suggestions be implemented and seeing just how much of a difference those little things make.

Keely

Ron_Jackson
01-19-2008, 05:38 PM
Now, check this out. I am watching Jeremy Sutton teaching Painter X and this came up. There is a tool in Painter X that you can click on and it is a template layout of the "Devine Porportion". With a bit of cropping to this image, here is how the template looks over this crop. What do you guys think?

http://i99.photobucket.com/albums/l293/voodoomagic_2006/DevinePorportion.jpg

Keith_A_Howe
01-19-2008, 06:35 PM
Ron, I purposely kept my mouth shut , or should I say fingers still? because I had already given you some input on this print. I thought it would be good for you to hear other opinions. As I suggested at IUSA adding the children has helped this image. before it did not have a center of interest. And I also had told you to tone down that bright spot on the tree where a branch had been cut off. Glad somebody else reminded you. Flipping the image was another good improvement and cropping off some of that heavy dark tree trunks took away the lopsided feel of the image. I feel that the bright green grass of the foreground is still brighter than the children and tends to almost glow. Holly says she gets almost a dark and menacing feeling out of the tree branchs and the kids have an inocence to them. You need a title to explain why this subject is in this environment. Sorry she is blank on a title at the moment.
Keith

Ron_Jackson
01-19-2008, 06:42 PM
Thanks so much Keith for your input. I will try to figure out what to do about the glowing grass here. I understand perfectly.

Ron_Jackson
01-19-2008, 07:25 PM
This time I toned down the glowing grass.

http://i99.photobucket.com/albums/l293/voodoomagic_2006/GWWImageFlipCropver3A.jpg

George_Hawkins
01-19-2008, 07:37 PM
Ron,
Back again, and I like the girls nearer to viewer. I had not said so, but that was in my subconscious. I like the amount of crop you did.
Another disclaimer, I am not a judge.

George

All this encourages me to pull some fall scenes to work in Painter.

Chris_Padgett
01-19-2008, 07:47 PM
I'm going to chime in and go against popular opinion, but I really like the "feel" of your image when it's not flipped. I understand reading left to right, but in your original composition the girls had "movement" out of the trees, with it flipped my eyes get to the trunks and stop. It makes me feel like they are trapped. I think there is enough curve in the branches to bring your eyes back to the girls with the first orientation. This is an awesome image and I have enjoyed watching it grow, thanks for posting it.

Linda_Gregory
01-20-2008, 12:56 AM
Full disclaimer, I'm not a judge. It is a lovely image but I have some concerns about the two keys. The girls and grass are light and airy while the tree branches are dark and foreboding. I think it'd add a lot if you had an image of a single child standing or sitting, looking lost.

Again, just for discussion. :)

Ron_Jackson
01-21-2008, 07:34 PM
Just can't quit messing with this. Here is anothr version with some extra interest.

http://i99.photobucket.com/albums/l293/voodoomagic_2006/GWWImageFlipCropver3ALightRays2.jpg

Keith_A_Howe
01-21-2008, 07:40 PM
Ron
No just NOOOOOO
It doesn't improve the image, it looks fake. Also if you had light shafting through the trees it would be at the same angle unless the tree branches were way way up into the sky or you had some kind of glass above the trees to refract the light. IMO the image as it is now dropped to a 70 or lower.
Keith

Ron_Jackson
01-21-2008, 07:45 PM
No problem. I will return to what I had. Thanks Keith.