AuthorTopic: GR#067 - Punk Furry Tail High - Chars  (Read 20716 times)

Offline Koyot1222

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GR#067 - Punk Furry Tail High - Chars

on: June 22, 2011, 07:59:21 pm
01 08 2011
Playing with light source, cuting composition.
But it didnt help.


29 07 2011


27 07 2011

Very deep water... :/

26 07 2011

Some little progres... :)

18 07 2011

2 days ago i was thought that i should dropt it... little farhrer.

13 07 2011


11 07 2011
« Last Edit: August 01, 2011, 11:18:08 am by Koyot1222 »

Offline Elk

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Re: WIP Punk FurryTail High

Reply #1 on: June 23, 2011, 06:39:17 am
1. Furries are bad for your health

2. next time save your pictures as PNG ;) and if you want it to be pixelart, it should be, you should pixel the font yourself
The outlines of that thing are also really blocky and unorganic, might wanna start with that aswell!
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Offline ptoing

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Re: WIP Punk FurryTail High

Reply #2 on: June 23, 2011, 01:24:06 pm
The pose in the first picture is REALLY uncomfy. Try standing like that and you will see what I mean. It's not natural.

Other than that, yes, post your stuff as png or gif please, it will make edits possible so people can show you how to improve on technical aspects.
There are no ugly colours, only ugly combinations of colours.

Offline piffany

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Re: WIP Punk FurryTail High

Reply #3 on: June 23, 2011, 07:44:51 pm
Her body is very feline, but her face is quite human (for example, no whiskers or cat nose). Is this intentional or overlooked?

Two types I see usually:

(1) Human with minimal cat costume:



(2) Cat with human proportions plus human hair:



Also, in the second picture, there seems to be liquid coming out of her gun? Is it meant to be smoke?
« Last Edit: June 23, 2011, 07:46:59 pm by piffany »
--Piffany
Disclaimer: I am still fairly new at pixel art, so please don't be offended by my negative critiques :)

Offline Koyot1222

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Re: WIP Punk FurryTail High

Reply #4 on: June 24, 2011, 05:10:37 am
I was trying to inwent new character for short pixel stories.

« Last Edit: July 28, 2011, 11:26:49 am by Koyot1222 »

Offline 8bitbeard

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Re: WIP Punk FurryTail High

Reply #5 on: June 24, 2011, 05:45:46 am
I have nothing really to add to your high res problem except that I absolutely in love with your low-res work, especially the poses and the movement within them - amazing.
You style somewhat reminds me of french comic.

Offline Koyot1222

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Re: WIP Punk FurryTail High

Reply #6 on: June 24, 2011, 06:49:57 am
Yup, i didn even noticed that someone will recognize it :) Yes, i wanted to stylize my work for old 70-80ties comics :D Or comic openings of french movies from 70ties. First i was thinking abouc creating some short 3 or 4 frame stories but in the middle i was also thinking about making some sort of adventure platform game with that character. Thats why i wanted tu put a littlebit dynamic into those lowres pictures.
I know that ive made some many things that have to be fixed in the future, especialy as someone saw that, like liquid smoke.
« Last Edit: June 24, 2011, 07:10:35 am by Koyot1222 »

Offline 8bitbeard

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Re: WIP Punk FurryTail High

Reply #7 on: June 24, 2011, 07:09:21 am
Yeah, I'd say with the small ones you nailed that style.
Why do you want to go larger anyway?

Offline Koyot1222

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Re: WIP Punk FurryTail High

Reply #8 on: June 24, 2011, 08:47:54 am
Im still learning how to pixel, thats i wanted to make it in hires...
Small update
next one
« Last Edit: June 24, 2011, 11:09:00 am by Koyot1222 »

Offline heyy13

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Re: WIP Punk FurryTail High

Reply #9 on: July 04, 2011, 12:40:22 pm
I love the little sprites, they're awsome.

My quick edit on the most recent post (specifically the hair). I tried to keep in a similar style (not my normal thing at all was a good exercise), then i got to the bits at the side, which i figured were supposed to be hair aswell?  :-\ And went abit nuts. :P But yeah, what i was trying to show is an approach you could take to the detailing, i saw you started to pillow shade the curly things and it just makes it blury.



I'm interested in seeing this continue. :)

Offline Koyot1222

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Re: WIP Punk FurryTail High

Reply #10 on: July 05, 2011, 06:39:01 pm
Very interesting, those hair are very impresive, but those curly part they suppose to be some futuristic things on the future, like... Malczewski "meduza"

Thankyou for your edit ill try to do something similar in my work :)

im very glad that you also liked those lowres Furrytails, in the near future i was thinking about some small 3-4 picture short comic stories with this haracter.

Offline heyy13

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Re: WIP Punk FurryTail High

Reply #11 on: July 06, 2011, 11:33:16 am
That would be a great project! I'd love to see that.  :)

Also woops, i couldn't figure out what they were. Hmmm futuristic bright yellow tentacles.  :-\ *strokes her chin* How about something more along this line then? I'm just trying to show you afew ways for you to shade them which isn't just banding colours inwards (like you'd started to do earlier). Give them abit of volume and shape! Glad i'm being helpful.



I'm using an online .gif converter and it's making the colours weird out.

Offline Koyot1222

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Re: WIP Punk FurryTail High

Reply #12 on: July 06, 2011, 07:28:28 pm
Also woops,(...)
Heh, dont worry its my fault :)
I havent got too much time to work for hair problem, but i was try to examine your way to colore it :) Very nice idea :D
« Last Edit: July 06, 2011, 07:52:16 pm by Koyot1222 »

Offline Koyot1222

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Re: WIP Punk FurryTail High

Reply #13 on: July 08, 2011, 08:57:42 pm
small update:


Its realy pain in the ass, becose my seducion mustaches doesnt look like your. Heh, im keeping work :)

Offline ptoing

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Re: WIP Punk FurryTail High

Reply #14 on: July 08, 2011, 09:52:48 pm
Quick edit on the face, without palette change (tho I think some colours could perhaps be tweaked, contrast is a bit low, very yellow/orange overall.



Just some ideas how to make her look softer/more feminine.
There are no ugly colours, only ugly combinations of colours.

Offline Koyot1222

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Re: WIP Punk FurryTail High

Reply #15 on: July 09, 2011, 08:41:47 am
Very nice, ill try to use this kind of light on the rest parts of body.

"contrast is a bit low"
Ive made it couse i was thinking itlbe bether for more smooth steps between colours. Ech, long road before me :) To learn and make it properly :) Thanks for edit, ill examine it.

Offline Koyot1222

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Re: WIP Punk FurryTail High

Reply #16 on: July 12, 2011, 02:28:38 pm
Just some ideas how to make her look softer/more feminine.

After some time i started to think that this woman on the picture is looking more like india princes witch i realy wanted to avoid. I looked on Alphonse Mucha drawing book one more time and i started to think, that maby its good point to think about the project one more time. Ive started to sketch. Those are few samples. ill try to draw the picture one more time useing all advices.

Offline Koyot1222

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Re: WIP Punk FurryTail High

Reply #17 on: July 13, 2011, 09:05:27 pm
Probably ive chosen the ugliest one, but this time slowly id started to redraw the picture.

Offline Corinthian Baby

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Re: WIP Punk FurryTail High

Reply #18 on: July 13, 2011, 09:28:29 pm
I think the second sketch shows the most character and dynamism with the gesture. Maybe it does make more sense to be looking up longingly while lounging instead of a kind of irritated look she gives off in the second one, but the clouds, rounded horizon and halo/crown thing make it seem more majestic.  She also looks older. Anyways, maybe you could combine the positive elements of the two?

Offline Koyot1222

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Re: WIP Punk FurryTail High

Reply #19 on: July 13, 2011, 09:31:39 pm
(...) She also looks older. Anyways, maybe you could combine the positive elements of the two?
Very nice idea. Thankyou, ill try to do that :)

Offline Koyot1222

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Re: WIP Punk FurryTail High

Reply #20 on: July 18, 2011, 12:54:18 pm

2 days ago i was thought that i should dropt it... little farhrer.

Offline heyy13

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Re: WIP Punk FurryTail High

Reply #21 on: July 18, 2011, 12:59:07 pm
Please don't drop it, your style makes me happy and i can see a definate improvment as you update. :) The new pose has alot of character. I love your pen drawings.

Offline Koyot1222

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Re: WIP Punk FurryTail High

Reply #22 on: July 19, 2011, 08:51:51 pm
Thankyou :) Those words gave me strengt to work more for it :)

Minwhile, i was working for another workbench wallpaper with furry:

Coments/edits very welcome :)

Offline pistachio

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Re: WIP Punk FurryTail High

Reply #23 on: July 19, 2011, 09:48:25 pm
Pretty please don't drop it! D:

I'm a big fan of the direction you've recently taken this thread, although frankly that princess is looking a bit too human to even be called an anthro. Not that it's a bad thing, in fact I'm pretty sure giving her any animal's characteristics wouldn't help. I'm far more eager to see where that goes as opposed to the new wallpaper, honestly.

But that wallpaper's looking good too, if not a bit bland. How about adding a pattern in the background, just very faint to keep it readable, perhaps diagonal stripes or large circles or something along those lines? Might want to darken her tail, right arm and boobs while you're at it, just to keep a feeling of consistent depth. Not sure if shading will show up clearly at that size however.

Offline PypeBros

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Re: WIP Punk FurryTail High

Reply #24 on: July 20, 2011, 07:09:58 am
Meanwhile, i was working for another workbench wallpaper with furry:
Neat style. I'd suggest you make her drop some shadow. That'd make the workbench more look like "a place where she lays". I'd also suggest you to replace your black art-line by some dark-colored art-line (possibly keeping the black outline, but I think even that can be dropped). Reason: black tends to kill any volume you try to convey through subtle shadows and shading.  It flattens everything at pixel-art scale. It must be used with caution.

Offline Koyot1222

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Re: WIP Punk FurryTail High

Reply #25 on: July 20, 2011, 11:17:17 am
Im very happy that some of my work made you happier. Pistaccio, thankyou for all words, i was tryied to make my drawing better useing your advices.
PypeBros, i just redraw all black outlines, and in my opinion it helps a lot. Thankyou for advice.
I also wanted to learn how to draw some pixel circles, with isnt so easy thing...


Next WIP. Something more? thanks for any new advices.

This how it looks like in my Directory Opus Magellan (stetched to pal hires Lanced):
http://i.imgur.com/r0su5.png
« Last Edit: July 20, 2011, 11:29:05 am by Koyot1222 »

Offline PypeBros

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Re: WIP Punk FurryTail High

Reply #26 on: July 20, 2011, 03:41:17 pm

Imho, you can push the artline thing yet one step further by adjusting the tint you use to the colour of the object. E.g. I used dark brown for golden stuff and greyish cyans on the inner line of the gloves while keeping the blue for the *out*line.

Tried to soften her ... hum ... features a bit too ... and fixing some banding on the weapon, but maybe that was above my level.

Well. Anyway, don't take my word for granted: try it again, compare, etc.

PS: are you really working on ... an Amiga ?

Offline Koyot1222

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Re: WIP Punk FurryTail High

Reply #27 on: July 20, 2011, 04:45:33 pm
PS: are you really working on ... an Amiga ?

Yes, not only but, why not? Its my favourite hobby. Some of my favourite artists still useing C64, but i dont know this home computer, expecialu how to draw for it ;) Im still having my old but working amiga 1200 with spectrum graphic card, wtch is only change its dont has real harddrive but CF card as a hardrive for quick and easy data files excchanges betwen PC and Amiga.
http://www.ppa.pl/graffiti/obrazki/rysunki/koyot/1182_002.png
For finishing work, or in my job for pixels im useing gimp.
« Last Edit: July 20, 2011, 04:51:02 pm by Koyot1222 »

Offline Ai

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Re: WIP Punk FurryTail High

Reply #28 on: July 21, 2011, 01:35:53 am
PS: are you really working on ... an Amiga ?

Yes, not only but, why not? Its my favourite hobby. Some of my favourite artists still useing C64, but i dont know this home computer, expecialu how to draw for it ;) Im still having my old but working amiga 1200 with spectrum graphic card, wtch is only change its dont has real harddrive but CF card as a hardrive for quick and easy data files excchanges betwen PC and Amiga.
http://www.ppa.pl/graffiti/obrazki/rysunki/koyot/1182_002.png
For finishing work, or in my job for pixels im useing gimp.


May I suggest using Grafx2 for most of the pixel part of it? It's really like DPaint/Brilliance etc , and much more adapted to pixel work than GIMP.
It even has an Amiga port. The only thing GIMP does in the pixel arena that Grafx2 doesn't, is animation.

Oh, and BTW, you do some beautiful linework :)
One crit on the latest image: I think that's meant to be a gun she's holding -- but it mostly looks like a heavy grey block. Of course there are guns which are pretty much like that -- the point though is it's difficult to read. I think you could improve the readability by making the gun barrel narrower, less like a Glock and more like.. this? or this. or this.. The commonality being a) roundedness, so there's an excuse to add highlights, and b) narrowness
« Last Edit: July 21, 2011, 02:08:46 am by Ai »
If you insist on being pessimistic about your own abilities, consider also being pessimistic about the accuracy of that pessimistic judgement.

Offline Koyot1222

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Re: WIP Punk FurryTail High

Reply #29 on: July 21, 2011, 08:34:09 am
I was thinking about composition an useing rest of the space. I have added some things. How do you like it?


Ai, i was interested in Grafx2 some time ago. But i had to short time to start to like this program.
Im useing Gimp mosty becouse its much diferent from photoshop from adobe pack, that im forced to use every day in my kind of work. Gimp have also layer with my amiga PersonalPaint did not have.
i was thought it has mostly all of things to create pixels properly, and i was also thinking that Grafx2 program is rather for profesional pixeling use. Not for amateurs like me.

"It even has an Amiga port"
Whoa... i just missed that...! I have to check it :) Thanks :D It has version for even 68k machines such as mine :) Huhu!
- I tested 68k archive it dont want to work... :/ It demands sdl library.
« Last Edit: July 21, 2011, 10:39:51 am by Koyot1222 »

Offline heyy13

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Re: WIP Punk FurryTail High

Reply #30 on: July 21, 2011, 11:01:08 am
I like the addition of the rubble, adds alot to the composition and gives the nuke some grounding in the scene. I love your tiny sprites. She's flippin' adorable. The new gun is more readable but huge, she must have serious muscle tone.

The AA is awful! It makes it look more and not less jaggy. :-X Ptoing posted an awsome guide to AA recently in another thread. *goes to look*

http://ptoing.net/aa.png (from his post, in the moon thread) Actually just that whole thread is a pretty good AA tute, http://www.wayofthepixel.net/pixelation/index.php?topic=12910.0 .

Since your nearing the end might be time to look at pallet optimisation. :) You have some very similar colours (like the dark grey in the rubble that's almost the same but less saturation as one of the greys on the nuke), that you could ditch. Also might consider increasing the contrast between the second darkest blue and dark grey (bottom of the nuke), since they read as almost the same colour and it would be more versitile if one was abit lighter.

All over good though. She needs to be the main character in a side-scrolling adventure/film noir style game. I'd play the heck out of that. Going to animate some of your sprites?
« Last Edit: July 21, 2011, 11:02:43 am by heyy13 »

Offline Koyot1222

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Re: WIP Punk FurryTail High

Reply #31 on: July 21, 2011, 12:01:16 pm
I like the addition of the rubble, adds alot to the composition and gives the nuke some grounding in the scene. I love your tiny sprites. She's flippin' adorable. The new gun is more readable but huge, she must have serious muscle tone.
Thanks, this character is still evolving from picture to picture :) I had a feeling that i have to remake all older sprites to make them look more like this last one.

The AA is awful! It makes it look more and not less jaggy. :-X Ptoing posted an awsome guide to AA recently in another thread.

Ive seen it, and im still try to analize ptoing picture. I was try to make something similar with my picture but it looses hard dark outlined comic style after that modyfications. So i was sterted to think how to combine my style and hard rules of AA to make them look... better. Becouse i know it wouldnt loook perfect, im still amateur in this materia. Itll take some longer time...

Since your nearing the end might be time to look at pallet optimisation. :) You have some very similar colours (like the dark grey in the rubble that's almost the same but less saturation as one of the greys on the nuke), that you could ditch. Also might consider increasing the contrast between the second darkest blue and dark grey (bottom of the nuke), since they read as almost the same colour and it would be more versitile if one was abit lighter.

Very good idea, i was thinking about that becouse i wanted to ad some other colours for background without increasing existing palette colours.

I also wanted to ad something more to the picture... but its probably too much.

All over good though. She needs to be the main character in a side-scrolling adventure/film noir style game. I'd play the heck out of that. Going to animate some of your sprites?
I was thinking about making her main character in platform game such like Another world. Where secret spy is dropped by enemy lines in IIww time. Spyes, chases, hiding in the dark, and solveing small puzzle quest like finding objects, keys, and transporting them to their destination avoiding guards or lights etc.
I was thinking about animating her sprites but right now i dont see reason, its quite early without whole project. Probably ill make some several other drawings before ill try to animate some sprites with that character.
« Last Edit: July 21, 2011, 12:09:44 pm by Koyot1222 »

Offline heyy13

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Re: WIP Punk FurryTail High

Reply #32 on: July 22, 2011, 01:54:23 am
I don't like the flag. Doesn't really add anything. If your going to put something else in the image possibly top right or bottom right? I think top left just makes the image heavy. Especially with such contrasting colours.

Don't diss it, there's definite improvment through-out the thread, practice makes perfect (or near enough that you don't go crazy atleast). :)

Sounds like exactly what i was imagining. May that game be realised.

Offline PypeBros

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Re: WIP Punk FurryTail High

Reply #33 on: July 22, 2011, 06:14:04 am
I don't like the flag. Doesn't really add anything.

Seconding that. Given you're doing a workbench background rather than a plain "wallpaper", I expect the user to want something that keeps sufficient amount of "empty" space so that he's got room to work around. Even the similing (?) mickey face is already eating up valualbe space, imho.

I'd really try to make window and buttons an integral part of your design. If your workbench environment supports that, try to theme up the window decoration according to your character (they could be reminiscent of her guns or belt, for instance) possibly add some low-contrast texture here and there to avoid a too large amount of "unused-space".

Just my .02€, btw. You're the one with the guns in hands :)
« Last Edit: July 22, 2011, 06:18:17 am by PypeBros »

Offline Koyot1222

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Re: WIP Punk FurryTail High

Reply #34 on: July 22, 2011, 09:50:27 am
Last update:

I started to little dislike the picture, so its probably a good time to work on handdrawn project picture :)
Ive made small animation how long and hard road, it was to produce such small picture:

Probably it isnt good as a tutorial, too chaotic... too... But im impressed that i gone so far, probably without all yours good advices this picture will never be looking like that. Thanks to good people all who posted here.

And... It isnt bad after all as a Amiga Magellan wallpaper.
http://i.imgur.com/AlS2o.png
« Last Edit: July 22, 2011, 10:19:48 am by Koyot1222 »

Offline Koyot1222

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Re: WIP Punk FurryTail High

Reply #35 on: July 27, 2011, 07:35:49 pm

Some little progres... :)

Offline Koyot1222

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Re: WIP Punk FurryTail High

Reply #36 on: July 28, 2011, 12:36:52 pm

Very deep water... :/

Offline Koyot1222

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Re: WIP Punk FurryTail High

Reply #37 on: July 29, 2011, 12:25:46 pm
I was fighting with face, probably i didnt won, but its quite better right now.

Offline Phlakes

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Re: WIP Punk FurryTail High

Reply #38 on: July 29, 2011, 05:48:31 pm
First, and it's not too big a deal, but I'd suggest you clean up the pixels and finalize the outline before you move on to coloring. Maybe something you might consider next time, it can help with the shading.

Second, I'm guessing the light source is at the top middle? Because right now, the face looks like a flat circle with a little bit of depth behind it. Sort of pancake shaped. If you just move the source a bit to one side, you can get some nice little shadows with the face to accent the features. Please excuse how dirty this edit is-



It gives it depth and some good contrast, and lets you play around with the shape of the facial features a bit.
« Last Edit: July 29, 2011, 09:17:07 pm by Phlakes »

Offline Koyot1222

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Re: WIP Punk FurryTail High

Reply #39 on: July 29, 2011, 06:39:36 pm
Thankyou :) Its very good advice, ill try to use it :)
Thankyou that yove spent some time for edit expecialy for me, its explains everything.

About picture: I was still thinking about composition, im still looking for palette, thats why its got little flat.
I was afraid that if i start to prepare details i will loose whole look. Thats why the composition and palete was so important for me :)

I very glad that you wrote those sugestions couse its another signal for me thats someone care about my work. Sometimes i just need time
when someone will put a hand on my neck and say "It isnt bad after all, just go another way, i can show you..." :D Its very important for me.

Offline pistachio

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Re: WIP Punk FurryTail High

Reply #40 on: July 29, 2011, 11:06:07 pm
Not as much fan of the latest updates, sorry to say, but at least you've made progress. I find the background a bit distracting and its perspective rather surreal, and the contrast a bit low. Some colors tend to clash as well, and are pretty saturated and unusual, actually. I'd probably prefer a different/modified color scheme as opposed to what you have now. (Now that I realize, isn't that the same character you attempted to draw last time?)

The head is still a bit malformed, and you managed to let a few anatomical faults slip through; for example, the way the neck is attached to the body. These do become a bit more obvious when colored in. I must say her left leg looks a bit uncomfortable and illogical as well, so that's something you might want to look into. You also seem to be a bit confused with your direction. Before coloring the piece, and adding in all these futuristic details (which I'm not sure you needed) I think it was pretty clear before that you wanted this to be along the lines of a majestic foreign princess-thing--at least from my point of view.

The change (or rather, addition) of eyebrows give her a sort of agitated, annoyed look, unlike the longing and almost emotional gaze you had in the original drawing and first draft. I find this unfitting for a lounging pose such as the one she's assumed.

A last note, I figure a lightsource coming from the upper left might have been more interesting. You could end up with a cast shadow on the wall she's sitting on! And who doesn't like cast shadows? (Not figuring out where to leave them; when done right, I mean they're rather attractive.)

These are just some points I thought you should know. I'll be making an edit.

EDIT

In the middle of this edit I ended up getting confused with direction as well, so this probably isn't what you wanted, considering you wanted the piece to share similar colors with its last iteration... So in terms of that, it might as well belong in the Lineart thread. :yell:

However there is an advantage to this; there are a lot of details you forgot about that could have been potentially interesting. I didn't expect this to turn out to be the same character as last time, basically.



I did make an attempt to correct a few problems and change the direction of the lightsource... I think I did a decent job on that.
« Last Edit: July 30, 2011, 07:03:04 am by pistachio »

Offline Koyot1222

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Re: WIP Punk FurryTail High

Reply #41 on: July 31, 2011, 07:31:29 am
Thankyou for your edit, itll help a lot :)
i was trying to draw a picture similar to Alphonse Mucha drawing :) Your palette is looking very interesting, more nicer and your technic still embares me ;) ill try to work on it :)
Thanks for help

Offline Kcilc

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Re: WIP Punk FurryTail High

Reply #42 on: August 14, 2011, 03:00:07 am
Your anatomy is starting to get a little funky. I'd suggest mirroring your art and work on it backwards for a while every now and then to make sure you're actually seeing what you've drawn.

The thing that really pops out to me about your newest update is the absence of a pop. I look at your character, and she kinda just blends in with the background, and vise versa. There's not a clear "Hey, eyes! Look at me! I'm the important thing!" At the stage of your latest update, this is one of the more important things to get nailed down so that you don't have to rework it like crazy once it's all refined and pretty.

I took a ton of liberties with my edit, so forgive me.



Here are some of the more important things I changed?I played with the composition to try to make your character pop, I tried to balance the values (not the colors), I tried to clean up the anatomy, and I established a strong light source to add a little bit more visual interest.

Here's the first stage of my edit, mostly addressing the super duper important parts of the piece, and getting a good base to work from.

I identified the round thing in the back, the ledge, and the character as the meat of the image...the parts that I felt held everything together and made it all work. Notice that here I only used the brightest color on your character (ignore the couple stray white pixels on the round thing), and I did that to try to bring her more to the front so that she would attract the most attention, because while the wall and round thing are very important, they're the background and are mainly used just to seat the character, and provide a "world" where the character lives. I'll call your character ivy from now on.

The second stage diverges a little bit from my original goal.

At this stage I cleaned up Ivy just a little bit, to kind of reaffirm that that is where you need to be looking (and as general anatomy goes, what she should actually look like), with all of the craziness in the background that does little more than muck up the composition. This the place where I usually get really experimental, so I'll need to work on that. Notice that there is a whole lot more white. I felt the urge to make the light source super strong and bring the ledge more into the foreground since the random swirly details demand a more firm push towards Ivy. I'd call this stage a mistake since the extra details I added didn't actually do anything. They just sat on their lazy butts eating pizza and being pains.

The third stage is where I started reigning in the background, and got it to actually help frame Ivy.

With help from your piece I was able to come up with a more reasonable composition. I took the long branch looking part that's right above Ivy's head in your latest update, and built on that. This is really where the strong light source paid off in terms of visual interest. Notice that I used mostly light colors on the right, and mostly very dark colors to the left; while this does seem a little normal since well, y'know that's how it would work since the light source is coming from the right, and the shadow would be cast to the left, but notice where exactly I put the shadows. They don't really conform to how it would actually work in real life, and I didn't break the rules because I planned to break them; I put the shadows where, compositionally, they would make the most sense, and frame Ivy the best. It cuts most of the fat off of the background garbage, and (I hope) leaves your eyes knowing exactly where to go since there's a definite pop.

So, to recap, keep a strong composition throughout the entire creation. Try to keep the lights and darks that you established early on, and only use colors that are similar in value in those places. Like, in the shadows only ever use the three darkest shades, and in the more light parts, only use the three or four lightest shades. Keep your ramp in little "clusters" to avoid a big stew pot of confusing values; another thing is to identify only three or so super important parts of your piece that really need need to be there, and work those until you like them before moving on to the less important details; lastly, don't just add details for the sake of adding details. Try to make sure everything in your piece has a purpose?be it something that directs your eyes to the super duper important parts of the image, adds an extra level of immersion or depth to your piece, or whatever. Just try to make sure that no detail is there just to be there.

I hope I've helped you out in some way. You're awesome!