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Apollo
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Limited Edition Portrait Background - Halloween 09 edition! [Winners posted] Reply to this Post
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Ahoy again, everyone! It's portrait background time again!

Theme:
This month we're looking forward to the change of the season as we go into fall colors, and to the Festival of Freaky Fun that we always have in-game at Halloween! So, we're looking for autumnal and/or spooky portrait backgrounds, of any size. Autumn leaves, skellies, zombies, ghosts, creepy gothic mansions, masks, parties, trick-or-treat, pumpkins... and so much more!

Submissions: Entrants will create original backgrounds that are consistent with the theme and style of the game. The image must look sensible with characters placed on it in any of the orientations possible for its size.

Entries must fit the appropriate scale.

1-pirate backgrounds: 348 x 650
2-pirate backgrounds: 696 x 650
Large backgrounds: 1600 x 1170

Reworking entries: (to update an entry, please upload the latest version with the same file name as the previous version of the entry). If you want an alternative version rather than a replacement, multiple entries per artist are also acceptable. You can enter multiple times for any theme.

Only original art is accepted. You must create the images yourself.
Plagiarized entries, photographs, and other unsuitable entries may be removed from the entry page without notice.

Upload your images to the YPPedia, name the file according to the naming scheme listed there, and post links to the thumbnails here for comment. If you want your pirate name to appear rather than your account name should you win, please post your pirate name at the bottom of the post containing the thumbnail.

Please put "hallow09contest" in the summary field so that we know which entries to consider when judging starts. Thank you! The summary field for the upload, then, should be:
{{hallow09contest-Portrait|Forumname}} (where "Forumname" is replaced by your own forum name!)

Judging: Quality of work, style, how well the background fits with the game's theme, and how well the placement of the portrait characters fit into the background are the primary determining factors.

The entries will be judged in the Three Rings offices by the artists and developers and the winner will be put into future releases as a Limited Edition portrait background. The portrait background may also be re-used for limited times later, and even (if appropriate) to be adopted as a longer-term or permanent portrait background, rather than a limited duration one. The same winning artist may be chosen more than once for different entries. Entrants may be asked by the arrrtists to make small changes to their designs after the judging.

Submitted works are eligible for winning future contests. Artists who entered backgrounds in a previous contest: if they are eligible for the current contest, please enter them again! We would love to reconsider them. Likewise, if a background does not win, it can be submitted for future contests, as long as it fits within the theme of each contest.

Prizes:
A winning entry will be included in the in-game list of available portrait backgrounds, usually for a limited duration. Anyone in the game can use it when it is available. Each winning entrant will also receive an "autographed portrait" (signed postcard) of Cleaver or Cephalopod, and a pack of playing cards in the mail, a free copy of his/her portrait in-game, and a clothing item of her choice in the color(s) of her choice. The item cannot be the box edition Savvy Hat or anything Atlantean or indigo, but can be black or gold. In the event of the same artist winning multiple months, an additional clothing item can be substituted for the real-life prizes if the artist does not feel like having a household full of Puzzle Pirates Paraphernalia.

Deadline:
September 30th 2009, 11:59pm game time

Suggestions: Make it look like it came right out of the game. Get your line weights down, and compare with existing portraits to be sure. Keep your lighting consistent with the lighting on the pirate portrait art. Choose a scene that many in the game would like to use. Take your time and rework, going to others for advice and critique.

Also, take note of the way some sizes get cropped.

Questions, discussion, entries and feedback can all be posted here. Good luck!
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[Edit 2 times, last edit by Apollo at Oct 1, 2009 6:04:32 PM]
[Aug 31, 2009 1:21:04 PM] Show Printable Version of Post        Send Private Message    http://blog.puzzlepirates.com/apollo/ [Link]  Go to top 
Cambiata

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Re: Limited Edition Portrait Background - Halloween 09 edition! [Deadline 30th September 2009] Reply to this Post
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Here is an old entry that I want to fix up and re-submit. It was a last minute entry last time so I would appreciate some feedback as I feel like it could use a little work.


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Cambiata,
~Currently pillaging the Obsidian Ocean~
from the Viridian (now Meridian) ocean

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[Sep 1, 2009 10:51:56 AM] Show Printable Version of Post        Send Private Message    http://cambiata.deviantart.com/ [Link]  Go to top 
AndyOrr

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Re: Limited Edition Portrait Background - Halloween 09 edition! [Deadline 30th September 2009] Reply to this Post
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Perhaps it's be easier to work on if you lightened it a bit and then darken it down again? I turned up my monitor to full brightness but it's still hard to see the details.

I really do adore that moon, it's fantastic. The clouds in the sky are great too, and I really like the dark navy tone you've picked for the sky, however it seems somewhat blotchy to me, like brushstrokes - perhaps smooth it out a little?

The sillouette of the tree is brilliant too, I don't think you need to touch it at all - it's twisted enough to be spooky, but without looking overly ornate. Same thing can be said for the bats.

I think you need to work on the headstones and the path a bit more though. Personally, I think the headstones look like cardboard cut outs - I know that's not the right way to say it, but I hope I can get the meaning across... XD. I think you should make them a bit thicker and have sharper edges? Perhaps one of them nearly cracked in half or something, or with some cracks appearing at least? Also, you should definately get a good stone texture to put on them, that'd really bring them alive.

As for the path, maybe go for a more gravell-y texture? How about a little puddle on the side reflecting the moonlight? I know that'd be really hard to do, but it'd look fantastic. What about some weedy grass on the side?

Also, just another idea I'll throw down - how about a sillouette of a wolf with his head up howling instead of the furthest away headtone on the right?

I hope you can find something that is of some help to you in all that waffle! =]
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- Shambo -
[Sep 1, 2009 12:28:34 PM] Show Printable Version of Post        Send Private Message [Link]  Go to top 
sasuke1315

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Re: Limited Edition Portrait Background - Halloween 09 edition! [Deadline 30th September 2009] Reply to this Post
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Here is an old entry that I want to fix up and re-submit. It was a last minute entry last time so I would appreciate some feedback as I feel like it could use a little work.




That's looks very nice
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Catastrophy-malachite ocean
[Sep 1, 2009 7:00:25 PM] Show Printable Version of Post        Send Private Message [Link]  Go to top 
Entharion

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Re: Limited Edition Portrait Background - Halloween 09 edition! [Deadline 30th September 2009] Reply to this Post
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Very nice background so far. Here are a few things I feel might help improve on it.

First, I think the moon could do with a bit of edge blur to blend it into the sky a little more. Next, the furthest tombstone on the right is causing some perception issues regarding depth and distance. I would probably remove it and maybe adjust the spacing and scale of the others as you see fit.

I tend to agree with Andy regarding textures on the sky, stones, and path. Not too sure about doing a puddle, as there is already a lot going on in the scene. I'm not sure how to word my thoughts on the trees, so I'll come back to them later.

It seems that you are trying for a foggy atmosphere, which makes sense because it adds to the spooky part. I think it could be done a little better though. Fog tends to hang at a particular level usually, and the areas above and below are generally pretty clear. So at tree level is probably too high since they are on a hill, as is the lighter blue area just below the bats. I would think the top of the highest tombstone (as reference point) to the top of the long grass might be a good level for it. And wispy like you have done, but perhaps a little less transparent. I.e., more visible.

Back to the trees. They seem kind of, busy, I guess. There is a place near the top left that is more opened up like a tree which I like. The rest of them in the area look more like brambles to me. If you are trying for spooky trees, perhaps try to unclog the main branches, as dying trees tend to lose the smaller twigs.

Sorry for my post length. You have a great beginning, and I believe a good chance at a winner with some more tweaking. I could see myself buying a portrait with what you are working on. Good luck. :D
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Schweatybol of Sage
Captain of Chrysalis
King of Metamorphosis
Cartographer of Sage -- If you need charting, just ask. I'll do it free if I'm not busy.
[Sep 1, 2009 7:54:28 PM] Show Printable Version of Post        Send Private Message [Link]  Go to top 
Mawkawlaw

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Re: Limited Edition Portrait Background - Halloween 09 edition! [Deadline 30th September 2009] Reply to this Post
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Here are my current ones I made a few days ago to prepare for this:



Click here and here to see my other ones that are forum breakers....


Advise is appreciated. Thank ye.
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Makawhawla on Meridian

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[Edit 2 times, last edit by Mawkawlaw at Sep 2, 2009 11:34:36 AM]
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Philipine7

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Re: Limited Edition Portrait Background - Halloween 09 edition! [Deadline 30th September 2009] Reply to this Post
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I'd make one but i do not have photoshop yet, that one lacks detail i suggest trying to upgrade it so it has the row of pumpkins getting smaller as it goes down. Ok i cant realy explain in detail well but yeah
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http://yppedia.puzzlepirates.com/Philipine

Philipine
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Kirppu1

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Re: Limited Edition Portrait Background - Halloween 09 edition! [Deadline 30th September 2009] Reply to this Post
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I'd make one but i do not have photoshop yet


Excuses!

The background of the portrait in your avatar was made with a free program - you don't need photoshop to win ;)
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~Kirppu on the Meridian ocean~
Current avatar by Mangouste!
[Sep 6, 2009 4:19:03 AM] Show Printable Version of Post        Send Private Message [Link]  Go to top 
Mawkawlaw

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Re: Limited Edition Portrait Background - Halloween 09 edition! [Deadline 30th September 2009] Reply to this Post
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that one lacks detail i suggest trying to upgrade it so it has the row of pumpkins getting smaller as it goes down


I know mine lacked detail (like all of my portraits :P), but that was just a draft. I have updated it and here it is:



I have some portriats in my other post, but they are links. I didn't put them as an image so I wouldn't break the thread. I would like some help on those, if possible :).

Thank ye so much for yer input ;)
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Makawhawla on Meridian

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[Sep 6, 2009 3:07:09 PM] Show Printable Version of Post        Send Private Message [Link]  Go to top 
Dead_Rise

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Re: Limited Edition Portrait Background - Halloween 09 edition! [Deadline 30th September 2009] Reply to this Post
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Constructive criticism?


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Mortality on Viridian/Hunter

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[Sep 8, 2009 5:19:34 AM] Show Printable Version of Post        Send Private Message [Link]  Go to top 
Dexla

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Re: Limited Edition Portrait Background - Halloween 09 edition! [Deadline 30th September 2009] Reply to this Post
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I have a bit of dilemma ...
I originally came up with this idea... but it was pointed out to me that my light source/shadows don't fall in the correct spots.... so I went back to the drawing board...

"A" - original with not-so-correct shadowing (all images reduced for forums to actual size of the portrait that you would see in your browser)


So I tried to straighten out the shadows a bit, but I'm not happy with the way this looks now.... and the shadows are only a bit more accurate. I don't claim the light source to be actually 'correct'
"B" - with adjusted shadows


So then I looked at previous portrait backgrounds and felt I was seeing a lack of emphasis on shadows anyway, so I did a version without shadows all together....
"C" - no shadows


And in all actuality, once 2 pirates are in place and the game crops off the bottom... that path and those shadows, imo, really don't amount to a hill of beans...
"A" with pirates


"B" with pirates


"C" with pirates


LOL I've tried to get opinions from my friends, and bless them because they tell me they like them all, but I was wondering which you all might think 'works' better. I personally think I'm leaning toward version "C" if I don't get a good argument to go with another version. It's clean and the lack of tree shadows doesn't bother me If the light is shining on the faces of the pirates, it's obviously coming from behind me anyway, casting light down the path - hence, less shadow. My emphasis isn't on the ground, it's was all about the leaves from the very beginning, so I'm at a point where I don't care much about the ground anyway.

Sorry for the long post... I'm just at wits end.

LOL can I enter all three?
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Dexla d'Midnight
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[Edit 3 times, last edit by Dexla at Sep 8, 2009 12:42:42 PM]
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merethif

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Re: Limited Edition Portrait Background - Halloween 09 edition! [Deadline 30th September 2009] Reply to this Post
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Cambiata, I'm glad to see you re-enter your spooky backround. Personally I've prefered the version with steel sky, but well, probably most would prefer the blue sky anyway. If you find some time to rework this background a bit I would suggest some tombstones tweaking. Now all the tombstones are very uniform. I'm used to much more "varied" graveyards with many different tombstones. Maybe you could create several different tombstones and then mix and match them. It doesn't have to be clustered with graves really - I'd say three finely mastered tomstones would do the thing.
Also the tomstones farther in the background should be less detailed then the ones closer to the pirate, maybe not a total silhouettes like the trees, but something in-between.

Dexla, if your background would be a stand alone piece of art I would vote for version A - the shadowing doeasn't have to be "correct" anyway, it has to have artistic expression :-D
But because it's not stand alone piece of art I must agree with you - version C is the best in my humble opinion too. Also note that all those fine little dots of green and... purple (?) on the ground around the trees are much better visible on version C.
And now some nit-picking if you don't mind. I'm not sure if there should be light blue sky between the leafs. For me it looks rather like an entrance to some sort of the grove so behind the leafs I would expect to see... other trees. Maybe some dark brown instead of light blue would looks better? Especially in upper part of composition.
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Merethif of Viridian Ocean
Novice/Able at Poker and proud of it!
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[Sep 8, 2009 1:40:52 PM] Show Printable Version of Post        Send Private Message [Link]  Go to top 
Evilcheese4



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Re: Limited Edition Portrait Background - Halloween 09 edition! [Deadline 30th September 2009] Reply to this Post
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Any constructive criticism on this?
It would be greatly thanked.
I'm not overly pleased on the moon in this picture, though. Any advice on improving it?


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Evilcheese of Everywhere but Viridian.
Some alts in other places.
Mainly Hunter.
Not on Ice.
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Now what?
[Sep 9, 2009 1:00:02 PM] Show Printable Version of Post        Send Private Message [Link]  Go to top 
BootlegPatch

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Re: Limited Edition Portrait Background - Halloween 09 edition! [Deadline 30th September 2009] Reply to this Post
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I'm SO PSYCHED for this. Both to see the new entries and to enter if I have time.
:D

Dexla: Looking good! I'd go with version C, and I agree with everything Merethif said. Perhaps add some little old fashioned lanterns or pumpkins along the path so there is a source for the light, and it also adds nice detail!

Evilcheese: It's a good base, but needs much more detail. Take a look at current and retired backgrounds on yppedia.puzzlepirates.com, it will help you with linework. Be creative with it! What I find easiest to do is to jot down ideas first, then make small drafts. I then pick out a draft and finalize it. (But I'm just fussy like that, lol)
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Albini on Viridian~
Yarr, vain-ness!
"Queen of 'arts" Avatar by the sublime Phillite
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[Edit 2 times, last edit by BootlegPatch at Sep 9, 2009 5:09:11 PM]
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Mobettagc

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Re: Limited Edition Portrait Background - Halloween 09 edition! [Deadline 30th September 2009] Reply to this Post
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To Evilcheese: I love what you did with your design! Love it :) Keep up the good work and good luck!
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Mobettagc of Sage Emerald
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Philipine7

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Re: Limited Edition Portrait Background - Halloween 09 edition! [Deadline 30th September 2009] Reply to this Post
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Any constructive criticism on this?


o.k i would say try and give it a 3d edge create a back ground ground and a place that shows where the sky starts but otherwise, good :)
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http://yppedia.puzzlepirates.com/Philipine

Philipine
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Mawkawlaw

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Re: Limited Edition Portrait Background - Halloween 09 edition! [Deadline 30th September 2009] Reply to this Post
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Are my portraits so bad that I don't get advise on them? (wouldn't be surprised it that was why there isn't advise, lol.) Anyway... since I didn't get advise lately I decided to tweak the sky a bit:



may I PLEASE have some advise?
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Makawhawla on Meridian

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[Edit 1 times, last edit by Mawkawlaw at Sep 13, 2009 1:45:04 PM]
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Philipine7

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Re: Limited Edition Portrait Background - Halloween 09 edition! [Deadline 30th September 2009] Reply to this Post
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well it is good the pumpkins should look more realistic though, and the fence try and make the fence better
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http://yppedia.puzzlepirates.com/Philipine

Philipine
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Prince of : The Very Sexy Flag
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FinchSparrow

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Re: Limited Edition Portrait Background - Halloween 09 edition! [Deadline 30th September 2009] Reply to this Post
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First time I've tried to give critique, so I'm not sure what merit it has, but I'll try all the same.
I think that the clouds across the moon need a little work. Perhaps see if you can make them more transparent, as they look a little solid at the moment. Similarly, the fence posts and the pumpkins need some more texture or shading, they come across a bit flat.
At the moment it seems like there is nothing significant between the fence and the horizon. Maybe add some trees or something similar?
That said, I do like changes you made to the sky, and the bats come across well :)
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Roseash on Viridian
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Dexla

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Re: Limited Edition Portrait Background - Halloween 09 edition! [Deadline 30th September 2009] Reply to this Post
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And just a suggestion... you might want to place the single pirate cut-out over your background to give you and idea what gets mostly covered up once a pirate is actually in the picture.
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Dexla d'Midnight
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Enyana5



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Madbaby from sage
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Harlech

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Re: Limited Edition Portrait Background - Halloween 09 edition! [Deadline 30th September 2009] Reply to this Post
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Night of a Thousand Parrots


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SIXTH Puzzle, Win an Avatar.
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starsapphire

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Re: Limited Edition Portrait Background - Halloween 09 edition! [Deadline 30th September 2009] Reply to this Post
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lol
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Falmari on all Oceans

In water they had great delight, and those that came at last to the western shores were enamoured of the sea.
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Ilyarus2004

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Re: Limited Edition Portrait Background - Halloween 09 edition! [Deadline 30th September 2009] Reply to this Post
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Night of a Thousand Parrots



YES!!!!!
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Ilya on most of the oceans,
Russian on Midnight.

Hypnos tells ye, "i burn u"

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Tanabear

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Re: Limited Edition Portrait Background - Halloween 09 edition! [Deadline 30th September 2009] Reply to this Post
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Comment and suggestions are NEEDED!
Please help me out :)


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Tanabear on the Meridian Ocean
SO of GTLDubstep
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Mawkawlaw

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Re: Limited Edition Portrait Background - Halloween 09 edition! [Deadline 30th September 2009] Reply to this Post
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That looks really cool. May I suggest a little bit of texture on the eye patch (now I sound like a hypocrite. I am bad with textures :P)
>>>>>>>>>>>

Here is my updated portrait:



with the person:



If this portrait needs more help (most likely :P) plz say so!

>>>>>>>>>>>
Harlech : doing great. For the coloring maybe ye should color the parrots like vultures or something of that sort.
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Makawhawla on Meridian

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[Edit 1 times, last edit by Mawkawlaw at Sep 19, 2009 7:31:27 PM]
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Tanabear

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Tanabear on the Meridian Ocean
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ddraigeneth

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Re: Limited Edition Portrait Background - Halloween 09 edition! [Deadline 30th September 2009] Reply to this Post
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Tanabear: Make sure you try putting the pirate cutout over it so that you can see what will overlap. It may be hard to tell what it's meant to be, if too much is covered.

Mawkawlaw: Each version is improving, but I think the area that needs the most work is your shading. Right now, everything still looks kind of flat. Take a look at things like the pirate's head--the way the shadows wrap around where it curves--and try to put that on your pumpkins. Definitely not an easy thing to get the hang of, but that would be the goal to work towards. :)


In general, it's just a matter of making it fit with the pirates. Do they look like they go together? You could draw something beautiful that looked like a photograph, and it still might not win, because the portraits themselves are cartoony. Finding that balance, right in the middle, just takes practice.


Oh, and Harlech? Creepy. Creepy and awesome. Make sure that center parrot doesn't get covered up! Very nice lines.
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Gwiddon d'Sage - Making her own avatars since 2005
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[Edit 1 times, last edit by ddraigeneth at Sep 19, 2009 11:51:24 PM]
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Dead_Rise

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Re: Limited Edition Portrait Background - Halloween 09 edition! [Deadline 30th September 2009] Reply to this Post
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Harlech; I suggest crows instead. >:D
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Mortality on Viridian/Hunter

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[Sep 20, 2009 1:20:00 AM] Show Printable Version of Post        Send Private Message [Link]  Go to top 
Mawkawlaw

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Re: Limited Edition Portrait Background - Halloween 09 edition! [Deadline 30th September 2009] Reply to this Post
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Harlech; I suggest crows instead. >:D


oh fine! I was just meaning to color the birds like a "scary" bird such as a vulture or a crow/raven. lol.

anyway, I worked on some of the shading. I need some help on how exactly to shad the trees. I hope I shaded the pumpkins OK:



thank ye SOOO MUCH for the advise, Ddraigneth :)
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Makawhawla on Meridian

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