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Baba Yaga by sticmann Baba Yaga by sticmann
It's that hideous witch Baba Yaga from Slavic lore, sporting the skulls of some of the children she's eaten.
CHOW challenge from conceptart. It's not quite finished but it's close. Critiques are very much encouraged.

*EDIT*
Fixed several things: changed the head lumps, brought in her right sleeve a bit, integrated her more into the scene, shifted her weight more over her legs, moved the large plant things that were behind her, added texture and tweaked the color a bit.
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:iconchimaeric:
Chimaeric Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2009  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Ooh, I like... her?

I dig your choice of texture, it makes it look as though there are swarms of out-of-focus flies buzzing around her. Nice. The atmosphere (including the ambiguous mutant foliage and fungi) is very nicely done!

The only comment I have is after reading through the others' comments... She is supposed to be sitting on a chair? I had assumed (and liked) the fact that she looked like she was wearing some kind of grotesque backpack or frame. I could just imagine the skulls and other paraphernalia rattling about on it as she lurched around that swamp. Oh well.
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:iconsticmann:
sticmann Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2009
Thank you. No, in an earlier version those fungi were directly behind her and it looked like she had some kind of funky throne. I moved them out of the way so it wouldn't be so ambiguous. The rest is as you said. I'm glad you liked it :)
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:iconvidpen:
VidPen Featured By Owner Feb 15, 2009  Student Digital Artist
I love the character and the colors. His hands are really neat
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:iconsticmann:
sticmann Featured By Owner Feb 15, 2009
Thank you :D


her hands :P She's a witch from Russian folklore.
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:iconvidpen:
VidPen Featured By Owner May 20, 2009  Student Digital Artist
you're welcome :)

oh cool
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:iconm0nkeybread:
M0nkeyBread Featured By Owner Feb 14, 2009  Professional Digital Artist
Ugh been sick or I would've commented earlier...

She looks like a cross between a deformed root vegetable I dug up from my garden one day, and an old neighbour of mine! brrr *shiver*. I really like the design overall on her, the rendering of the whole thing is also done well.

Some small suggestions I have(although it's a bit late) are:
- I really like the cataract eye it, but it may be even creepier if we could see a hint of the retina/pupil behind it.
- Her left shoulder is very pointed and i'm not sure if it's a hunch, some stuff that's holding up the skull backpack thingy or both? There's nothing wrong with it per se, it's just that it makes me wonder what makes that shape. (mystery or suggestion is a good element though)
- There's a shape in the bottom left, middle distance which looks like it could be three tree roots or stumps or something. I don't think the "roots" are blended into the fog at ground level very well. I think they also might benefit from a bit of silhouette tweaking, (they just seem to stand out to me each time I look at the pic). Love the foreground vegetation silhouettes!
- It is a little hard to see how/what she's standing on, and she does seem to be just chilling there for no apparant reason, besides being her hideous self of course ;)

This is much more original than a lot of the wips I've seen. A high standard of polish is something to keep developing of course, but I feel that originality should almost be more important in these things. Good luck. ;)
Couldn't make it this week, my head is in the process of mucus overload.
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:iconsticmann:
sticmann Featured By Owner Feb 14, 2009
mmmm... mucus overload.

Thank you. I'm fairly pleased with the concept and the rendering, but not the pose. Like you said, why is she just standing there? It looks like some sort of hideous photo shoot. That's something I need to work on. The eye thing would have been cool. That shape on the left there is some sort of large fungus type thing. I see what you mean about blending it in more at the bottom.

I completely agree about the concepts. Probably 3/4 of the "designs" this week were the same thing. :puke: I don't ever expect to win one of these but I'm learning a lot, so it's really good.
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:iconm0nkeybread:
M0nkeyBread Featured By Owner Feb 14, 2009  Professional Digital Artist
hideous photo shoot... now that might make an interesting topic to speed paint :D

I think pose is incredibly important, after all 90% of our communication in real life is built into body language.
I guess there are always two aspects together that make a concept really stand out to me...originality and very good technique. I agree the challenges are really good way to learn. It's nice to work on something for a bit longer and put some detail in as well since we do a fair amount of speedies.

Can't wait to see the next topics. I've got something in my head for environment that I hope I will be able to fit somehow into a topic ;)
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:iconkaracature:
karacature Featured By Owner Feb 13, 2009
I love the smoke and the crazy character design. Way to think outside the box. I didn't have time to start on this CHOW, maybe next one...
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:iconsticmann:
sticmann Featured By Owner Feb 13, 2009
Thank you. I'm trying to push the designs further. Still trying to find what works. :P
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:iconkaracature:
karacature Featured By Owner Feb 13, 2009
keep pushing. I like this crazy direction. It's unique and that's a very important thing to be!
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:iconsticmann:
sticmann Featured By Owner Feb 13, 2009
I agree. On this character challenge, for example, probably 75% of the posts in the WIP thread are the same design. :puke:
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:iconkurome-tenshi:
kurome-tenshi Featured By Owner Feb 13, 2009  Hobbyist General Artist
OMG it's Great Aunt Myrtle!

Well. Almost.

Looks great. The textures really blend nicely.
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:iconsticmann:
sticmann Featured By Owner Feb 13, 2009
:ohnoes:
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:iconapneicmonkey:
ApneicMonkey Featured By Owner Feb 12, 2009  Professional Digital Artist
Yep, that reads much better - love the smoke effects that are circling around her.
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:iconsticmann:
sticmann Featured By Owner Feb 13, 2009
Cool. Thanks.
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:iconturchenko:
Turchenko Featured By Owner Feb 12, 2009  Hobbyist Digital Artist
having been born russian, i would always read stories about her. thanks for doing this, it really took me back xD

might i suggest you give her a head scarf?
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:iconsticmann:
sticmann Featured By Owner Feb 12, 2009
Glad you liked it :)
Where do you think the scarf would fit?
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:iconturchenko:
Turchenko Featured By Owner Feb 12, 2009  Hobbyist Digital Artist
huh, i don't really see how you could fit the scarf onto her head if it's shaped like that

i guess it's too late to change it, but that's just the first thing i think of when i think of her

oh, and she's also supposed to have a nose like a water faucet
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:iconsticmann:
sticmann Featured By Owner Feb 13, 2009
The contest rules said we could re-interpret her as we liked, so I threw out most of the physical descriptions that have been written or illustrated before. I kept the "hideous" part and the idea of her eating children.
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:iconturchenko:
Turchenko Featured By Owner Feb 12, 2009  Hobbyist Digital Artist
or even better, put her house in the background; the cottage with chicken legs xD
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:iconsticmann:
sticmann Featured By Owner Feb 12, 2009
That's not a bad idea.
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:iconapneicmonkey:
ApneicMonkey Featured By Owner Feb 12, 2009  Professional Digital Artist
I like this one... very nice sense of depth and the witch critter is a cool and creepy design. :D
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:iconsticmann:
sticmann Featured By Owner Feb 12, 2009
Thanks. Anything you see that needs to be adjusted?
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:iconapneicmonkey:
ApneicMonkey Featured By Owner Feb 12, 2009  Professional Digital Artist
Man, I hate critiquing other people's work... I'm just not that kind of guy. :p

Ok, if you really want something - I'm guessing that she's sitting in some kind of chair. I'm guessing because that's the only part of the painting that's not really clear to me and could probably do with a little additional detail. :)
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:iconsticmann:
sticmann Featured By Owner Feb 12, 2009
I ask because I'm trying to learn how to do this stuff. I don't take it as a negative at all. When I give it, it's for the same reason. It's why I started the speed painting group also. We learn more together.

I agree about the sitting/standing ambiguity. It isn't supposed to be a chair, so I'll clear it up.
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:icondwsel:
dwsel Featured By Owner Feb 12, 2009   Digital Artist
I see its a bit (lot? :D ) exaggerated and caricatured portrait :)
In my opinion figure is not well balanced. Lower edge of her coat it too straight. If the figure were walking that edge would look more natural. At this stage adding more folds on it would also look fine :)
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:iconsticmann:
sticmann Featured By Owner Feb 12, 2009
How would you make it more balanced? Do you mean that she looks like she'll fall over or that she is asymmetrical? You're right about the bottom of the cloak. I'll fix that.
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:icondwsel:
dwsel Featured By Owner Feb 12, 2009   Digital Artist
Top of her dress occupy bigger area and has more details and texture (maybe it's only because of my current monitor, correct me if yes). I would either make the bottom 'wider' or give it more texture to give to this part the same 'weight' as the top part has. For me the posture looks now a bit unstable because of this.

Emotionally unstable too :lol: but I think this is point of this painting ;)
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:iconsticmann:
sticmann Featured By Owner Feb 12, 2009
Yes, you are right about the detailing. I'll work on the balance. Thank you :)
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:icondwsel:
dwsel Featured By Owner Feb 13, 2009   Digital Artist
Much better now! I like the way you lightened air around her with with those strings of fog.
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:iconsticmann:
sticmann Featured By Owner Feb 13, 2009
Thank you. Is the balance right now?
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:icondwsel:
dwsel Featured By Owner Feb 13, 2009   Digital Artist
It gets better with every update :)
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:iconsticmann:
sticmann Featured By Owner Feb 13, 2009
:)
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:iconringonoki:
ringonoki Featured By Owner Feb 12, 2009  Professional General Artist
It looks more like Chernobyl mutant then like old angry woman with magic abilities.IMHO
[link]
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:iconsticmann:
sticmann Featured By Owner Feb 12, 2009
:) Indeed so. I think some of her spells may have backfired :P
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February 12, 2009
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