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Destiny Falling

By Mikstyx      
This is a fine art grunge image that I did for my Awake coursework. The original image is stock from that I have worked on in Photoshop. I was inspired by gaming imagery and wanted the colouring to have an organic feel to it.

Tags: Female Colours Fine art nude Digital art Organic Grunge Female model Fine art figure

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paulbroad 14 131 1293 United Kingdom
18 Dec 2016 11:51AM
Difficult. Apparently not your original so it is just the processing that is yours? You call it fine art? At the risk of causing a disagreement again - can you define fine art for me. No one has managed yet?

Why is this fine art, and what is fine art?

For me, quite a striking result, but for what purpose. In my age group and photographic background, not an image for my wall, but possibly a book cover, given a sitable title of book as it does make you look.

18 Dec 2016 12:17PM
Hi Paul, thanks for your comments. The image is made up of many layers and blend modes within Photoshop using a black and white stock image. So yes "just" the processing is mine. The style and processes involved in making these type of images lends their name to "Fine Art Grunge". If you look closer you can see that the image is processed in a painterly fashion and the mere fact that it is artwork rather than just a photograph (although certain photography is art) tends to make it so. The Grunge is all the added layers of darkness, colours and noise. Hence Fine Art Grunge. I absolutely agree that it probably wouldn't be an image to hang on the wall but has a strong commercial aspect to it. It was intended to be that kind of work because that is where my artwork is mainly going at the moment. Please feel free to check out more at kind regards Mik
mrswoolybill Plus
15 3.0k 2467 United Kingdom
18 Dec 2016 12:30PM
Hi Mik, welcome to the Critique Gallery. You've been on the site for a few years but I think this is the first time that you have ticked the critique box? I guess you know what we are about here.

Thanks for explaining what you were aiming for, that helps. I do like the idea of the organic feel.

As Paul says, this is a difficult upload for critique purposes, because we are not seeing the original and because the original was not your own work. So we cannot comment on the basic image and we don't know what you have added. If you could upload the original as a version or modification it would be informative.

I like the coloured swirls, they mould well to the contours of the face. Is that your work? The shadow under the chin and highlight on the cheek sre both a bit overdone I think.

Beyond that I would prefer to see a plain or simply textured background, with a subtle dark vignette. You have gone a bit OTT for my taste with texture layers, there are too many details (the lettering for example) that catch my eye. I'm trying to work out what the first appearance of the felon is about, what it has to do with Food and what the music is... And what is the tabulation on the left? When detail near the edge of the frame dominates to the disadvantage of the subject, that's dodgy...

Similarly the vertical bands. The lighter band on the left looks unbalanced to me.

This isn't my area of work or personal interest photographically so I am looking as an outsider. I shall be interested in what others say. Unfortunately Tanya, the Critique Team member who really understands this type of work isn't around at the moment but I'll send her a message asking her to look in here when she can.

Edit, I'm a slow typist, your comment appeared while I was at work. Thanks for the further information, it helps no end in the CG when there's a dialogue!
paulbroad 14 131 1293 United Kingdom
18 Dec 2016 12:52PM
I accept what you say. But, some photography is art? Is photography not an art form in all respects. If not, what photography is art and what is not? I know I get on my high horse on this one, but no one has yet told me what 'fine art' actually is.

The Sistine Chapel ceiling I can see as fine art, a low key shot of the left cheek of a girls bottom eludes me! Yet, we get fine art photographers and fine art degrees. How do they differ from normal photographers and normal art degrees?

dudler Plus
18 1.7k 1885 England
18 Dec 2016 2:37PM
Hi, Mik, and welcome to the Critique Gallery!

I am going ot duck the 'is it art?' quesiton, pausing to say two things. First, many people define what they do as art, and would claim that the fact of doing so makes it thus. (Though it could be bad art...) 'Fine art' is a term that has come to mean something that is about an approach or an intent, rather than makign a statement that something is both art and a fine example. I suppose that many people who are artists, in some sense, will feel that the more hours they put into something, the better it has to be, and that having to learn difficult techniques adds value. Hence, artists who use photogrpahy as a medium, and revive elderly and arcane processes. Sometimes the resutls are beautiful. Sometimes not. And is a surgeon who takes three times as long to remove your appendix better than one who does it quickly?

So my personal approach is to let people use the term if they want, or deny that photography can ever be art or fine art, and I'll get on with taking and looking at photographs. I don't know if it's art, but it's what I do.

So what do I think of this?

The colours and the swirl appeal to me.

The way that the pattern seems to flatten and smooth the model's ear is slightly offputting - it makes it less organic. Less human organic, anyway.

The background is OK. I don't have any great feeligns either way. However, where it spills onto the figure, particularly the lettering on her chest, I wonder why. (You could produce that particular part of the effect by projecting onto the model, if you wanted.)

I get it that it's a commercial venture, and I know I don't know what constriants and aims the Awake coursework imposes.
18 Dec 2016 10:59PM
Paul, maybe I should have said most photography is art, but as art is in the eye of the beholder, who is right and who is wrong. I love how my piece has invoked this conversation. I will find the original to compare.
18 Dec 2016 11:16PM
Hi all I have updated my showcase on my page to show the original image and the finished article. Regards Mik
pablophotographer 10 1.9k 414 United Kingdom
19 Dec 2016 2:38PM
It's not the technique what it matters sometimes, it's the result.
I can see this as art.
I like the confinement in the pointed house represented in the triangle and the rectangle just below it, the conformity and subordinationof the face to the shapes looking down and to the right.I took note of the footnote and the pentagram, the distant song which accompanied the solitude.Does she dance with it? No, but as Voltaire said: ''If God did not exist, we would have to invent him'', similarly if Art does not exist we have to invent it. I was told recently that Canon 5D MKIII can take duplicate frames, this could a projection of a pattern on the model and a hot of both in one take.The reflection of a building on a glass frame which showcases a ceramic tall pot makes an instant two pictures in one frame. How my may arrive to a picture it is not an issue, we may use a pinhole camera, paper, tripod and long exposures, we may use a automatic pocket camera and film, we may use a pro DSLR and an expensive lens, we may use our telephones or tablets to take that picture. The question will remain, ''what shall we take a picture of?'' ''How does it look like?'' Each photographer addresses that on their own.
It sounds that I like your picture, although the darker curvature and shape below and above each of her lips and the yellow area enclosed by it is something I may had designed differently. The overall blending of colours is good. I would not consider this ''organic'' but rather ''fictional and fantastic''. Interesting, nevertheless.
Merry Christmas
19 Dec 2016 3:23PM
Thanks for the great feedback, this is so much more constructive than when I post something onto my Awake FB page. I think that because my fellow Awakers have a collective interest in the group they are less likely to be constructive, I usually get comments like Awesome and great job. I am loving the feed back I am getting from you guys. Many thanks Mik
dudler Plus
18 1.7k 1885 England
21 Dec 2016 11:19AM
Partly, Mik, it's because there are a team of us who get free membership in return for taking care to provide constructive feedback, whether or not the general membership does so.

And we have a specific place for requesting feedback, this Gallery.

However... Such places exist on model-photographer websites as well, and they don't, I think, work as wel las things do on EPZ. This is a friendly and supportive community. Long may it continue!
TanyaH Plus
18 1.3k 411 United Kingdom
22 Dec 2016 11:25AM
Art, Shmart ... whatever Grin

I love this simply because it's different. It's also damned hard to 'critique' as such, because it's (a) something you've added to and not something you've created from the outset, but (b) art (however it's defined) is something that has to touch the soul. It doesn't matter if it's 'proper' art, or 'artwork' that sits within a particular category, or has the acceptance and seal of approval from "those in the know" ... if it moves the soul, then it's artful in a way which cannot be quantified easily Smile

What I particularly like here is the colours of the work on the body and face - they immediately grab the attention and because they curve and mold themselves to the contours of the face, that feels 'right'. They're also bright and funky and that draws my eyes in and makes me begin to explore the rest of the image ... and that's when I notice the little details, like the soft writing on the left; the dense shadowing around the eye which (for me) indicates a sadness and melancholy underneath that bright exterior ...

I find myself trying to make out the words themselves, but then I gave up because 'felon' doesn't speak to me with this image. However, there's a couple of words which do stand out for me - "soft salve" and "artificially". That sums this one up in my head, because it's an artifically created salve for the soul Smile

If it was mine (and yeah, I know that's easy to say!) there's a couple of minor adjustments I'd personally make.

One is to soften the outer edge of the ear a bit with some shadowing, so it isn't quite so defined against the dark hair behind it.

The next thing I'd possibly do is to make the line down the edge of the neck going into the shoulder on the left more defined - you've got quite a crisp defined edge to the right hand shoulder, whereas the left side is more muted and therefore seems messy (sorry!).

The last thing I'd probably do is to take out some of the background texture from the hair itself. It's not a problem at all, and that kind of thing is very much a personal choice, but I'm wondering whether a less 'worked' and more realistic feeling to the hair would be a nice balance with the overall weirdness of the rest of the image?

So yeah ... fab image all round, I think! Smile Good to see something like this as well and I think your work on the original image is very creative and effective. It takes a lot of guts to do something like this and put it up for comment; you'll always get a mixture of opinions with an image this strong but that's part of the fun of it. Take what you want from the comments and ignore what you don't want Wink


Ps - just reading back what I'd written above and have one more thought - take back that highlight on the cheek just a touch to lessen its intensity. It needs to be there, definitely, but perhaps a little less bright.
22 Dec 2016 12:21PM
Thanks Tanya, great comments.
dudler Plus
18 1.7k 1885 England
23 Dec 2016 11:36AM
Tanya does things like this, and knows whereof she speaks.

I will say one provocative thing, though - as photographers, we all start with something that already exists, the subject in front of the camera, and add to it...

23 Dec 2016 11:45AM
Hi dudler,
point taken and I do use my own photographs in my work sometimes. I've almost finished building my studio, so hopefully soon I will be using a lot more of my own material to create with.
TanyaH Plus
18 1.3k 411 United Kingdom
23 Dec 2016 11:58AM
John makes a very good point, actually! Not one we often think of, or like to admit to as photographers, but true all the same Smile
dudler Plus
18 1.7k 1885 England
23 Dec 2016 12:46PM
The horror of still life... Having to choose everything, not just the angle...

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