My entry for day 17 of Equestria Daily's Artist Training Grounds II. The brief was "draw a pony under pressure".
This was the perfect opportunity to draw some Rarity, who has been rather under-represented in my entries so far. Then, after sketching the scene out, I realised there had to be Sweetie Belle in there too. My two favourite ponies in one picture! Given the subject I decided today's picture would be perfect for playing with shading and lighting techniques. I also built on my earlier work on capturing the look of the backgrounds from the show, as mentioned in my day 10 piece, this time avoiding the overabundance of straight lines I used then.
Update: For my own reference I put together a breakdown of the stages involved in constructing this picture, which I've uploaded with commentary to my scrapbook. Click here.
My first entry (of two) for day 30 of Equestria Daily's Artist Training Grounds II. The brief was to revisit one of the previous day's themes.
I decided to revisit my day 1 piece, back when I was anticipating only entering when I felt like it and doing mostly quick pieces; over the month I became utterly absorbed in the ATG event, not missing a single day and often spending several hours on some of the more complex pieces. A simple, sweet little piece with nothing complicated in the way of composition, perspective, colour or shading, has become this far more demanding one. What a long and interesting month it has been.
Update: This, along with my other day 30 piece, was included in Equestria Daily's Drawfriend #551 post. Glad to know someone likes my stuff enough to submit it to EqD and get it included!
My entry for day 7 of Equestria Daily's Artist Training Grounds II. The brief was "draw a pony facing a conflict", and as we all know desserts are serious business.
When I decided to take part in the ATG I expected to dip in only when I found the time and liked the theme, but here I am, a week in and still sticking at it! I'm getting much more used to my graphics tablet (not that I won't do some traditional art over the month too), and I'm enjoying spotting my shortcomings and working to correct them. I noticed I've not been very adventurous with facial expressions in my previous entries, so I decided to go with a comic for today's challenge to give more scope for playing around.
My entry for day 10 of Equestria Daily's Artist Training Grounds. The brief was "draw a pony making a decision". I imagined Twilight's first trip to a public library, and how she might face having to pick just a few books to borrow.
I attempted to emulate the style of the show's backgrounds for this piece. I've always admired the gorgeous background art in the show, and this really made me appreciate the level of detail they put in. I think I've probably been a bit too strict with sticking to shape and perspective, where the show itself tends to be looser and freer with the geometry. I intend to try and develop a freer style with backgrounds in future pieces.
Update: This has joined several of my previous ATG pieces in being included in one of Equestria Daily's Drawfriend posts (#531 this time), thanks to someone else's submission.
"I don't even remember how this was supposed to get us our cutie marks..."
I had this image hanging around (as lineart only) from before the Equestria Daily Artists Training Grounds event of August 2012, and I decided to dust it off and finish it. I found, thanks to a month of flexing my creaky old drawing muscles, that the old lineart now looked embarrassingly stilted, so I redraw it from the sketch. I can really see the benefits I got from the event!
Update: Another piece makes it to a Drawfriend post on Equestria Daily - #568 this time. Thanks again to whoever it is that's spotting or submitting them!
My entry for day 19 of Equestria Daily's Artist Training Grounds II. The brief was "draw a pony cooking".
I love the fan conception of Derpy Hooves and Carrot Top as flatmates: I imagine them being like pony versions of Morecambe and Wise in their classic "at home" sketches. One of their most famous comedy performances is the hilarious "making breakfast" routine, and the notion of Derpy and Carrot Top doing the same thing was too funny to pass up. Originally I planned to do individual panels showing them doing the same things as Eric and Ern', but as I sketched it out the idea of doing it as a single-frame montage arose (and the actions got more ridiculous). The layout also provided an opportunity to play with curvilinear perspective, something I've not tried before, at least not with a proper grid (I did something similar with the background on my day 14 piece, but that was by eye alone). The background was a real time-sink this time, not only because I wanted to keep adding more and more detail, but also just figuring out how to distort the objects to fit the curvilinear perspective while still looking natural.
Update: This picture made it into an Equestria Daily Drawfriend post, #539 this time, even beating the posting of the day 19 ATG gallery! Whoever's spotting or submitting these is fast!
My entry for day 15 of Equestria Daily's Artist Training Grounds. The brief was "draw a pony being inquisitive".
This comic started as the idea of having filly Twilight surreptitiously investigating Celestia's quarters at the school of magic, and the notion of telling a short story (without making use of word balloons) grew out of that. This was quite an ambitious task to take on, but one I did for a reason - I have a bad habit of dallying too long on my lineart, and this means pieces often take far longer than they should. I used my day 14 piece as a conscious attempt to work on this problem, breaking down the image into distinct areas (each of the six main figures, the background and the sky), and setting time limits for each. Doing a comic was a way to continue this, as it is naturally broken down into segments, though this time I didn't use time limits - just having the panels helped me gauge the progress.
I would like to have coloured this, but time ran out on me and I had to resort to my backup plan, some basic half-toning to set the mood. I really need to be careful I'm not biting off more than I can chew with these daily challenges! If I find the time later, I will revisit the piece and colour it.
My entry for day 27 of Equestria Daily's Artist Training Grounds II. The brief was "draw a pony attending a masquerade".
Time for another refreshing break from the digital realm to do a traditional piece. I've been playing with different looks for the characters on and off throughout the ATG event, trying to find ways to depict them in a more distinctive style that departs from the show's designs while still keeping them recognisable. I started a version of my day 16 piece using a different style but ended up going with the show style in the finished piece. An alternative idea for my day 13 piece also used the same alternative style but never made it beyond a sketch.
Well, no more shrinking from this challenge. With only a few days of the event left, I decided I've got to try the different look out for real - for me, this event has been about pushing boundaries and trying out new things. The slightly more realistic horse-like proportions make for an interesting look. It was fun coming up with alternative hairstyles and masks, and I would love to have had done versions of all the mane 6, but time wouldn't permit it.
My entry for day 11 of Equestria Daily's Artist Training Grounds II. The brief was "draw a pony fixing something".
I decided to take a palate-cleansing break from my all-digital entries so far and do a traditional art piece. This was produced with coloured pencils and brush-tip felt pens. Having already done pieces with Apple Bloom and Scootaloo I'd been looking for a chance to include Sweetie Belle somewhere. Day 11's theme provided a good opportunity to have the Cutie Mark Crusaders being adorably good friends, as well as to work on a simple composition concentrating more on the positioning of figures in the frame.