Final layer count: 150
Well. This was a long time in the making (for me anyways), and is kind of a combination of a number of experiments in lighting, shadows, texturing, and lineart (no seriously). I know there's a bunch of issues with it, but honestly I'm surprised at how well it turned out, I'm happy with it, and I'm a little awed with how far I've come. Regardless, a list of issues I am aware of follows. I'm probably not going to fix any of these in favor of trying new things with more organized layers instead of the layernado of this one.
- (Her) Left goggle frame: too sharp, feels unnaturally clean. Also the texturing doesn't quite fit with the other goggle frame.
- Mane: Lighting doesn't match up with the rest of her lighting. Ponytail almost feels plastic. Lack of loose strands is the main issue.
- Feathers: Mostly just lighting. As I see it her feathers should allow some light from the one light source through, but I avoided this as I would've also had to guess where her wing would be thickest/thinnest.
- Grey straps (mostly on the goggles, her hoofband to a lesser extent): Doesn't really seem like a material. Arguably subverted for her hoofband(s) as that is supposed to be a cloud.
- Fur: Texture is inconsistent. Not entirely sure why, I triple-checked all the layers and methods and they should look the same. Needs further investigation.
- Blocked colors (most noticeable in the background): Probably due to 8-bit palette. Not sure how to work around since filters won't work on 16- or 24-bit palette.
- Angle: Her muzzle is inconsistent with the way she's turned, I think. It doesn't look quite right, but it's not off enough to bother me. Strangely enough.
Now if you'll excuse me, I'm going to go stare at her some more. Yes, I kind of have a thing for grey eyes (damnit Melanie Laurent, stahp). Sue me.
Wallpapers:1920x1080 (text)1920x1080 (no text)3200x1800 (no text)
Yes, I am aware she is missing her other facial features. I couldn't figure out how to add nostrils without them looking weird, and I actually didn't want to draw her mouth, partly because of the angle but mostly because she won't talk unless you talk to her first.
Lineart drawn in GIMP 2.8.6., then moved to Photoshop for everything else. I do not own My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic. Zephyr (depicted) is the protagonist of Broken Wings, Scattered Dust, an in-progress adventure ponyfic' authored by yours truly. You can find that here