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She Who Leads by ransim She Who Leads by ransim
This piece is my entry into Lucias's Halloween contest.


This piece was inspired by a poem I read several years ago regarding the Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead). I've always loved Autumn and the Dia de los Muertos celebrations always fascinated and held special meaning to me.

Woman with a Somber Gaze

Woman with a somber gaze,
Tell me, what do you see in the candles?
are they ghosts in the night
or are they flowers of the earth?

What do you treasure on your lap
illuminated and transparent,
even in the air
your silhouette appears?

Twice as much the pain,
twice as much the loss,
the flowers have become rivers
and the fragrance cries out.

Pondering at night,
vigil of the imagination,
bundle of lights and echoes,
stay up late during the wake...

Woman with a tender gaze
the flames of candles reach out;
are they mocking this moment
or are they restfully flickering out.

In your illuminated face
life rejuvenates,
to those who love death
this is a golden night in their sight.

For those who love life
it is a night of confusion,
the wax kisses the flowers
and the flame caresses the emotions.

Julie Sopetran, 1995
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ProCritique Featured By Owner Oct 18, 2006
You chose the perfect mix of images for this picture. The way youíve fit the girl in under the canopy of trees is amazing, she seems to belong exactly there. The way the eye first focuses on her face, and then to her arm and up and around the tree back down to her feet and then to her face forms a kind of circle, which keeps you in the picture.

I love the flash of red you used for her top! Itís very prettily reused in the foliage. The gold of the lamp is very nicely done also, the mixture of that with the oranges and reds in the leaves and her shirt make it very apparent that the season youíre presenting is fall. The way the light makes the trees into a solid black is a good choice to match her hair color and eyes. The colors you used is beautiful, the whole palette really works well.

The transparency is a good way to give her a ghostly appearance, however her skirt is less opaque than anywhere else, and the uneveness is a little disconcerting. Adding a little bit of saturated purple may help there, and also define the shadows youíve hightlighted so well. The edges of the modelís body are harshly done. Iíd suggest feathering the area highlighted before inserting her body into the image. You may want to give the halos a stronger feathering also, just to make the lightsource seem even. The effect given now is that the light is swallowed by the trees and background (and maybe the black you added in, I just noticed it), though that may be more to your liking. Overall, youíve got a good grasp on the tools required, you may just want to spend some more time experimenting with the strength you use.

The framing is nice, the black and white neatly echo the black tree trunck and white haze. The frame on the right seems to be a little bit thinner than the other side, maybe because of the difference in colors beside it. You may want to add some width or take that into consideration next time. Itís subtle though, so itís not a big deal, just an observation.
ransim Featured By Owner Oct 20, 2006  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I almost don't know what to do with myself with such a good critique!

This was one of my first pieces that is a real foray into full art, I've done do much in the past that was really focused on the subject and little on the background. With the subject itself I was trying to portray and unevenness of her opacity as it were to make her appear as a not quite there spirit.

I'm going to play a bit with the haloing and the frame tonight, thanks for the honest critique, you have no idea how much its appreciated. Especially given I'm jumping head long into a new style and area for me.
ProCritique Featured By Owner Oct 21, 2006
I've gone ahead and sent your newest piece of work to the same critic to see what heads and tails can be seen. You're welcome for the critique, I hope we were of some help.
kaldtonde Featured By Owner Oct 5, 2006  Hobbyist Photographer
nitallica Featured By Owner Sep 17, 2006  Hobbyist General Artist
Very nice hon :)
bloody-mari Featured By Owner Sep 17, 2006
wow... i really love this one :)

nice work :D
nutamu Featured By Owner Sep 17, 2006  Hobbyist General Artist
Creepy cool
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