stahlber's avatar
By stahlber   |   Watch
1K 33 23K (2 Today)
Published: March 10, 2015
Image size
2100x2834px 2.66 MB
Adobe Photoshop CS2 Windows
anonymous's avatar
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crainium3de's avatar
crainium3deHobbyist Digital Artist
Kodai-Rekishiya's avatar
A masterpiece really!
I will not discuss technical aspects, my competences are nil regarding digital art. However, the idea of the light coming from above, through an oculus maybe, light blue on the girl, dark brown on the creature is great. I sense no fear in the girl, no agressivity in the creature. I sense more some sort of complicity, like between beings knowing well each other, for some time already. Someone (the creature) asking something, the other (the girl) answering no, in a gentle way. I imagine what happens next: the girl hugging the creature, maybe a kiss, saying "dont be sad, dont pout, will be back soon", then flying away, and the creature retiring in its cave, sighing.
Anyway, a piece of Art (with a capital A).

sandcastler's avatar
Sexy petite physique!!
Letitbelong's avatar
She tries to hold a monster back, with fragility and beauty, and I think she is afraid. But he listens to her. I think he will not hurt her. Something that seems to be difficult in reality but possible in imagination and spirit. That's my interpretation, a reflection how I perceive the world.
mvalS94's avatar
mvalS94Hobbyist General Artist
This is a masterpiece!!
UnbridledMuse's avatar
UnbridledMuseHobbyist General Artist
Wow, this is awesome! :la:
spartiAtes's avatar
spartiAtesHobbyist Digital Artist
Well done!!!
This is perfection!!
TwistedRootIV's avatar
Oh...THIS! This is one of my favorite pieces EVER! I wish I were that monster...I would treat her so well.
Galinas-Claim's avatar
COOL!  This is one of the first images I remember seeing when I discovered this site.
beautyliesintheeye's avatar
Ah... would have loved to write a critique on this! :-)
Such a great piece of art.
I'll give you a short version, though it indeed deserves a long one as has rightfully been done given the exquisite result you've offered us.
I would have gone completely opposite the comments I've read. And what you have written in your answer to the critique.
To me this is no stale mate. True, that impression comes off at first. But then, one wonders as to the true meaning of the title "one more time"...
Her back isn't bent enough to convey resignation. No groveling here. She isn't mesmerized either. Her body isn't slack or tensed. Paused.
It doesn't express fear either, or it would be more tensed and upright. She has obviously quite enough height available to meet the dragon's gaze but chooses instead to bend slightly, with confidence. Her stance is that of one addressing an issue. A difficult one maybe, but a manageable one.
Her wings are folded, but not placated or flat. They do not express anything but simplicity of stance.
What do we have opposing or amending that: her hand and arms, her gaze, the speech she obviously delivers and of course the setting, the title and the dragon, or more appropriately the drooling beast.
But most of these are at best purely interpretative. No real information available here, save neutral ones.
Let's take a random look.
The setting is stark and contrasted. But what do you expect from a cave and a shaft of light? Neutral.
Secondary interests, namely the butterflies, are neutral at best or positive. They do not seem otherwise affected by any of this, and what's more their sheer presence is rather a testimony to the peacefulness of the setting if anything else. Neutral.
The Girl. Unfathomable. Take a look at her without the setting or her Nemesis. What do you see? And she's totally unscathed. No past action in this picture. The only troubling aspect of her posture is her left arm which is strangely invisible.
Three possibilities: it's hurt (it doesn't bleed, but may be broken yet she doesn't display any expression of pain) and she nurses it; she is shielding her breasts (but if so in a purely academic way since nothing in the picture qualifies sexually and the beast looks her in the eye); or she holds it in a defensive posture (crossing her breast instead of covering it, and a close examination accredits this in my opinion, but is her hand on her heart?). I hold the last hypothesis for relevant. Neutral mostly, but the keystone. Everything hinges on it and we have no real clue but a nagging feeling that something may be amiss or that at least we're missing something.
So we obviously look closer at The beast. Yes it drools and looks beastly and impressive, but that's the essence of its character. Nothing to see here. The capital feature is where and how it looks. It is intent and listening to what is said and to who talks to it. What could be said? Think about it. What could be said that had any interest (and it obviously does) for a creature that could easily swallow whole its prey if that's what the Girl (yes I know it's not a girl proper) is AND knowing that it cannot talk itself which seems obvious from the long tong lolling out.
The scene changes completely at that point. So much so, that one is inclined to look for additional clues.
The skull. Yes. But what the Hell is it doing there? It's obviously an add on. The classical stance would be to have a claw on it, but the one we see rests well above and behind. This also alters the perception of the scene and the Beast. Why would it bend itself in such a convoluted way to address (or listen more appropriately) to a prey?
So we go back to a perception of stance and discourse, partaking even. This is so true, it is probably why you had to add the skull (I'm well aware my commentating neck is sticking way out waiting for the blow lol), as if you knew all the plotting wasn't enough of a giveaway. In a sense, it's almost as if having succeeded so well preserving the suspense, you had to tip your hand extra to make sure we didn't miss the obvious conclusion.
But as for most exceptional works, yours has escaped its creator and taken a life of itself. Independent of your own volition.
Being the positive and sensitive one, I immediately though this was a plea:
"One more time!"
"Please let's play one more round before I'm off"...
"I know you're exhausted (stop drooling on my knee like that) but you're so big and strong... please..." ;-)
Oops! Just looked back and realized I let the keys fly on the board... well. Wasn't a short version after all! ;-)
stahlber's avatar
stahlberProfessional Digital Artist
wow, thanks!  what an in-depth analysis, deeper than I myself ever went...  I guess I pretty much went 50/50 with thinking and instinct on this one...  the butterfly is partly a compositional device, and also a symbol of escape/freedom, that may be denied her...  the drool mostly a trick to connect the protagonist and antagonist closer to each other...  the claws not resting on the skull, frankly I never thought of it, not consciously, probably felt the skull would have been instantly crushed by what looks like roughly half the weight of the monster.  :)
beautyliesintheeye's avatar
Of course the skull should have been crushed, but that's why it wouldn't be art! lol No decent artist would crush a good skull to no good effect! Hahahahaha! Just kidding, but in all good fantasy the receiver of the charmed tale expects leger de main from the artist. Alas, I'm not an artist, at least not in your kind of expression. The only thing I do that would be remotely connected is storytelling, as in telling bedtime stories I create as per precise instructions given me by my 3 little girls! A treat and a feat if you can believe it. Anyway, even for such trivial undertakings, I can fully feel the unspoken expectations when they arise.
Anyway, what guided my lazy boots this way again (aside from the obvious visual pleasure of your creation) is the piece which struck me as a perfect example of some of the points we discussed, and most probably a testimony to the independent life an artwork gets to have included offsprings... ;-)…
mr-machina's avatar
mr-machinaHobbyist Traditional Artist
This is one of my all time favorites. So much of your work is so memorable.
prudence13's avatar
This image is TOTALLY AMAZING! :) Please disregard that critique from that prior Deviant..they clearly don't know perfection when they see it!
b-no-since-1969's avatar
b-no-since-1969Professional General Artist
Ehliasys's avatar
Ehliasys Digital Artist
he - I know this since I joined CGSociety many years ago.
It's one of my all times favorite images; brilliant in composition, scope of interpretation and impact.
the sense of suspense between delicateness and vulnerability on the one side and brute strength, menace and force on the other is just spot on.   
LovelyLiar's avatar
LovelyLiarHobbyist Traditional Artist
SO beautiful.... :heart: her face.. And her wins.. The fragility is just gorgeous. And the creatures face approaching her... I just wish I knew how to describe things better... 

Just! Ugh so beautiful! :heart:
SapanVasava's avatar
SapanVasavaHobbyist Digital Artist
Awesome Man...!!!
adamquinnart's avatar
adamquinnartProfessional General Artist
Wow I remember this piece from a long time ago. The details of the original I liked more but this is very nice :)
DoctorOverlord's avatar
Wonderful piece of art.  Like others I remember seeing this piece a while ago, it's nice to see it again here on DA.
anonymous's avatar
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