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Please Do Noogie The Skeleton


This is one of the panels from my ongoing Undertale webcomic, Just Cause. As happens more often than he's willing to admit, Sans is having a terrible day, and this picture is a symbolic look at what's happening under the unknowing noses of the people who care about him.

I originally intended to have Papyrus hugging Sans from behind, but the angle of his head and shoulders wasn't quite working out for that, and the look on his face was turning out downright mischievous. After a brief contemplation, I concluded that I liked the idea of him giving Sans a noogie, so rather than changing it, I decided to just go with this happy accident.

It's also a bit of a shout-out to the neutral ending in which Papyrus urges Undyne not to noogie the skeleton or the phone. I think near the end of the murder route, Sans would give anything to have a noogie from Papyrus.

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Brou07's avatar
So much pain, yet such a warm feeling.
I love the idea behind this drawing, and the way you captured it. Very well done!
StephOBrien's avatar
Thanks! I appreciate you taking the time to tell me so. :)
DoubleDandE's avatar
Hello, I'm from ProjectComment

Well now this is an interesting little happy accident. I liked how you changed it to a noogie when things weren’t going to go for what you had planned. It’s a great example of how artists should be when drawing, and just go with it- great job on putting that in the description. I wouldn’t have ever guessed if it wasn’t there. The angle and his head placement are great for such the spot, and it looks very well. The panel itself is simple, and I like how it’s dark everywhere, and the shading reflects that. The heart that’s cracked and glowing is very nice, almost as if it’s blinding to look at. The shading helps show this, as it’s pushing back the light in itself from the dark shadow.

There’s not much that needs improving here, however I might suggest adding in some bright concentrated spots on Sans’ jacket and skull to show the light is close to him. They don’t need to be too bright, but help show how power the light is. Also, the shading or shadow here would be minimal.

Either way though, I can see that the light shading goes over the line art and helps add to this illusion anyway. Very nice. The pants near the bottom of the panel could be a bit brighter, and the two could be off centered, but overall it’s just a panel for the comic, so I’m not sure how it’ll be placed in the final.

Very nice work overall. I like what you’ve done so far- keep up the great work. :thumbsup: 

StephOBrien's avatar
Thank you very much for the detailed feedback, and sorry for the late reply! I appreciate the suggestions. The cracked soul wasn't supposed to be super-bright - maybe it would be if he was psychologically healthier, but as it is, it's fading. Still, you make a good point about how the parts nearest to the soul could have been made brighter to show the proximity - thanks. :)

The reason for the darkness near the bottom is that this is a mental image, so it fades into black around the edges, but I guess that wouldn't be clear in a standalone panel.

Thanks again for all the thought you put into this comment!
DoubleDandE's avatar
You're Welcome. 

No problem, glad to be of some help. And ah, I see. Would make sense now that you pointed it out. 
apples-ishness's avatar

This is such an adorable art piece! It conveys a warm message using a simplistic, easy to understand style. You've done a great job portraying the characters' emotions through body language and facial expressions. This scene makes me feel all warm and fuzzy I LOVE IT! 

Some suggested improvements:
  • Poses - The poses drawn do an excellent job of conveying the emotion, message and warmth of the scene. There are just a few tweaks with the hands I could suggest to improve the drawing. Firstly, Papyrus's (I think? The tall guy...) hand that is resting on Sans's (?) head is facing the wrong way around - his thumb should not be visible to the viewer. Secondly, I'd suggest having Sans's hand turning slightly more so that they are flat - that would make it seem more like he is cupping the heart in his hands. Other than those suggestions, I'd say the poses word really well. In particular I like how Papyrus's spine is drawn, bending him into position. It makes for a nice little composition trick to lure the viewer's eye around the scene.
  • More intensity - As the characters appear to be in a completely dark room, all the light would come from a single source - the heart. So the intensity of the shading and light would need to be amped up to reflect this setting. There is the start of this in the drawing already but it could definitely be more intense. Also, the light from the heart could cast an even greater, more intense light to give it more impact and draw the viewer's eye.
  • Cropping - The cropping of the piece is a little too tight for comfort. I'd suggest giving the characters a lot of head-space and perhaps show the full length of their bodies (if the drawing literally ends at the bottom, meaning it wasn't cropped to be like that, then kindly ignore that remark). The lack of head-space is the biggest problem because it makes the characters seem squished down.
Great stuff!

Commented on behalf of ProjectComment
StephOBrien's avatar
Thank you so much for the compliments and feedback! That thumb, though - AUUUUGGH! That's at LEAST the third time I have drawn Papyrus' thumb on the wrong side of his hand. I get so wrapped up in trying to figure out how a mitt would look in a pose that I forget that the "camera" will be looking at the opposite side from the one I'm looking at. Thanks for pointing it out. And come to think of it, I think I forgot the symbol on his chest. Those two features. Those two frikkin' features have tripped me up a disproportionate number of times compared to everything else I draw.

For that matter, I just realized Sans' hands are backward, too. *additional silent screaming*

I do tend to do a little too light on the shading, so thanks for reminding me that I need to be bolder in adding darker shadows in situations like this.

The drawing does end at the bottom, but based on your suggestions, I might do a full-body redraw of this someday, probably at wallpaper size. Producing new webcomic pages takes priority, but I think this deserves a place in my "someday" file.

Thanks again!
Octahazer's avatar
Playing the Undertale game myself, this game was a wonderful game to play, I honestly had a lot of fun, but the fact you had the decision to kill one or both of these brothers was emotionally distressful; you grow a bond between them and you're absolutely disgusted with yourself after realizing what you've done, it's just terrible. :(

But I've come from ProjectComment to come say just how remarkable this is. You created a simple yet nice drawing that shows these two giving that silly ol' brotherly loving that only they know how to display, and I can't get enough of these two to be completely honest with you. If anything, the only thing I would suggest is more lighting around the heart, since the hearts usually do glow - unless I'm a moron and don't know about that concept, but other than that this picture is amazing! :la: 

I totally love it! :heart:
StephOBrien's avatar
Yes, it is a wonderful game - right now, it's my favorite as far as story, characters and setting go. I've never killed either of the skeleton brothers, and I don't plan to.

Thank you so much for the compliments and suggestion! There is a bit of a glow around Sans' soul, but I agree that it could have been more pronounced and noticeable. Thanks for taking the time to comment - it's very encouraging!
Octahazer's avatar
I'm really glad that you appreciate it, it means a lot to me! I'm not too good with commenting just yet so I'm doing the best I can! I'll get better, I promise! :la:
StephOBrien's avatar
You're off to a good start, I think. You said what you liked about the picture, and gave feedback on what could be improved, which is the basis for a good comment. On some pictures, you'll see a lot of details to compliment and/or a lot of improvements to suggest, and on others, you'll only notice a few things you want to mention; either way is fine. :)
HazelRose3637's avatar
Awwww!!! :3 So cute!! Poor Sans looks so broken and hurt! You did a great job capturing his anguish and pain. I wanna hug him, too!

And Papyrus is such a great brother! I think you drew him at a great angle, from the side/back and nuzzling his bro.

The overall feel is warmth, and light in the darkness. I like this without anything in the background. It puts all the focus on these two and the emotion they emit. Well done!

...I still wanna hug these two dorks lol Huggle! 
StephOBrien's avatar
Thank you so much! I really appreciate the detailed compliments!

...And also, I want to hug them too. Especially Sans. Sure, he'd probably be weirded out by some random human stranger showing up and hugging him, but I still want to hug him.
HazelRose3637's avatar
You're welcome :D And ikr!
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