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:iconmarkoos-gang:
Markoos-Gang Featured By Owner Edited Feb 8, 2019  Hobbyist General Artist
Hi! I'm here from gallery at a glance from ProjectComment ! I must say, I love your art! 
Your characters are very beautiful and well designed, their positioning and placement in your images is really well done. The front two characters have quite dramatic poses, but the third character is just kinda standing there. I really enjoy the colouring, it gives a nice look I don't see usually. It really works with your style too! I enjoy finding little details on your characters, such as the ripped cape and the little sparkles on Todd's sword. You do a good job at putting in drama and perspective in your pieces. I've noticed attempts of including shading in your art, which is something I'd say you could keep working on.

Sometimes your colouring can seem quite rushed, but I believe that may just be the stylistic choice. Which I do believe looks nice, but can be a tiny bit off putting at times. I love the light colours you use that make the characters stand out a lot more. Your anatomy can seem a bit odd at times, but I've grown to really like it. Considering the cartoony style it works quite well. You do a brilliant job at different body types and different heights to make your characters all different from each other. Looking at them all lined up together makes it really easy to see all their differences. Which is something many people (including me) can struggle with. 

Now, Im gonna give my answers to your questions :D

  • Bullet; Green My character designs feel very generic, even though they look very original. Why is this?
They are very original looking, but I can agree that they aren't overly memorable for me. I am unsure of why this is. I am unsure why I find some things memorable and some not, I believe the best way to combat this is by working at your characters and experimenting with different looks. Just don't change them entirely, because I really do like them. Little changes might be able to help. Other than that, I don't know. I must say, your main character does look a lil generic, the others are fine though. I am unsure how to fix that. 

  • Bullet; Green What personality or character type seems to be missing from these lineups that I should consider when I make my next OC?
I'm not quite sure what personality or character seems to be missing, the personality of some characters is hard to gather by just looking at the lineup you have. Maybe the inclusion of some younger and older characters might add to that? Maybe like your stereotypical wise elder, but with some interesting flair added to them?

  • Bullet; Green Please look over the characters in my lineups and find a few details on some of them that are unclear or drawn wrong, then take a guess at what it was you think I was most likely unsuccessfully attempting to convey?
I think you did a fairly good job at conveying what I believed you were trying to do. I just think adding more different postures to some of them could help a little bit with this? But other than that. You've done a good job. 

  • Bullet; Green If you were tasked with redesigning some of these characters, how would you have designed them?
If I was to redesign them, I wouldn't really change much since I really like them, changing things would remove the unique flair you give your designs. I would tone them down a bit from the extreme style they have. This is not insulting to you, but thats just to go with my art style.

  • Bullet; Green I've been posting art of these characters for 8 years. Why haven't they caught on yet?
This, I am not sure of. For someone who's fairly new here I don't know how things catch on. Maybe a lack of mingling with the community has led to this? Try and find groups to submit art to and find people with common interest as you. It could help

And, I think thats all I can do for now. I hope this helps!
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:icontoddntheshiningsword:
ToddNTheShiningSword Featured By Owner Feb 9, 2019  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Thanks for your Comment! I hope my Reply isn't too long for you; I don't know if you like long Replies or not. ^^; 
I got Comments from both you and the other person, but I gave the other person a Comment first and then a Reply, and for you I'll do the Reply now and then the Comment after. ^^; I looked at your stuff, but your question is... you didn't seem to have questions, from the Note, so I need to think about it, ya know? Also, you Commented fast! You did it like a fe hours after the Notes went out. :emailsend: whooosheheh
Also at first I was scared at first that since this Comment was in Featured and not the Folder, I was worried you missed the Folder :noes:, but you mentioned the lineups so you surely saw them. X3


To Reply, actually, no, my characters aren't well designed. A good character is usually one designed with intent to accomplish a purpose, and conveys a message while solving a problem. I know that sounds kinda deep, :slow: but every character needs to characterize something, ya know? So they gotta get their point across in the style they're made in. And then when a character is part of a story, they need to play a role in the story and work well as a cast, and mine don't do any of that well right now. Most of the characters either don't have a purpose, their point is unclear, or they're just not good, :no:and they don't fit together in interesting ways as a cast, so they're boring.
Some evidence for the characters not quite communicating right to people is that my main character, Todd, is actually supposed to look a bit generic. People can tell he's more generic than the others, but they can't always tell that I did that on purpose, so it looks like I did it by accident. :cry:
I can assure you that I DID NOT do a good job at conveying what I was trying to convey. In many of my drawings, I didn't even know what I was trying to convey! There's no way I could have gotten a design right when I, myself was confused when about what I was making when I made it! :dizzy: :doh: So I ask a lot of people for help with this whenever I'm on Project Comment, to see if anyone can tell what it was I was trying to do when I did those confusing details, but so far no one can even tell what it is I'm asking. That's how far off I am. :slamhead:
I'm glad you like the details in my characters (and that you like the characters at all! :thanks: ) but the details are where they fall apart. They're full of things where you look at it and don't really know what it is, or what it was supposed to be. :evileye: 
For example, Shaza, the swordswoman. In the green coat. Her boots, for example, have these green things on them. They make no sense! What on Earth ARE they? I HAVE NO IDEA. In some pictures some of them are jewel-like, and some of them stick off or bulge off, and it some of them some of them are floating around like they're levitating or something, with no attatchment point. Sometimes there are more lines and sometimes less and sometimes I take them off completely, or make them paint, or painted or.... I DUNNO! But then when I take them out there's too much black space. I feel like something green needs to go there, but I don't know what it is. My characters disappoint because they're got bits of detail like that where I don't know what the heck I was thinking or making when I made that. :stupidme: 

I color in crayon, so, for better or for worse, that's why my coloring looks the way it does. :aww: I use colored pencil and cheap markers to go with it. I usually shade my pictures, but I don't understand shading, so I never do it well at all. And some of the crayons have sparkles in them. :star-half: :meow: :star:

When you referred to the first, second and third characters, I didn't know which ones you were talking about, but now I think MAYBE I know which picture you were looking at. :?

I'm really glad you suggested younger and older characters. I'm really thinking now that adding characters like that will help!! Thanks a lot for that! And also, I wasn't insulted when you said you'd tone my characters down if you made them.
And sorry that these questions were hard to answer.
I'm really happy that you actually liked looking at these characters and wanted to look through more of them. :)
:community:
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:icontigraidoxxx:
TigRaidoXXX Featured By Owner Edited Dec 3, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
Hi, I'm from ProjectComment, Gallery at a Glance :)

Have to tell you that you're being a cheat, asking so many specific questions ;) can't do that at a glance, unless the commenter already follows Todd's adventures. But I'll do what I can :)

:bulletgreen: Do you know anyone who's extremely good at character design that also likes to evaluate people's characters and give impressions and pointers?

Nope :)
Seriously, I'm not aware about advertising or developing characters and communities that focus on that. I only know that ProjectComment allows various forms of getting feedback.
There are a ton of groups like www.deviantart.com/the-oc-real…, maybe you can look there. Other than that, I've no idea :)

:bulletgreen: Do any of my characters remind you of other characters you've seen? If not, feel free to skip this question, but if so, please be specific. Example: an individual character of mine reminds you of a specific character from a show, game or even a deviant. I'd like to be able to look that character(s) up.

Your characters in general remind me of old RPG and other console games (that I'm not playing :) ), like Mario (that's the only one I'm more or less aware of, design-wise). The whole style of yours is very outstanding here, for dA - can't say it reminds me of any other artist here. That is, because while keeping things simple and cartoonish, you actually do a solid work at following the designs throughout your drawings. People either develop towards more realism, or never achieve any decent quality, so you fill an interesting niche as I see it.

:bulletgreen: Some of the details of these characters are really confusing. Please find specific accessories or pieces of clothing that don't look good and show me a reference or search term for something that you think might look better or more clear.

Again, it's hard for me to pick something specific, because of the cartoon style it looks like everything is possible.
Okay, let me go through this bunch of designs.www.deviantart.com/toddntheshi…
- what are the azure things in the Zellica fairy? If they are folded wings, they are too narrow on the first image. The blue butterfly wings can transform into hands? But, your use of distinctive colors for these elements makes up for the changing shapes, making the parts of the body understandable.
- I'm not sure the sphere-like skirts on girls look natural to me, because their middle is like crinoline, while bottom is narrow, not like a wide bunch of fabic gathered underneath. Since it would be a crazy lot of work to stitch such a skirt, it gives me thoughts of plastic or other hard material, not fabric. But maybe it's something normal for a cartoon :)
- the gray dress girl looks like she has square tits. Is that intentional? :) If that's her dress shape with a high rim, then it's not very clear. I think you can use different color for the rim (if that's a white lace I see here), to make clear that it's not her bust outline, but a piece of fabric.
- not sure what the black and silver element on the back of the next character is. A cape or some odd colored hair? If that's hair, I suggest more hairy edges, showing some divided hair strands. If that's a cape/hood, then it's okay. Overall that's a complicated hairstyle/headpiece. I think it's cool, but it's not easy to get the structure from a couple of images only.
- Todd looks most proportional out of all your team, and I guess that's reasonable. Since you aim for a "normal' look, I suggest you look more into body proportion guidelines for this one. Like, arms reaching mid-thigh, legs being roughly 1/2 if the total height (too short now). There are dozens of tuts for that. Like here www.deviantart.com/nominee84/a… or you can search for more here on dA :)
- imo, Ryugo's boots and feet look too disbalanced in their size, even for a cartoon character.

In general, talking of your character proportions, you seem to be working intuitively rather than logically, but I suggest you keep in mind some links that exist in human body, that artist usually keep to make things look balanced. You seem to be doing okay so far, but I suggest you do study anatomy, even as you keep drawing cartoons.

:bulletgreen: What kind of change can I make to my characters overall to make them better as a group?

I think they fit well on a group, forming a unified cartoonish cast, suitable for a fantasy comic.
I think you should pay more attention to accuracy of your coloring (still not neat enough :) but the recent ones are more polished than older stuff). Also, the color choices. I'd pick a palette that looks good on its own and then go through all the characters and check if the colors are supposed to work together. Next step: turn everyone to grayscale and see if the values work together (balance between bright and dark colors).
Imo, about color schemes:
Good: gray dress girl, african, Simon, the blue-hair sword girl (one with Princess sword :) )
Okay: plappers, fairies, Todd
Fairly okay: Ryugo, the green-coat-blue-pants lady :)
Not okay: two sisters in puffy dresses

Coloristics and color wheel are what you can use to choose color combinations for your chars.
Now you make them recognisable and distinguished, but not all of them look aesthetical. I think I commented on your work once :) well, maybe I've said that before then.
www.deviantart.com/cgcookie/ar…

:bulletgreen: Which characters are your favourites, and why?

Can't say at this point. Todd is okay. The blue-haired sword lady with Princess sword is cool :) the plapper species are quite cool too ( I like the red one better, cause he looks more badass :) ).

Hope this helps you out. I'm not giving much ref, because man, that's a lot of work, sorting through someone's OCs that you don't know much of ^^; If you have any specific questions about exact details, feel free to ask.
And you can suggest that people critique your comic pages in the deviation descriptions, I've seen other artists do that, if they need feedback. Then you get feedback from those who know your stories well enough. Also, you might look for some classes for artists where you live, if you want to study more seriously :)
I can say that your strong sides (looking at your gallery) are:
- recognisable characters
- accurate designs and unified style
- ability to keep pace and create long comic stories
What needs improvement
- coloring technique and accuracy
- color choices
- page layouts (I get a feeling of clumped pages, and often there's too much text. To improve that, you can study other webcomics and just ask yourself each time, if something can be written more shortly, or thrown out.)

Good luck!
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:icontoddntheshiningsword:
ToddNTheShiningSword Featured By Owner Edited Dec 8, 2018  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
I have to say I was amazed by the quality of your Comment!! :omg:
No wonder you Commented on Featured! You really put a lot into this! I can tell because you clearly looked well outside simply the lineups Folder, but also CLEARLY looked at the lineups, too. I only linked a small folder, but you have noticed things only someone who looked around and saw some comics would read, and you paid close attention to the lineups, too, because you noticed the characters' names, which even Watchers didn't see. I wasn't sure if I wanted to reveal them all or not, so I probably picked the worst option and put them in where they'd be hard to see... ^^;
I didn't want answering my questions to be too difficult, so I tried to ask ones that were specific so people knew just what to look for, but flexible so people didn't have to tell me everything. I was hoping I wasn't cheating! :dummy: I... also was trying to ask them with people who weren't following their adventures in mind. But maybe the questions were harder than I thought. ^^; THANK YOU. I also picked the lineups folder because it only has a few things in it, it's clear which are new and complete, and... I've made a lot of drawings of other people's designs, and I didn't want people to get confused as to which outfits or characters were mine. In the lineups Folder, all ideas are mine. :nod: 
It's really great you noticed C with Princess. :meow: However, that character is not mine. BUT it's crazy because all the references for her and Princess at the time were black and white, so I had to come up with the color scheme myself, independent of her creator's colors, and it's great that you AND her creator thought the colors were great and her creator said they were mostly eerily accurate! :bow: :XD:

For the characters reminding people of characters, or being favorites, I was only asking in terms of appearance or feeling it created, and not in their personalities or stories that you'd only get from reading the comics. Thought people might get some vibes from some of the designs. :greetings: :shrug: Even though their styles are different, some of them are still based off things, and part of the reason their designs are confusing in places is because they're based off something there that I'm not even consciously aware of, so I, myself, am confused about that part! :XD:


You were completely right about all the things with the azure parts of Zellica. :happybounce: Yes, they're wings, the butterfly ones can turn to hands, and they are too small when folded. They technically should be larger when folded, but I wanted them to be a bit magical and shrink or expand when folded or spread. Just need to work out how. I'm really glad you pointed to their different shades making them make more sense! because I wasn't sure it was happening
It seems like some of the same elements keep being unclear to people. It's good to hear so I can know what isn't clear. :nod: I liked getting your thoughts on texture and fabric.

For the girl in the gray dress, yes the dress and chest are supposed to combine to make her breasts square. :XD: That was intentional. I think if I look at my reference again, and do better shading, it will be more clear that it is. I think.

For the woman in green, that is hair. But it's supposed to evoke thoughts of weapons, among other feelings. It seems to work, but it's unclear. I'm also not sure if I'll keep it just as it is. So I need to take your advice and to clarify, or I need to change it altogether.

For Todd, he is my main character, but even though he's simpler, I have a problem with him because he looks accidental, so maybe people like him less for that. I make his legs slightly short and arms slightly long on purpose, and especially with his arms, I've been doing that for a good number of years, but it looks unintentional, even now. I want Todd to look proportional at first, and be simple to draw, but to have a plastic-ey look to him when you look closer, and have his Sword's scabbard look like it's hooked on with velcro and his body resemble a letter 'X' whenever his pose allows it. Not sure it's working. I also wanted him to have a design where it would be easy for me to change the color scheme of it to any colors the tone of the current comic episode or picture calls for and still have it make sense that they'd be different. I think that part is working great. :D

And about colors, I really appreciate that you appreciate the color schemes of the African and Simon. Everyone can appreciate Simon's colors because I love how great they feel, but not everyone appreciates the black guy's design, so maybe they find his colors too simple due to negative feelings. :shrug:
I'm definitely going to take your color study advice
For the sisters in the dresses, are you saying for colors that red and green is not a good color choice, or that there's too much purple mixed in and the one with the hat has too many colors?

Glad you like that red plapper. :evileyes::iconbadassplz: And that you knew to call it a plapper. :happybounce:
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:icontigraidoxxx:
TigRaidoXXX Featured By Owner Dec 11, 2018  Hobbyist General Artist
Hehe, good to know this digging was not in vain :)

I looked everywhere, because I planned to at least try to answer your questions, and that required some knowledge of your chars :)
If you use other people's characters in your pages, it's best to just credit them in descriptions (but I'm not sure, maybe I haven't noticed that you did).

I see, these wings are kinda the way I supposed they looked like. Then that works. As well as the square tits (whatever they are supposed to mean :D)

If you did mean to make Todd's figure slightly off, then it probably works as intended. What's the purpose, to make a bit of a joke about typical adventurer characters and stories? :)
I think recoloring main character is a good practice, it makes the story look more fresh. He's recognizable without persistent colors, I can agree here.


The black guy colors are simple, but that's a classic scheme, and it looks kinda in place, like it's a not too polished, simple guy :)
Simon is really a good shot.


I think the brown skin is challenging itself. Don't forget, that you start these characters with a colorscheme including brown (a warm and somehow saturated color).
The spiralhair girl has nice hues, but they would work only in pair, when you add both azure and green they start to conflict. This red+azure and mint green+dark brown (or the other way around, red+mint, brown+azure) both form nice complimentary pairs. But here you have a bunch of 4 strong colors and they become too much. This needs a more desaturated color for balance (black, white, gray) and to remove our make less visible some of these intense hues. Or maybe look into a fully different color scheme, that works together, and works with brown at the same time.
The other one has definitely conflicting bunch of hues (purple+green is an almost 100% no-no :) only a very confident artist should combine these two in one place, and with additional red and other small color bits and the dark brown skin they all just turn into garbage ^^;)
Oh, and if you're core member, you can throw in polls,asking people opinions about which color schemes work better. Or use the project comment community :)

Yeah. I checked how these are called :) they are amusing species.
When you become famous, you can sell them as merchandise :D
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:icontoddntheshiningsword:
ToddNTheShiningSword Featured By Owner Feb 3, 2019  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
AH! NOW I remember why I delayed so long in replying to this, other than that I was discouraged in December and didn't respond to messages. I had wanted to put a lot more work into finishing a new lineup drawing , Relataline , that I spent long enough making that even your suggestion made it in. I made it with people's suggestions in mind. It's still not finished, because I was discouraged all December, and then got distracted by another drawing.

I used your design suggestions mainly on the spiral hair girl. I tried to simplify her color scheme, and put the colors in the pairing you suggested, on her design. Red+azure and mint+brown. But I added the pair tan+blue. Other colors were then played down or removed. I also tried to keep the colors as near each other as possible in the pairs, and for a time thought about using white or yellow to separate pairs from each other. I even removed some details just so I could get color pairs directly together. :) 

Maybe I SHOULD do a Poll asking about color schemes. That might be a good way to get feedback for something as specific as that, but not other things. Last time I did something like that, though, I got weird results, :slow: so if I did it again I'd need to give people less voting freedom, hehe.

I'm still amazed that you looked up Plappers. Somebody made me a plapper out of sculpey once. :meow: Tadd and tha Shanang Sward:pointl: I built Todd at the high school my mom teaches at, EVEN THOUGH I'M TOO OLD TO ATTEND THAT SCHOOL.

Don't wanna be famous, because when you're famous people try to influence you TOO MUCH, or maliciously dig into your past.
I'll try to remember character skin tones a little more consciously when I design or redesign them. Right now I just do it like real life where you just get dressed and don't think much about the color of your own skin or stuff like that ^^;

Lastly, the beginning: I'm really glad you were able to guess that Todd's body is slightly off to make a bit of a joke about typical adventurer characters and stories! :XD: That's right! That, and so I can abuse him more because he's more cartoony. 
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:icon99sampanda99:
99SamPanda99 Featured By Owner Sep 29, 2018  Hobbyist Digital Artist
1. Please describe my characters to me. ("What kind of personality do they seem to have? What role do you think they play? What do you think they do? etc.")

I'm basing this off of a quick look at your art and I haven't read any of the descriptions. I'll focus on only a few characters I'm seeing quite a bit in your gallery: 
MoreConstructin by ToddNTheShiningSword  First, this girl! Based on the drawings of her I think she's one of the protagonists in your story. She seems to be Outgoing and perhaps naive? She may also be a magic user of sorts. 
Toddup by ToddNTheShiningSword Next, this dude. He seems to be a pretty "generic" main protagonist, not saying this to be an insult or anything! Brave and optimistic are some traits I'm getting from this design. He also may be a "warrior" type class. 

May in March by ToddNTheShiningSword Finally, this little lady. She seems to be the more level-headed type, though I'm not really sure about what I can infer from this character design. I think she might be a little similar to the first girl but removing the "naive" bit. I'm also not sure what "class" she'd be.

 2. Does it look like any of these characters (or the cast as a whole) is trying to communicate a specific idea or feeling? Please explain, if you can, what that idea is, if it's unclear, and/or how to make it clearer.

I just get a feeling of a long-running adventure story from the lineup I'm seeing. I haven't read all of the descriptions where the story probably is so sorry if I couldn't add much. 

 3. What's the most interesting thing about each character [that you want to answer this for], or about the characters as a whole?

I quite like your character designs, though some of the side characters are a bit forgetful. For example, the green hooded girl the I commented on in the answer above has an interesting silhouette with the bubble-shaped dress!

 4. I think a 'MEH' character is worse than a bad character. Which character(s) look the most uninspiring, and what do you think I can do to fix them?

Again, I think some of the side characters are a bit forgetful. IMO, I think that having a defined theme is pretty nice to have with a character's design, like a "cloud" theme. Another this is having strong contrast. It's just how I like to design characters and you don't need to follow it! I'm better with critiquing the visuals of art rather than story or character design. 

 5. What, in your personal opinion, do you think I need to do to make these characters ones that you, personally, would like more? Please be specific. (Examples: Is there an item/improvement/power you imagine one having? Is there something they seem to be expressing that you don't like, or a side of them you'd need to see first? Is there something I should exaggerate more, or something I should tone down?)
I think that most of the characters are fine as they are, again, I'm not the best person with critiquing a story so I'd suggest looking at the answer above for anything that I might have to say here! 

I hope that you find my comment somewhat helpful! Heart 
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:icontoddntheshiningsword:
ToddNTheShiningSword Featured By Owner Oct 19, 2018  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Thanks for commenting.

The girl in the green and the guy with the sword are definitely main protags. :nod: You got their "classes" right. Some of the personality traits were off, though. For the third girl, That design wasn't done by me. It makes a lot of sense to me that you wouldn't be able to infer anything from her design because I was confused by what her design should be when I was making her, so I got some design input from someone who as also confused- because I was confused! :doh: LOL But yeah that's why I linked a specific folder like you already know now- so designs like that wouldn't be included. ^^; It's totally no problem that you didn't know the story, because I actually really wanted people to guess what they thought the story was without actually seeing it! :D
I kinda wonder which characters you thought were side characters, because Featured doesn't really show the actual side characters at all.

And last it's cool you suggested that I give the character designs a theme, and gave "cloud" as an example, just because 'cloud' is so artistic and weirdly non-obvious, and so it's just the kind of theme that I would want to make! Except I might actually make one even less obvious because it'd be more specific, like thundercloud, for example.
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:icon99sampanda99:
99SamPanda99 Featured By Owner Oct 19, 2018  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I'm glad you like my input, even though it wasn't the best. Best of luck on future projects!
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:icontoddntheshiningsword:
ToddNTheShiningSword Featured By Owner Edited Sep 29, 2018  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Oh no! :noes:
You commented on the wrong Folder! :nuu:
I tried to let both of you guys know which folder I needed feedback on, because the character designs I needed feedback on are only found in a specific subfolder. Most of the rest of my Gallery has art that's old, or designs made by other people, or things that aren't about the designs. :(
The characters were in this folder:pointr: www.deviantart.com/toddntheshi…

The Group tells us to link the Folder we want, but the link doesn't show up in the Notes anymore, so I tried to reply to you both on there manually so you'd know. :oops:

But I since you did all this work already, I guess it's okay if don't do it all again for the actual Folder... ^^; :aww:I still thank you for answering. :la:
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