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Submitted on
January 3, 2013
Image Size
2.4 MB


8 (who?)
Illumination by ActsofArt Illumination by ActsofArt
The scanner washed out some of the color but I did the best I could with Gimp and I think it came out alright.
Colored Pencil.
Time: around an hour and twenty minutes
So I made my own 100 theme project list and apple was my first subject.
I wanted to make it interesting.
knowledge can only be obtained when we admit we do not know something
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Ludjia Featured By Owner Jul 21, 2014  Professional Digital Artist

Hello, i have some quick tips that can help you improve the quality of the final artwork with minimal effort. When using coloured pencil and other traditional media, it's easy to forget that they actually have a limit to how much detail one can put in, after all, paper seems like you can draw really small on it. But notcie that the shading with the coloured pencil is limited to the amount of dots it lets down into the grain of the paper. Small detail and solid colours are hard to do at this scale. If you draw it much bigger, you can fit a lot more detail in the same shape. I'ts a mistake I used to do a lot myself, drawing small and then fiddling with tiny corners, when it is actually mush easier and freeing to draw bigger.
My second advice for you is to have a look at some lighting tutorials, that way you can get a nice 3D look to your apple, making it seem more realistic. If that is not desirable, I would definitely go for a bigger paper, as you can get smoother colours that way. you can also try different paper types, they hold pencil colour differently.
ActsofArt Featured By Owner Jul 25, 2014  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
I'm not sure I understand how drawing bigger would enhance detail. could you elaborate? I mean I do know of my own tendency to draw small (a habit I have been slowly breaking down) But I'm not sure I understand the connection between the grains of paper and and the size of the drawing. I appreciate the suggestions on 3d tutorials although it should be noted that this is a conceptual piece and I often find it hard to blend both conceptual and realism. Also, I often switch paper to see the varying effects although it should be noted that I am still working on technique. One last thing to add is that this particular drawing looks much better on paper than the scanned version, a lot of the finer detail was washed out in the process.
Ludjia Featured By Owner Jul 28, 2014  Professional Digital Artist
The reason you can fit more detail on a bigger drawing is because you essentially are working on a higher resolution. An example: if I was to make a pencil drawing that was 30 mm big (3 cm) very tiny, then if I was drawing something like a dragon or something, i would want to fit in the scales, eyes, but i could not, because the pencil tip is just too big to draw those kinds of detail in the space of 3 cm, and the grains in the paper gets in the way, they just will not hold detail between them.
If I drew the same dragon on an A3 paper (432 mm wide) then I could fit in at least a small eye and some scale detail, but I could probably not detail them as I pehraps would want.
an A4 (279 mm) is typicall considered fairly small, the first thing we were taught in art foundation was to work on A2 and then we worked on A3 after that when our skills got better, I'm back to a4 only for some types of painting (cheap commission or watercolour, where the randomness and limitation of the pigment holds weight. I also use the limitation of the paper now as an experssion, by drawing tiny things and scanning them in at something like 600dpi resolution and turning them huge in photoshop where I can actually draw on those miniscule scales.) It's important to just cconsider what scale the drawing is going to be viewed at, and work at a detail level that works at the size is going to be viewed at. If one works at 100% resolution in photoshop, one will have little control over the sharpness of the painting. Same is true for paper. if you work bigger, it fits longer view distance and will look much sharper with much more space for detail. A scanned picture can be shrunk to any size, but you can't scale up without loss.
Juho-Lee Featured By Owner Jan 17, 2014  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Nice. I kind of get your vision. 
ActsofArt Featured By Owner Jan 20, 2014  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
why thank you!
xLossen Featured By Owner Jul 24, 2013  Student Traditional Artist

This is a critique from :icongimmefeedback: like you requested.


Hello! This idea is quite fetching. I like how you included fire on the apple, it is interesting and maybe conceptual? I assume you have used coloured pencil by the looks of things. I have been using traditional mediums for some time (expecially coloured pencil) and have learned a lot. I will give you some tips on how to improve this picture and some things that can help you when colouring in the future.


The colouring on the apple appears well coloured but at times i can see strokes that go up and down. I may be wrong but if you have coloured in a up down motion then that doesn't give a solid colour foundation. Instead it will create lines and marks you don't want. Try colouring in small circular motions to give even colour that hasn't got darker or lighter marks. (i hope this makes sense)


Where you coloured the fre. It seems like you have coloured quite hard. This is also a fualt when colouring in up and down motions, you tend to use more pressure on the pencil than what is needed. Colouring fire is touch because there are so many detailes, shapes and colours in a simple flame. I have tried colouring fire before and i had to use a photograph reference to get the shapes and colours right. I don't know if you did this on here but if not it will help you understand fire a lot more! Some shading around the apple would make it look more 3d but don't forget the fire is a light source and will cast a orange/ yellow light across the apple thaat will blend wth the red.


I hope this makes sense. If you need me to explain anything don't be afraid to ask~



ActsofArt Featured By Owner Jul 24, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
it is indeed meant to be a conceptual piece.

 I think what you are seeing is the trouble I had blending two colored pencils of different brands, I keep meaning to buy a new set but it feels like a waste not to use what I have(which is several different kinds of colored pencils all mixed together) maybe I should try separating them out by brand and replacing what I don't have with a new set of the best ones.

I do not believe I pressed down particularly hard for the fire, what you might be seeing is a less than clear scan(really it looks much better in person but what can I do) Also: That damn fire...being the only artist in the family(and also the one who drew it) I seem to be the only one who noticed it was off. it's because I mixed up the color order. since yellow is when the fire burns brightest, there should've been some towards the edges. and red should've been less apparent. ugh. but knowing what I did wrong won't help me now, since it's pretty well set. I might try to fix it when I finally break down and buy a tablet.  it really bugs me too because I've practiced a lot with fire and I was even once told I was good at it and how cool that was because it is hard to master. But it's been a while I guess and I should've taken more time to get back into practice.

creating a light source didn't seem that important to me and I thought the shape of the apple itself helped to establish it's shape and dynamic. I guess I was wrong?
xLossen Featured By Owner Jul 25, 2013  Student Traditional Artist

You have done exceptonally well on the fire. The details you have included prove accurate but i believe you are right about the colours. And the brand of pencil isn't a priority. See, i use WHSmith watercolour pencils for my colouring (and i use them as normal coloured pencils not watercolour) and i havn't had problems with them. I have had problems with paper though, as in order to create a good coloured picture many layers of pencil has to be used and some paper is rubbish when layering colours. I was very picky when i picked my sketchbook for that exact reason x) Try testing the paper you currently have. Colour with one colour then colour over it with another and see how far you get before it becomes shiny and hard to colour anymore. I use about 5-6 layers on my colourings. Usually i start with a lighter colour to the original colour it is meant to be. (so if i was drawing a red apple i would start colouring it pink) Then i would add 2 different shades of red. (a light red then a medium red <-- the colour you want most of the apple to be) but make sure to keep the lighter areas by restricting where you colour and leaving some of the pink and the light red. After that i start to shade the apple with a dark red in the areas that gain the least light. Then i add purple to colour the darkest shading. Overall that would be 5 layers of colour.


Well it is your choice. There is no right or wrong so what i'm saying never means that what you chose was wrong. A little shading would of helped to round the apple and make it 3d instead of 2d. This is entirely your choice though.

Meekochan Featured By Owner Jul 9, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Is this suppose to be like an apply on fire or an fire turning into an apple or an apply containing a fire inside or... *starts confusing herself*
ActsofArt Featured By Owner Jul 9, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
the apple is on fire. or maybe the apple is reflecting a fire.
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