Otter Practise Dump by Thea (critique requested)

Otter Practise Dump (critique requested)


3 December 2016 at 22:52:30 MST

In lieu of starting on the free portraits I had a small crisis of forgetting the heck was my style. Drawing is the hardest part of commissions and I'm always striving to get fluidity in my work. I think my biggest issue is inking eats that fluidity out of every sketch dealing with line quality on huge print resolution files that I doubt a beefier computer can solve. I'm considering totally reworking my finishing approach which will slightly change the look of my illustrations, hopefully for the better though.

On the other hand I'm totally anal about accuracy to the species, which most furry artists don't care about. I do anthros because I'm passionate about the natural world and I silently scream inside if there isn't a specific breed name to a species, and I wonder if I really should just drop it and do a pure anime style XD

So yeah, coming up with some sort of a hybrid of anime and realistic. What are your thoughts? Do you go after an artist for "that" style, like there's only one type of human-ness percentage in their anthro world, or do you like it when they lean a little towards what you supplied for a ref sheet? When you shop do you consciously note the kind of work/value put into anthropomorphism that the mainstream of furry art consumerism eludes, or should I stop bothering to take my furry work that seriously?

Submission Information

Visual / Sketch


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    I've always preferred a more "realistic" style when it comes to people drawing my characters, but that's not always what I end up getting as realism tends to "cost more", for the simple fact it takes a bit more skill to pull it off. At least that's my guess anyway. But I do also enjoy art styles that are somewhere in between realism and "cartoony" as well. (Zootopia being a prime example for me currently)

    The style that you have here is fantastic, imo. It's a nice mix of realism, and as you said "anime". I'd love to see you expand on it and make it your own ^^
    I'm sorry for making you scream inside for not including a specific species for Jack, btw XD I got lazy in that regard I suppose. But she'd most definitely be an Oriental Short-clawed otter.
    I completely understand being "totally anal" about species accuracy as well. It's one of my own pet peeves when it comes to anthro art, though I do embellish a few things here and there to make my characters stand apart from others (Jack's glowing markings for example)

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      Yeah the biggest reason I don't do complete realism is I can't quite stand to work on an image for more than 22 hours in a row before I need a serious break or go bonkers. It would take almost that amount of time just to render fur on a character let alone a background to match. But I do love me some Goldenwolf prints hanging on my walls.

      Thanks for the heads up on Jack! I used her hairstyle on the females here for a warm up- adding extra poof really livens up a character.
      In honesty, out of every otter client in my entire career I think only one person actually stated which particular otter their character was, so don't feel bad. Now I can use this study sheet to get future clients to understand their species better!

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        Oh man, I can't even imagine working on something for that long either, so I completely understand. Your style as it is though, is amazing. Even without complete realism. That's awesome too, that you've got some Goldenwolf prints! :D She used to frequent the renaissance festival here in MN a few years back, so I've gotten to meet her at least once or twice. Though I never got a chance to buy anything, sadly :c

        I had actually wondered whether or not the females were intended to be Jack or not because of the hairstyle XD But didn't want to assume, since they didn't have the brow piercing/cheek markings, so I'm glad you cleared that up. Extra floof is always nice and does indeed bring life to a character :D
        I have complete faith that you'll do her justice when you do get around to actually drawing her.

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          Oh man just to go one of the top 5 furry conventions- Goldenwolf always has some matted prints hanging in the art show. I think I paid $60 for two at buy-it-now price. You can always order online, but whenever I can buy in person I do as international shipping costs more than the product nowadays.

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            Sadly, money is a bit of an issue for me most of the time. So conventions and buying art is something I generally can't afford to do ;w; But that's good to know that prints aren't super expensive. :3

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    I've said to many of my friends that I personally like when an artist can come up with a style they like to use and that "defines them". It can be a pretty long and difficult thing to be sure...........I've followed so many people who jump from one "popular style" to another--especially in the realm of digital art. It can be easy for things to "look the same". But I enjoy looking at the top page and saying "That's XXXXX's art!" because their style is unique to them. Whether it's a look of the lines or the coloring...or the way they draw a particular species.

    I think it's wonderful that you truly want to bring even the small details to what you draw.....because it's a really big step on the path of your style and balancing what you want to do with your skills. Instead of merely saying "I'm doing this because its easy and fast", another thing I see many artists (especially money-making ones) do. You can always have a tier for the "easy/fast" and save your quality stuff for a higher tier...........which judging by what little I've seen of your art these past couple days, I am certain many people would pay better sums for your attention to the small details of a species and such. :)

    Personally, I will buy what appeals to me from an individual artist (at 'cons, as I don't have the PayPal)....I can buy something from Blotch that I enjoy just as much as something I've bought from Idess or something I've bought from Terrie Smith. Because I love what individual artists do in their own style and I love being able to pick it out in a lineup. I'm not adhered to an individual style of realism or anime or cartoony, because they all appeal to me when the artist is doing it because they love doing it. :D

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      Thanks for the input! "Easy" just isn't in my DNA XD it's like I can't feel content with my life if I'm not constantly challenging myself (especially being stuck sitting for work). Though in honesty I prefer sticking to the difficult large commissions than a bunch of fast little ones as it's less communication work/sales tracking for the same money.

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        You're most welcome! :)

        As long as you find something you both love and feel like you can do as an ongoing "career" (of sorts), then I think you're doing the right thing. :D