The Dragon's Child
I am a fan of the theme, although dragons have always given me a bit of trouble - but this is going to be a fun project
There are many pictures of Dragon's and Dragon riders out there, I thummed through my younger sister's extensive collection of dragon books, calenders, and such while mulling over ideas, and discarded my first idea (a sort of mage sitting on a dragon on top of mage citidel ruins on top of a cliff with a bunch of clouds) which while would have been rather an 'epic' picture which I like (extreme depth of field, wide landscape, small figures, lots of detail) - there were similar pictures I could find in the calender (maybe not all together, but the pieces) - although if I get time, I might go back and do it, because it would be a pretty fun picture to make.
I settled on my current concept as I wanted to come up with a 'unique' dragone Rider. Originally the child on the dragon's back was going to be a sleeping little boy and the dragon was going to be at rest, but for the challenge and dramatic impact I decided eventually on a dragon in flight. Since 'The Dragon's Child' is actually a story I have had in my head since I was young (which came about when my older sister and I were swapping 'making up a tale' with each other) - the little boy changed into a little girl (who in the story, is raised by the Dragons, most noteably one dragon in particular, of the forest until she manages to sneak into the forbidden areas of the human world as a young woman)
Preliminary sketch (unfortunately it came out really light in the scanner) - for sizing and placement of main elements - most my first rough sketches the dragon I kept making too big - I wanted to get the placement and 'plan' of the piece out on some plain computer paper before I switched over to sketching on vellum
The preliminary composition. This is a smaller/darker scan than the one I have scanned for the reference for my art. Since most my art supplies are packed for the remodel of our house, then I'll be painting digitally. (As fun as it would be to do a dragon in crayon..hehe)
I was planning to use Artweaver and Project Dogwaffle (since I no longer have photoshop, it was on my old computer and the cds for it are packed somewhere) - however I may end up with a problem - I tried opening the base file in Dogwaffle and it froze, which might indicate that the canvas size I want to work in is just too large for Dogwaffle to handle, which would be very sad as it is my program of choice for Digital painting (in combination with a program that allows layers and compilation, such as artweaver or photoshop) - If this does turn out to be a problem, I might have to improvise and save out smaller sections of the base reference and paint those - perhaps just painting focal pieces in Dogwaffle, and doing the majority of the work in Artweaver.
As to the actual coposition - I am mostly ok with the placement, however, the line of the dragon is still off (mainly in the tail, I believe, but also I think perhaps the wings might need some refinement - they are supposed to be in outstretched gliding position, and the entire dragon is at a slight angle to the viewer so that the figure on her back is visible)
From the priliminary sketch to the preliminary composition, I changed the direction of the child rom head facing the dragon head to head facing the dragon tail - both for increased visibility of the child, and so I could work out a system of strapping the child to the dragon (in this case, the child's legs are strapped to the arms of the dragon in addition to the binding that goes around the stomach of the dragon, behind its wings, and over the back of the child - changing the direction also gave more room and less obscurity in the placement of the blanket covering the child, and what the dragon was doing with it
I still have not filled out the 'borders' of the picture, as I am under what design will be complementary to the picture yet not too busy (I have tried out a few, but they have all been irrelevent to the piece, or detracting) - Originally I wanted a key or a lock at the top, but it did not fit with the theme. I do like the 'breaking of the walls' as pieces of the piece go past the borders, so my borders will brobably have a bit of art noveau or celtic elements that break into or past each other.
It's cut off in the second picture, and you can only see bits if you squint hard at the preliinary sketch (or run it through a filter that darkens it or the 'sketch' filter ironically) - but there is a bottom border as well with a quote
" Of the Dragon's Child this is said - "she flew before she spoke ""
I am thinking I might need to take a photo rather than a scan, as the scan lost a lot of my background and detail - although much of that I can fill in as I go. The background/foreground is basically 'the land of a thousand waterfalls', a few ruins, and a ton of trees with special flowers
Feedback is appreciated, especially on dragon anatomy/angles/forshortening