Hey charlotte!! So I'm here to give you your requested critique! Honestly I'm in love with so much of your stuff, and technique wise there's really only one or two tiny issues I want to go over. In general though, I'm going to look at text, creativity, and colouring like you asked. I'm going to explain straight off the bat I don't think I need to touch any of your banners because they're all perfect - like I genuinely cannot fault any of them. Also this blend++ is so beautiful, it's really soft and I like the fact that it's a little busy but you've managed to use negative space quite well - there's just a great balance between the two. Anyway, let's get started!
The first thing I noticed about your text is that there's a lot of repetitivity in each piece. You use drop shadows a lot, which in a lot of cases works fine - but there's just a few that I wanted to show you where it hasn't come off as well as the others. First off here++, while the placement is really good - you can't really read the word 'gold'. It's because the actual text is the exact same colour as the background, and the drop shadow is too far behind, i'd have moved it out to the right and down a little more, or made it bigger. It's one of those cases where you can have a really cool idea, and while I 100% approve of creativity, you have to let it go when it doesn't work. Another piece where it doesn't work is here++, where the dark drop shadow is against the really white moon. I always say use opposites, so if it's a light background - use a dark drop shadow, but if it's too sharp or its literally almost opposite in colour - it can be too much and make the text look really heavy. Lastly here++, because you've got a heavy background with animation, and a very scripty fonts, and a very thick drop shadow - the text becomes a bit unreadable. I had to squint to be able to see it. It's all about balance. If you have a lot going on with the base, make the text simple - and vice versa. Another thing I've seen you do a lot is put a white or black block behind a quote. For example one, two, three, four - and while there's nothing wrong with this, I'm seeing it a lot in your gallery which means you've fallen into a habit of doing it automatically. I'd suggest taking one or two of the older pieces that have that, out of your gallery - and steering away from it in the future. If it's because the base is too light or dark, you can always get a light or dark fluffy brush (or a white/black to transparent radial gradient layer) at a low opacity and put it over the area where you want to the put the quote. The very last thing about text, is me being really nitpicky but I'd watch out for using white drop shadows or any white at all in your text. It can be quite blinding, and only really works when the text is the focal point so in this++ I really like it - but otherwise I'd do it sparingly.
My only real concern with your colouring, is that some of your mono/bw can look a little flat. In this banner++ and this signature++ there's a lot of depth in the colouring and it really brings the graphics to life. But in this++ for example all the images look a little flat like they weren't prepped enough. Similarly here++ and here++ all the mono images look a little featureless (as u can see i googled flat synonyms bc i felt like i was saying it too much). Like they don't look defined enough. I think they're lacking contrast, which you can do throughout the graphic making process - rather than just once. You could also look at filtering them, or using unsharp mask. When I image prep I set a white to black radial gradient on overlay on top of the person, so the lighting is immediately there. Otherwise, besides that, as far as I can see there's no issues with your colouring!
From what I can see, it sees you're very set in your ways. It's a staff artist habit, but it's one we all need to break! In your signatures especially, the composition is all the same. A person at the back, some textures in front, animation in the centre, and then some more people in front. here at the examples of where you do that (with and without animation): x x x x x x . Composition is part of our style, like there's reasons we see a graphic and go, oh charlotte made that! But eventually it's what makes a graphic boring, and it makes the process boring. Trying new things should be a part of the process, I mean some of your best stuff is where you've tried something different with text, colouring or the images you've used. Some tips to get away from that is constantly looking at new shoots, finding new stocks/textures/fonts to play around with, and one of the easiest things is just looking at your gallery - or asking someone else to [cue bex ]. Eventually you'll start to notice a pattern in what you do, so if you keep that in mind when you make things, you will end up making something differently. Or challenge yourself. Try negative space, and using only one person - or try making a busier graphic but using the same texture in different ways etc etc. Once you get to staff it's all about finding new ways to make things that little bit more difficult for yourself - and pushing yourself out of your comfort zone!
This is totally optional, but I have one or two [well actually three] recommendations of what to take out of your gallery. I know you have some things in here from your grad days, and personally I'd take them out too and challenge yourself to revamp!
x - for reasons prev. mentioned, and the stars on top of the star animation make it too cluttered
x - for reasons prev. mentioned, the text is too heavy, the mono on the smallest guy doesn't work
x - for reasons prev. mentioned
& that's it! If you have any questions, if you need clarification on anything i've said or if you feel i've been to harsh, PM me and I'll reply as soon as I can! I hope that this can be of some use to you!