Hi Jess, here with your critique! So sorry I'm late - I've had a pretty busy month and totally neglected my online double life :c
Technically, I think you're very good (your blending is impeccable, and your graphics are really creative) but there's two things you could improve that jump out at me when I look through your gallery. The first is your use of fonts, and the second is your filtering. As for the first - you use a lot of fonts, which isn't necessarily a bad thing in itself, but sometime's you're using about three or four different fonts per graphic and I think this is just a bit too much at times. Your text placement is excellent, but sometimes it's just a little too busy. When you've got each word in a different decorative font at different sizes, it makes them compete for attention - e.g your 'blood shadows & moon' CI - there's four different fonts there, at the very least, and I find it actually makes the title a little hard to read. I see the word 'moon' first, then 'blood' (because they're both the same sort of size, and 'moon' is brightest') then the word 'shadows', even though they're stacked in a totally different order. Same goes for your 'I'll wait for you' and 'no ordinary love' banners - I read the titles in totally the wrong order because the varying fonts and colours almost confused the meaning. Sometimes you really do pull this font variety off, though, like your 'end of days' banner - the colouring makes the text very cohesive and the quote is well spaced. Same goes for the 'flawed design' banner - 'flawed' is largest, but 'design' is at the same angle as the girl, which works really well compositionally.
As for filtering, I'd say that you're definitely using it well, but it has the tendency to be a tad overbearing now and again. The 'no ordinary love' banner, for example - the boy's face looks a little too smooth and plastic; the contours are just a bit too simplified for him to look natural. I'm not sure if it's filtering or over contrasting, but there's the same problem on the 'this devilry' banner - the picture of the girl is just a bit too simplified and she's lacking some definition, especially on her arms.
Overall, though, this is a really nice gallery (and you win brownie points for having In The Flesh graphics [thanks for making me want to weep into my keyboard and create parenthesis within parenthesis]) and I can't find much to critique you on! If you feel you're at a plateau and want to break out of your comfort zone, I can try and suggest some challenges for you?
- Almost all your gallery is dark; try making some light, washed-out, pastel-toned graphics?
- Try making something without using stock or textures; just people and text
- Make a few things where you limit yourself to just one font, or all text on one line, etc
- Make a graphic using purely abstract textures, or angular/architectural stock (no flowers, clocks, nature, birds, curtains, lightning bolts)
hitch or ditch
Definitely keep your 'flawed design' banner. It's so creative and the composition is great (my only criticism is that, on the right, a tree seems to mysteriously blend into the girl's knees). Also keep your Penelope Collins signature - the stock use is really nice, the colouring is beautiful, and it has a lovely textured grainy look.
Consider getting rid of your 'how to keep a secret' banner - there's too much going on with the text, and the background is too loosely blended to be fully cohesive.
Thank you for requesting critique, I'm just so sorry it took me this long to get around to it!