Hi Alison! I'm here for your critique. Based on your post, I'm going to focus on coloring and text. I'll work my way down through your gallery and highlight those two techniques. Before I begin though, here's some text tips that I like to use:
- Right click the text layer. Go to blending options. Click drop shadow. Change the distance to 2 px. If you still can't see the text, change the spread to 10%.
- Place the text on the very top layer, above all the coloring, if it's not visible enough.
- To figure out text color, I usually create my text on white, then click the color box. Rather than select a color, I drag the mouse over the graphic and the eye dropper tool should be into effect. I click around the graphic, taking colors from the graphic itself, until I see the color that works.
- Add a new layer directly under the text layer. Take a soft brush, and color a blob under the text like this. Then take a soft eraser (set on like 30%), and blend it like you might see with a gradient map. (You could do this technique with a gradient map, but I like the control I have with the other way.) So now it looks like this.
I love, love, love this banner!! Composition is spot on and I think the coloring is gorgeous. My one critique (and I almost mentioned this in your ybw! lol) is the text on the right. I honestly think you don't need "run in the shadows." I also wonder how it would look without the far right girl as well. I'm not sure if I'd like it or not, but maybe play around and see how that looks too. The main text could be a little more visible. I think adding that drop shadow like I mentioned above or painting a small blob may help with that, actually.
I like the effect you have in the "movement" banner but I'm not crazy about the font. I think the small text on the left could be one size smaller, and I think I'd like it centered instead of aligned left. The color of "movement" is nice but I wonder how it would look if you pulled one of the warm gold colors from the banner? I think Tonks's face is a bit white as well, especially when you compare it to Lupin's. My suggestion (another trick I do a lot lol) would be to add a new layer on top of her face, then take what I call a "shadow" color. Basically when you see natural shadows on someone's face? Use the eye dropper on a shadow on her face to give you a natural color. (It's typically a shadow of brown) Then you paint over her face - though avoid the eyes. If you do, no big deal, just go back and erase over the eyes. Then I usually set the layer to soft light and lower the opacity. You may have to put that layer above all the coloring, but sometimes it's fine under. Just play around with it. Another tip with white faces is to duplicate the image of the person, then set that new layer to exclusion and lower it to 10-15%.
I love the text on this! Very creative, good font selection and coloring. I think the girl on the right's face looks perfect. The one on the left is a tad darker and more yellow. Maybe try playing with her to match her to the one on the right? The brightness and coloring on the right girl is perfect.
Stunning composition on this one! I love the text color, but "two" is a bit hard to read because the similar color flower behind it. What about putting the title to the left of Keira and the names on the right?
"Eyes on" is verrrry hard to read on that banner. White on white can work, but you'll need to make it a thicker font, and add that drop shadow. I also think that far left text may work better if you have it taller. As in, have "And I'm" on the first line, hit enter, add "scared of" then enter, and "your stolen" then enter and "power" at the bottom. Maybe.
I think "Leavin" and "Jack" are very unique banners and I love the coloring, but for me they're not as strong as your others. (See, you set a very high bar with your first banner and your Jane/Gaston banner, haha.)
Ahh your "Mulan" chapter image is stunning! I like you "Malfoy" chapter image, but the edges of Malfoy are a bit sharp? And I think the background may be a touch too overly blurry. But I love the coloring and composition. Text is good. What about making the "D" a color from the graphic - a gray - and then placing it under the other text? Your first chappie isn't as strong to me as those two. The girl is a little too sharp so you can almost see a halo around her.
Love em. Perfect. Let's move on.
My favorites are "unbreakable" and the Romione one, though the text is a bit hard to read on it. Because of that texture, I think you'll need to paint a white blob under the text layer. Actually, you see how in that Cinderella example I provided the black blob is at an angle? I actually think you should do that here, but with white, so it almost looks like a gradient from the angle. I like how you did "tonight tonight" but I think the names on the right could be moved a little to the right. Maybe make it smaller and go all caps?
Both are gorgeous! I think the December header could use a slight drop shadow to make it really pop.
Whew! Wow I rambled a lot haha. Truly though, you have some awesome pieces here. I think what you might benefit from actually is a gallery clean before promo's because I feel like some of your pieces are SO STRONG that it makes some older pieces look well, older. Which isn't a bad thing! But you're clearly improving. So in my humble opinion, set your bar. Anything below, either clear it out or update it so it's on par with your best. I will most definitely not be surprised if you're in a new shade soon.
Anyway, very good work my dear! I hope I didn't ramble too much, haha. Keep up the good work!
Edited by Fireheart, 19 November 2015 - 02:27 AM.