It's getting a little difficult to come up with things to write about in regards to art stuff these days. In general I'm pretty happy with where I am currently skill-wise, but that doesn't mean I want to stay where I am. I still want to get better, and there's still a lot of different avenues to even attempt. Currently, I'm looking into ways to improve my shading. on my Commission Details page, it shows a small sampling of what shading I can do, Flat, Simple and Complex. Flat isn't actually a shading of any type, it's just base colors. Flat Coloring is, funny enough, something I need to work on, as I don't quite grasp the idea of "tone." A piece's tone depends on how dark or light it is, what warm or cold colors you use. Typically, the colder colors have a darker tone to them, so for example a blue sky will have a darker tone than a hue-shifted green sky or something. I'm pretty happy with how Simple shade is going, but I'm not very happy with Complex shading. I'm a little unsure if I should even mention it but in all honesty, the past few Complex Shading pieces I've done I've been a bit unhappy with for various reasons. Admittedly, a few of the reasons you won't even notice unless you have a magnifying glass and dissect each piece bit by bit, but it's still on my mind now and then.
There are a few pieces in which I can use to demonstrate what I mean when I said I needed to work on "tone" earlier; A recent short one of two page comic, and the completed Silk and Dagger comic are two such examples. Even though it's a Flat Coloring finish, some parts I feel like are simply too dark or other parts that are way too bright. However, I'm afraid to change the coloring too much, as I liked the color combinations when I first made them or that I'm afraid it will detract from the original design too much. This could mean I need to change how I design things, or that I simply need to understand color synergy better. I have a few ideas to try for this at least.
Because of all of these issues I currently have in art, I'd like to try and wedge in fundamental work alongside commission work. I of course love getting commissions to work on, but I think there's honestly only so much "skill building" that a commission can provide. Commissions are being made based on the setup you see in the Commission Details page, with a little bit of wiggle room. Of course I still learn a lot from commissions, but I don't really get a lot of opportunities to experiment in wide and weird ways. It's funny, but that's kind of what the Weekly Vote stuff was for but unfortunately I haven't had time to do Weekly Vote stuff for a while now, and that doesn't seem to be changing anytime soon. Fundamental work is simply things like attempting digital painting work, messing with brushes, "live" modeling exercises, shade experimental, etc.
Last note about commission work, I've recently made an update to the Commission Details page to say that I'm no longer functioning on a Open / Close commission work flow, instead I'll just try to work on things when I can, and be comfortable with the idea that the art piece will eventually get done. I say that as if that's going to be the new way things will be, but in truth I've always generally done this. As long as I get to the work, and finish it within "a reasonable time frame," then everyone is assumedly happy!