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Crossing the Alps


Elephants are cool. Just sayin'.

The subject matter in this is the Carthaginian army under Hannibal crossing the Alps to invade Italy during the Second Punic War.

Rendering done Real Time in iClone. Costumes for humaniods thanks to Arteria. Terrain, sky, and column are all my own.

See if you can find the two *sneaky sneaky* places I used a bread basket.

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Some people already complained about the elephant just not "looking right" and I think I have to agree with them. His head looks very strange. A bit "too long" to be really realistic.

Anyway, what I really don't like about this picture is the blurry background. Sure, it is way more realistic this way. Now it seems that I am standing there, watching the people and animals move by. That's why I cannot focus the background, because I am focusing the foreground. But paintings give us the opportunity to create something that isn't bound to be "realistic". So, I would like it better if the background wasn't so blurry. Besides, in full resolution, the blur for the background doesn't "feel right" anyway.

Ok, that was a lot of criticism right at the beginning of my review. Now to the things I do like: I like the people in this picture. They are not standing still, but they are moving across the picture and you managed to capture this "movement" in it. It really seems as if they are just walking past me. Maybe I am one of them, moving along with them. Or maybe I'm just an innocent bystander and they ignore me.

I'm not too sure if I like the illumination of the picture. On the one hand, it prevents me from seeing the figures clearly, as they are mostly in the dark. On the other hand, the dim light creates a very good atmosphere. It's impossible to tell if the sun is about to rise or to set. Both leave room for some nice analysis, but if I type them out I run out of character space in this review ;). So I just finish it with saying: This is a very interesting picture!

{ Review Request Club }

samulis responds:

thanks for the input, Haggard. I was rather proud of myself for at least attempting to capture movement in an image.

Perhaps it's my poor eyesight, but I like distant blurry things. XD

Do note that the blur helps with any rogue pixels in the photo as the resolution is larger than the image, I believe.

Detailed, but slightly inaccurate.

I think that the Elephant would be being led by someone, rather than having it's tusks so close to someone merely walking along in front of it. Still, as details go, it's relatively minor, so Nothing major gets deducted for that.

To be honest, the wrinkles on the elephant's trunk irked me more - they are too angular, as if some sort of bone plating has been sub-dermally implanted, giving armour plating to something like that. You need to make the skin seem more relaxed and supple. The tusks certainly look dangerous and should they come across any Romans, Hannibal and his men will definitely take some out, before sustaining losses of their own.

The other thing that needs more detail is the fallen tree. It looks to have been "cut" in the angled manner and the re is no natural random splintering of the wood fibres, as a tree falls over. If an elephant has pushed it, consider making it an uprooted tree, as the roots may give way in the mountainous / hilly terrain first.

[Review Request Club]

samulis responds:

Your fallen tree is a ruined column, symbolic of the distruction to come.

Perhaps I should sub in a different elephant... all the hate at this one poor elephant! XD

Though thanks for the great review. Next time I will be far more subjective when finding elephants.

Pieces of art like this are kind of hard to come by, with everyone trying 2D digital art instead of using a program to its finest by selecting 3D artwork. And although you say, "Elephants are cool," it looks to be the most lackluster feature of the entire picture..

The landscape looks very well done. I'm not really sure what the thing is in the middle of the image is (perhaps a fallen pillar or something? If so, it still has no earthly business being there). The mountain and clouds are blurred to perfection, as if it is a borderline between separation and fusion. I can't really say much for the actual characters in the work though. They seem so unmotivated by many things around them; unrealistic. And like I said, the elephant just doesn't look right at all. The tusks look like they have been warped together to form more of a hoop around the front of it, and the expression on its face is so annoying it can very well distract me from the rest of the picture!

It's a good piece of work all around, but....I just didn't feel like it spoke out loud enough as it could've. I really have no other way of describing it.

~Review Request Club~

samulis responds:

Your eyes do not decieve you, that is indeed a fallen pillar in the center of the image... it is a symbolic gesture refering to the 17-odd years Hannibal spent pillaging and ruining the Italian countryside.

Characters are not my specialty, that is why they are the creations of others.

Blurring is thanks to a Depth of Field simulation in the program.

I understand what you mean... it's not a very aesthetically stimulating piece, as a glorious looking landscape or massive building would be.

I really like this piece. It reminds me a lot of the old RTS games like Age of Mythology with the stylizing of the characters. I also like the hidden pieces, they offer a bit of whimsy to the piece.

One of the main things that is throwing me off though is the expression on the elephant's face. I've never known elephants to have such a strange "smile?"

samulis responds:

Maybe the Carthaginians decided to leave a trail of peanuts over the mountains. XD

I actually didn't pay very close attention to the elephants' face honestly. He was one of the few that fit the scene properly.

Credits & Info

Waiting for 1 more vote

Jul 2, 2012
10:48 AM EDT
3D Art
File Info
1920 x 1080 px
3.1 MB

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