I'd like to take you on a short journey of a painting I've been working on during the last schoolism class environment design by Nathan fowkes.
In the final few lessons we would go towards a final rendered portfoliopiece. I'd start with a bunch of sketches ( seen here: http://sammavanklaarbergen.blogspot.nl/2014/12/composition-sketches.html )
So this is where I started. This is the first sketch I had and I agreed with Nathan on this; that this was a bold statement that worked well. So I decided to pick this one to take further.
Moving on this is what I wanted to do as a color key. I liked how it worked and the statement was still bold and very clear. That was important here. The values stayed strong, the cooler temperatures on top and the warmer temperatures down below made it dynamic in terms of color. But it needed more.
So this is what I thought was a decent render of the color key. Pretty alright don't you think? I honestly didn't really know where to take it so I just did what I could. Nathan knew I would have trouble detailing it and what he critiqued me was not really what I expected. He said the focus was a bit lost. And he was right. The simple color key worked better.
'Go back to the color key and add some very subtle textures without breaking up the simple statement'
And he was right. This is an important lesson to me. More is not always better. Keep in mind the painting as a whole and don't get lost in detail. Don't lose the focus of the picture.