Okay so I’m going to be brutally honest here.
You’re the most frustrating screenshot maker I’ve ever seen. By volume, you’ve probably generated more content then anyone else in this forum, but you’ve stopped putting in effort to improve your craft. A lot of times, people will make threads with their oldest to newest stuff and, for the good ones, there’s a clear timeline of quality. Nobody started out a god at posing or lighting or whatever, but over time, they defined their own style improved their technical prowess. Everyone, and I mean everyone, was at your level of quality at one point, but they chose to take it to the next level and improve.
You, for whatever reason, have not made that decision.
I could look at pose you did 2, 3, maybe even 5 years ago and I would have a hard time separating it from poses you do today, sans specific models you have downloaded. You’ve been here and active in this community pretty consistently since you joined 7-ish years ago and I have a hard time believing you haven’t seen other people that started at the same time or after you get better then you.
It’s fine to do joke poses and blow off steam making an image that makes you smile, but they shouldn’t be every image you produce. You should strive to make images that have artistic merit - some of these are clear attempts at that goal, but don’t quite meet the level of quality of other people here. Take criticism to heart - research how other people produce good looking work, follow some guides, try something completely different then what you normally do, ask for advice, learn new techniques - strive for self-growth.
I wouldn’t be writing this if I didn’t think you have the potential to step up your game, I just think you need a jolt to stop saying that ‘yeah, this one light 5 minute pose on a blocky map using bad looking assets is good enough to post in the perskins thread.’ There are interesting ideas in these poses, and your subject matter is usually different then the norm, but that doesn’t give you a pass to keep producing mediocre work.
I don’t care where you come from or who you are in the real world; here, you are your art, and your art has hit a plateau. I want to see you improve and, despite the harsh words, truly believe you can do it.
In order to help more than just saying ‘get gud’ in 500 words, I’m going to eat up my entire evening and write specific comments on every image you posted.
Awkward posing. Niko and the cop both are posed stiff. Niko look like he’s about to fall over. He doesn’t look like he’s actually staring at his phone. Everything looks static, there’s no sense of motion.
Scene population. The scene lacks people on the sidewalk. Street windows are empty Props for putting people in the cars, but the vehicles themselves are weirdly dense only behind the main character, giving the feeling that they’re just there to be in the scene. This makes it look like he’s walking in front of a row of parked cars, instead of j-walking through traffic.
Poor lighting. The scene is using map default lighting and what looks like one overhead light to get some shadows. The shadows are harsh and make Niko’s face look like a burn victim. Shadows are important to the composition of a piece, they’re essentially missing here.
Content choice. Vehicles are low quality and low rez. The map is stark and is probably prefaced with rp_. The gun has smoothing errors that are made obvious by the lighting, and the phone is cartoony.
Camera. Not terrible, but not interesting either.
Joke pose? Obviously low quality model with no effort put into posing, lighting, or scenebuilding. Map has terrible transition from land to water, but none of the background really matters with that character model.
Subject matter. Your interest in music and guitars shine in this image, you obviously enjoy playing and want to illustrate the technique.
Posing. The posing is relatively poor. Hand posing is lazy, and she looks like she’s trying to keep her balance more than stepping on a pedal. Try doing what she is doing and see how things like your knees and torso are bent, where your hands are, where your fingers are.
Lighting/Shadow. Default map lights and shadows with a single overhead light once again. Use lamps, dynamic shadows are important to mood setting. The lighting is boring and brings nothing to the table.
Scene population. Incidental props help tell a story. You have the basics there with a chair and some speakers, but you lack items that make this feel like a real space. Crazy knife is the master of filling out environment with small props. I’m not saying everything needs 200 items in the background, but more than this is needed to sell an environment.
Content choice. Once again, the props you choose are low-rez. I can appreciate the lack of good music related models, so I’ll give you a pass on that in general. Out of context, the emo Ellie reskin is a little silly but not entirely inappropriate.
‘look at all these models I have on my computer’
No lighting or composition. I won’t go too into this one.
I like this one. You’re actually using post-processing like vignetting and depth of field plus color correction. You’ve placed a few more incidental props – the cinder blocks behind the wheels give the environment some flavor. Do more of this!
Prop and character choice could be better; again everything is low rez. This might be more an issue with wanting models that just don’t exist in high quality, but you need to work with what is available to you and just not use a model if it’s going to take away from the scene, like the hoodie dude.
Lighting could be better, and there’s still no shadows to speak of.
Camera position and composition are passable, but aren’t helping the scene.
This, I think, is the best pose of this set. It’s on the cusp of the next level of quality, but lack of lighting and a relatively bland camera angle hold it back.
Bears on a boat:
Joke pose. Let’s pretend that there are no bears there for the sake of argument though. Lighting is bland, map choice is once again stark. Camera is off-center and uninteresting. No effort was put into scene building.
Ohio state co-ed:
Model aside, it’s a pretty bland image. Lighting is flat despite you having a great opportunity for a pin light with lamp models in the picture. Color correction/white balance is way too blue. Camera angle is flat, dead on and too zoomed out.
The pose is boring, there’s nothing of merit happening. IF you want to go with a ‘living life’ image, micro details are important, so thing like poor finger posing and hovering over furniture are extra obvious.
The model choice is cringy. The rest of the scene looks decent, although I’m pretty confident that’s how it looks to begin with. If I were to guess, it’s probably some room ported wholesale from Life is Strange?
Zebra Force walking:
I don’t want to comment on model choice here.
Psoing is weak – military poses are the bread and butter of this subforum, so there are tons of references and guides to follow on how to pose people holding guns.
Lighting. Non-existent – standard map lighting and a single light overhead. Once again, no shadows. It looks like you may have a cool (as in color) accent light to the right of the camera, but it’s being washed out by the daylight map.
Map choice. Once again, rp maps are a poor choice for posing they’re bright, blocky, and stark; in the amount of time it takes to make them not look like basic brush work you could have just made a map yourself.
Clever idea, poor execution.
There’s standard issues with lack of lighting here. And when I say lack, I mostly mean so bright that any nuance is washed away in a flat result, mostly from baked map lighting.
Camera placement really kills this image. Barney is almost off frame and there is a ton of unjustified empty space to the left/topleft.
Posing is weak. Take a reference screengrab and actually try and match their poses. Spend some time on tweaking the work.
‘look at all these models I have on my computer’
Keep the perskin poses in the perskin thread.
You’re gonna love my sham-wowza:
Joke pose, not too much effort was put into this, so I won’t put much effort in critiquing it.
Hatzine Miku (sp???):
Not my cup of tea, but a decently well executed faux cell shaded image. I have seen better posted on the forum, but a solid attempt.
Posing isn’t bad, but you missed the fingers.
FPSBananas for sale:
Not sure if this is a serious pose, I doubt it, but the model choice is weird.
Posing is 2006-comic era quality, as are the model and map choices.
Fingerposing is missing or lackluster. Lighting is bland, camera angle is bland, composition is poor – one of your subjects have been needlessly cut off.
There’s nothing going on in the background.
I’m going to refer you to the garage band pose for most of this critique. Some of the model choices hurt it more than help, especially with the exceptionally nice looking car model. Lighting is bland, color correction doesn’t do anything here, and it lacks post-processing.
I do appreciate you putting effort into this, just add more incidental props and polish it up.
There is a hint of scene building here! Get this out of the rp map and make the background with models in an environment where you control the lighting (like gm_black) and you are there.
Camera angle could be better. Lighting killed this piece.
Yes, another screenshot with some effort put into it! The car model is a little low rez, but that’s not the end of the world. You started to put some props in there to tel la story – the box on the hood, the mats underneath, that’s a good start. Fill out the rest of the garage. The props exist, use them. The dude’s pose is a little akward.
Lighting: There is lighting in this image(!!!) Use those dynamic shadows more. Without them, the parts on the hold look like they are floating, and the map default shadows break with the cardboard mats.
Camera: I like the camera work here. It’s not great, but the basic composition is solid and if the background was more filled out with noise instead of dead space, it’d work great. Like the change in aspect ratio.
Scavenging for parts:
Pretty much the same problem with the scrap yard reappear here. Choose a better map, work on lighting. Poses are stiff but serviceable. Use more random clutter props, like a lot more, and not just the default half-life 2 stuff.
Alright, that’s all I got. Like I said, there is potential in this work. I would not have wasted two hours writing this if I didn’t care or didn’t think you could improve. Please, please keep posing but slow down and put effort into each pose and a critical eye to the work you produce. Other people can only say or do so much, the only person that’s really going to make you get better is you.