Oy, guess who's here. The Captain Smartass!
So, let me explain the "star rating" first (ok not so first), on why I placed them like that, whether it's fair or unfair, it's up to you to decide. Now that I'm here, may I point out that I have never seen a single Merlin episode. That's why I might not 'get' what is the idea behind it, but keep in mind that from this I can probably criticise the piece of artwork less influenced, am I right?
At first let me tell you I'm very impressed with this deviation. I think it's at least a step if not two comparing to your latest pieces.
Vision here is two thumbs up. I like the way you placed them in modern environment. It does reflect the title or vice versa. You did quite fair job on the background, still like in 8/10 complaints I will bitch over the lights. But that'll be further explained under Technique part. So half of a star less from perfect is mostly because I believe you'll get that much better in future.
Originality gets only 3 points because... uh, well, originality. Do I sound evil if I say it's not much of it inhere? Of course there isn't, since it's Fanart, duh? And well, we have seen a bunch of time-traveller artworks, but that's your idea here as well. Yep, the piece is just as original as it's intended to be. I know. That's why it gets full 3 points. Not your fault, but too bad there's a Originality in the critique part.
Technique. As usual, I'll bitch over that until you bleed. Because I'm a bad, bad person. *Takes a deep breath*
For difference, I'll start with background. Do you see that wall behind guys, where it says 'Avalon' and Camlann? That wall seems like it's made of balloon. It doesn't give a flat feeling. The gray on left with white-ish on right with smooth transition makes it look like it's a bit rounded. Maybe a few dents on it and other distrosions would fix that... maybe. Next, whatever is behind those walls, grafitti and other stuff, is too well lit. Isn't some darkness supposed to be there? I think so. OK, cars. They seem like they were made of cardboard, no offense, please! I think that a few more highlights on the roof and some more darkness inside might help a bit. You see, they are terribly flat if you look at them. Plain side-view on all the lanes... if there was supposed to be perspective on the painting, the cars killed it. But it's not all bad. You see, still the background was what I was impressed the most on your painting. You actually made quite detailed background and I can only give you high-five on it. Just don't give up, not because of my complaints. You'll do so much better next time (though, it's not that bad this time, really), I know it.
The foreground, characters and lil kid in front... They're good. The right guy seems quite a lot like a lesbian girl, his stance and haircut and complete lack of any other facial hair and his overall skinny figure, but maybe that's how he looks. The left guy has a little more male-ish appearance. Maybe his head is a little too small comparing to the left of his body, but it might as well be my distorted eye. However, proportions are unfairly easy to miss with just tiny bit and you may ignore that complaint. The little kid in front is very good. So simple and all - exactly as he has to be. You don't want him to take all the attention and that's the right way to go.
Immmmpaaaact now. I'm sure slash fiction fans are melting now and doing all the stuff you don't want even think about. So you get at least 4 points here. Again, what's missing is, that you'll once come up with something even better, and I want to leave room for that. A simple kiss between these two guys is probably really tempting for some of the folks, hey, 2 guys doing yadayada... ugh, cool, I guess. But it is nothing... so... special. It's maybe too direct. Sometimes you don't need to draw a kiss to show romance between two beings. A subtle look can do it and sometimes, you can't go without *mature content label*. And what you'll go with is what you want to show.
My Overall Feel Rating: 4/5. If that's more than you expected after what you've read upthere, that's because you deserve 4 out of 5. Well, you do know I hardly ever give more to about anyone, right? I'm really looking forward to see your artwork at the end of this school-year, I know I'm gonna be impressed. I expect you to strive for your further improvement and if you do that, you'll rocket-launch to your success. And I believe in you. And you, believe in yourself.
Waaaah late replies. But yeah.
First of all, thank you so much for taking the time to write all of this, and just generally for the support. Just ugh, thank you. Means a ton (:
Second of all, I know you call it bitching, but this is all actually really useful, so 'bitch' away
Anyway, the general idea behind it was to show the concept of the Arthurian legend and the bond between Merlin and Arthur being, as the title says, timeless. That while Arthur dies (SPOILER ALERT, but not really spoiler alert, I guess, because of the Arthurian legends), the circle is not complete, but instead keeps on repeating (cue the title 'once and future king'), and that time moves on while they stand still and never really cease to exist. Something along those lines. I think.
Definitely fair enough for originality, cause well, yeah, fanart. I really should kick my ass and do some original stuff soon too.
Also hearing you on the background part, especially with the walls and the cars, because I'm really not used to doing complex BGs often and I tend to have that irrational "fear" of overdoing it (you know, when whatever you try to shade looks too much? XD) and then normally end up not doing enough (like with the balloon wall and shades and flat cars, prime example xD). So yes, will watch out for that, thanks for pointing it out c:
To be honest, I thought Merlin looked a tad too feminine too (even though he really is skinny and without facial hair like that), but had no idea what else I could've done to emphasise the manly, hahhh, oh well xD
And the kiss part, yeah, definitely agreed. I normally prefer to show romance otherwise too, but thought it would fit here somehow. That, plus I thought I'd practice my kiss-drawing skills a bit lately because DAMN, kissing poses are the most evil thing to draw, I swear XD But yeah, no, you're absolutely right, a less direct approach may have been more effective. (;
Thanks again, for both the compliments and the constructive criticism! ^^ Will definitely strive to work on these things in the future c: