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Philomena -  Equestria's Finest Phoenix by aJVL Philomena -  Equestria's Finest Phoenix by aJVL
~Let it light Equestria's path.

First attempt on a bird. Went through some real-life eagle picture to make it at least somewhat anatomically right. Still getting the hang of colour and value.
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This is very striking. The contrast between warm and cool colors, and the dark and light values cause the phoenix to stand out quite nicely against the background. Also, the composition of the piece expresses a nice dynamic feeling; the wings' positioning, feather bits, and the tail's placement gives a sense of motion and establish the phoenix's power The placement of the phoenix on the right and the decision to leave open air on the left (rather than just crop at the wingtip) adds a lot to the dynamism as well.

Despite really enjoying this piece there are a few things that bother me a bit and since I don't see the point of a critique that does nothing but praise I thought I'd explore them. One thing that confuses me a little bit is the lighting on the phoenix; The feather bits seem to emit their own light and it seems like there is also a light coming from below the phoenix but the wings have very little light on them in comparison. Compositionally I think this contrast works but I can't help but wonder about it anyway. Also, the tail feathers seem a bit like they're squashed into the canvas and that they are coming up higher than the angle of the bird make it seem they should; The wings angle makes it seem like it's moving a bit more upward than the tail feathers imply. Just a few observations I had.
What do you think?
The Artist thought this was FAIR
100 out of 102 deviants thought this was fair.

Now THIS is impressive. The subtle amount of realism blends really well with the style.

The details on the feathers are super nice, especially on the chest. That's my favorite part about this piece: it's very textured and very detailed. I will comment that the right wing seems less detailed than the left, or it maybe was a little bit over-glowed.

This may have been due to stronger glow on the right wing as well- I feel a LITTLE bit more warmth on the left wing would have been welcome, just to be a tad more consistent, and to improve the lighting. (Not too much more: i get a feel of left-to-right/near-to-far bright-to-dark for the piece, so you obviously wouldn't want to remove that.)

The flecks of fire are very varied for just being ember and ashes, which I like a lot as well: it keeps things moving without drawing the eye away from what's important.

I can't find any fault with the motion: it's got a solid direction and is supported by the colors and contrast, and for the anatomy, I'm not sure how phoenixes are specifically shaped but the only thing I can say is I think her legs may be a tad short. This is relatively minor, however.

It's hard to find a lot of things wrong with this piece so I'm not going to make up issues. There is some stuff that could have been done differently, just to get a different effect: as is, Philomena contrasts well with the background and pops out, but the image feels very cool against the blue. Dabbling less into the greens and more into the pinks and violets for the background may have made the piece stand out with warmth, suiting for a firebird, which might have been a neat route to take. (Again this is just a suggestion, something I just think might've been cool as well, and doesn't really have an impact on the piece.)

Overall, lovely work.
What do you think?
The Artist thought this was FAIR
101 out of 105 deviants thought this was fair.

The Artist has requested Critique on this Artwork

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LadyJayeCameron Featured By Owner Oct 2, 2015
Gizmodo used your art today:…
aJVL Featured By Owner 1 day ago
Okay, woah. That's... I'm at loss for words. 
Shutterflyyay Featured By Owner Sep 30, 2015
A caffee called "Fenix" in the city I live in uses this picture as their- ...hmm what do you call it... banner? The picture above the entrance with the caffe's name on it. I bet they didn't ask you for permission Wink/Razz 
Makes me smile every time I pass it.
aJVL Featured By Owner 1 day ago
I don't recall, so I don't think they did.

I don't think I can do anything since I believe it's in a place far away from where I live? (Singapore)
Shutterflyyay Featured By Owner 1 day ago
Serbia, 9339 km away, no I guess you can't do anything, but it speaks about the quality of your art :)
Silverwind234 Featured By Owner Sep 22, 2015
Oh my goodness... I had this as my background for a long time and I had no idea who made it or anything because I found it on Google Images. What a coincidence!
QAtheAuthoress Featured By Owner Jul 31, 2015  Student Artisan Crafter
DebyMalwoy Featured By Owner Jul 5, 2015  Hobbyist Artist
Supernatural OMG Beautiful-silver-100px 
s-tec Featured By Owner Apr 5, 2015
I just want to say thanks for this. It has been my desktop wallpaper ever since the day you released it.
aJVL Featured By Owner Apr 9, 2015
That means so much! Thank you!
Ajax94 Featured By Owner Apr 1, 2015
It looks really good!
wottstep Featured By Owner Feb 23, 2015  Student Traditional Artist
Ignas357 Featured By Owner Feb 23, 2015  Hobbyist Photographer
Would you look at that. I had this on my desktop for quite a while in hopes of finding the original artist. And now to just stumble upon it this randomly. c:

Anyway, just so you know someone on da has this claimed as their own art. But I remember the account being dead for a while and I don't think I could find it again anyway. I guess it's not too surprising for you, considering this has gotten on a yearbook in some way : D 
Also, it was actually this picture…
I assume it's a WIP or something? The wings seem to have a whole lot less details
ScarletsFeed Featured By Owner Nov 8, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Your photo was used on the yearbook cover of a middle school here in Rio Rancho New Mexico, I saw it on my sister's yearbook and immediately recognized it as your piece/ and a piece of brony art. I looked for a credit and couldn't find one (don't know if that'll bother you, it sort of did me DX, beautiful art such as this should always be credited!) Figured I might as well make you aware,

BTW, this is one of the most stunning pieces of art I have ever seen!
aJVL Featured By Owner Nov 9, 2014
It's fine... Haha. Do you have a picture of the yearbook I can see? I'm actually curious how it looks like. 
ScarletsFeed Featured By Owner Nov 9, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Sure! ---->
Sorry it's sideways ^^;
aJVL Featured By Owner Nov 14, 2014
Haha, no worries!. And oh my god, that book is awesome!
Neytirislover51 Featured By Owner Sep 26, 2014  Hobbyist Photographer
That is really well done!
I found this through btw
KonyJay Featured By Owner Sep 14, 2014
Rainbow-Flutter-Dash Featured By Owner Aug 25, 2014  Hobbyist Writer
Wow, Philomena is a lot more epic than she looked in the show. Faved :D
TomFraggle Featured By Owner Jun 3, 2014
Looks great!
TheBlueDreamMaker Featured By Owner May 10, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Most magestic bird ever!
Genericname4 Featured By Owner Jun 23, 2014
You spelt majestic wrong
TheBlueDreamMaker Featured By Owner Jun 24, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
well thanks for the information buddy :)
I'll keep it in mind next time
warriorsgirl12 Featured By Owner Apr 27, 2014
so epic
caliaponia Featured By Owner Apr 16, 2014
Great background, and it'd make an even better print, I think.
BonezandGrim4ever Featured By Owner Apr 11, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Very nice, well done.
Scooterloo9000 Featured By Owner Mar 23, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Beatiful!You have a great feel for art!Heart I love the details!
Hsupert Featured By Owner Jan 18, 2014
Your first attempt?!Wow! 
MLPegasis4898 Featured By Owner Dec 11, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Woah! This is awesome!!! And the background really fits with Philomena's colours, indeed!!! :wow: :omg: :omfg:
Kluvira Featured By Owner Dec 2, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
I'm going to make this my desktop background if you don't mind uvu it's simply magnificent! 
ElAsmar Featured By Owner Nov 22, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Amazing! Maximum respect!!
NottKenny Featured By Owner Nov 1, 2013  Student General Artist
This looks really, epic.
DaisyWolfLove Featured By Owner Oct 15, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Clapping Pony Icon - Princess Luna Luna Approves of your awesomeness!
aJVL Featured By Owner Oct 18, 2013
DaisyWolfLove Featured By Owner Oct 19, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
*inhales alot* YAY!
Saga-Sage Featured By Owner Sep 20, 2013
Beautiful, simply beautiful.
Stygian359 Featured By Owner Sep 12, 2013   Filmographer
Ah! I have been looking for the origin of this image for some time, I must say its one of my favorites without a doubt! As a great fan of the phoenix I could spend an hour criticizing your work however the image is wonderful I shall simply say this is absolutely amazing!
idislikecake Featured By Owner Sep 8, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
my new wallpaper
NicolasDominique Featured By Owner Aug 12, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Lovely :)
APC03 Featured By Owner Aug 10, 2013
super cool picture!
Corsair43 Featured By Owner Aug 2, 2013

That's it.

Just... wow...
Toeyak5973 Featured By Owner Jun 23, 2013
Wow...this is stunning to me. Every picture tells a story and for me, this one tells a million. Set as my desktop and phone screensaver :D
Ponkool4 Featured By Owner Jun 3, 2013
I love this artwork! It's now my cellphone's screensaver :)
Niyashy Featured By Owner Jun 2, 2013
TheDashDub brought me to you - twice - and I can't stop being amazed by your art style oO Those little details, the lighting, everything...
Faved and +watch, keep being awesome~ /)
PonyEveningStar Featured By Owner May 22, 2013  Student Interface Designer
Hello :P
I really, really love this! I was wondering if I could have your permission to use it as artwork for a video for some music I hope to put up soon on YouTube? You will be credited of course. :) You can see some of my work if you follow the link below. The piece I have in mind is an epic soundtrack suite ;)
Alexshy Featured By Owner May 19, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Woooooow.... This is soo awesome!!!!
aJVL Featured By Owner May 19, 2013
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Submitted on
June 23, 2012
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