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Submitted on
May 11, 2009
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Good vs. Evil by DavidSondered Good vs. Evil by DavidSondered
For the Wacom/DeviantArt.com competition: Bring your Vision to Life- Good vs. Evil

The idea:
What is good and what is evil? This painting is a mix of several symbolic features that stand for Good or Evil or sometimes, depending on where in the world one is, both.
The Dragon/Serpent is a symbol of evil in many western cultures, even though the snake stand for something inherently good in many cases (Askleipos and healing for instance). In the Eastern parts of Asia the Dragon is mostly something good though, standing for balance.

The knight, something good in many ways according to many historians, but also the focus of oppression in Europe. Moving to the Holy land, the Knights templar where considered the scourge of the earh, there to steal Gods land away from his chosen people, whereas in Europe they where bringing God back to the land.
The Teutonic helmet, standing for rampage, but at the same time the order that the Teuton brought to Europe.
The scimitar, standing for the Muslim world, nowadays quite often scoffed at or seen as pure evil, whereas Islam quite clearly is the most tolerant of the Abrahamitic religions and thus would be something good.
There are a multitude of little items that can be found like this in the painting, and I have spent a lot of time thinking them through as I painted them in.

Even the lighting of the painting is meant to be a contrast. The warm and comforting red and yellow is on the left side (traditionally the Evil side) and also represents the Hell that exist in judeo-christian mythologies. Blue and cool, cold and uncaring colours, but at the same time quite often seen as Good colours.


I hope you will enjoy my painting. As far as I have understood the rules of the competition, the entry that receives the most :+fav: between the 19th of may and the 29th of may will win the Deviantart community-prize. I have honestly no idea if it will harm me or wether I will gain from getting a huge amount of :+fav:'s before the 19th, but the most important part for me is that my art is appreciated even though I am in dire need of a new tablet.

I have never had the fortune to have a Wacom tablet. It would be a great thing to win one through this competition, especially since my own tablet is singing it's last tune and sometimes is just really acting up.



EDIT:
So, didn't win the competition, managed to get to the semi-finalist-stage though.

I am very grateful for that as it has brought a lot of new watchers to my gallery.

A bit disappointed in the winners, the community-award was great, the number three winner was unique and inventive but number two and one?!
Seriously, number one is a masterpiece in digital fuzziness. I would have expected a piece of art where you at least can see what's in the piece and number two has what to do with good and evil?
end-rant.

Anyway, this piece of art is now available as a print right here at DA ( [link] ) and also in our Red Bubble account ( [link] )


Once again, thank you for the support.


/Edit


Add a Comment:
 
:iconsilverroses222:
To start of with the critique i'd honestly say great work,
wonderful painting, i like it very much...
and the planning i've read there, very tiring it must be..

First up,
Vision.
I was directed towards the area between the serpent(?),
and the knight...that's good...
the serpent's facing the knight but what about the knight?
am i mistaken, or was it on purpose?
Well, that's your say ;)

Next,
Originality.
I'd say the first thing people think about
when they hear good and evil,
is some evil looking creature against a savior,
am i right?
You did a good job there,
but not a full score for originality i guess,
though i must say I'm impressed by the amount of things you thought about :)

Third,
Technique.
A full score on this.
One word. Awesome. :icongrin--plz:

Last but not least,
Impact.
I don't see most of the things you thought about,
but there's something that keeps bothering me...
Is this a symbol of the old and the modern? ^^;
What do you think?
The Artist thought this was FAIR
44 out of 45 deviants thought this was fair.

:iconjnredmon:
I think, more than anything, this painting succeeds because of its presentation. The ideas and overall design, honestly, aren't that unique, but the sheer technique and impact of the image make this an amazing work.

One thing I noticed as I read the description was how you combined various aspects of different mythologies and cultures, trying to make who is "good" and "evil" more ambiguous. While I think that's a really great concept, I honestly think that could have been represented better. When I looked at this, I immediately assumed the serpent was evil and the knight was good. Perhaps this is just my cultural upbringing (and I'm just reinforcing the point of this painting), but I feel like the characters could have been made more ambiguous than they were. Like, you mentioned that the serpent is a good symbol in Eastern cultures. But this serpent doesn't look fierce of dignified in a way that many Eastern dragons do; it just looks vicious and wicked. You also talked about using colors associated with hell behind the knight and peaceful colors behind the serpent. That's a really unique concept, but I think the idea could have been made clearer. The buildings behind the knight look majestic and grand, while the stormy area behind the serpent looks threatening. Personally, I think this would have worked better if you had your heroic-looking knight in front of a harsh, darker red background with a more-destroyed environment, with a calmer and less stormy background behind the evil-looking serpent. But then again, maybe it would have lost some of its subtlety that way.

Also, a side note - the idea of this picture is "Good vs. Evil," but these two don't really look like they're in combat. They aren't facing each other; they're sort of just posing. Regardless, it still looks really cool.

The design of the knight isn't particularly original, but I really admire the design of the serpent. It sort of looks like a combination of flesh and metal - organic and inorganic. It looks amazing. Also, maybe it's the eyes, but for some reason, this serpent makes me think of the Pokemon Registeel. And I mean that in the best possible way.

Please don't think that I dislike this painting or that I don't admire it - the technique is absolutely flawless. The detail is incredible, the image is very powerful and memorable, and it has a lot of life and energy in it. This is definitely a fantastic piece overall. But, if I'm being honest, I just don't think it communicated your ideas as well as it could have.
What do you think?
The Artist thought this was FAIR
3 out of 3 deviants thought this was fair.

The Artist has requested Critique on this Artwork

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:iconred-jirachi-2:
Red-Jirachi-2 Featured By Owner Aug 7, 2013
Now do Chaos versus Order
Reply
:icondavidsondered:
DavidSondered Featured By Owner Aug 24, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
Might happend...
Reply
:iconredwingsdragon:
RedWingsDragon Featured By Owner Jul 5, 2013
Awesome work here
Reply
:icondavidsondered:
DavidSondered Featured By Owner Jul 5, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
Merci
Reply
:iconrevan005:
Revan005 Featured By Owner May 29, 2013
Cool idea.
Reply
:iconwerewolfwrath:
werewolfwrath Featured By Owner Feb 7, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Man I remember finding this image years ago and immediately fell in love with it (mainly because of the design of the creature, but still love the image overall) and I'm just finding it again now because I couldn't remember the name of the image. Of course it had to be the easy Good vs Evil that I wouldn't have even thought of. Anyways, as I said while the entire thing is great, what really draws me into this picture is the creature. I can completely agree with how you said that snakes could be considered evil, but I also like how you made it more than just a giant snake (like for example the Harry Potter version of the Basilisk) The extra eyes, wings, markings, horn/fangs? and the metallic looking headpiece all make it look very demonic looking (or evil if staying true to the title). The background is just as spectacular looking to me. Shame you didn't win the contest, I'd have totally voted for this.

My only real complaint is something that was brought up in :iconsilverroses222: critique with the knight. It's not the way he looks, he just seems to be facing the wrong way. If he was facing about 90 degrees to his left, he would probably look a little more like he was actually facing the thing. But it's just somewhat minor detail. I can't really say for sure, but this is arguably my favorite piece of artwork that I've seen so far. Maybe I'm just being a bit bias because I love the creature design, but hey that's a good thing too I guess. Glad I'm commenting now instead of when I first found this, as I wouldn't have thought as much of it then (and this comment would only be a sentence long if that) Oh well, love the image in any case.
Reply
:iconforcesword12:
Forcesword12 Featured By Owner Jan 18, 2013
in truth? Good and evil are what they are merely in the eyes of who says it.
Reply
:iconwnter06:
wnter06 Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2012
wow! this drawing good real art?
Reply
:icondavidsondered:
DavidSondered Featured By Owner Nov 25, 2012  Professional Digital Artist
yes, real art. Painted with a wacom tablet on a PC, but very much real art.
Reply
:iconradioactivespine:
RadioactiveSpine Featured By Owner Sep 29, 2012  Student Writer
The only thing more lovely than this epic piece is the description. You did an astounding job on blurring the lines between good and evil.
Reply
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