Long story short, I've always been super clumsy at composing shots. I'm trying to improve the readability and general feel of the composition, as this page introduces a character that creates the story's main conflict. I need to hit the following story beats with the page:
a) The introduction of said new character.
b) Establishing the town and townspeople.
c) Creating a scenario in which Mahsuri would meet the new character, and find him a likeable kind of chap.
d) Keeping the setting as Malaysian as possible, while still keeping to the general (cartoonish) tone of the world.
So far this version of the page (as lo, there have been many) covers all the bases, but comes across without any real flow to it. The focus, Mahsuri and sidekick, are just sort of hanging out in the middle, and many of the elements lack real contrast when it comes to size. Also, the low-contrast foreground framing was done in page three, and doing the same thing twice in a row seems like a one-trick pony kind of deal. ...plus, now that I think about it, I had a super similar shot in the Prince of Persia storybook from last year. Oof.
Some of the problems could be solved with colour, shadows and contrast, but others - are the children on the ground his? - need a different approach entirely. I think part of the answer lies with spokewheeling, as James Gurney puts it, but doing it without falling back on one point perspective again is really tricky for me.
All that said, if you've got a spare minute and any suggestions, I would love it to tiny bits.