I have to say that the updated version has colors that mesh together a lot better than the original. But I like both of them for different reasons!
I that grass underneath the melted snow, or a hole leading somewhere else?
Yup, it's the part where snow melted because of the warmth of the flower.
I like the contrast from the darkness of the environment to the brightness of the pond and the flower that produces the warmth as well. I have a feeling that this piece perhaps tells a story which explains why these two people are out here, possibly on a quest of some sort. It's really neat and I light the way that the lighting sets the mood of the picture, one of cold, dark, and mysterious while at the same time intriguing and full of adventure.
is that guy in armor from titan fall?