If you’ve been following me on twitter (or sharing with me on Diaspora), you’ll probably have seen the work-in-progress photos of this image. It took me about 8 hours to do this. I suspect I could have done it in less time if I could have done it in one sitting, but I don’t have that luxury. I quite like it, it’s in theme and concept with my original idea.
I think I’ve come a long way in the last few years in terms of my drawings. I now approach an image as a project, which includes multiple iterations, design considerations, foundation work, etc. And this one was no different. I had a character designed from my Lost Heroes RPG project (I’m currently working on the rules a bit) and I wanted to do a new character image.
So this is Matthew, a Renegade Chosen. His body and face are covered in scars where he pulled himself together in the Void. His knife is actually the remains of a sword that he created while in the Void. It burned and melted away as he cut his way back to Earth. The knife allows him to make quick short trips into the Void and travel instantaneously to other places. However there is a darkness to his power, a manifestation of his power in the Void, a shadow.
When coming up with the image design, I did sketch out some concepts, and figure out what the character should look like. I used a number of manga/anima books that I have as reference. They are clean sharp images. This allowed me to jump to the next stage and create a clean outline of the character.
But then came the power of the lightbox, my favourite piece of drawing equipment (besides pencils and pens). I created Matthew’s shadow and played around with placement of the “portal” and the shadow. Once I knew that worked, it pretty much started to fall into place.
Originally the shadow held a version of the sword that was complete, but the placement of it, looked bad. So I left it out. It’s nice how the image evolved though. This was the last stage before I started adding some shade:
If I had a graphics tablet I could probably do more of these stages online and tidy up the image better, but I do enjoy using a pen or a pencil on paper.
Now back to actually doing some writing!