A greyscale piece commissioned by a patron. Yay patrons! I was pretty much just allowed to go for it. The original idea was “punk” but I veered off course into some combination of street thug/seedy sailor in the back streets of Bangkok. Which is maybe truer to punk than Green Day, so ya know.
This pulled a lot of photo reference, modelling, and research together, including classic sailor tattoos, Sailor Moon, punk girls and punk fashion, and even lots of ripped up denim skirts, to experiment with the best way to distress them. There are also lots of subtle and not-so-subtle callbacks to the character in the art, which I’ll leave to you all to Waldo. I do a lot of research before I start work on a commission, and a number (3-4, minimum) of designs and prelims. I hope it shows.
Kinda love the expression I got out of her, with the slight, holier-than-thou smirk.
She ended up looking a bit trashier than normally comes from me, but given the attitude and character attributes I was going for, it’s appropriate.
Copic marker, colored pencil, and acrylic paint on 11×14 smooth bristol board.
I could go on about composition and design choices, but that could get boring as much as I personally love talking about it, so if you’ve questions about the technical stuff, just comment away!
I’ve posted this one already, but here it is in context. You can see I changed a few things compositionally by the time I worked out the pencils, but it stays pretty true to the original idea.
You can see where I was noodling about and constructing bits, such as the curve of the bat, and the basic shape and location of various tattoos. Note that by the time I got to inking/coloring I totally changed the tattoo on the upraised arm. Just had what I hope was a better idea is all.
A few things of note. I’ve been pushing myself to a cleaner inking style, which hopefully shows. Less needless hatching. Except for that denim skirt. I like playing around with textures, and knowing what was in store for the wall, I went at it there. Note most reference to the tatts has been erased at this point. I can see the indentions in the paper, which will let me recreate them in pencil later. Needed them out of the way to really see the inking.
That wall is completed. Normally I save the background for last, so that I can allow the color and contrast in the main figure to do what it needs to, and match the intensity of the bg to that. However, when I know there’s going to be a bunch of splattering and randomness anywhere, I switch up and hit that first. That way, I can correct any misfired splatters, for example, at a later stage. Note where her head is pressed against the wall, and how the ink splooged onto the hair. I was able to work that out later with the markers when I finished up her hair.
The lady and her tattoos! Note they’re back. I penciled them in before coloring in her skin. That made the pencils “permanent” under the layer of marker, and made it easier to work with later. I did the line work with 2 acid free, dye ink markers (frayed burlap and iced spruce) and completed the colors with Copics. I wasn’t sure how well the 2 media would play together, and luckily it worked out pretty well.