Abigail Southworth

Illustrator & Designer

20

4

FINISHED PROJECT: Women Not to be Reckoned With

When I first approached this project, I approached it from the standpoint of having a single finished piece. The longer I worked on this, the more I felt that this deserved more than one go in order for me to fully understand Mike's process and what he wanted us to achieve. So instead of my original plan of doing my 'herculean beast playing fetch' concept, I went into a completely different direction. I'm still keeping the information from that idea up, but I'm restricting it to the initial idea. See more below!

Part I: Playing Fetch is Serious Business

I'm first tackling the woman, trying to find a pose that I think would best show the humor that I want to create in the scene, without being over the top. At this point i'm not concerned with clothing or anything, more with the pose.

I ended up with a more traditional, but more dynamic pose, of the woman running in one direction while looking over her shoulder. The beast would be running after her. Possibly humor in the use of a small twig with the beast will be so large.

I then worked on the sketch for the beast. I wanted him to resemble a dog, but slightly more demonic and intimidating.

And just as a bonus- I worked on a flying creature that's a combination of a heron and a bat.

I then finished my sketch of the woman. I wanted to make her muscular, but light on her feet. Perhaps a trainer for these types of creatures...?

Here's the setup for my creature and the woman. I thought of making the creature larger, but I don't want her to be dwarfed either. At this point I decided to work on another concept, but keep this one in my back pocket for a rainy day.

 Part II: Beauty Takes on the Beast

For this part of my project, I wanted to focus on different ethnicitys in a fantasy setting, adding a single sentence to show their 'story.' The first two were simple 'elf' practice, then I moved on to more involved work.

The challenge for me in this was that I haven't really done much traditional artwork the past few years. I found I really enjoyed Mike's technique of working with prismacolor and gouache on toned paper!

(I do want to apologize for the bad camera photos. It's been a while since i've done traditional work, so I don't even own a scanner as of yet.)

"Though treated as an outcast for her half-elf and half-human heritage, not even she imagined the destruction she'd bring."

"At ten, she picked up a sword. At 14, she won her first battle. At 18, she slayed a dragon. But she'll never see herself as strong as long as he's alive."

"With armor fashioned from an old dressage saddle, a staff made of a branch and old hunting knives, and a sash from her mother's wedding dress for luck, it was her determination that won in the end."

"Nothing made her happier than a nice meal and good company. Especially when they're the same thing."

Overall, this was a great experience. I really enjoyed working on the toned paper, and there were some great tips and tricks that i'll be bringing into my own practices. I'm going to be doing more of these over time for sure, they were a lot of fun and made me think more about the characters i'm creating. 

Thanks everyone!

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