Mike & Hellboy mean a lot to me creatively. From understanding what the medium of comics could be do beyond superheroes, to listening to every interview with Mike I could find where he talked about his motivations & history to help me create an unusual path of my own for the type of career in comics I was after
To the left is the finished piece, and below I'll run through the process of creating the artwork.
I thought of several ideas for a Hellboy pinup: Hellboy drinking in a pub with skeletons (some playing cards, a cobwebbed dart board, drinks all around), Hellboy in artifact collector's trophy room, Hellboy fighting a big moster and breaking it's jaw like King Kong fighting a dinosaur...and somehow in all that flurry of writing down ideas, I came up with Hellboy stealing the egg of a cockatrice.
So, I sketched out this version (added the 'EGG' balloon just for fun) and gathered some reference including photos of roosters & the cockatrice bronze window on the transom of the Belvedere Castle in Central Park. Pretty much the only bit of this drawing that survived to the next version are the cockatrices
I used Copic Multiliner SP pens (the 0.7 and 0.3 nibs) to ink everything.
Most of the ink-work was done live on my Twitch stream as fans watched and asked questions.
I tried to vary the density of the ink details, going much darker and more textural on the nest while making the scales of the cockatrices more suggestive and leaving their wing-skin very open.
I also decided to push back the window architecture further into the distance, so I added a color hold over the inks there (an area where I want the ink lines to be a color other than black)
The last step was to render everything with light, texture, and shadow. I do almost all of this work using the dodge and burn tools in Photoshop while using a stock texture brush. This one took a lot of fiddling to get just the right blend of tonal values, and a big thank-you to Gene Ha who I showed this to at a mid-stage who had some advice that saved me a lot of struggle,
So, go back the MIKE MIGNOLA: DRAWING MONSTERS Documentary Kickstarter! and get a print of my Hellboy piece on one of the reward tiers!