Worgen Sonic, basic shading

Back to work on Worgen Sonic in Warcraft armor. I actually would have gotten a lot farther on the background, but every time I clicked in the top right corner of the canvas, Painter would crash. So finally I just threw on a solid black layer and erased through it to show the gradient underneath. It’ll be fun to put on the highlights and details, but I thought I was lucky getting this far tonight, with Painter being ornery.

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Worgen Warcraft Sonic sketch

Seeing spots

I got to the point where I was ready to put the spots on the cheetah griffin. And I realized that I was going to need some guides for them. They go in distinct patterns, they don’t just sprinkle the animal randomly.

So, after staring at my reference photo for a while, I came up with the following spot flow pattern.

The resulting spots:

I couldn’t exactly tell for sure, but I think the spots in the middle of his side actually go in a spiral, like a thumbprint. Unfortunately the wing covered that up in mine.

I went with a real dark background in the end, with lots of texture brushes in it. I’ve been looking at a lot of paintings by old masters, and they were totally into really dark backgrounds. It makes your subject pop.

Finishing up the cheetah-griffin

I was tying up various loose ends, and it dawned on me that I never actually finished this one commission I had for a cheetah-griffin. I contacted my commissioner, and thankfully she was very gracious about it. So I’m doing my best to finish up.

Anyway, here’s how far I had gotten on it:

It had a few problems, and my commissioner asked if I could raise the head a bit. So I did.

I deepened the shadows quite a bit to add a little more punch, and added more blue in the shadows to cool them off. Moved the head and remodeled the face. Did some work on the legs to show more of those muscles and tendons, but they still need quite a bit of modeling before I’ll be happy with them. Also, fiddled with the dang tail feathers until I got them looking decent. I referred heavily to a nice griffin illustration by Hibbary, because she had the tails exactly how I wanted to draw them.

Hibbary’s griffins
Cheetah griffin sketch
Cheetah griffin rough colors

Eagle vs. siberian wolf

So, while searching through Google for good reference pictures of wolves, I happened across this pic.

Upon staring at it for a while, and going, “What in the HECK?” I clicked on the original site.

Turns out it’s a story about people in Central Asia who train golden eagles the way other people train small hawks and falcons, and they use them to cull the local wolf population or hunt them for fur. I think I read a book about them once (I’m not sure where it took place, but Central Asia seems about right), and it was utterly fascinating.

Here’s the blog if you want to see more far out pictures. With more details, too!

Book about similar people, Ali and the Golden Eagle

Basic values on werewolf pic

First off, I finally figured out that the wolf’s head was just too big. He’s not very tall, as werewolves go, so the head size I had started with just turned out to be too large. I shrank it a bit before chucking on some shading in the background.

Anyway, I got all the shadows in there, and just erased them to let some background gradient shine through for the highlights. And I’m liking where it’s headed so far. She’s in the light, he’s in shadow … all symbolic, wooo … anyway, I know not everybody likes werewolves, but I like them. And if this was a vampire instead of a wolf, certain people I know would be drooling over it. >.>