Is it strange that my main impression after finishing this page was…poor Ophelia can’t do anything about the hair in her face….
I mean regardless of if she could move her bangs out of the way without scraping up her face..she is in public now so she can’t even attempt. (ㄒoㄒ)
Any how I am sure she is not thinking about that because of being in awe of the temple and all.
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I am always a bit disappointed in my scanners ability to pick up my pencil drawings. Granted…my scanner is not great and it is notoriously difficult to get accurate scans of tonal work but still! ( ╬●∀● ) Regardless, I wanted to show the original pencil scan of the cloaked crowd because it is really nice in person and there are few things I love more than rendering fabric…ahhh the joys of my life.
Also here is the last panel without the bell obscuring things. I vowed to give more time and love to backgrounds in this chapter and I am making good on that promise! This was the most elaborate panel in terms of layers and lighting that I have ever done and I learned a lot! ٩(ˊᗜˋ*)و
I have been attracted to darker themes and imagery my entire life, and when I started drawing and writing stories at a very young age, those darker interests were very present. As a child I searched for and became obsessed with anything macabre I could get my hands on (despite the efforts of my parents to stop me from getting my hands on such things), and by the time I was a teenager that search lead me to horror manga and anime.
While a lot of what I read was very gory and sad it was considered Shōjo manga, and had very beautiful art and imagery. My favourites were pretty much every work by CLAMP. If you aren’t familiar with there work you can get a look at their gorgeous art style by looking here. CLAMP was a huge inspiration for me because they perfectly expressed and married my two interests; beautiful, flowing art and graphic, disturbing horror. They were the main feed for my emerging artistic style…that I would call “beautiful disturbing”.
Ophelia is very special to me because the intention of her design was to meld soft, elegant beauty and body horror. She is a very satisfying expression and homage to my influences and innate attractions. Through the years, Ophelias character design has stayed very close to the first draft I made when I was 17. I loved drawing Ophelia and have many sketches of her from before the world and the story of West Seven was even properly formed.
I am actually pretty reluctant to post these imagessss (๑´ㅂ`๑) but here are some early drawings of Ophelia. The very first is on the left. Now, looking back on these, I feel like my artistic abilities have progressed to the point where I can express what I stuggled to in the past. My true vision of Ophelia has definitely come into reality with this most recent piece! ( ˃̣̣̥ ω ˂̣̣̥ )