As many of my more personal works often entail, I was given the task of taking a written description of a character and producing artwork for them at the request of a private commissioner. While I was never specifically told what the project was for, I nonetheless picked it up as character designs are some of favorites projects.
When starting out, I first took inspiration from French history and Chinese paintings and tried to blend the two together to create a deadly geisha of sorts. That is, until I reread the supplied description and found no evidence or chance to integrate Asian culture into the character’s design and thus cut it from the project entirely. Instead, I modeled her after the European high class around the 1700s, particularly with the inclusion of a powdered wig and pale complexion.
Because the character in question is meant to be portrayed as a villain, I had to figure out how to convey this at first glance. While a dark palette of contrasting black and white with a detailing of red took care of the color, it still felt like something was missing. Then I remembered that the character was in possession of a demonic sword – a sword that was just as likely to take possession of her! With this realization, I decided to make her eyes an unnatural pink in color, as well as make her pupils slits as opposed to the rounded orbs we’re familiar with; a haughty pout completed the look.