HOW TO: Godzilla UNLEASHED

This particular customer asked for a Godzilla themed guitar that would be in an old 70-80’s Movie Poster style.  Fun!!  I started by creating a photo composite from a variety of images and vector drawings.  When the customer approved my idea, I went on to create a vector mask for the composition.

You can see how the layout will work.  The vinyl mask will allow for some very strong lines and definition between different aspects of the composition.

After I laid the mask out, I started the painting with the mushroom cloud that is burning in the very background of the image.  I wanted the cloud to be the brightest part of the painting, so I started here, establishing a value system immediately that I could follow for the entire piece.  The cloud was made with a combination of dagger, soft pillow and flood strokes applied with A LOT of intensity.  Parts of the cloud are almost 100% application.

Next I went to work in front of the mushroom cloud, but behind Godzilla.  There is  a lot of fire and smoke and lots of atmospheric energy going on all around.

Once my white underpainting was established, I used an opaque yellow, well reduced to produce a transparent-like color to act much like kandy, to add some brilliance to the mushroom cloud in the hottest areas.

Next a kandy orange wash wash ws used throughout the background and within the mushroom cloud as a secondary glow.  The areas that have a green or brown appearance are areas where the kandy orange was applied directly over the black or over areas with just light application of undercoating.  This provides natural, yet complimentary coloring.

I used just a bit of red kandy, mostly in the very deepest parts of the background.</p>

After applying the red wash, I went back into the immediate foreground and adds some very focused white.  I wanted this AFTER the background kandy washes because I have plans to add some additional features inside the black that is now protected by the vinyl mask.

I sprayed the white of Godzilla’s eye and his teeth before removing the vinyl mask.  Next I start in with the skin texture.  Godzilla is covered with small spikes over his entire body, so I used small dagger strokes starting at the top and working away from the tip of the spikes.

You can see that the claws, teeth and eyes are at nearly 100% white application.  Notice also how the vinyl mask allowed me to really define the top of the left arm with a more intense white.

Back with the kandy orange, I add areas of glow designed to give the feeling that the fire below is interacing with reflections off the bottom side of Godzilla’s left arm.

After spraying this application of kandy orange, I went back in with some more white and transparent yellow to build the intensity and glow of the fire.  I allowed a bit of orange kandy overspray on the black areas because these areas would normally take on a bit of the colored tone from the suggestion of ambient light from the fire.

Godzilla is given a light wash of kandy purple.

I mixed a blend of kandy purple and black for the detail color.  I used this to really chisel out the skin texture and other features on Godzilla

Here you can see that I also went back into the mushroom cloud with just a bit of kandy green to create a complimentary color reaction.

Now I just needed to add the final white highlights.  Notice again how intense the mushroom cloud glows.

I reapplied Godzilla’s face mask so that I could do a clean core shadow on the teeth and also to ensure that there was a good amount of separation between the teeth and the glow in the mouth.

The composition is finished up with some text.  The first application was a kandy green to trans yellow fade.  I re-masked that area less a small outline and hit is pretty hard with kandy orange and a highlight of yellow.

Once unmasked, I added some detail cracks to the lettering.