This subject was chosen at the request of and honestly I thought it might end up being a bit boring on the redesign side after watching the movie. However once I started thinking about how to approach this I really got into it...much to my regret lol! Let me explain, The GB is essentially a carnivorous sauropod (I love how all dinos ate meat back in the day!) and while a sauropod form makes for a tremendously powerful beast it doesnt really fit the bill for a good design given its film attributes. In the film the creature had to very marine oriented and while Ive no doubt that sauropods could swim, they arent built for extended aquatic life. So I began to reference aquatic reptiles both prehistoric and modern/ This lead to studies of pliosaurs of all sorts, alligators, sauropods, turtles, the Sando Aqua Monster and even Fell Beasts from the LOTR films.
Suaropod paid homage to the original's build giving me a good base to start from. From here I looked at the Sando Aqua Monster (from Star Wars ep 1) as its a kiaju sized sea beast that hasnt fully adapted to ocean life yet. That changed my leg structure making me think more along the lines of seal locomotion. Combining Brachiosaur leg posture with this idea and some alligator thrown in gave me my beast's final body structure. Something that could move about on land but like alligators spent more time in the water. Pliosaurs gave me good ideas for the head and tail (certain artists have done mosasaurs with paddle shaped tails) and my study of the Fell Beasts was perfect for the thick muscular neck I had in mind as in the film it needed to be powerful enough to life many tons of steel and iron. Note the GB is only 70 feet tall making him more of a true dino in size that a real kaiju. Lastly the eye is pure turtle (red iris, brown ring, yellow cornea) who knew there eyes were such sinister colors?
So were does the regret come in? In choosing alligator hide for my scale pattern. I try very hard not to repeat textures if I can so I decided alligator fit this monster's nature well and even the original had of square shaped scales. Oy vey! Im a detail fanatic but damn thats a lot of scales and several variations along the way! Sometimes I get mad that I discovered the amazing work of Richard Delgado (Age of Reptiles - BUY IT NOW!) because his books gave me scale fever and apparently there is no cure. But now finally it is done and Im happy with it. Another kaiju down....and on to the next (as work permits).
Edit: I added a radioactive glow to the Behemoth at the suggestion of , Id have to say, I like it.
Here is a piece that I have been working on for the past week or so for 's monthly art challenge. This month, the subject was Rhedosaurus from: The Beast From 20,000 Fathoms. Great Harryhausen film. Oh, everyone wish Mr. Harryhausen, the stop motion master behind this film and many others, a happy 92nd birthday! Give or take a few days. Anyways I hope you guys like it because I poured out my heart into this, trying to get all the details right, from head to tail.
Oh yeah, and for those of you who have watched this flick, take notice of the octopus fighting the shark in that building right where the Rhedosaurus is surfacing...you remember that from the movie, don't you? In the movie, there was a scene where a real octopus fought a real shark but then they got eaten by the "bigger fish" if you get what I'm saying
I was on a Harryhausen kick last month and pumped this out. I loved this battle when I was a kid, when I first saw 7th Voyage I thought the Cyclops was going to win the fight in a Kong type way but I was happy as hell to see the Dragon be victorious. This layout was not my first idea but I like the overlapping characters, kinda looks like they're eyeing each other up before the first blow. Once again this piece is mainly prisma markers done on colored pastel paper with watercolor for the sky and some washed out ink on the rocks for shadow. Hope you guys like it
Ya I know this is not my usual style of artwork. Itís a lot darker than I like to go, but honestly this was an image that was burned in my head after a nightmare. I watched The Crawlers (aka Trolls 3). Now I have seen this movie many times before, but for some strange reason it affected me differently this time. I had a nightmare that same night about those goofy tree roots killing me. Then for some reason I started to think of Biollante and Erika Shiragami. And so this came to mind. So let me explain my crazy thought process a little and explain why I deviated so drastically from my usual bright and fun type imagery.
For those of you who do not know what Biollante is; allow me to illuminate. Biollante is a genetic monstrosity that was the direct result of fusing Rose, Human, and Godzilla DNA together. The human DNA that was used, was that of Erika Shiragami. A beautiful young woman that was killed during a terrorist bombing act. So distraught was her father that he fused her DNA with that of a Rose. This only would prolong her life for so long. He wanted to grant her everlasting life. So he used the regeneration abilities of Godzillaís DNA to bond with the Rose/Human DNA. What resulted was a hybrid of beautiful, and yet destructive power. The new creature escaped to a lake, where it grew to a massive giant rose monster with teeth. Godzilla was lured to the monster by itís call and battled it. Setting it aflame he destroyed the Erika plant clone. Biollante would reappear later in the film, this time mutated into a reptilian like plant. Battling Godzilla, monsters ended up with a draw. Godzilla retreated to the sea because of being poisoned by the humans and Biollante turned into pollen and took to the heavens.
Ok, so now we are all caught up, Iíll explain my piece. In Biollanteís first form, she is nothing more than a mutant rose with teeth. It is beautiful, but not destructive. She was merely a deadly beauty that was looked upon in heavenly manner. After Godzilla destroys her, she takes on another form. One more ugly and vile. Horrid and disastrous. One can easily see the internal conflict within the character. As a rose, it is beautiful and has reminisces of human traits. It is a flower that Erika adored. When it is set aflame, something changes. And this is where I can see the spiritual battle for the soul of the monster taking a stand. Biollanteís second form is more reptile and monstrous. The DNA of Godzilla has completely eclipsed the frailty of the human spirit. Strangled and imprisoned by the animalistic fury of the nuclear giantís encoded cruelty. At the end of the film you see that Erikaís soul still endures, but that is only after Biollanteís form vanishes in a haze of glowing motes of pollen. The whole idea of struggling souls and conflicting natures in a kaiju film is truly a rare occurrence. So celebrating actual good writings and ideas, is something that should be done. Certainly in the face of Toho shying away from new stuff and just falling back on tried and true basics. Iím looking at you Mothra and King Ghidorah!
I suppose that one can also argue that Biollante never truly had a soul. That the closest thing it had, was the souls of Godzilla and Erika. But that is not an argument I will argue at this point and time. The merits of such talk are far to complicated for a few words written out in a blog.
So all in all I am pretty happy with how the piece came out. The glowing eyes and chest. The spiraling motes of light and overall composition of interaction between the two characters. Iím pretty happy with how it came out. I do not plan on doing another dark image like this, but who knows what nightmares will bring. I worked hard and long and hope you guys get a kick out of the strange going ons of my brain.
From the Gamera series we have the MOST iconic of all his foes, the mighty knife faced Guiron. Guiron is an alien monster whose main attribute is this his head is a machette hard enough to crack Gamera's shell. He can also leap farther and higher than any kaiju I know and has telekinetic shuriken lodged in his blade/snout.
Ok taking all this into account I started be checking out animals with powerful necks. Charging animals like bulls, buffalo and rhino were my first subjects of research (hence the pawing at the ground pre charge pose). Then I took a look at the Reek from Star Wars and the Kothoga from The Relic. To support that huge horn/blade my design had to have a very powerful neck, this neck needed to deliver powerful axe blows and head thrashes. Equally important was a heavily muscled and powerful body to balance the weight on the kaiju's front end. So I made this my thickest kaiju yet. His legs are also powerful but stumpy which actually fits in well with the original's context.
Since Guiron is a quadreped but like all good kaiju can stand when needed I blunted the end of his tail and make it rigid and muscular to act as a third limb for standing kinda like a kangaroo uses. In the film his shuriken are hidden beneath a membrane that just disappears when they are in use. I decided to implement a short of shuriken shooter nasal passage like structure on the blade. Guiron has one of the most durpy faces in all kaijudom with his super sleepy eyes. Couldnt have that. I went with something that gives him a more applicable field of vision and eyes inspired by my gecko turned sideways. I gave him huge rancor-like nostrils to drive his metabolic needs as such a powerhouse. Plus he can do some cool angry bull snorts now. Since the blade is part of his head I set his enormous fangs right into his armored skull instead of gums. Everything about this guy was built to say power...like a bulldog version of a kaiju. And since Im tired of scales I went with a thick elephantine hide.