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The Headless Horseman by Bluesrat The Headless Horseman by Bluesrat
I've been working on this off and on for close to a year now, since my sister ran an Iron Kingdoms story last Halloween featuring he Headless Horseman, Iron Kingdoms style!

The story was awesome, a detective tale of black magic and corruption that included scenes so evocative that I just *had* to do a picture of the horseman coalescing/galloping out of the mist...and since I'd been wanting to break out the evil green glowing for quite some time anyway, this seemed like the perfect excuse!

(That's how you know things are getting *really* bad in Iron Kingdoms. Any random horror can be rotting, black, or gore-covered, but only the high-class bad news comes in Cryxian green.)

Aside from the truly gratuitous amounts of evil green, this picture marks something of a milestone. It's the first picture I've ever done that's a true digital painting, rather than the color-in-the-lineart sort of thing that I usually do.

And the Headless Horseman is going to be on a calendar! He's the October submission for this year's Madmousemedia ([link]) art calendar project. I contributed an illustration last year and got some free calendars for it, so I can tell you they're good quality. She only charges the fee for their production, which is around $15. If you're so inclined, they're a great chance to pick up prints from several good artists at once!
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:icondreadedone131:
DreadedOne131 Featured By Owner Oct 30, 2013
"Clippty Clip and a Clippty Clop, he's lookin' fer a head to chop!" :P
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:iconnoneofakind:
Noneofakind Featured By Owner Mar 18, 2013  Student Photographer
badass
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:iconladyarah:
ladyarah Featured By Owner Oct 26, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
I just wanted to let you know that I put this in an art feature in my group :iconrealmsoffantasy-myth: , in the article "Realms of Fantasy and Myth: Week 46 - Dullahan" You can find it here: [link]
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:iconbluesrat:
Bluesrat Featured By Owner Nov 20, 2012
Hi! Thank you so much! That's really fantastic of you.

I got distracted for a while and missed the request to add this to your gallery. It unfortunately had expired before I could respond to it (do they do that faster than they used to? It hasn't even been a month!). If you would still like to add it, I'd be happy to authorize! If it's a hassle, then no worries. :) I very much appreciate the attention, not to mention the link to so much absolutely gorgeous art!
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:iconladyarah:
ladyarah Featured By Owner Nov 22, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
My pleasure!! And no worries, I just sent another request for it. I'm REALLY upset that they changed the window to submit (I know it wasn't that short before, I would have submissions from later than that). There's nothing in the group settings that will tell me if someone rejects the offer versus it timing out, so I can't just go back and re-submit for them. Oh, well.

I'm sending a member request too, in case you'd like to join ^_^
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:icondarthwill3:
DarthWill3 Featured By Owner Jun 3, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Very awesome!
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:iconjigsaw3d:
jigsaw3d Featured By Owner Oct 12, 2011
i love that color =D
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:icontsiki10:
Tsiki10 Featured By Owner Jul 24, 2010  Hobbyist General Artist
This is really cooool. :D
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:iconbluesrat:
Bluesrat Featured By Owner Sep 6, 2010
Awwww, thank you!
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:icontsiki10:
Tsiki10 Featured By Owner Sep 7, 2010  Hobbyist General Artist
Np, ^^
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:iconparkins73:
parkins73 Featured By Owner Oct 6, 2009  Hobbyist Photographer
I have to say this is one of the absolute best renderings I have ever seen. :thumbsup:
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:iconbluesrat:
Bluesrat Featured By Owner Oct 7, 2009
Wow, thank you!
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:iconparkins73:
parkins73 Featured By Owner Oct 7, 2009  Hobbyist Photographer
You are very welcome! ♥
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:iconparkins73:
parkins73 Featured By Owner Oct 6, 2009  Hobbyist Photographer
I have to say this is one of the absolute best renderings I have ever seen. :thumbsup:
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:iconmadartiste:
Madartiste Featured By Owner Oct 26, 2008
You know, he looks almost exactly as I imagined him. I'm glad you guys liked him so much -- since you've not seen the last of him! Bwah hah hah! :D
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:iconbluesrat:
Bluesrat Featured By Owner Oct 27, 2008
YAY!
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:iconearthboundsatyr:
EarthboundSatyr Featured By Owner Oct 24, 2008  Professional Digital Artist
I llike it, especially your choice of color pallet. :)
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:iconbluesrat:
Bluesrat Featured By Owner Oct 27, 2008
Thanks! After I posted it, I was like, "Gee, is that *too much* evil green?" But you have to commit, you know? XD
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:iconearthboundsatyr:
EarthboundSatyr Featured By Owner Oct 27, 2008  Professional Digital Artist
:D
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:iconcelticwolfwalker:
CelticWolfwalker Featured By Owner Aug 23, 2008  Hobbyist General Artist
Very cool piece! Even if it did take a year to do, sometimes those turn out the best. Yes, the evil green is the best for super evil stuff.
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:icontearra:
tearra Featured By Owner Aug 22, 2008
WOW! .... WOW! How did you do that? How'd you get those effects!? Wow! That is so awesome!
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:iconbluesrat:
Bluesrat Featured By Owner Aug 22, 2008
Thank you!

Actually, it was surprisingly easy and low-tech. It's the work of a bright apple-green fuzzy-edged brush on low to medium opacity. To get the spooky translucent glow, you go over interiors once and edges repeatedly--the brighter edges make the interiors look translucent by comparison. Also only paint the stuff you want to stand out. Shadows should stay dark, and areas of low light intensity should stay dark, too, to get a look like it's emerging from darkness--such as on the horse's back legs and torso.

I admit I cheated on the weird effect on his sword. That was the Liquify filter. :D
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:icontearra:
tearra Featured By Owner Aug 22, 2008
I actually understood most of that. Cool.

*looks closely at picture* Hey, I see what you mean. That's pretty neat. I'll have to keep that in mind if I ever need to try something like that, though my coloring's still pretty basic.
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:iconjagash:
Jagash Featured By Owner Aug 22, 2008  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Gratz, it looks good. Question though, is the light source the grey at about the top left?
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:iconbluesrat:
Bluesrat Featured By Owner Aug 22, 2008
Yeah, I was originally going for a moon-bathed misty glow on the more substantial bits, with the evil green glow from the horse . I sort of re-thought that later, but by then I had already merged that layer into the main one, so I was kind of stuck with it. I still can't decide what I think of it. What do you think?
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:iconjagash:
Jagash Featured By Owner Aug 22, 2008  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I have an eye for colour/shade + lighting and noticed a few little inconsistencies such as the coat on the left thigh which _might_ be in the shadow of the cloak. Don't know, for some reason the lighting seemed slightly dissonant to my eye, though the composition itself and technical skill in production was superb.
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:iconbluesrat:
Bluesrat Featured By Owner Aug 22, 2008
Aha, yes! I see it now.

Or, no wait, I mean he's a ghost, he doesn't *have* to obey the laws of physics! :D
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:iconjagash:
Jagash Featured By Owner Aug 22, 2008  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Cool, I need to paint some wraiths. Moliate for the win.
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:iconmurasaki99:
Murasaki99 Featured By Owner Aug 21, 2008  Student Traditional Artist
Woo! Green evil glow for the win!! :w00t!: Well done indeed! I've only just started doing a few fully-digital pieces, so I know how much work goes into them. :boing:
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:iconbluesrat:
Bluesrat Featured By Owner Aug 22, 2008
Yay for evil green glow! I admit I kind of wondered if I hadn't gone overboard with it somewhat...but what the heck, you have to commit to your art, right? :D
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:iconmurasaki99:
Murasaki99 Featured By Owner Aug 22, 2008  Student Traditional Artist
The Cryx would definitely believe you have to not only commit to your art, but put your SOUL into it! :omfg:

It looks uber-cool! :D
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:iconbluesrat:
Bluesrat Featured By Owner Aug 22, 2008
Well, they'd probably rather put your soul into their art, but it's really all about the sacrifice, right? :D
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:iconmurasaki99:
Murasaki99 Featured By Owner Aug 22, 2008  Student Traditional Artist
Definitely!! :skullbones: :)
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August 21, 2008
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