Protectors of the Realm 2 – Naga

Personal – Naga
I was inspired by the Harajuku Girls dance crew who toured with Gwen Stefani a few years ago and wanted to create a character who was cool and strong at the same time. That fit well into my Protectors of the Realm series.

I did the preliminary work on the iPad right up to the point I started to run into problems with the low resolution (about A5 at 300ppi). I then moved to Photoshop for the finish. Recently, I extended the image just a bit to make it more postcard-friendly and added the tattoos. I had planned to add tattoos from the beginning but left them out of the original version because the crop didn't leave much of them visible. The extended version has a lot more room, so I put them back in.

Naga – Work process

Towards Freedom

Maailman Kuvalehti – Vapaaksi
Maailman Kuvalehti gave me the task of illustrating an article about the struggle of Isoke Aikpitanyi out of forced prostitution for their 5th issue of 2013. She was smuggled from Nigeria to Europe with false promises of easy work. After two years she found a way out and became a fierce anti human trafficking activist. She is still helping people in the same situation she used to be in.

Because the article was very narrative, I approached it as I were illustrating a short story. The three images were a "cover" and two key moments in the story. The images were painted entirely in Photoshop.

You can find the original article on Maailman Kuvalehti's webpage (in Finnish).

Maailman Kuvalehti – Vapaaksi

Lady Sovereign

Personal – Lady Sovereign
This was basically an excercise in depicting aged skin. The iPad and its low resolution do show a bit but I'm pretty happy in it as a 3,5 h study.

I love texture and especially working it into the image by hand, not just by loading up a photo, warping it and setting it to soft light. I do use that technique too, but it's not as enjoyable as just painting it in, bit by bit.