Years ago I purchased some reference photos from Jason Morgan’s website. There is one black panther photo I really like. But it takes me almost 2 years to finally have the confidence to actually paint it.
When I look at the photo, I have this scene in my mind. A beautiful big black cat roams at night to keep its territory under watched. It also protects all creatures on its territory away from evil. The black panther is not alone. It belongs to a secret underworld association, night watcher. They all have a little piece of accessories on their body. And this black panther has feather earrings. The moon is bright, the clouds is heavy. The black panther is quiet. It shall have some magic power to fight the evil enemies. It comes and goes on its own, leaving its shadow behind.
So I gathered all reference photos I need such as moon, clouds and thorn. I put them together in PS and play around. Then I drew a very general digital concept picture.
At this point I didn’t know how would I finish this because I hadn’t figure out all details yet. But I knew I had to push myself forward. So I started painting. It didn’t go well at the beginning. The panther itself was straightforward but the background really took me a lot effort. I painted the clouds and thorn back and forth because I didn’t know how realistic I wanted to go. Maybe I should go completely realistic? Or should I keep it a little impressionist looking? After struggling for weeks I finally came to a point that I could accept it and needed to stop.
Here is the result.
It is not perfect but that is what I can get so far. I am just glad that I push through the process. In the future when I can paint more fantasy paintings, I would always look back at this piece and the glowing mushrooms one. These two are the corner stones of my mythical beasts art dream. ^_^
I hope you enjoy this one too.
It is almost the end of year 2020, I hope everyone is doing well and stay safe. Just hang in there a little bit more. Everything will be OK.