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Adding to the Floating Heads

Not so much RAAAAR!, more 'Urrrr'.

Before beginning the art for the latest addition to the ongoing series of Bad Taste Bears 'Floating Heads', I decided to take progress scans.

This one started out as a take on the Frankenstein theme. I'd previously drawn out a version with beefy metal staples instead of stitches, but when it came to it, I realised he looked a bit sorry for himself.

I redrew him and added a grabby hand to break from the single blob composition. I was happier with this level of drama, so I transferred it to an A4 piece of watercolour board I'd previously painted black.

Phoshop 'rough'

To get some idea of how I wanted the final thing to look, I took my drawing into Photoshop and established form and lighting positions. One single white light from below and two 'out of frame' secondary and tertiary coloured lights.

First touches

Adding light

Adding secondary light and scar flesh


Final tweaks

My intention was to have either side of the facial scar a different fur colour to emphasis the Frankensteininess of the image. However, once I'd established the dramatic lighting, I realised that any difference would need to be quite strong to be noticeable, which might make the final image fussy, so I kept them the same.

The reaching hand is given slightly brighter highlights to place it 'nearer' to the viewer. Similarly, the head is subdued where it passes behind the hand to create depth.

I researched autopsy scars. The most impressive undulations in flesh had no visible stitching. It would've been fun to paint, but I didn't want him looking like a Cornish Pasty, so I opted for a 'juicier' style with black stitches.