After 161 HOURS of working on this piece for a commission, it is FINALLY FINISHED!
Persephone: The Goddess of Springtime journeys down into the Underworld w/ Hekate & Hermes, to visit her long-awaited beloved; Hades. Arriving at the gates of the Underworld, greeted by the Cerberus.
I wanted the entire piece to be one of my most surreal & ambitious artworks, while also infusing elements of horror. Letting classic body-horror films such as John Carpenter's The Thing or David Cronenberg's entire filmography inspire the artwork seen here, while blending it with Greek Mythology. I think I've accomplished exactly that & it's been a lot of fun. I hope you all enjoy!
Persephone: The Goddess of Springtime & Flowers
While sketching out concepts for Persephone, I felt like the possibilities were seemingly endless for where I could go with her design. A Greek goddess that is essentially mother nature herself while also being the soon-to-be bride of Hades, making her the Queen of the Underworld.
My drawings started in embracing her springtime goddess aesthetic & then gradually throughout the sketches gravitate more towards the idea of Persephone falling in love with death itself to become the Queen of the Damned. She was truly a lot of fun figuring out & crafting all these different appearances for one single character.
Hekate: The Witch-Goddess of Moon & Night
Sketching my interpretation of Hecate/Hekate (I've seen it spelt & pronounced so many different ways lol): the Greek Witch-Goddess of the Moon & Night.
For this concept I've sketched out here, the idea was to bring an element of body-horror into the realm of Greek mythology. Not necessarily "grounding her in reality," but to an extent introducing some of the laws of physics to her form while still being somewhat mystical. Thinking about how Hekate is essentially 3 bodies sharing one combined organic system, I came to the conclusion that there was only so much muscle mass, body fat, & skin to go around. So, because of that, not everything is always distributed evenly. As the 3 bodies are constantly fluctuating, morphing & molding together, body parts are ripping apart & splicing back together while their insides are also in a continuous flux.
To touch a little more on my mentality of Hecate's faces and wardrobe designs:
The first outfit, honestly, I wasn't sure what direction I wanted to go with at all. I took in some references, but ultimately had no clear angle to take this in. I had a multitude of ideas & wasn't entirely sure how to focus them. I don't like this design very much.
For the key necklace design, I felt like their outfits should be somewhat different & reflect their personalities. The one on the right is a younger more innocent/naive soul who sees the future; so therefore, she's more minimalistic in her coverings because she's not worried since she knows what's going to happen. The middle sees the present & therefore lives in the here & now. She's almost more primal & instinctive in her actions & her wardrobe is one that she wants to provoke others with. The left sees the past; she lives learning from the mistakes made by history & is more inclined to wear armor because she doesn't have sight of what is to come, she's cautious because of what has already happened.
Third outfit was bringing it back to a simple toga/robe/cloak shared amongst the 3 of them.
The final outfit is a combination of the 2nd & 3rd designs.
Hermes: The Trickster God of Travel
Believe it or not, Hermes took quite a lot of time figuring out. Even though I ultimately only came up with two character designs for this tricky God, there are dozens of other versions of this character that did not make the cut here & even his body was in somewhat different shape than seen here. For the first design, it was a pretty quick mockup, going for a simple classic Greek look. The second, on the other hand, was anything but "simple." Being heavily inspired by H.R. Giger to bring a very twisted take on Hermes, giving the impression that he was "made" rather than birthed.