Hope you enjoyed yesterday's short and sweet and all around silly presentation of Dratini! Today on Pokemon day, I have concocted an illustration of the ever graceful Dragonair in most detailed fashion in high contrast to its predecessor! In this interpretation, we have some sort of decorative trinket that we should waste no time investigating...Let's begin!
Dragonair has always exuded beauty, charm, grace, and serenity. It is a creature that turns the baby fat of Dratini into something exuberant in a form that is slender and flowing. It is also a dragon, a typing that is only explored at the end of the dex of this Kanto generation of Pokemon. With these thoughts in mind, I planned for a way present Dragonair in a manner both elegant and powerful in its aesthetic appeal.
One of my favorite go-to directions for this series has been creating works of art that seemingly exist and come out of the fictional Pokemon world and lore I am working from. I take that route once more here for Dragonair - this work was created as if it were a trinket or relic of an older culture of the world that might be found in the museum or a family heirloom of sorts.
It can be whatever you want in your mind - a chakram, jewelry, a ring, a bracelet, earrings, whatever! I personally see it as some sort of disc weapon that is mounted on a wall. Nothing large, perhaps the size of a dinner plate.
Or maybe it could be a prop on Pokemon x Game of Thrones :)
With Dragonair being a creature closely related to the weather, could people of yesteryear pray or channel their wishes for rain to this decorative idol of sorts? It was thoughts like this that had me excited on working on the piece. The actual origin of this work can be traced to Ouroboros, (my FMA fanboys and fangirls may have an idea of what it is) and rather than making Dragonair eat its own tail, I decided to keep the circular appearance that depicts snakes or dragons be a base to extend the groundwork into something I could call my own.
By the way, here's an early concept draft of Dragonair I did before starting work on the winning rendition:
I could have finished it up and it would of been a nice enough piece of work, but it didn't really offer anything to the series in terms of expanding styles to the challenge and portfolio of One a Day.
So yeah, back to the work-
I treated the edges almost like a weapon, having them appear metallic and blade like, akin to Xena's weapon in that TV show back in the day haha. The blue body is long and slender like that of Dragonair, and the sharpness of it all is homage to its powerful dragon type lineage. In between the circular shaping, which took quite a lot of revisions to get down, I found ways to incorporate the rest of the features of the pokemon - jewels in set for the orbs, the winged headpiece, and the horn. All of it is treated stylistically to mesh into one whole continuous piece.
I would have the head and the tail extend out evenly to create a balance to the spiraling shape, which I hope you will appreciate.
When things looked too simple, I ended up adding detailing the blue body that sort of pays homage to Tolkien's the One Ring. I kept the markings simple and followed a basic pattern to keep the flow steady. This work took a while but It was totally worth it. It was fun and had a long gestation period - It felt like I was going nowhere for a while in the middle but I'd figure everything out soon enough and have come to enjoy this work as a finished product.
So that'll wrap up today's illustration! Can you believe we're nearly at the end of this run? This week was the last full week of illustrations! I'm going to OD on the drafts for the work that's due for next week over this weekend because I have something big planned to go out with a bang next Wednesday for Mew. I usually rest up on the weekends but I need time on my side and I'll have to start preparations as early as tomorrow morning. I'm hyped to work on it so I don't really mind...But Dragonite, Mewtwo, and Mew to close it off? That's an epic line up and a bit intimidating...But it makes it all the more exciting for me.
Ladies and gents, thanks as always for your time! I'll see you Monday; have an awesome weekend, you hear?! Love and peace!
+ Pokemon One a Day is a series illustrated and curated by Bonny John in an effort to represent the the first generation of characters from the world wide phenomenon that is known as Pokemon. The idea is simple - to draw and share one new Pokemon a day (weekends off!) until every Pokemon from the set is completed. This project is an exploration of fine art styles for learning and leisurely purposes.
+Click here to visit my personal website! It'll direct you to my YouTube, FB, Twitter, DeviantART, and Tumblr pages!
P.S. Here's a WIP shot for yesterday's Dratini, for those who were asking:
The first concept I had was something really strange and sort of paper inspired. It was designed like a streamer or something - I have no idea what else to call it, and I really have no idea how I even came to scribble that out. Such is the power of a doodle.
It would also resemble Hitmonlee's style of illustration so I quickly backed away from it. Anyway, I was thinking about how I could illustrate a lengthy Pokemon and snakes and such shaped creatures are ever so limited...and what better way to give yourself options by cartooning it up? I immediately then thought of the Worms video game series as well as grafitti, and created a smushy body shape and flow for Dratini. With strong black outlines, the piece was really booming now.
The nail in the coffin was presenting the piece as a tiny little part of the canvas, mapped right into the middle. This will give you all of Dratini in one shot, and adds to the cuteness. One hit KO to your hearts.
And that's Dratini's story!
2 write ups in 1 day - a new Pokemon One a Day record! Okay, bye for real! Time to play Persona 4 Golden (just got it today! yahoo) before I slave away over the weekend.
All my love and good night/good morning,