The Superpower Pokemon
What if our world of fine art and culture crossed over into the Pokemon world? The answer is found in today's illustration, featuring
Michelangelo's Bonny's Machoke!
So, the last time I illustrated another form of art for the rendition of a Pokemon, it was for Arcanine who was based off of several "lion dog" family of statues. I had wondered whether or not I should take it in the direction of coloring to make it look made of stone or give it the original color scheme, and went with the latter. For today's work, I decided to make the piece mimic it's original, in a form that looks like a statue from a Pokemon museum. This is relevant because Machoke (and the rest of the family) are depicted in a wide range of colors, from purples, blues, to seafoam green like colors, while some descriptions read that he has grey skin.
The piece is rather straight forward - Machoke is in the same exact pose as David, the figure and title of the masterpiece by Michelangelo. The changes I made lie in the proportions in the muscles and, uh, the face, if you couldn't tell. It should be known that life drawing, and drawing anatomy from works of old and live models are among my most favorite means of practicing and honing my skills, and it's fun to boot. I think all the practice of my life drawing class and practice after paid off as seen in my work in progress shots, as I got down the contour relatively accurately and quickly in comparison to a few years ago when I started.
Machoke is largely humanoid except for his head and skin tone. Because Michelangelo's David is already elongated and carries a unique shape compared to the average person, I made some alterations to fit Machoke's body type. Machoke is definitely thicker and squattier, with just his pecs sticking out on his chest with a very short abdomen, usually covered by his belt and undergarment. I added the undergarments to Machoke based off of David to keep it PG-13 and to pay homage to the original design, which I always make fun of because of how specific it is when it comes to a Pokemon design. Machop evolves into a Pokemon with a speedo with a gold belt with the letter P. The power of nature and evolution protects our eyes!
I made the arms thicker and the chest larger and more pronounced. Machoke's legs here are shorter and wider, and the base of the original marble statue remained the same for the most part. I'm very proud of this work and had so much fun working on it - this is a piece that I spent a lot of time on and I hope it shows. This whole process also reminds me how much I miss my life drawing class and that I should focus on doing more drawings and sketches on anatomy and models for practice. I've been getting tons of creative and cartoony practice from this series, so it's time to balance it out!
+ 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.