I'm really feeling it!

Performing today...Poliwag! Pokemon One a Day!

The Tadpole Pokemon

Water Type

Today we take a look at a Poliwag, PoliSWAG, the Pokemon with the- hey guys? Wait, come back! It was a joke! Please come back and read the rest of this! Guys? GUYS!!!

(Oh, and case you missed Arcanine, he's right here. I posted him late on the due date but he was still submitted on time, thus keeping my combo streak of drawing and posting alive!)


Okay, yeah, it's horrible joke but it had to be done. And its now out of the way so we can focus on the important stuff! So, Poliwag the tadpole is a cutey patootie baby in its line of evolution, so with my rendition I decided to go back into the realm of realism with a new direction in brushwork. It'd been a while since I explored a realistic rendition, not playing it up with something cartoony like Primeape but something that looks real while translating the original aeshetic design into the work. Another that comes to mind was Pidgey, which I illustrated and rendered in a very loose textured manner.

I had first started off a draft of Poliwag in its original cartoony form, but I found it to be incredibly dull and uninspired. The only change I had made to it was a longer tale as a nod to real tadpoles. I tried my best to come up with an interesting coloring style but I came up with nothing. I then began to play around with a few drafts that continued to fuse cartoon with reality until I decided I may as well go as far as I could with a realistic interpretation while keeping key features in tact.


The key features were the tail (which the real form already has) the pink lips, and obviously the swirly belly that the series of Pokemon is known for. In case you didn't know, the swirls are actually the internal organs (intestines) of the Pokemon. Kinda gross...mostly kinda cool. Thus, I made the swirls a color of something more fleshy. I tried to add a nice sheen to the body to make it look slippery and wet, and added some texture marks in accordance with a few reference shots I looked up for pose and general anatomy of a tadpole. Speaking of which, in the Pokedex it tells that Poliwag's legs are still very underdeveloped so I made my little fella's legs appear small and frail as well, which again are a natural nod to real world tadpoles.


And that leaves us with one Poliwag with a penchant for realism. At least to the extent I am currently capable. Don't tell anyone, but I think Poliwag is super adorable - alway have and so I made sure to make a creature like this could be ~kawaiiiiii~ in this light as well.


+ 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.


+ Links to my YouTube, FB, Twitter, DeviantART, and Tumblr canbe found on my official website

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