Iemanjá/Yemoja

iemanja_final

Hi everyone,

Here is a new work I did.
This is Iemanjá/Yemoja, one of the main orishas of the afro-brazilian and yoruba religions. I wanted to show a different version of her, inspired by the shapes and powers of the sea. I did this image for the wonderful “Contos de Òrun Àiyé”, a comic book project by Hugo Canuto. More details about it here (portuguese only).

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I did a good research, learning some important aspects of her: she is a mother, queen of the sea, sometimes called and depicted as a mermaid. Symbols: the waning moon, starfish, waves, pearls.

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I ended up with the mermaid version, since in my opinion it was more primal and symbolic and had a good balance between power and beauty with a unique shape and silhouette.

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The final design is made to enhance the mother characteristics: big belly and breasts, the body paint of the womb (she gave birth to almost all deities). You can see my exploration and final design of the fan/mirror.

And here is a little making of.

Orixás – Oxalá

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The main, more realistic version

This is my take on Oxalá / Oxalufã / Obatalá, one of the main deities of the Candomblé and Umbanda brazilian religions.

I have always been fascinated by the intricacies of the great Orixá pantheon, with so many unique characters.
I decided to start studying and getting deeper into the legends, beliefs and rich stories to portray each Orixá / Orisha.

Oxalá / Obatalá is one of the oldest and most powerful orixás, being responsible for the birth of human beings and the creation of the world. Its color is white and it carries a wooden scepter called opaxorô, which it can use to divide the world in two, if needed.

I went for a more african design, since the original beliefs came from the yoruba people of Africa. The crown is based on the nigerian yoruba crown, or ade / adenla. I decided to make the beads longer to represent power and mystery.

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An alternative version, trying a cartoon style

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Another quick alternative version, going for more details in the dress and beads

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I first start with pencil sketches, exploring different ideas

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Then I went to 3ds Max to quickly model the character to help with 2D

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The beauty pass + ambient occlusion

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I decided to go back to pencil drawings to help with the pose and overall design. This is how I came up with the crown

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Starting to integrate things and doing a paintover

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The ornaments I did for the main design. Some I didn’t end up using

Brazilian Bestiary – Saci

 

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I decided to do this image to celebrate the Folklore Day here in Brazil (Dia do Folclore), which happens 22/08.
I chose the popular Saci character and put a bit of twist to it.

The Saci, or Saci-Pererê, is said to be some kind of one-legged trickster and malevolent spirit represented by a black boy with a magical red cap.

The Saci is often times depicted with a pipe, since he is very fond of tobacco, which you can use to bargain things with it.
He is said to trick people into many bad situations, stealing things, making confusions sometimes harmful and fatal.

Saci is also the name of a bird said by some indigenous people to be magical. The Saci (Tapera naevia) is said to inhabit ruins and sings incessantly a melancholic tune, but is never found. Some said it houses dead spirits. It is also said the bird rests with one leg.

So for my design I decided to make a bit of a mixture between the boy and the bird, hence the feathers and scales.

 

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I first start with quick thumbnails

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Then I choose the best ones and start with the line art

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Proceeding to the color and volumes

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The four chosen ones with different designs

 

Old King

One of these days I had a nightmare.

I was walking inside an empty house, with wooden floors and walls, in what was probably a sunset.

Then, suddenly, a tall, bald old man appears in front of me, wearing a white robe of some kind.

He starts walking towards me and changes his face to a horrible expression, with bulged, bloody eyes and an animal-like mouth, dripping. Suddenly I know he wants to suck my brain and I get the hell out of that nightmarish place running.

And the weirdest of all is that I know who he is. He is called “Old King”.

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