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I’ve been thinking of doing a photorealistic portrait series of favorite female characters from my childhood, and this is the first official installment. The Little Mermaid was the first time I remember sitting in a cinema and wanting to hurry home so I could start copying the vibrant Disney style I saw onscreen. I think I was 9 years old at the time.

I’m particularly proud of the facial features and the hair work on this one. The look is still pretty referential but as I get more confident I’ll probably start reintroducing a more stylized vibe. I’ve found that I improve faster by repeatedly rendering the “basics” before moving on to a less figurative mode.

As always, this was rendered completely using Procreate on an iPad Pro, with the aid of the truly excellent Paperlike screen protector. I’ve experimented a bit with custom brushes while working on this, particularly for the hair, but found that the stock stuff was perfectly reasonable for the effects I wanted. The whole thing took a little over 12 hours to paint, over a period of 10 days. Like most of my work I vacillated quite a bit during the final 10%, so some of those 12 hours were likely spent just staring at the canvas.

PS. In case you’re wondering why I’ve gone quiet on the crypto front it’s because I’ve been working on a big project for CoinMarketCap’s The Capital conference in Singapore in November. If you’re around, please give me a holler! © 2024. All Rights Reserved