Friday, 25 January 2013

Heavy boots of lead...

Yay! The line-up is now complete with: Iron Man.
Again, focusing on one core element of the character - in this case, the life-support suit - I redesigned Tony in the following way.


I've always been somewhat perplexed by Tony's decision to always highlight the very thing keeping him alive - his arc reactor chestpiece - by making it all see-through and glowy. Wouldn't anyone with the slightest bit of knowledge about Tony and his condition aim a dirty big laser gun straight it and blast it to bits? I love Iron Man, but I also find it difficult to make the 'magnet in my heart' to 'powered laser blasting robot suit' jump. So, as you can guess I changed a few things.
In my head, Tony didn't get shrapnel lodged in his heart, but in his spine, effectively paralyzing the bottom half of his body and severely limiting the movement of his chest and arms. While in captivity, instead of building an arc reactor to power a magnet, he'd use it to power a crude but highly powerful body brace, capable of moving his body for him, as well as granting him super-human strength (this kind of thing is not that far from reality). Having returned home, I imagine he'd develope
 some kind of nanite technology to cure his paralysis more effectively, but work on the robotic exoskeleton suit, incorporating booster rockets, repulsors, etc. 

So that's it, my redesigned Avengers are complete! Here's a group shot. Now, to submit these all off to Project: Rooftop (my hopes shall never dwindle). Thanks for reading! 
TF



Thursday, 24 January 2013

Raaargh! Hulk is Hulk's own night-light!

Several years ago, I was working on my Liceo Matriculation Thesis (sounds a lot more pompous than it actually was). We could choose any theme we wanted and somehow work it into a cross-discipline discussion (science, history, literature, art, philosophy, etc.) My theme, as you can probably guess, was superheroes! For the science part, I purchased a cracking good book, The Science of Superheroes, by Lois H. Gresh and Robert Weinberg. It's a really interesting read for any comic book and science fan. Aside from the chapter on Spider-man another chapter that stuck in my mind was that on the Hulk.


The authors do away with the crazy origin-by-gamma rays and hypothesis a very different sort of Hulk. In the book, they imagine Bruce Banner creating a form of artificial super-steroid which he ill-advisedly uses on himself. The steroid pumps him up into a 940 pound, seven-foot tall behemoth, but also leads the irreversible loss of all his hair, violent mood swings and increasingly aggressive and dull-witted behaviour. During one of his steroid-trip rages, Bruce decides to tamper with his genes, mixing his own DNA with GFP (green fluorescent protein), which leads to him glowing bright green every time he gets angry. I liked their version so much, that I had to use for my Hulk redesign. All I added were some sensor/drips which inject the super-glowy-steroids in controlled doses so that Bruce could have greater control over his transformations, as well as some highly-durable armoured shorts. Because... well you get the idea.
Let me know what you think! Thanks,
TF

Wednesday, 23 January 2013

Capn' 'Murica!

Here's the next Avenger in my redesigned line-up: Captain America!
Now I have done a Cap redesign before, for a previous P:R fan-art friday. But as I'm doing an Avengers team redesign, and I can't imagine the team without some form of Cap in it, I thought I'd revisit it and tweak it.


Here again, I'm focusing on one core element of the character: in this case, Cap as a patriotic symbol.
I wanted him to be more of a faceless national mascot: let's say in my continuity Steve survived being frozen for 70 odd years, but was horribly disfigured as a result. He's either really scarred or literally rotting away, depending on your own creepy imaginations. Thus the full face mask. He's not really a person anymore, but more like a living flag or crest: I removed the 'A' and tried to make his costume look as much like he's wrapped in the star-spangled banner as possible.
Plus, I figured the 'heroic on the outside, scarred on the inside' angle might work well as a metaphor on any form of nationalism/patriotism: it looks grand and makes you feel nice, but often hides something dark and scary just below the surface.

So there you have it! All feedback welcome.
Thanks for reading,
TF

Tuesday, 22 January 2013

Ant-man and Wasp

Hey all,
Seeing as my Thor redesign seems to have gone down well (thanks for all the comments!) I decided to go all out and do a whole Avengers line-up. Once the group is completed (as Randy suggested) I'll put them all up against a background in a group pic to highlight their silhouettes. I've also got some hopefully interesting ideas rattling around for Hulk, Iron Man and Captain America... but first things first. Here are the next two Avengers in my redesigned line-up Ant-man and Wasp.



I really focused on the core of Thor's character as a Thunder God, and decided to turn him into living lightning. I had thought of doing the same with Hank and Janet, but it got a tad too Spider-man / Cronenberg's The Fly for my liking. So, remembering that these two are more than just their insect-themed names and costumes, I switched to what is perhaps their most important characteristic: their size-shanging powers.
The idea with these suits is that they're supposed to monitor and maintain the wearer's vitals during the molecular/cellular stress of shrinking/growing; hence the bulky, technological and padded look. The helmets would provide oxygen and pain-relief, as well as incorporating two-way communication and pheromone excretion for insect communication. The Pym formula capsules are stored in a rotating compartment on the belt, which I envisioned as working a lot like Spidey's web-shooters.
I also imagined Hank creating his suit first, without any particular animal theme in mind, and then modifying it to be more ant-like (adding antennae and mandible-like tubing on the helmet) to match Janet's more overtly waspish uniform. The spikes on her gauntlets and feet are retractable blades than can be charged electrically (her stingers) and her wings fold away into a compartment on her back.

And there you have it! Please let me know what you think in the comment box and stay tuned for more redesigned Avengers soon :) Thanks for reading!

TF

Saturday, 19 January 2013

Thoredesigned

Hey, Project: Rooftop are doing another Fan-art Friday!
Considering my track record - my fan-art redesigns have successfully made it on to their site every time I've submitted for such an event - I decided to have another go.
This time, as you'll have seen in the link, the subject is Thor.


As usual, I've taken this as an opportunity to re-imagine the Odinson as much as redesign his costume. I always fancied the concept of Thor being less human-looking, and much more otherworldly. As someone who is mistaken for a god of thunder here on Earth, I thought it'd be cool if the Asgardians were all beings made up of pure energy. My Thor would essentially be a living lightning bolt, who assumes a humanoid form when visiting Earth. I didn't want to make his outfit overtly nordic, and tried to put in a lot of different cultures' design elements, suggesting that maybe even Zeus,  Raijin and other Thunder God figures in mythology were more or less inspired by him.
So there you have it. As usual, please feel free to post a comment in the box below (seriously do it, these masked men are getting awfully pushy!).
Thanks for reading,
TF

Tuesday, 15 January 2013

Friday, 4 January 2013

Redesign: The Teen Titans

For the first post of this new year (6.5 billion and 13) I decided to try something special.
I remember being hooked on Cartoon Network's show, Teen Titans which, despite its anime-esque animation style, really appealed to me. I liked the characters and their personalities and even enjoyed a little light shipping (BB + R 4 eva).
Therefore, as a tribute to the show, and an excuse to draw something in this new swirly style to send off to Project Rooftop in the vain hopes that they might actually like it this time... here are my redesigned Teen Titans.



With Robin I wanted to try several things. Firstly, get rid of that godforsaken 'R' logo which I have hated since as long as I can remember. I have never understood why the sidekick to somebody like Batman would resort to actually attaching their initial to their chest. I'm just glad that when he became Nightwing (and when Tim Drake became Red Robin) they ditched the letters for symbols. Second, really drive home the animal theme. Batman actually looked vaguely like a bat. Robin should, therefore, look vaguely like a bird. Thus, the beaky helmet, red-breast tunic, feathered cape and clawed boots. I gave him the batons and red section on the chest to make this outfit look like a transitionary piece, between the original Robin outfit and the Nightwing look. This is Dick starting to grow up and step out of Batman's shadow, becoming the leader of the Teen Titans. 
Beast Boy was always my favourite character on the show (he could change into animals and was a vegetarian!). I like the comic book version too, but I have nonetheless been a bit skeptical about such a power. If you wanted to stick to his original power-set, this is Beast Boy goofing off at the camera by morphing several different parts of his body at once. However, if I had the chance the write the character, I'd change his power-set from actual shape-shifting, into something a tad more plausible. In my mind, this Beast Boy's DNA was merged as a child with that of several other animals, so as to grant him as many of their unique abilities as possible (strength, speed, night vision, poison fangs, tail, heightened senses, etc.) In other words, his freakish appearance is permanent, but he now possesses every single animal ability he could ever need at once: he's a sort of super-beast. 

This is essentially the same Starfire redesign I did last time, with a few tweaks. I changed her outfit into something more alien, and made her feet a little less weird-looking. I kept the feline look as I was really fascinated to learn that Tamaranians are supposedly descended from a cat-like race. 
Again, if you stick to the comics, those green halos around her hands are her starbolts firing up. However, in my re-imagining, the energy actually comes from those jeweled rings she's wearing on each finger: I imagined they were a piece of highly advanced technology from her home world, which were handed down to only those of royal blood. As a princess, Kori gets to use them to go zappy zappy boom boom on Earth with her friends.

I didn't change too much with Raven, at least not outfit and colour-wise. I added the longer boots, dress and gloves - and more noticeably the inscribed bandages - to capture her more introverted side. As the daughter of a transdimensional demon, I always figured Raven as the most powerful of the team, who had to work tremendously hard to contain all that raw energy. I don't see her as the snarky and grumpy goth she was on the show, but more as a shy and quiet soul, who only uses her powers when absolutely necessary. Thus I borrowed a little from Doom Patrol's Negative Man design and wrapped her in magic bandages, to symbolise that attempt at control and repression. Underneath, she's not that different from some Lovecraftian Black Hole of Terror, who has wrapped herself up to look more human. 

Finally Cyborg. I decided to go for less of a Robocop 'more machine than man' route, and instead leave a little more of Victor Stone visible. I wanted to emphasise his torn nature as a former athlete who is partially reconstructed with hardware, by putting most of the robotic components in the lower half of his body. In my re-imagining, Vic used to be a fantastic runner, and the loss of his real legs would have thus dealt a particularly painful blow. His new robotic legs are inspired by real-life prosthesis, as used by several para-olympians, only augmented. The plate on his chest functions as a replacement for his lung and part of his heart, helping him conserve energy for much longer periods of time. His new eye possesses thermal, microscopic, telescopic, night and x-ray vision, and his robotic hand can transform into a high-powered railgun. This version of Cyborg usually tries to stay out of the heat of battle, but I imagine he has some kind of nanite solution that can grow a layer of strong dermal armour all over the human part of his body, just in case.

That's all :) Let me know what you think in the comments down below!
Thanks for reading,
TF