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The Painted Skin

A strange tale of a scholar falling in love with a fair maiden. However, she is in fact a demon who wears flayed skin of a beautiful woman lurking in the dark, trying to lure men into eating their hearts for longevity.

This is an assignment for my character design class in 2022 inspired by The Painted Skin, a classic short story from Strange Tales from a Chinese Studio in 1740. I created 3 original characters with the lineup and a book cover, along with step-by-step process work.

Below is my step-by-step work process for the character lineup and book cover.

Character design and Lineup

Below are the 3 characters, the fair maiden, the demon, and the young scholar I designed with various body shapes and personalities, from sketches, and lineart to the final fully-colored character lineup.

The Fair Maiden Sketches

The Fair Maiden sketches

The Young Scholar sketches

The Young Scholar sketches

The Demon sketches

The Demon sketches

Rough Sketch

Rough Sketch

Clean Lineart

Clean Lineart

Tight Sketch

Tight Sketch

Flat Colors

Flat Colors

Final Character Lineup

Final Character Lineup

Book Cover Art

I have always wanted to illustrate concept art or book cover for iconic and classic Chinese Literature stories like this. Below are the step-by-step process work for the book cover, from thumbnails, rough and tight sketches, value and color comps, lineart to the final art.

Thumbnails

Thumbnails

Value Comps

Value Comps

Rough Sketch

Rough Sketch

Color Comps

Color Comps

Clean Lineart

Clean Lineart

Flat Colors

Flat Colors

Final Art Without Text

Final Art Without Text

Final Art

Final Art

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