Process for 'Song of Madness'

Hello everyone! 

I thought you might like to see a process gif I put together for 'Song of Madness' :)


Here's some reference/inspiration for the piece, and a couple of sketches that I ditched in lieu of a more intimate angle (though I still like the ideas and may use them later on for something else):


The challenge here was communicating the impact of sound using visuals only. The figure is clutching her head/ears in both preliminary sketches, in the left sketch the world, along with the victim, is basically falling apart - descending into chaos/madness. In the right there are spell particles and a flock of frightened bats taking flight in response to the noise. Flying debris would be present in both.

I ended up ditching these ideas, choosing a more close-up perspective (to perhaps enhance the feeling of claustrophobia or inescapability) and painting the spell aggressively whirling around the subject in the form of purple wisps with screaming little skulls.

It was a fun exercise, and definitely got me thinking about how to illustrate a non-visual concept.


And the finished painting:

Thanks for reading!