Thursday, January 13, 2011

Inspiration Thursday!

Welcome back to my new and consistently updated artblog!

Today is Thursday, which means I'll be pulling something out of my magic art bag that relates to something that's been influencing me. This week it's Egypt again. In the past few months on this blog I've done a handful of Egypt works- a drawing from a photo here, a comic illustration there- but this week I'm trying something a little different.


There's a lot of gods in the Ancient Egyptian pantheon. Many of the anthropomorphic (mixed human and animal) are known and referenced still to this day. These include Horus (half falcon), Anubis (half jackal) and Bast (half cat). The image of men and women with animal heads is very striking, still. I drew a couple of them when I did my comic on Hatchepsut a few years ago. (My favorite might've been Hathor, half woman/half cow)

Some are a little less... inspired.


Take for example our (half) man, Kheperi. Kheperi is the god of rebirth, the sunrise and a couple other random bits. I don't think that he would have caught my eye, except for the fact that he's half Scarab Beetle. Actually no, that's not it. Let me clarify.

Scarab Beetles were sacred to the Egyptians; their young grow and then are born and emerge from a ball of dung that the scarab beetles pushes around town, and this seemed to the Egyptians to be 'rebirth' in action. That's all par for the course with Ancient Egypt.

What's interesting about Kheperi is how he was portrayed. If an Egyptian god or goddess were human, their specific attribute was held or rested on their head (see Isis or Maat) If an Egypt deity were half animal, it was the head of the animal (see my favorites Anubis and Sekmet) In my artistic opinion, the ball was dropped when they got to Kheperi. Check this out:

That's right, they just straight stood a Scarab Beetle on his neck! It's hilarious; it reminds me of the black bars that are used to protect someone's identity. I knew that there had to be a better way to approach this.


And now we're going to continue this tomorrow. I worked out a sketch on how I thought Khepri should look, and started to work out a sketch. However, I was having too much fun with it and started to actually really draw the thing. You'll have to take my word for it right now that it's looking pretty awesome.

I'll see you back here tomorrow for part two!

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