Sunday, November 17, 2013

"Demon Skull" Illustration from "Dementia Magazine 1986

I've always been into skulls. Partly, I think, because of my love of monster and horror movies from a very early age, but also because they are easy to draw. In 1986, I found in opportunity to contribute some illustrations to a new horror anthology magazine called "Dementia". I don't recall how I found out about it, but was glad for the chance to get some of my weird drawings out there in the world. The publisher, Roger Reus, assigned me a story to do a drawing for, the title of which fails me, so I did the  piece and and few spec spot illustrations and sent it off and waited for the publication. My main story drawing was not used, but all of my spot drawings were and I even got a sizable ad for RELUCTANT SADIST on page 30 as trade for my efforts.

This "Demon Skull" drawing was inspired by the work of H.R. Giger of Alien fame and Roger and Martyn Dean of YES rock album covers. I am a child of the rock'n'roll, stoner culture of the 1970s and that psychedelic energy leaked into much of my work at that time. I did this drawing with a Pilot V5 ballpoint ink pen on bristol board. I don't recall how long it took, but I do know that I had fewer distractions back then (internets I am looking at you) and more patients. I have toyed with the idea of trying to sculpt this figure, but I cheated this drawing by making a flat version of the skull without apparent far side protrusions showing. I imagine he'd be symmetrical, so not too difficult to complete.

Here's the cover of that first and only issue of "Dementia" sporting a fabulous EC Comics looking drawing by "Allen K." of a zombie chowing down on some hapless citizen decades before it was cool or commercially mainstream.