Black★Rock Shooter (ブラック★ロックシューター) is a character created by Huke inspired from a song created by Supercell (featuring Hatsune Miku). The first time I saw the music video was a discovery on two fronts for me. I was just learning about Vocaloids and Hatsune Miku at the time. I also saw the artstyle of Huke for the first time, which I thought was very unique and inspiring (Huke @ deviantART).
Based on the feedback and popularity of the video, an OVA, anime, and game were created based on the character and her world. Despite the mediocre reviews both animated works have received, I thoroughly enjoyed watching it just to see more of his art in motion.
I was just getting back into art around the time the anime series came out. Seeing the series also reminded me of how much I liked the character as I picked up the BRS2035 figma as well. I’ll probably be picking up the PSP game when it comes out, thanks to NIS America. While I was watching the show, I decided to go ahead and sketch her up. I started the way I usually do, but this time I used SketchBook Pro to lay down the rough lines based on a suggestion from my friend Louie . I really did notice the difference using SketchBook as opposed to PS with regards to the feeling it had. That pencil tool is just awesome, imo. I could only imagine how much more I’d notice it if and/or when replace my graphire with an Intuos.
I based the pose loosely off of one GoodSmile used to advertise the figma I picked up recently, modifiying it accordingly for the anime version. I didn’t make her Rock Cannon as large because I felt that the size was a bit much, although definitely not as large as seen below. It does change size and shape in the show, so I decided to shrink it down a bit. I started the picture using the default DPI setting for PS, which was something low like 72 or something… I basically had to redraw the sketch to accomodate as I bumped it up to 300. I increased my canvas to 3000×3000 so I could get more details in as well. I was having a hard time with the shape and symmetry for the gun, as you might notice on the rough drafts. I was pondering whether or not I should utilize shape and line tools to make the object as geometrically accurate as possible, but I went against it and decided to keep it all by hand. (Translation: I was lazy.)
I wanted to mimic the art style of Huke with the textures and blending, but I didn’t think I could create anything that looks even nearly as nice as he could. I just mostly stuck with what was familiar and what I was used to. I went through several versions before I settled on the proportions and pose that I was okay with. I did a bit of experimenting with a few things on PS, mainly with regards to layer blending properties and such. I also used brushes with softer edges in a few areas to blend the shadowing and highlights. I was somewhat happy with how the glows ended up looking on her eye and the Rock Cannon. I also used a screen blend with some generated clouds to try to attain the look that it had in the animation.
I tried to create a background to accompany the image, but it proved to be quite a headache to get something that I was satisfied with. In the end, I decided to just go ahead and wrap it up. I honestly can’t say I’m fully satisfied with how it turned out. Finishing this has been more of a relief than any other work has been thus far. I would probably say the same for Death Devil Ritsu if I ever get around to finishing her because I’ve really been frustrated with that work as well. I’m not sure what it was that got to me during this. It could be because of my attempts at the background but I think it’s more that I want to move on to other things like doing a rendition of Hatsune Miku and Megurine Luka. I got sidetracked enough to do some sketches of them during this project.
So what’s next? I have some ridiculously infeasible desire to delve into an animation project based on the song “Palette” by Yuyoyuppe and meola featuring Megurine Luka. I could take the “easy” way out and learn some MMD (MikuMikuDance) but then it wouldn’t be animation, would it? I honestly don’t think I’m gonna take up this project because it would probably take a crazy amount of time to complete, let alone to learn how to do it. I’ll probably just settle with doing what I normally do, but I’ll have to put in a lot of thought with regards to the poses I’ll put them in. For Miku, I was thinking of some form of Snow Miku or having her dressed in winter attire, but I think I might just go with her standard outfit in the end. As for Luka, I’m just hooked on that song so much, so it’ll probably be something inspired from that song in some form or another. I’ve also had some random thoughts on perhaps doing Yozora Mikazuki from Boku wa Tomodachi ga Sukanai, an Etro version of Lightning from FFXIII-2, or some rendition of the maniacal Kefka from FFVI. I’ve also wanted to do Sheryl from Macross Frontier for the longest time, but my first version of her on my sketchpad didn’t turn out that well.
Well, until the next blog post or art work, laters.
( ﾟωﾟ )