These are some sketches I did for the Crimson Fist, a real-life "good guy" who dresses as a super-hero and does things like distributing care packages to the homeless. He contacted me about doing an illustration for him, but first we had to decided on a costume design. My favorite is the first one. It has a modern movie hero look, since it's based on motorcycle leathers -- just like the movie versions of Daredevil and the X-Men. I went into "anime" territory with the hair, to keep if from looking too aggressive. But the Crimson Fist preferred the second sketch, which has more of a classic comic hero look. In both cases, I designed them so they could be easily replicated as actual real-life costumes. And as it turns out, the Crimson Fist might have his favorite design made into a costume for himself! That'd be very cool.
I'm really happy with both of these. And I'm especially happy with how the style of them turned out. It's my first time experimenting with the combo of a fine-line pen and a heavy brush, and I think it gives my work a nice earthy, gritty quality. It's a tad like one of my favorite comic book artists, John Paul Leon. I'll probably incorporate this into the illustration I'm doing for the Crimson Fist (as well as a "clear line" 40's comics style which I can do). And I'd like to find some more projects where I can use this new style.