This image was my entry for a Drawing Jam called "God of War". While browsing the web for some information and inspiration as well, I realized that most of the images just focused on an effigy of God himself. So I decided not to go that route. I wanted something bigger, something more powerful - why not show a God of War fulfilling his destiny?
The idea was set and my next step was to spend some time choosing how to present my image. I'm a big fan of super-wide cinematic shots. So why not giving it a shot in this epic direction? Now everything was set and it was time to fire up Photoshop!
The Tools and Painting Process
I'm a big fan of customized brushes and shapes, but for this image I worked mostly with my "standard" brush set. I used some customized brushed for the clouds and for the arrow, but the rest was done with a hard round brush and my main brush (not named it yet). Fig.01 shows what brushes I used for the entire image. A big help for defining shapes is the Lasso tool. It's easy to draw in some random shapes and work with the brush and eraser over and over until you're happy.
As I said before, I wanted something huge and epic for my image. With that in mind I started to block in some rough color values and shapes. My goal at this stage was to set the main colors and the composition. The God needed to be huge and followed by his army. I painted in the initial shape for the God and set his pose, as you can see in Fig.02.
I kept working on the God and started to paint in more details, such as the God's face. To get a better impression of scale, I started to paint in the God's army by using just the round brush. For the shields I used the Round Selection tool, added a new layer and used by normal "paint/erase" technique (Fig.03).
Reworking the God
Not really happy with the pose of the God, I started to draw in some lines for a better understanding of how the pose could look more impressive and strong. The extended lines on the right side of image were mostly done to find a good level of blending with the clouds and atmosphere (Fig.04).
Reworking the Composition
Taking a break from an image is always a good way to refresh your eyes and view. After a delicious cup of coffee I started to rework the entire image/composition. My first step was to extend the canvas to the right side and add some warm tones to the upper right side as well. I also repainted the entire army by using a customized brush. The brush is a simple shape of a standing person and was set to opacity and jitter. By painting the army a lot smaller, the immense size of the God was shown much better (Fig.05).