Mercury/Hermes Hopi Mask for John Picture

Puppetcancer issued a bit of a challenge on his dA journal none too long ago; try drawing Hopi masks in their traditional style, but do so with a Greek Mythological theme.

The first I came up with was a mask of legendary snake haired bitch, Medusa. Pretty common of me, she's toted out a great deal, it wasn't a very creative concept, though I had a great time with it and was thrilled with my colored results that you can see here: Medusa Hopi Mask for John.

So, discontent that I hadn't done something more unique, out there and/or clever, (you can insert any descriptive-yet-negative term here you'd like), I sat around thinking of Greek/Roman gods and goddesses, who doesn't get all that much love... and thought of the Disney Hercules film, back to one of my favorite characters in it, the lippy little messenger god, voiced over by one of the coolest people alive, Paul Schaefer, formerly of The CBS Orchestra on the David Letterman Show -- the god I decided to draw next in a Hopi mask was none other than Hermes/Mercury.

I had a struggle with the wings, I'm not exactly delighted with how they appear now, but for a first serious attempt with limited material to be inspired and/or guided by, this isn't one of my drawings/coloring jobs I get to legitimately gripe about. This IS good work, for Mandi Pope, anyhow, and it wasn't exactly a push from John outside of my artistic comfort zone, no, it wasn't that by a long shot. He picked me up, as we say in the police business, "ass and elbows," and THREW me out of my artistic comfort zone and refused to let me back into it until I'd at least made an effort to create something outside of it.

Lemme also brag, I have one hell of an artistic mentor. Come to think of it, I could have just said "mentor," period. John has taught me so much more than simply art techniques and tricks, I've learned countless things from him about every topic you could bring up, and then some you couldn't. I really appreciate his shoving me outside of my boundaries to try things I figured I'd probably either hate, fail at or hate while failing at it. It may sound funny, but I love it when he proves me wrong. Turns out, though I wouldn't have ever personally even guessed it, I CAN draw Native American Hopi masks, and I CAN incorporate a Greek Mythological theme, and YES, above all of that, I CAN make it more creative and more visually appealing/interesting than the overused snake haired bitch, Medusa... though that one WAS fun to create and I AM still happy with it, and probably always will be, no matter how much I progress from it or don't. It's the principle of the thing, that I did something I thought I couldn't or never would have even tried were it not for my John.

So thanks, Honey. This one's for you.

Art by Mandi L. Pope, 2015.
Inspired by a conceptual challenge by Puppetcancer.
Artist's Note: I also tried new techniques with changing black lineart to colored lineart, such as with Hermes' wings and the bands on the base and top of the head as well as the tassels. I like how it looks.. "less harsh" than stark black lines would. I'm going to try that in some other works that are currently on my editing room floor, and have already applied it to my WIP I'll post soon of Fire Elemental: Fire Thunder and Maf (lineart).
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