Zal and the Simurgh Picture

Assignment. We were supposed to pick a figure from a legend or myth and illustrate it. We were encouraged to interpret it as close to the source material as possible and not to rely on images established by popular culture/recent stuff.

I picked Zal and the Simurgh from the Shahnameh partly because names that start with the letter Z are awesome it was so obscure compared to more well-known legends, and admittedly before looking it up for this assignment had never heard of of either the story of Zal or the Shahnameh/Book of Kings from Persian mythology.

A brief summary of the story would be that Zal, abandoned as a baby by his dad because he was born an albino, was found and raised by the Simurgh, a wise and magical creature, before his dad later regrets what he did and comes to get him when he's grown up. Better late than never I suppose. He does some other stuff in his life later on like becoming a warrior, falling in love and having a family, but that's not what my drawing is focused on.

Done entirely on Photoshop, some of specks of birds flying in the bg were taken from a photo. There's bits here and there that could use some refining, the thing that annoys me the most is the Simurgh's neck and Zal's right hand, but since it's already due it's not worth fusing about unless I have the time to later.
Continue Reading: The Myths