Getting more practice with cel shading in Illustrator! Clothes are a little difficult--it's hard to shade them so they don't look like just a solid shape--but metal/shiny things are actually a lot of fun. I tried it with more of a "western + lots of Japanese influence" style that I've been fussing around with, though because of the way I ink in Illustrator and the coloring style it turned out way more anime/manga-y than I intended. (This is not a bad thing, mind, just not quite what I was trying for.)
Character is the male version of the main character from Legend of Mana--the one you play, y'know, who you use to hit things with swords. (I call my dude Helios. :D I gave him a backstory and personality and everything, which I may or may not end up using in a small-ish fancomic.
I need to get more motivation and confidence before I really get into comics, urgh. Too much second guessing myself.)
I like making fan art for a lot of reasons in general, but one especially nice thing I can say about it is that I can lay the blame for any ridiculous costumes and/or character design on someone else. Shinichi Kameoka, I'm looking at you for this one.
As for the picture itself, it was very roughly sketched in Photoshop, digitally inked and colored in Illustrator, then taken back into Photoshop for a quick-n-swirly background. Took about...I dunno how many hours, actually, I worked on it over the course of 3-4 days. Just the inking ate a lot of time, same for the flat colors, then the ordeal of shading each individual area, then final tweaking...so the total time = LOTS. It'll go faster the more I practice, though.
As with most of my stuff, I release this into the wilds of the Internet with a Creative Commons license! You can even take the background with the little link at the bottom out, just make sure people have the means to find their way back to me and we're good. He's yours to play with, just make sure he keeps his collar and tags on, alright? Alright. :D
...And with that, I feel I should put copyright information here, because while I might technically own the picture I don't own the character design (slightly silly as it is.) Legend of Mana and all characters, of course, belong to Square-Enix, formerly Squaresoft. Ah, the days of the PS1...can't believe that's considered retro now, but eh, what're ya gonna do. *sits on porch swing, smokes pipe, reminisces about the good ol' days when polygons were new*