We started this piece at the original Jade Monkey, though we put most of the time in at the New Jade Monkey. And seriously, this piece was the most challenging thing I had done at the time, and still is one of my most ambitious and difficult pieces I've done. Thank god Jason sat so well for it (considering it's on the ribs)
So. this first pic is the design layout. I took images from the movie and combined them with some pics from the comic series as well. I wanted the piece to have the same overall feel as the comic and the movie (after all, that was part of what made the movie so bad ass, how Rodriguez recreated Frank Miller's style so beautifully, it was the purest translation from page to screen that comics had gotten to see up to that point, and proved that there are real stories in comics, not just batman and the x-men... sorry...geeked out a little bit, my bad)
And this is the finished tattoo... damn I wish I had those process photos...
but to fill in a bit of what happened in between these stages, was about 20+ sessions of working each character element separately and then working the between spaces, before doing multiple sessions of fine tuning and adding white and red accents. Alba's character was the most difficult, and the most important. though I don't think I got her look 100%, I feel she still captures the character of Nancy.
The back of the tattoo (your left, as you look at these images) I added Kevin the serial killer (Elijah Wood) and Gail, the prostitute gang leader (referenced from the comics). Kevin was by far the easiest, and Gail turned out to be the least interesting character in the piece actually.
From there however, on the right, front side of the tattoo, is where I think I did my best, and had the most fun...
Miho (Devon Aoki) and Marv (Mickey Rourke) are two of the most dynamic characters in the Sin City world, and they they turned out the best overall in my opinion in the tattoo, and I also liked that they ended up in the front/forward facing area of the composition, being positioned where they would get more visibility. That Marv tho... a fucking joy to tattoo! I would love to do a half sleeve of just him from that classic shot.
Too bad I couldn't show more of the in between process (kinda the point of this little blog segment after all...), the grey lines, the base shading, building this piece up bit by bit, layer by layer, session by session, slowly painting this image into skin. I wanted to show it all...
I can say now, that in a way, I wasn't ready to do this piece when I did it. But in doing it, I became more able, and by the end of the piece, I had acquired the skill and understanding needed to pull off a tattoo like this. It's easily one of my favorites, and I think I'm more critical of this piece than of most others, but it was a such a great and challenging learning process, I wish I was still working on it! ha!
oh yeah, I am.... I get one more fine tuning/touch up session, unless I can talk him into more.... hahaHAhahAha! see you in July Jason!