Now that Issue 278 of Heavy Metal Magazine has been on the newsstands for a couple of weeks, we wanted to share a look behind-the-scenes at some of the art and process that led to the final execution of the comic.
Once we had our script finalized, we felt we needed to breathe life into some of the characters that were making their first debut in the new comics, such as The Tormentor (an angel who serves as the story’s main antagonist), Vicar Alary and the villagers from Shard’s home town.
Before handing them off to our illustrator Nat Jones, we went to our primary Court of the Dead concept designer, Amilcar Fong to give faces and identities to these scenes and characters in the story.
Below you can see the original penciled concept art juxtaposed with its final illustrated-comic outcome (penciled concept art by Amilcar Fong, Illustrated Comic art by Nat Jones).
Additionally, here’s a look at some of the process drafting key scenes, showing possessed villagers devouring Shard’s horse and Death handing off the powerful and mysterious underworld dagger, Seraph Woe.
For the cover, we relied on a two-person team to achieve the best results. Long-time Sideshow and Court of the Dead artists Tom Jilesen and Fabian Schlaga teamed up and delivered an incredible illustration worthy of being plastered on the cover of Heavy Metal Magazine.
Tom Jilesen handled the line drawing and Fabian Schlaga executed the coloring, which incidentally enough is the same team that designed and colored the Underworld United logo that serves as the main brand icon for the property, so we felt it was only appropriate for them to tackle such an illustrious gig like this over two years later. Check out the evolution of the cover below.