First off, I really need to give props to Brian Bendis and John Romita Jr. I thought their ad campaign to introduce the new Avengers team was a stroke of genius. A brief sentence boiling down the essence of each new Avenger's character. Robert Kirkman's no fool, he knows a good idea when he sees one. He immediately used a similar approach to introduce his new Guardians of the Globe line-up. It was just as cool the second time around, and probably even more important to do, as several of these characters had never been seen before.
I've been living with these Sanction 7 characters forever and a day now, but know one else really knows these characters at all. I figured the "Bendis New Avenger Intro" was a interesting exercise to try out. I REALLY enjoyed it! It helped me get a more concise handle on my own creations. Boiling down their motivations, hopes and fears in a few sentences. I have quite a few to do, so interspersed between other illos I'll be rolling out these ads all summer.
As for the actual execution of the piece, even though I liked the ad campaign I really didn't want to replicate it exactly. I needed to put my own design spin on it. The piece was colored in photoshop. I decided to go with the exact opposite of the white negative space of the Avenger ads which meant using a lot of black as a back drop. Then I thought, what the hell, as a added design element I would use a photo or backdrop image that best describes the character's power. A warped photo of volcano plumes worked nicely. And because I can never leave well enough alone I took the original black and white illo, blew it up and inverted the image to create a "negative" background. Initially it was too stark and fought waaaay too much with the character caption. So I brought the opacity of the negative figure to about 45% and that seemed to work out just fine. Run the title text at the bottom and the puppy is complete. Shake, stir...and serve chilled. Enjoy!