The Frost Giant’s Daughter

"The clangor of the swords had died away, the shouting of the slaughter was hushed; silence lay on the red-stained snow. The bleak pale sun that glittered so blindingly from the ice-fields and the snow-covered plains struck sheens of silver from rent corselet and broken blade, where the dead lay as they had fallen. The nerveless hand yet gripped the broken hilt; helmeted heads back-drawn in the death-throes, tilted red beards and golden beards grimly upward, as if in last invocation to Ymir the frost-giant, god of a warrior-race..."

— Robert E. Howard, "The Frost Giant's Daughter"

The Frost Giants Daughter by ~SimonBreeze on deviantART

The Frost Giant's Daughter is one of the first of Robert E. Howard’s Conan stories that I ever remember reading, and it is one of my favourite too. I have read the story as the original short within the novels and as a comic within the Savage Sword of Conan many times now.

The story is set in the mystical swords and sorcery world of the Hyborian Age and details Conan pursuing a spectral nymph across the frozen snows of Nordheim to battle her brothers to the death. It is a fantastic story, which originally was rejected by the publishers and was to be sadly never published within Robert E. Howard’s short lifetime.

I really like this image, and I have been experimenting with adding a new colour palette to my style. For those that have seen my work they might have noticed that I will mostly work in one of three colour palettes: red & yellow, green & yellow or simply just blue. That is not to say I do not use others from time to time, however these are ones that I will favour given the choice.

All I have done is added purple to my blue palette, as you can see in this image.

And?’ I hear you say.

It is an important change, it has added ‘more’ to my ‘blue’ pictures, changing the way I colour them completely. For example, in the past I will use the blue colours in the shadows and highlight with lighter shades of blue or white. What I have done with this image, and will continue to do so with future images, is use the purple in the shadows and shading and blue in the highlights. This simple change has made a huge difference to how the image presents itself to the eye. The background is a bit of an obvious change, the more subtle changes are on the snow or the two characters in the tones of their skin, especially with Conan.

I have already finished another image (which I will be uploading soonish, it is part of a pair and the second image isn’t quite there yet) of Dr Manhattan from the comic book ‘The Watchmen’. If you are familiar with the character, he has blue skin. I hope that when this image is upload you should be able to really notice the amazing impact adding this simple change to one of my main colour palettes has made.

The hardest part of this image was the Frost Giant’s Daughter, see-through clothing, ivory skin, grrrrr! A real pain, but I preserved and got there in the end. This picture was quite a random choice for me, it came from my love of the character of Conan, I think he is up there somewhere in my top five heroes along side, (In no particular order) Luke Skywalker, Indiana Jones, Han Solo and James T Kirk. So I will be painting more Conan in the future, only next time I think some place warmer!


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