Kritzel’s Choice 2021:
Again I did a review of my art year 2021. While already posting my personal favorites of different themes during the last few weeks, I did an an overall review, too. On this page you will find details, tiny easter eggs, explanations etc. regarding my „Best of“ paintings 2021 (oh, and in case of fanart spoilers too). So, it’s a spoiler page, if you’d like discover the secrets by yourself, skip reading the texts, just enjoy the paintings.
You will find my „Best of 2020“ here. It’s in German language, but you can use the autotranslation of the side bar (there are sometimes silly results, though).
Sleepover & Zeppelin Night Ride
These two paintings were collaborations with Potato_Beta (Instagram) depicting our OCs we created for the Arcryla City Discord server. It all started with a convo about Crissy not being able to handle emotions and even less able to handle being in love with someone who seemingly is totally ignorant about her feelings. So, we talked about a sleepover in which both OCs also would talk aber love matters. They already knew each other because of a zero-g-device Crissy created for a photo session for Potato. Soon, it became a small series since Potato was eager to see Crissy and her crush Paula coming together. This resulting in a Zeppelin Night Ride on which Paula’s attention on Crissy awoke.
Potato and me painted our respective OCs, she also did the general backgrounds, doing a great job with the clouds and zeppelins and buildings (Sleepover) and the flying fish (Zeppelin Night Ride). The Fish were part of the lore between her OC Potato and Potato’s boyfriend Conway, so we included them. I then filled in the background details and the furniture (in both paintings), the music instruments and the people. Because the painting would’ve been too cramped, if we add actual musicians, we had the idea that the instruments are playing themselves, this way also fitting the steampunk theme.
In the Sleepover painting both OCs haver their favorite plush toy near at hand (Crissy a water bear, Potato a seal). It takes place at Crissy’s place since she lives alone and they didn’t want to have Conway around. Crissy’s appartment doesn’t have a guest room but the sofa easily can be transformed into a big, comfortable bed.
All the stuff in the appartment on the one hand shows how chaoti Crissy can be at home, one the other hand it shows the things she loves like the water bear theme all around or pizza and mangoes. Likewise, many of the snacks are potato based, Potato’s favorite food. As you can see, they ate a lot and drank a lot and had a lot of fun that evening. The clock tower in the background is a reference to an Arcryla City painting of Maylunary (Instagram) that shows the same clock tower, indicating that it’s indeed the same city.
To reveal another secret: Another follow-up, a third painting, already is planned and in the making
The Owl House fanart. I drew this piece immediately after watching Season 2 Episode 9 – „Eclipse Lake“. In this episode Amity fights an epic battle against the Golden Guard, depicted in a great coreography which reveals what her abomination magic already is capable of.
This inspired me to develop this even further, so she not only got a sword made of abomination goo but also a shield: Amity Knight was born!
I first started to paint her in her school dress but then I realized, she did above-mentioned fight in her winter clothes. Since I intended to paint no actual scene anyways and I like her current normal freetime clothes, I skipped the winter dress too and went for the latter ones (this way also avoiding to have to draw the even more detailed winther clothing tbh).
Love Letters & More Tales from the Swamp
In 2020 I only hinted at it (to learn more about the story of this painting, click here), now it got more obvious and in my June pride month contributions I confirmed that these two are a couple.
I started to draw Swamp Girl well in time before the start of the Mermay and this was a good decision since her skin colour was a challenge. For the first time I planned to colour it and first I thought of some kind of greenish colour. But it didn’t work out well (and besides … Amphimaid already was planned to be green, too, so it would’ve undermined the intended contrast).
Therefore, I decided to give her a human skin colour. Since at this point in time I still used Sketchbook, there was no feature I was aware of that changes one colour for another with one click and the filling tool also was insufficient to this purpose. Therefore I had to draw the lineout and the base colour completely anew.
This painting continues the story. This time they are not together but they are exchanging letters. The letter Swamp Girl sends in the first painting is delivered by the small blue octopus Tiny Inky who also provided the ink to write it. The letter is stuck into a shiny ring. I have to admit, the bottle is a little bit small (notifying myself to make it better next time. The challenge with Amphimaid was to keep her SFW (Safe For Work). Since she is naked, I had to cover her lap with her legs while the textures of her breasts already gave the impression of a bra in the 2020 painting.
The title refers to the 2020 paintings‘ title, of course.
During the Arcryla City Summer Festival after seeing how handsome the Mayor is some guys on the Arcryla City Discord Server joked around about showing the Mayor’s abs and furthermore painting our OCs in a sexy/hot pose.
This idea stuck even after the festival finally came to an end. But how could I put Crissy into a sexy pose without being too lewdly and being still SFW? Since I already wanted to paint Crissy at work in some way, I simply combined both ideas.
Still, because Crissy is a dedicated worker, she won’t just strip off her leather jacket and the helmet and put herself in a sexy pose. So, it had to be lunchtime. A break from the hard work in which she could air the clothing and cool down a little bit. She still had to do some work, so she spotted some loose screws or something similar and started to tighten them just one moment after biting into her sandwich. If you look close, you can see tiny water bears embroidered into the fabric of the handkerchief the sandwich is lying on.
It was quite an exercise in anatomy. Additionally, the overall and the jacket (in particular the jacket) gave me the willies. It took several tries to get the jacket’s left arm right. There also was the question of the background. One idea was that this scene takes place under open sky with Paula on her jetbike spotting Crissy from afar but I doubt that she would’ve been recognizable and tbh, I wanted to finishthe painting. Thereofre, I went for the giant cogwheel.
After finishing the painting and already sharing it, I realized two things: I forgot the pocket watch and I could really make it look like as if this painting is an actual pinup poster. Well … I really love the end result.
Knowledge is Power
Gone curious because of many The Owl House fans who also love to watch Amphibia, I tried it this show on one weekend in October 2021, too. Immediately after watching the episodes which were out since then, I had to draw my favorite character, Marcy Wu.
In the course of the show she got stabbed, thereafter healed in a tank and afterwards possessed by an entity called „The Core“ by being forced to wear a huge helmet. This painting isn’t an actual painting from the show. It’s my imagination figuring out Marcy finally freeing herself from the core.
With Anne Boonchuy, the show’s main character, we learned there are powers of the calamity box‘ gemstones (Blue, Green and Pink) connected to the three girls (Anna, Marcy and Sasha) and their most preeminent character traits (Heart, Wit and Strength). Since Anne glows blue when her powers awoke, Mary would glow green according to her gemstone and since her power is the power of wit, I thought, it finally will burst the helmet – Knowledge is power, literally!
Anne grew twigs in her hair in her calamity form. I added moss to Marcy’s hair not only to keep this thought but also because it was the studying of the moss man which enabled the Newtopians to keep her alive with advanced health care technology after being stabbed
The first words „The Core“ said through Marcy were „Why … hello there“, so I took this reference as Marcy’s first words right after her return (in the original version I wrote „Well … hello there“ since I accidently heard this words in my first watching of the episode but learned that this was wrong later).
Let’s cross fingers that this one day actually comes true.
Oil and Water
Few shows impressed me like the Netflix show Arcane. I never heard from the video game League of Legend before on which this show is bades but I actually didn’t had to. The show is so impressive, the characters so well written, the plot so intriguing – just some moments ago I watched it a third time and still discovered new aspects.
So, it came no wonder that immediately after watching I draw this fanart of my two favorite characters, Caitlyn (left) and Vi (right). They have a great chemistry and the moment they meet you can tell that they belong together. The painting is inspired by two scenes in the show but no actual depicting of any of them. Instead I tried to show them making it out, changing glances just a few seconds before the kiss.
To get Vi’s face right was a challenge, first I drew it too masculine. It was supposed to have it’s edges and angels but she still had to be look feminine. Some tutorials on Instagram helped a lot to fix this. I also forgot the freckles but added them later. Finally, I added a blur to draw the focus on eyes, noses and lips of this cute and strong couple.
The title is from episode 8, of course, Vi used this metaphor to describe their difference („Oil and water, top and bottom“), although I am not quite sure anymore who is who. First I associated the oil with dirt, the undercity, and the water with pureness, the topside. Therefore the background behind Vi is darker than the one behind Caitlyn. But oil floats on water, oil would be top, water bottom, so it actually would have to be the other way around.
Amphibia again. One week of me watching Amphibia the new episode featured Terri, a smart assistance scientist with a good heart who helps Anne and the Amphibia’s family Plantar. I loved her appeareance, I loved her character, so I drew her.
This time the challenge was the background. I didn’t plan to paint a too detailed background, some shadows and shapes should suffice. Since she worked on technology for interdimensional travel, I chose to put in the shadow of an electrical apparatus and flashes all over the place.
Note the ID card. In the show she used it to rescue the Plantars – so, it was mandatory to add it to this painting, too.