You may recall this deck from my Decks gallery. It’s been there since 2015 when I created it, but I posted a lot of in progress shots to Instagram but never really posted it anywhere else. I just posted to Behance with it, so hey, why not share here, too?
Here we go. I had a deck that had a digital transfer on it courtesy of BoardPusher. The image I had was specifically made for a skateboard deck, but it printed really dark and it was hard to make out what it was, so after leaving it in the box for a long time, I decided to sand it down and start fresh. I hadn’t done a skateboard deck in a while, so I decided hey, why not? I didn’t have a deck with Azra on it, which was surprising to me given how often he appears in all my other works, and the one that I sanded down was actually of him, but didn’t do any justice.
I started by sketching out an idea on some sketchbook paper…
Then transferred it to the deck with pencil.
After I got everything where I wanted it, I started inking. I also knew right from the get go that I wanted to do copper leaf. I love the way leaf looks photographed and scanned (and it really pops in real life), and I’m not a fan of gold leaf, but silver leaf felt really blasé to me, so I decided on copper leaf. I introduced it so soon because I knew I’d have to ink over some of the rougher edges.
I started with the recommended Speedball Mona Lisa adhesive pen that was marked on the back of the leafing package. The store was out of the traditional in-a-can adhesive, so I just thought the pen would work. Turns out, it’s really difficult to use the pen on something so porous as unfinished wood as the wood just drinks it allll up.
I ran out of ink somewhere down the line, as well as nice, crispy drawing croquil pen tips. So I had to go to the store and pick some up. Hooray!
The ink was quite a bit too watery, making the wood drink it up and spider it out. It was nothing leaving the cap a little open so some of the water could dry up didn’t help, though. I could scrape off with an etching tool any of the parts that spidered out as it didn’t bleed too deeply.
After struggling for a while with the pen adhesive (putting it on in layers didn’t help), I went out and purchased some paint on adhesive I think by Martha Stewart that did the trick a lot better than the pen. It stuck, so that was good!
I decided to add a few details in white acrylic paint just for a little “pop”. White feathers, and some highlights on Azra’s armor, nothing too in depth.