In the early stages of creating Little Dragon Cthulhu, JimmyZ (of Little Bunny Cthulhu) and I realized that one of the first things I would need to get started was a mascot. Little Bunny Cthulhu has been around for a while, and has been re-imagined many times by various artists. I was going to have to hunt down the right artist to do our very first logo and hope they would be willing to take the commission in exchange for an interview. After several days of searching up and down DeviantArt, I ran across a gallery of some very cute dragons in a variety of styles. I sent the artist, FoxDragonLover, a note and what luck! She was more than excited to get the request, and I had managed to find a young artist looking for her first break.
Little Dragon Cthulhu: Tell us about you!
FoxDragonLover: My name is Alyssa, I’m currently 21 years old and all about fantasy. I’m a spiritual person who also enjoys singing (publicly in particular), and above all, I just love to create. I have a pet bearded dragon, two geckos and two chihuahuas. I’m of Irish and Scottish descent and it’s very apparent in my red hair, pale skin and green eyes!
LDC: What is your process for creating a piece?
FDL: When I make a new piece, I start by sketching out the subject matter with pencil. I’m not shy to make mistakes with pencil, for when I’m done I outline the sketch in black ink. Once the ink is dry I erase the pencil, and begin my shading!
LDC: What is your workspace like? How do you work?
FDL: My work space is pretty much wherever I feel the desire to…lay down on my stomach! As I’ve gotten older, I find it more and more difficult to sit upright and draw a picture. Part of it may be because I can’t see the paper at the correct angle, and the “correct” angle is the one that faces you most directly; that way you don’t mess up proportions. So, my answer, anywhere I can lay on my belly!
LDC: Talk about your creation of Little Dragon Cthulhu. What did you draw inspiration from? What mediums did you use?
FDL: As it turns out, a while back I was very taken with the Invader Zim franchise. There was mention of a “cthulhu” monster, so I drew him in a dragon style with meaty paws. I stuck to the meaty, fleshy arms and legs and toes, and tried to just keep his body stout and still draconian.
My original idea for him was white skin and little colorful polka dots, aha! But I soon realized that was silly, and came down with the sea green, salt-stained scales. As for his face, I had made a few octopus-like characters in the past, and drew my knowledge from that to put the tentacles on his face the way I did. I figured fins and cranial whiskers would be more appropriate than horns, and a trident tail to maintain the look of the sea. For the final piece I used copic marker, prisma pencil, a black sharpie, and a white gel pen on toned tan paper.
LDC: What are some of your favorite pieces and why?
FDL: It’s hard to choose a favorite piece of mine, I generally favor whichever piece has the best anatomy!
LDC: Your art tends to use strongly contrasting colors: black and white, vivid blues and golds and reds. Can you talk about contrast in your art?
FDL: Contrast is very important to me. I love dull colors in others’ works, but can never seem to make it work for myself. I like to make my color, or even lack thereof, strong and vivid, and very solid. Gold is a very divine sort of color to us as humans, we look up to it and value it as a sign of royalty or success. Whenever I draw something with yellow, I do my best to make is striking and achieve a look of being golden. Red is raw and vibrant all on its own. I feel I don’t give the color red a good enough chance if I don’t try to make it eye catching, as the eye tends to gravitate toward red very easily. Blue should either glow or be rich, in my opinion. I love a deep rich blue, a color that reminds us of the deep sea. Or perhaps a glowing blue, to remind us of the eerie unknown. Black and white is one of my favorites to work with, and all in all I like to make those two look silky. They oppose each other, but play a role towards one another. Black and white is very special, and also very controversial.
LDC: How did you begin the path toward being an artist?
FDL: I’ve been drawing ever since I can remember. Anything I saw that I liked, I drew. I drew in school too, even when I should have been paying attention. The urge was always so great, so much so that I would draw even while being given directions on an assignment in the classroom. Then I would quickly do my work, and get back to drawing. Now I draw in the evening since I am out of school and unemployed, and it usually only takes one or two days to complete a piece. A career in art is something I’ve always wanted, and seeing another artist inspired me to get a DeviantArt account. Now I feel I may be on a path to success.
LDC: What projects are you working on right now?
FDL: Right now I’m working on a personal story called Nefastus, the Realm of Fire. It centers around dragons living on a planet in another dimension, and their neck of the woods is all volcanoes, dry wastelands, and some very dark and strange jungles. A pair of dragon friends who’ve been together since they were almost hatchlings, Pyra and Periculo, are the main stars of the story. As of right now, I’m working on getting plenty of art for the characters and soon intend to design Cruor, the main villain in the story.