The head of TARTAROS is a skull of embers. The veins of his heart can be seen through his ripped-open chest.
I was transforming close-up photos of campfire embers when its face emerged. It was slightly freaky.
My original idea was for Tartaros to be abstract, not an entity.
Transforming interesting photos of embers or volcanoes would hopefully allow faces or forms to emerge. For each viewer, it would be different... like seeing form in the clouds.
By March 2011, I had what I thought might be a close-to-final version of Tartaros, with the walls of Hell dripping upward.
Two months passed.
May 9, 2011.
I was staring at the fire while everyone else was asleep in the tent. After a while, it seemed like an eye in the fire was staring back. Or maybe a face? I wasn't sure.
So I took this video and then some photos from super close-up.
Ten days later, while transforming these photos, a face definitely emerged.
A skull made of embers.
Starting with photos and playing around is much different from starting with a CG skull and texturing it (although I like doing both). Using elements from nature adds a certain collaborative aspect to the piece. It requires being open to whatever might emerge.
That being said, it was slightly freaky.
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Justice LeagueDesign + Execution, 2017 (Resistance)
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MMsCompositing, 2005 (Charlex)
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© Jesse Michael Newman, 2021