Wakanda Forever!

“So, umm…I’m confused. Is this like, a date, Nakia?”

Tonight, I’m going to see “Black Panther.” I have only heard excellent things about the film, and in the week since it came out, it has made ridiculous amounts of money. I’m pretty excited to see T’Challa and his full ensemble cast realized on the Big Screen, and that pretty much is the only thing driving today’s artwork, and the post.

The artwork was very fun to draw. Nakia’s movie uniform is very intricate, and really challenging to put together. I’ve always liked the Dora Milaje as an idea, since they were introduced to the mythos of the character in Christopher Priest’s critically acclaimed run (which is now back in print). The Dora Milaje were an excellent, complex story point that continue to make Wakanda as a setting unique among all of Marvel’s fictional environments.

Apparently, Nakia is presented somewhat differently than in the comics, and that is just fine. I don’t go to a film to see things I’ve already seen, I actively want new material, and news plotlines. I’m more than fine with a departure from “canon.”

The Panther himself is oddly challenging to draw. Having a basically black uniform, he’s really a complex bit of hatchwork and shading, to give him depth and volume. Additionally, I don’t usually draw characters walking away, looking over their shoulders, so that was a complex undertaking in figure planning. The pencils without the integration of the background reveal that subtlety a bit, I’m including them later in the post.

The background pattern was really challenging, since I just don’t do that sort of graphic pattern design. It was even more challenging to integrate into the initial foreground art, but overall, I’m pretty happy with the final design above.

The original, unaltered foreground art.

I also decided to draw Cap’s tuning fork with some real depth. Usually, it doesn’t have three dimensional mass, and kind of seems like a weird U-shaped blade of some kind. Giving it depth really makes it seem that she’s smacking with something clunky and heavy, something that would weigh about fifty or sixty pounds easily.

For all of you continuity people that are going to point to panels where it seems to act like a blade, like when she smacked the ankle of an AT-AT Walker, and the ankle broke, here’s your answer. Cap can easily bench press a mountain. She can, as a result, easily smack a blunt object through another blunt object, just by swinging REALLY hard. So, debate over.

I was a bit disappointed by Marvel Puzzle Quest’s Black Panther event, so I’m hoping that all of my disappointments were just gotten out of the way by that. The Puzzle Quest missions were just more of the same, instead of introducing Wakanda themed bad guys to deal with. I felt like that was a missed opportunity.

Anyway…it’s time to wrap up this post. Have an excellent weekend, True Believers…Cap, Nakia and I need to get to the movies!

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