Wednesday, July 7, 2010

My World : Sultura


She's bad. She's ambiguously European. She's famous for being infamous. She's Sultura, and she's a constant thorn in the side of those who fight for justice.

Sultura is a safecracker, thief, kidnapper, counterfeiter - the list is seemingly endless. The most consistent trait in her career is her vanity. Her motto "I make being bad look damn good!" is not just a catchphrase, but her goal in life. Most people would not go so far as to print up fake money with their own picture on it, but most people aren't Sultura. She may end up redefining narcissism, if anyone ever discovers what the limit of hers actually is.

Sultura has particularly earned the wrath of Shelly Ericson for taunting her as Captain Satellite's "concubine" during one brazen heist. Shelly has promised that there will be payback each and every time she gets her hands on the femme fatale. And Shelly isn't the sort to make such a promise and not fulfill it.

It occurred to me a few months ago as I was working on updating the Captain Satellite universe that there was a dearth as far as villainesses went. That didn't surprise me at all. While I LOVE women, I've never been handy at drawing them. That was why I only have a handful of heroines in my entire body of work, and even fewer villainesses.

I decided to address this deficiency and brainstormed for ideas on an evil woman to add to my stock cast. Enter Sultura. Her name is a real word (I think Italian), but I never was able to discern if it meant what it sounded like it meant. Not that it mattered very much. It had a great ring to it, and was perfect for a female name.

Fixing a look for Sultura and drawing her were considerably more difficult than christening her. There are a number of false starts in my files, and two completed pictures that were deemed unacceptable. Yes, I do maintain some quality control, as hard as that might be to believe. Finally, after doodling up yet another new design, I created the Sultura you see before you.

While I was coloring this picture, I had the uneasy feeling that I was making Sultura resemble an established character. After I was finished, I realized she looked somewhat like Cobweb, a character created by Alan Moore with his now-wife Melinda Gebbie. Well, Sultura isn't meant as an imitation of Cobweb. I arrived at the color scheme independent of any influence from that character. Believe me, I'm not looking to have any magic spells cast on me by Alan Moore. I'm sticking with what I have for Sultura though, so if you hear that I turned into a goat, now you know why.

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