I don't do a lot of fan art, but I read a short story by storykween
Jayden Woods and I just had to take a crack at her Tosti character, a Viking boy with long blond braids. I love braids on guys, but they're a tough look to pull off...
Anyways, the story is about the main character Canute's (later to be Canute the Great) relationship with Tosti, and Canute's own conflicted emotions about religion - whether to trust in Odin (the raven) or embrace Christianity. So I wanted to work some of these themes into it. It started, as most of my works do, as just a practice sketch of a face from a photo in a book, and when I read the story, I decided to turn him into Tosti, and it slowly evolved from there. My usual half-assed working methods. I was also trying to play around with some new brushes and coloring techniques, particularly warm saturated shadows.
Here's a link to the short stories (they're all really good!) [link]