The year 2006 started with a big load of pirate themed artwork.
It was no coincidence that I painted a lot of pirates in 2006. At work we were creating a pirate computer game. The production was a total mess and in the end we had to work a lot of extra hours in order to get it finished. The game did not even turn out to be good and I sort of summed the whole experience up by painting 'A Pirate's Life for Me!' which illustrates my feelings after the end of that project quite well.
At the forum we had an 'Art Battle' in 2006. That means that every contestant enters with a character and illustrates his fight against another contestant's character. I used this event to revisit a discipline I had totally forgotten about over the years: comics!
The pivotal event of the year 2006 for me was the 19th CG Challenge 'The Journey Begins' on CGSociety.org. I entered the challenge with a concept that I allready had in mind a few weeks before the contest was announced. The theme of the challenge totally fitted my concept and fuled my motivation to put a lot of effort into my entry. 'The Journey Begins' took me two month to finish and it received the second price in the challenge, which was a real personal breakthrough for me.
After the CG Challenge I was really exhausted. For the rest of the year I only produced some rough paintings for a demon themed thread in the forum.
At the end of 2006 I painted these quick visions of passages to the underworld. I always had a romantic affection towards caves and places under the earth. I returned to abstract concepts which helped me to create the sort of dreamlike quality that I was looking for in these paintings.