The way I see it, Castiel is in love with Dean, as far as an angel can feel love towards a human.
I'm not exactly a Destiel shipper, since I don't ship them sexually or anything, but I would lie if I said that the relationship between them doesn't fascinate me. It's so complicated and conflicted and yet so strong, that I think it's second only to Dean/Sam.
What I really like about SPN is that this show can build extremely deep and compelling relationships without getting in the sex zone. It's both relieving and incredibly interesting to watch, at least for me. At the moment I'm quite tired of sexual pairings in fiction, and the kind of brotherly, tormented love SPN is about got me hooked.
Don't get me wrong though, I am perfectly aware of the sexual subtexts. There's a reason why Cas is wielding a sword. You know, the whole phallic object thing.
You'll probably notice that Dean is sort of younger, hence the Samulet and the earlier season hairstyle. Even though it's certainly not canon, I like to think that Castiel has been watching Dean way before he pulled him out of Hell. All the while he had been preparing for a battle, Castiel was there... Only, Dean couldn't see him.
Now a few words about the piece itself. I won't lie, I spent too many hours on this.
While Cas was relatively easy to draw (though still imperfect anyway), Dean gave me a lot of trouble. Partially because Dean/Jensen is really hard to portray, partially because I had this idea in my mind, but couldn't find the right reference pic to support it.
I initially drew Dean's body in a different pose, but it sucked, so I had to redo him completely and I'm still not entirely satisfied with the result. I looked at multiple different screencaps/stills to build him up, and I did some parts of him with no reference at all (chest/stomach, neck, right arm).
I know there's something wrong in the pose and composition, but nevermind: perfection is boring.
Photoshop CS3 + Wacom Bamboo + lots of hours + a ridiculous number of references.
The original file is 5310 x 6027 px wide, which is really HUGE for my standards and that didn't help because Photoshop kept on stopping and being a bitch every 3 minutes. My poor laptop! *dead*
Damn I just love that comic style! Even if you think that Castiel is imperfect, he's not. He turned out totally perfect, and Dean ... wow. Just wow! It's so rough, but at the same time so detailed ... it could be the cover of a graphic novel.
I'm in love with Cas' wings, with how they melt into the background and how you played with the light. You can really feel the emotional tension, that (totally not sexual) love between them. Touching! Really, really touching. Thank you for that stunning drawing!
Tell me - how long did it take you to create these comic versions of them? Do you still rely on references today or did you draw them that often that all the references you need are in your head?
No, for this kind of "quasi-realistic" drawing I generally needs TONS of references to look at. It's really important to look at references to get the facial features straight. In my experience, there's a huge, huge gap between what you remember of a face and what the face actually looks like.
To draw a person as who they really look like straight from your head, I think, it takes an inordinate amount of time drawing them from references, over and over again, until you reach such a confidence and familiarity with the subject that you could draw them even blindfolded. And I'm nowhere near that stage!
This one took me a while mostly because Dean's pose and body structure seemed constantly off. So I had to work on this a lot more than I expected. It's all nice and fun when you have an idea in your mind, and so frustrating when you try to turn it in something concrete and you fail because the anatomy is all over the place and you can't seem to find the right references to help you.
Thank you very much for your kind comment! and sorry for the long answer!
Whoa, thanks for that answer! It's actually relieving to hear that not even those who seem perfect got every detail of their drawing subject stuck in their head - like you. I suspected it because I once met the artist who illustrates the Buffy & Angel-series. And she was able to draw David Boreanaz out of her head, as a comic character, without any issues. But well, she drew him like over a thousand times so far, I guess it's no shame on you then
And I know that dilemma with references. It's mostly the fault of how Americains make their movies, I guess. You never get to see a whole character, they're only shown from head to hip, everything beneath is only shown two in a hundred times - and when it is, the poses are less than useful. Damn it!
yes, and full figure shots are often fuzzy and low res and you can't see a bloody thing.
Anyway I have a huge admiration for comic artists because they can draw things and even characters straight out of their head. This is actually my goal. To be, once, free of the slavery that references are, although still being able to draw realistically. Not because I think using references is bad per se (quite the opposite: every great painter in the history of art used references and models) but because finding the right references is such a bore. LOL, possibly the most frustrating part of making art.
Yes I know what you mean. I always feel like a six-hour-portrait actually was one hour of drawing and five hours of research on google, fanpop and so on. But I don't think that all that practice until you can draw them without references pays off if you don't want to become a comic artist and need that ability to earn money.
i love this. and i was always aware of castiel deep love towards dean. cause cmon it was almost palpable. i think he doesnt even know what it is. can't wrap his mind to comprehend it fully. but i never saw dean at same level in it. and i tried. i tried to see what destiel fans saw, but tbh i never saw it. i never believe dean is 'in love' with castiel. i do see he has a lot of affection towards him, and i love it. he has became family to him and sam.
My main problem with embracing Destiel fully is that I see Castiel as a pure angelic creature and therefore a 100% asexual being. And to be honest, I don't want this to change at all. I love his outworldlyness - if that's even a word - and I think that with him the writers had an exceptional chance to explore the depths of a pure incorporeal bond. Which is not something you see much on tv.
And that's why I'm not really happy with the boring heteronormatizing thing that is going on in season 9 with Castiel; but I wouldn't want him to be framed in a context of homosexuality either. I just think that sexual orientation is something that Cas doesn't need to have. I don't think he "has" to experience sex and/or sexual attraction to be complete as a character. As for Dean, I sort of agree with you, even though I think Dean recognizes, to some extent, that his bond with Cas is completely different from every human bond he might experience - including the love he has for Sam. Not stronger, just different.
i know. i saw cas that way too, but i think at some point the deepest of his concern and affection towards dean (particularly, even if he does cares for sam too) just reached a point where he no longer could qualify it. it is family? it is friendship? it is more?. i think he no longer knows, and he is ok with that cause its something he doesnt want to explore either. it would only be problematic. Dean wake him up of his angel-soldier mode and that was it. he made a new being of him, one in charge of himself for the first time.
and yes, i do love his outwordlyness as well he is the cutest cute ever.
i would never want destiel to be canon. i think what they are now -friends, family, whatever- its perfect. i do want more teamfreewill scenes though i miss it.
i know, i didnt like it either tbh, but cas is experiencing a human existence for the first time, and he is just starting to know his body. i think it has to do with it more than the character itself. and of course he knows his bond with cas is different, cause it is. its the first time that he has a real friend outside of his own brother. one that have become family.
I was sitting at my computer deciding what to watch as I ate my ice cream popsicle, and decided on this wonderful drawing.
Seriously. This is amazing work. And if changes need to be made in order to make it perfect, then I don't want it to be perfect.
I also love your commentary and your opinion of the whole Dean/Castiel thing. I said the same thing in a blog post where I hypothesized that maybe it was the writers' intentions to make Castiel's feelings for Dean run that deep. Contrary to what a lot of people think, you don’t have to be sexually attracted to someone in order to be in love with them. Rhett Butler from Gone With the Wind said it perfectly when he confronted Scarlett about her futile pursuits of Ashley Wilkes.
“Oh, yes, you’ve been faithful to me because Ashley wouldn’t have you. But, hell, I wouldn’t have grudged him your body. I know how little bodies mean—especially women’s bodies. But I do grudge him your heart and your dear, hard, unscrupulous, stubborn mind. He doesn’t want your mind, the fool, and I don’t want your body. I can buy women cheap. But I do want your mind and your heart, and I’ll never have them, anymore than you’ll have Ashley’s mind. And that’s why I’m sorry for you.”
If Scarlett had pulled her head out of her ass and realized that Rhett was the only man who could ever really know her and still love her, I have no doubt Rhett would have welcomed an ongoing sexual relationship with her. But, as he said, sexually intimacy meant nothing to him when compared to mental and emotional intimacy. His love was based on agape, the Greek term for unconditional love, not eros, sexual love. Same with Castiel.
If this was the writers’ intention, then I salute them for such a brilliant strategy. Focusing solely on emotional chemistry, if done correctly, is a surefire way to get your audience extra invested in your characters’ relationships. Just look at Kirk and Spock. In fact, if the writers had directed even a small bit of focus on sexual chemistry, I have little doubt that fans wouldn’t be so heavily invested in the relationship as they are now. I know I wouldn’t.
Even though I do ship them sexually, their chemistry is what matters to me most.
Thank you so much and I agree wholeheartedly about what you said about agape. "Contrary to what a lot of people think, you don’t have to be sexually attracted to someone in order to be in love with them." This is exactly what I mean and sometimes I feel like contemporary fiction isn't able to portray true emotional bonds that really run deep between two persons without resorting to sex. I have very little to add to your beautiful comment - which I'm going to save on my pc for sure - and seriously all I can do is be proud and grateful that my artwork triggered such an interesting insight on these characters.
I completely agree. In stories, sex should be used to enhance emotional bonds. Instead, many writers of today use it as a cheap, lazy replacement. Apart from doing a complete 180 on their characters, this is the reason I stopped watching True Blood. Several promising story arcs like Eric and Sookie's relationship diminished into little more than plotless porn.
Sheepish confession: Most of the comment was copied and pasted from the blog post I mentioned before. I just thought it fit so well with your views on the whole Dean/Castiel debate. It's so rare and nice to encounter someone who'll take strong emotional relationships over sexual ones any time.
Wacom Bamboo Fun looks very promising, if a little pricey. But I'll definitely consider it. Thanks
Hey, if I may I'd like to ask a question. I showed this picture to my friend (I have it set as my desktop wallpaper so it was hard to avoid haha) and she was completely blown away. She can draw but she just uses good ol' pencil on paper. You created this using a tablet and photoshop? Is that very hard to learn if you can already draw well on paper? I'm just trying to wrap my mind around this, that's all. Anyway, thanks for your time.
Yes, I use a tablet to do all my digital paintings... Sometimes I start from a lineart that I drew with pencils and I scanned, but mostly I tend to do the lineart in Photoshop. If you can draw by pencil, and you have enough patience to learn how to use a tablet (and Photoshop or another graphic software), you will probably have good results with digital painting as well. Of course it takes time and a lot of practice, if you go back to the older pages of my gallery you'll see how ugly my first attempts at digital painting were. But you improve. For the record, I too started as a pencil artist (sort of). I've drawn with pencils for all my life, but it wasn't until 2008 that I bought a tablet and started doing digital paintings.
Man that expression on Dean's face...I don't even know what to call it. In any case fantastic artwork. That's what I love about coming here. I can't draw worth a damn, but coming here and seeing someone else create great art makes it so much fun. Faved and watched.