These images were inspired by nose art found on aircraft from the world wars and the present day. Though, when designing these images, I did not envision them as being painted on aircraft. I envisioned them as being painted on the armor of giant robots from an in-progress novel of mine.
This HellHound was inspired by a mecha model of the same name. I thought that a monster called the HellHound would need to look wolfish, so I decided to model the beast after a wolf. The fiery colors are self-explanatory.
This one was inspired by the sometimes whimsical names that pilots gave their aircraft. Who wouldn’t want to ride in a plane or robot titled Technical Difficulties? The joke being that the pilot of the mecha that the image is painted on is less than stellar. The image of a bird being zapped by a radio tower was inspired by an image from an episode of the Simpsons. I was torn on how realistic / cartoonish to make the bird skeleton and settled somewhere in between.
These HellHawks have the same story as the HellHound. I decided to try and make a cartoony version first and then decided to make it proportioned more realistically. I decided to show both versions. What collection of nose art is complete without racy pinup women? The facial look of Steely Sakura here takes inspiration from Japanese manga, which I though appropriate, given that this design is meant to be painted on giant mecha. The leg and arm armor is supposed to look like that of the mecha that she is painted on. That was likewise inspired by moe anthropomorphism seen in Japanese manga art. I considered what Japanese name alliterates well with Steely and then I came to Sakura. And if her name is Sakura, then she has to have pink hair. The cherry blossom emblem in the back was taken from a similar emblem of a Japanese fighter ace. The abundance of pink on the emblem might seem feminine but I doubt that the pilot notices.