Character Contest 36 Winners!

Many thanks to everyone who entered "Character Contest 36 - Superman Villain", I enjoyed looking at your illustrations and reading your stories. As always, your creativity and willingness to share it astounds me.

I have chosen the entries that I thought were particularly outstanding and am presenting them below as the Finalists. At the end I'll announce the overall winner, who receives any item they like, or a portrait of themselves, to be included in HeroMachine 3.

We had a number of "Big Scary Monster" types of entries, but something about this one from Alexander G caught my eye. It's almost too much, but I like it.

Cliff gave an angsty Goth teen with mental powers, which I think is a pretty fun idea for a Superman villain. I like to think "Headcase" would have him storming off in a huff, weeping for no reason, and changing out his blue tights for black.

The thing I like best about Danny Beaty's "Mistress Voodoo" is the glowing flame effect on the skull staff. That's cool.

DeColda's "Krypto" is another in the Big Scary Monster series, and I like the way he's put together. The pattern in the arms and legs also looks great.

I actually liked all three of DiCicatriz' entries so much, I put them all in! So without further fanfare, I present Iliakos, M2, and Solarium. They're all great designs.



Me, Myself, & I also has multiple Finalists, with "Angel of Death" and "Gaia". I really like how in the Angel illustration he limits the size of the background so the wings break its boundaries, that's a nice effect. Contrast that with the way there's really no background at all with Gaia, and yet that works just as well. I also think both character designs are excellent.


MScat's alternate reality "Lana Luthor" was one of a number of kryptonite-themed characters, which makes sense when you're trying to figure out someone who can go up against Superman. I like this design's simplicity, the use of the two honkin'-big gloves with the glowing kryptonite energy, and the flyaway hair.

Rancid had one of the most unusual, and thus effective, entries of all with Zyphoriom. I'm pretty sure a glowing green tentacle brain floating in liquid is bad news for Big Blue.

Rico's voodoo-themed "Mowjo" has one of the best faces I've seen in any entry to date. Really nice job on that.

I think Tango did everything well in this illustration of "Solarite". I love the line coloring and effects on the "fleshy" parts of the body, especially as contrasted with the hard metallics of the containment suit. The mouth looks like real fire, too. The background being washed out works great, and of course the little detail of the streak in the sky rocks. Great job all around, Tango!

Finally, I wanted to include VonMalcolm's "Wehrwolf" as a reminder that you can still get a great-looking character out of HeroMachine 2!

Which brings us at last to our winner, which shows that you don't necessarily have to throw everything and the kitchen sink into your illustration to make it effective. I love the simple, clean lines of the costume, the DCAU-style cutouts with chainmail showing through, even the way the hair blends into the top. You also see the same close-crapping of the sky as in the "Angel of Death" above, so that the background becomes not just part of the image, but a framing device for it.

Great job on "Kes Nal", Jack Zegler, and congratulations on your win!

Thanks again everyone, and if you didn't win or place this time, never fear -- another contest started earlier today, so take a crack at designing a Golden Age Heroine!

27 Responses to Character Contest 36 Winners!

  1. Me, Myself & I

    Well done Jack Zegler!

    Thank you for the critique on my entries Jeff. I’m happy to have made the grade for the finalists.

  2. Great stuff here. Jeff, I think you accidentally put one of DiCicatiriz’s characters up twice.

  3. Thank you so much for making one of mine a finalist! Im so happy. This was a hard contest, so many good entries.

  4. Congrats Jack Zegler and all others! Good job everybody!

  5. Oh well, always next time.

  6. Danny Beaty

    Congrats JZ! Thanks for the honorable mention Jeff!

  7. WOO HOO! Third contest I’ve entered and I made the Finals!!! I am glad Headcase made it, but was surprised Succubus didn’t win out over him, but then there were a lot of Femme Fatales in the running.
    Thanks Jeff!!!

    Congrats Jack and all of the finalists!

    I really did think Kes Nal had a lot of potental for a win.

    I thought Mistress Voodoo was awesome and I also geeked out over the flaming skull. Really liked her face and hair too.

    I was also pleased Gaia made it in the finals, she did on my list.

    I was surprised Matriach didn’t make it. She was a little too dark on the color palette for my taste, as wast about 10 others, but a couple of those that was darker than she still made the finals. I LOVED the blood soaked arms even though I don’t particularly like gore, but it was so well done. OH! And do we mention that POSE! Talk about a great pose! and well done costume and leg and face tattoos/paint.

    Ayphorium had my vote for the win, just because it was SO WELL DONE and so unlike any of the others and showed real imagination (NOT that the others didn’t) But when I initally saw the pic it made me go “WOW! I wish I would have done that one!”

    Mowjo was one that was too dark for my taste, I would have like to seen it lightened but I did love the Animal Spirits in the background.

    I really did like Solarium, it initally made me go “WOW!” but seemed a little …. TOO bright LOL. Can’t win for losing, I know.

    I was surprised The Producer didn’t get a mention as a giggle. He did from me! LOL

    I thought Doomsday Spore had a certain something, creepiness for one thing. I liked him.

    Eryziah King was very kewl. I liked his look a lot. The red outline kept him from being too dark

    I liked Goldbrick’s look AND the fact Supes is in the pic … although that may have been against the “no-copywritten characters or images”

    Kryptillian was SO KEWL, not sure if its because or despite his Godzilla look LOL! Also loved the tattered Supe costume in his claws!

    Nypthis was gorgoeus, but needed a few less stars or something, appeared a little “busy”, but as I said, gorgeous.

    Abel was very kewl, but a little TOO Joker. IMHO. But awesome work

    Prometheus struck me as the cutest male villian, which always scores points with me LOL.

    I really like Ruh Tul Xel, the entire tibetan monk in the sow covered montains worked for me. And the name being Lex Luthor backwards was no lost on me. heh

    Loved the tilted Japanese Rising Sun flag behind the Equaliser.

    Voyager was creepy, in a good way.

    I like Da Bomb’s use of the theme, and that dynomite got into the game just in time LOL

    Great work everyone!
    I can’t wait for the Femme Fatales.

  8. Me, Myself & I

    Here’s an idea Jeff. For those people who have not claimed their contest awards; how about rolling them down to the finalists?

  9. Well, I was hoping to see the 2nd version of “Kryptoman” in this, at least in the top, but I respect the others and they’re surely better than me. Congrats to all! I especially loved DiCicitraz’s Solarium. It was awesome!

  10. Congratulations Jack. I could see Kes-Nal in a Superman comic. One of my overall favorites.

    A fun but frustrating contest! Hard to come up with an adversary for the hero who has everything. Especially when trying to stay away from the “guy with kryptonite-girded loins” motif.

    I went with counters to “Truth, Justice (Jack Lane), and the American Way (Danse Macabre)”. knight1192a beat me to “Truth” with The Director!

    My personal favorites:

    * Danny Beaty’s Prometheus – Simple in design, same as Kes-Nal
    * DiCacatriz’s Matriarch – Not as a Superman villain, but way cool design; Solarium – He just looks powerful enough to take on Supes
    * kingmonkey’s Goldbrick – Great pose and costume
    * MSCat’s Lana Luther – If any villain with access to a kryptonite power-suit.
    * rancid’s Lady Besta – The pose and especially the armband; Zyphorium – Sheer originality!

    I have one more but too late for the contest. I’ll post him on the next “Open Discussion” for critique.

    As always, good works all!

  11. I appreciate you guys taking the time to list your favorites and commentary too, that’s cool.

  12. I thought Anomaly would win for sure…oh well

  13. Thanks for the honorable mention! And um, psst…if you look close, you can see that’s actually the blue boyscout himself! I tried to capture him mid-turn, and making a larger, clearer Superman would have required more time than I had (and a better internet connection that won’t crash on me), but looking at it now, I think perhaps an actual cape would have worked better than the fiery effect.

    Thanks again!

  14. William A. Peterson

    Tango, I don’t know if Jeff caught it, but I did!
    That was amazing!

  15. I did indeed catch that, very nicely done Tango!

  16. Tango,
    I caught it and thought it was amazing and and still trying to figure out how you did it. LOL
    Well done.

  17. I made it entirely out of item-right energy items. I figured, if he’s supposed to be in the distance, then you wouldn’t see important details anyway, so why not be a little creative? It passes the squint test, and that’s what matters to me!

  18. Alexander G.

    y am i always at the top of the honorable mentions? =)

  19. Me, Myself & I

    I actually got a kick out of VonMalcolm’s “Wehrwolfn” as well. There were a lot of details that weren’t refined perhaps but the overall feel was pretty cool.

  20. Jack Zelger

    Wow! Great! Thanks a lot, Jeff. I got that one in just at the last minute, afraid it’d be too late. Thanks for the kind compliments from everyone else, too. I think part of my inspiration may have come from years of watching Smallville, where anyone claiming any connection to Krypton has an easy time fooling Clark.

    Oh, and I wouldn’t want to correct the guy who just chose my entry, but the “chain mail” sections of the costume are actually supposed to kind of be solar panels.

    Jeff, I’ll get back to you on a choice of item once I have a chance to think about it.

  21. Oh yeah, those are hexes, not chain scales. Sorry Jack!

  22. Jack Zelger

    That’s okay. You can call them teflon baking pans for all I care. 🙂

  23. Jack Zelger

    Jeff, should I just use the “contact us” e-mail on the site to get in touch?

  24. Jeff, I think you accidentally put one of DiCicatiriz’s characters up twice.

  25. Thanks Jake, I’ve updated the post with the correct DiCicatriz middle entry.

    Alexander G, it’s because your name starts with an “A” and I usually put them in alphabetically.

  26. I really liked angel of deaths chest plate

  27. I like the winner, but i think that you might have meant cropping, not crapping. just saying lol.