|"A Happy Little Hitler" inks on bristol|
Initially, I had my subject with the classic cold stare you see in photographs. My wife and I decided to opt for a smile to not only make the work less menacing but to give face to another side of him (the sick bastard had to smile sometime in his life, right?) For my photo reference of a painter, I used a picture of Bob Ross... which also inspired the work's title. The work is curtained at top and bottom with the flags of all the countries Hitler invaded, conquered, and controlled during his reign.
In my portrait, Hitler is painting an image I found in a real Nazi propaganda cartoon depicting The Giant Jew-Bug taking over the world. The Germans used cartoons as propaganda just as the Americans did even via Disney cartoons.
Here is the thumbnail sketch of the original concept for my Happy Little Hitler. I found it rummaging around this morning and thought it was neat to compare. With more complex works such as this, I'll often do a couple of thumbnail sketches before I move on to my final sketch.