Here you can see some of the steps of my painting "sacrifaz"
I started with a simple grey values and a little area of color to focus the view on the head, the client like it but was afraid that the weight on the illustration focus all the attention at the bottom of the image.
Color Sketch and fix:
Here I changed the camera angle to add more action to the scene, in the past sketch the creature looks like it was waiting that the boat enter alone to it mouth, so I keep the idea but with a more action camera angle. I decided to lose the big horns and add more mouth.
1st pass Render:
I was a little short of time so I painted directly on greys, is not a good idea if you want variations on your illustration but this technique saves some time for me. As you can see here I changed the boat angle to evade paint all the little sailors dying on him and focus more on the sea creature. I add some fog and the client asked separate layers (I hate that) so that's why the back part of the body looks still less integrated with the background.
2nd pass Render and fix with a new idea:
Yeah, I know what you are thinking, what the hell is that cow in the face of the creature!? XD Well, I was looking for some texture and this little fellow appear and I thought.. hey, that fish eye camera looks cool on that cow.. mmmm let's try add that face to my painting.
And as you can see the face looks strong and scary with that angle, so I started to repaint the creature face over this crazy cow xD
And this is the final painting as you can see on my gallery!
I hope you like it and I will post more info and step by step on my journal