Looking back, I wish I’d spent as much time on the human figures as I did on the monster, but still, for a sketch, I enjoyed drawing The Haunter of the Dark. Lovecraft’s final horror story was adapted into a full atmospheric reading by HP Podcraft, and re-listening to it, I was struck by how dreamy it is: an archetypal vision of dark crumbling streets and doomed antiquarians almost like an early Thomas Ligotti story (although I guess the influence is vice versa). There’s some evocative images there.
And of course, the star of the piece is Nyarlathotep, the Haunter itself. I’d always pictured its monstrous form as having bat wings, but rereading the story, I realized the only definite adjectives attached to its form are that it’s really huge, it’s got wings (not specifically *bat* wings), and the “three-lobed burning eye”. For this drawing I went with a moth-like shape, or rather a mishmash of moths and various other arthropods, with hopefully not too much of the inevitable H.R. Giger influence. It moves across the night sky almost like a smoke, like a cloud, so perhaps it has no stable physical form. Perhaps it’s not a body at all but a radiance (an anti-light radiance), a thing that fills all open spaces instantly and smothers everything the moment it is unleashed, like Cyaegha in Eddy C. Bertin’s “Darkness, My Name Is.” For the three-lobed eye, I gave Nyarlathotep the ankh-eye I used in “The Dream-Quest of Unknown Kadath,” although I’m sure that really, the Faceless God wouldn’t be pinned down by any consistent physical attribute between all its forms.
I’m working now on the next page of “The Doom That Came to Sarnath.” Thanks for looking at these sketches in the meantime! Coming up, more architectural drawings, plus cats, ghouls and sea monsters!