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Child Soldier by CrimsonMagpie Child Soldier by CrimsonMagpie
I drew and painted this for the fifth issue of the Brooklyn illustrated newspaper Thunk, and as that issue has now been released I can show it to you guys! :dummy:


This is obviously indented to fit with the whole Kony thing that was popular a while back. I never actually read anything about the issue, but an image like this is easy enough to put together, since (to the astonishment of the trendy idiots of the world) child soldiers existed before Kony was kewl and hip.

I put in some carefully considered details to add more impact to the image.... Notice that the gun is a US Armalite rather than the typical Kalashnikov one expects in images like these. Research confirmed that some militias obtain these rifles, and also note that it's a 1960s vintage M16, not a modern M4. ;)

The editor told me that this image has gotten a lot of positive feedback from their readers. :happybounce:



Ink & watercolour on paper, 29 x 42cm
Add a Comment:
 
:iconreznov1941:
I like this image.I love these details in it like the Elmo doll he holds which shows how they are forced in a war they do not understand and how it's ruined their childhood.Also the way the child looks that he dosen't care and ijust wants to go home and get food really impacts you and the vest is a little oversized is just perfect.Little minor problems are it seems a litttle too cartoonish and maybe it's the technique.I'm not sure.Overall it's a terrific piece with some minor flaws that you could easily fix.

P.S. This is my first Critique.So it may have problems.
What do you think?
The Artist thought this was FAIR
3 out of 3 deviants thought this was fair.

The Artist has requested Critique on this Artwork

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:icongreenleaftheservine:
GreenLeafTheServine Featured By Owner Apr 28, 2014  Hobbyist Artist
That Elmo Doll Is Creepy :/
Reply
:iconcrimsonmagpie:
CrimsonMagpie Featured By Owner Apr 29, 2014  Professional Traditional Artist
Is a non-creepy Elmo doll possible? :noes:
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:iconarmygeneral13:
Armygeneral13 Featured By Owner Aug 3, 2013  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
where i come from in Ohio there are a lot of Somalian refugees and most of the teens have fought in wars. it's a very sad thing if you think of it
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:iconcrimsonmagpie:
CrimsonMagpie Featured By Owner Sep 6, 2013  Professional Traditional Artist
Indeed it is, although one could also think about the fact that many teenagers lied about their age in WW1 specifically because they wanted to fight on the frontline. Attitudes change a lot over time.... :p
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:iconarmygeneral13:
Armygeneral13 Featured By Owner Sep 7, 2013  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
yup
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:iconpittbull44:
pittbull44 Featured By Owner Jul 7, 2013
That just reminded me of Somalia
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:iconcrimsonmagpie:
CrimsonMagpie Featured By Owner Jul 9, 2013  Professional Traditional Artist
Whilst it's meant to be a depiction of African child soldiery in general, it was indeed inspired by Somalia, from where many reference photos can unfortunately be found. :noes:
Reply
:iconkurobei:
kurobei Featured By Owner Jun 15, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Very poignant and sad. The juxtaposition of big, wholesome brands and military gear got me pausing for though. Great style, thought provoking stuff.
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:iconcrimsonmagpie:
CrimsonMagpie Featured By Owner Jun 17, 2013  Professional Traditional Artist
Thanks, I'm glad it comes across well, and that the use of recognisable branding works as intended! :meow:
Reply
:iconqueen-of-olympus:
queen-of-olympus Featured By Owner Feb 12, 2013  Student General Artist
Hey I wanted to tell you that I love this piece and I'm in an advanced class. I know it's a little late, but my friend used it in his report for "A Long Way Gone" by Ishmael Beah and thought you deserved to know.
Reply
:iconcrimsonmagpie:
CrimsonMagpie Featured By Owner Sep 29, 2013  Professional Traditional Artist
Super late reply, sorry!

Thanks for letting me know that, it's cool to know people find my work appropriate for such things! How did your friend's report go, did they get a good score? =p
Reply
:iconqueen-of-olympus:
queen-of-olympus Featured By Owner Sep 29, 2013  Student General Artist
They got a 98
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:iconcrimsonmagpie:
CrimsonMagpie Featured By Owner Sep 30, 2013  Professional Traditional Artist
Nice! :iconbritishplz:
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:iconfixmeknow:
FixMeKnow Featured By Owner Jan 4, 2013
You did an awesome job! I love the expression on his face.
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:iconcrimsonmagpie:
CrimsonMagpie Featured By Owner Jan 5, 2013  Professional Traditional Artist
Why thank-you! :iconbritishplz:
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:iconjaakobou:
jaakobou Featured By Owner Dec 22, 2012
Nice work. I'm thinking real child soldiers tend to have, besides dead eyes, cheaper rifles like AK-47s and other shittier models. Also, if not holding their rifle with both hands, they tend to have a cigarette in the other.
Reply
:iconcrimsonmagpie:
CrimsonMagpie Featured By Owner Jan 1, 2013  Professional Traditional Artist
Thanks! Although I researched the subject somewhat, I decided to deliberately take some artistic liberties, including amping up the cute factor with the eyes and Elmo doll, although the inclusion of the M-16 was validated through image research. I also figured it's light weight would make it a little easier for a child to use compared to an AK. :p
Reply
:iconluxkrux:
luxkrux Featured By Owner Dec 16, 2012
When I first read "KONY 2012", I was thinking, "who is Kony and what party does he represent?"

But anyway, this is nice.
Reply
:iconcrimsonmagpie:
CrimsonMagpie Featured By Owner Dec 17, 2012  Professional Traditional Artist
I've never actually read anything about Kony, I know next to nothing about him apart from the very basics. :lol:

Thanks, I just drew on the emotional elements of the whole situation in Africa for it! :iconbritishplz;
Reply
:iconultimaodin:
Ultimaodin Featured By Owner Oct 22, 2012  Student Artist
I really like how the Elmo toy adds innocence to this. I'm not sure about the jaggy style on the back of his head though as it makes his head seem more menacing than the gun. Otherwise I still really love this style.
Reply
:iconcrimsonmagpie:
CrimsonMagpie Featured By Owner Sep 29, 2013  Professional Traditional Artist
Oh such lateness! :nuu:

Cheers, I hope it doesn't get me into trouble (copyright and all that), but thought a recognisable toy brand would add some punch. You are right about his head, but my style at the time was very jagged, with lots of aggressive linework. Not ideal for drawing a child but there you go.... =p
Reply
:iconkazzzak:
KaZZZaK Featured By Owner Sep 19, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Wow... This is really cool!... I mean of course, this is terrible... But the picture is very strong.
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:iconcrimsonmagpie:
CrimsonMagpie Featured By Owner Sep 20, 2012  Professional Traditional Artist
Thanks, I'm glad you think so! :manhug:
Reply
Flagged as Spam
:iconcrimsonmagpie:
CrimsonMagpie Featured By Owner Sep 4, 2012  Professional Traditional Artist
Learn to type, silly little boy. :spank:

If you put as much effort into art as you did into being a dick you might be half as good as me. :pat:
Reply
:iconrainylake:
rainylake Featured By Owner Sep 1, 2012  Hobbyist Photographer
Wonderful work! Very emotive.
Reply
:iconcrimsonmagpie:
CrimsonMagpie Featured By Owner Sep 2, 2012  Professional Traditional Artist
Thank-you! :iconproudplz:
Reply
:iconitachi1deidara:
itachi1deidara Featured By Owner Aug 7, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
this pic tells so much in so little :iconcryforeverplz:
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:iconl0ne-w0lf:
L0NE-W0lf Featured By Owner Jul 16, 2012
Congrats on the professional level, with such continual appreciation and recognition from magazines and other public responses.
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:iconcrimsonmagpie:
CrimsonMagpie Featured By Owner Jul 17, 2012  Professional Traditional Artist
Thanks, it means a lot to hear that! :la:
Reply
:iconl0ne-w0lf:
L0NE-W0lf Featured By Owner Jul 18, 2012
Definitely! I'm very happy for your success. :hug:
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:iconthe-build:
The-Build Featured By Owner Jul 15, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Nice piece of work, I especially like the details like his expression and the elmo doll, helps draw a little more on the seriousness of the issue.
Reply
:iconcrimsonmagpie:
CrimsonMagpie Featured By Owner Jul 18, 2012  Professional Traditional Artist
Thanks, I thought adding some elements that Western audiences would recognise and identify with would add a little more impact to the image. :manhug:
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:iconthe-build:
The-Build Featured By Owner Jul 18, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Not a problem, well addressed concept.

Also, are you free for an idea or two via note or email, I've had some rather large news...
Reply
:iconcrimsonmagpie:
CrimsonMagpie Featured By Owner Jul 21, 2012  Professional Traditional Artist
Glad you think so! :iconproudplz:

I've got quite a lot of comic work on my plate at the moment, but send away and I'll make room for it. =p
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:iconthe-build:
The-Build Featured By Owner Jul 21, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Done and done, hope you enjoy. :icongrinstareplz:
Reply
:iconcrimsonmagpie:
CrimsonMagpie Featured By Owner Jul 21, 2012  Professional Traditional Artist
I shall not reply tonight, as I'm drunk now, but I did enjoy. :icongrinstareplz:
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:iconthe-build:
The-Build Featured By Owner Jul 21, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
I'm glad you enjoyed and yay for drunkenness, is tintin trying to get you hammered again?
Reply
:iconcrimsonmagpie:
CrimsonMagpie Featured By Owner Jul 21, 2012  Professional Traditional Artist
Not exactly, but it's her birthday tomorrow, so we went for a meal and some drinks earlier. =p
Reply
(1 Reply)
:iconastrikos:
Astrikos Featured By Owner Jul 3, 2012   General Artist
That's really powerful., The composition is really real abnd creative, and deep. Lots of impact here.

Your shading style is awesome, I like the colors as well. Lovely!~

I also really like the way it's outlined. Awesome work!
Reply
:iconcrimsonmagpie:
CrimsonMagpie Featured By Owner Sep 17, 2012  Professional Traditional Artist
Thanks, all the outlining is done with a dip-pen like this [link] It's a real bugger to use, but the results are worth it. :hug:
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:iconastrikos:
Astrikos Featured By Owner Sep 18, 2012   General Artist
:heart: Aw that's awesome!
Reply
:icongzegzolka:
gzegzolka Featured By Owner Jul 3, 2012
Awesome work, it show a lot of emotions. While Kalashnikov would be easier to find there, sure, some groups use USA firearms as leavings of old colonial times or short termed diplomatic missions.
Reply
:iconcrimsonmagpie:
CrimsonMagpie Featured By Owner Sep 17, 2012  Professional Traditional Artist
Thanks dude, I thought the M-16 would make a nice little statement that an AK couldn't make. =p
Reply
:icongzegzolka:
gzegzolka Featured By Owner Sep 18, 2012
M-16 and AK are like borders of influence of big countries and they politics.
Reply
:iconchi77y:
Chi77y Featured By Owner Jul 2, 2012  Hobbyist Interface Designer
:iconcheerplz:
Reply
:iconcrimsonmagpie:
CrimsonMagpie Featured By Owner Jul 3, 2012  Professional Traditional Artist
:icontarddanceplz:
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:iconchi77y:
Chi77y Featured By Owner Jul 5, 2012  Hobbyist Interface Designer
:B
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:iconskulkey:
skulkey Featured By Owner Jul 1, 2012  Professional Digital Artist
excellent. it's powerful in it's relative simplicity (no background, forcing your attention on the subject). the doll and t-shirt are a nice touch, forcing you to consider it is really a child holding that very large weapon.
Reply
:iconcrimsonmagpie:
CrimsonMagpie Featured By Owner Sep 18, 2012  Professional Traditional Artist
Thanks dude, since this is a newspaper cartoon I thought the doll would be acceptable, since subtlety isn't a requirement of tabloid illustrations. =p
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Submitted on
June 30, 2012
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