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Silk Spectre by AdamHughes Silk Spectre by AdamHughes
Since the ART OF WATCHMEN book has come out, I feel comfortable posting the art I did for the 8 minutes I worked on the film...

First, the back story. I was contacted by representatives of 300 director Zack Snyder, while 300 was in postproduction, about doing designs for 4 of the 6 main characters from WATCHMEN. Zack wanted me to design the look of the characters, and then do 4 'cover-quality' color illustrations to hep convince the suits & ties at Warner Bros. Pictures to green-light his WATCHMEN film.

I did a first round of sketches, talked with Mr. Snyder, did a second round of looser sketches based on our discussions, and then was given the go-ahead to proceed with designing full illustrations. Since I was running late on CATWOMAN covers as well as other things, I was juggling the assignments. Since I do art for whomever yells the loudest, the WATCHMEN stuff took a minor backburner placing on my To Do List. I never heard from them, they never called or e-mailed saying "Hey, hurry up, you bastard!", so I worked on Selina Kyle.

Then, 300 came out.

It did so well in its opening weekend, Warner Bros. green-lit WATCHMEN the following Monday.

I guess my services weren't required, because I never heard back from the WATCHMEN people. I could've finished the color pieces on principle, like a good freelancer, but I'm so slow that my time is kinda precious, and I don't want to waste time drawing something that isn't going to be used. So, I just chalked it up to "That's business...".

The WATCHMEN people contacted me much later, asking for high-rez versions of the sketches for the inevitable ART OF book. I pointed out that, since I never actually did the assignment I was asked to do, I had never been paid. To their credit, once we agreed on a rate for just the sketches, they check arrived so fast, the envelope was warm, the ink was still wet, and the FedEx guy was out of breath. The WATCHMEN movie guys are a pretty respectable gang, as far as my experience goes.

*****Silk Spectre*****

When director Zack Snyder spoke about Silk Spectre, he confessed she was the one character he was really unsure of how to tackle, costume-wise. In the comics, she is pretty much wearing black lingerie covered in a gossamer camisole; he felt that was not gonna work onscreen.

I think he must've been relieved when I blurted out "Dude! Do her outfit in latex! You can make it have the same lines as her comic outfit, but it'll look cool onscreen and all the cosplayers will go nuts; it'll be a big fan-favorite!" When I saw the WATCHMEN trailer in front of DARK KNIGHT, and saw Silk Spectre in latex, I almost turned to the stranger next to me and bragged "That was my idea! Eeee!" Yes, I am functionally retarded.

OK, first sketch, on the left. Pretty basic. It matches Gibbons' design relatively closely, I think. I imagined it as a chin-to-toe full latex suit; that way the actress and stuntwomen would have some protection while kicking alternate 1986 ass. I even thought the gossamer cammy would work. Zack liked it, but wanted her to have a domino mask. Bless his zombies-that-run-fast heart, he wanted to make sure the Watchmen looked like damn superheroes. The second sketch reflects that, plus his request that she have some weapons. I thought those telescoping truncheons would fit the bill.

From what I've seen, the screen version doesn't have a mask, and shouldn't! The actress in the costume looks so PERFECT, they nailed it. Silk Spectre (both 1940s and 1980s versions) should have a fetich quality to the look, and what I see onscreen NAILS IT. I can't wait.
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:iconmarcostnh:
MarcosTNH Featured By Owner Apr 19, 2012  Student Traditional Artist
Amazing sketch man :), your art would be awesome in Watchmen :D
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:iconrugely:
Rugely Featured By Owner Oct 23, 2011  Professional General Artist
Wow! These little bits of background just make the movie all that much more for me. Great call on the outfit :)
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:iconforeverzerodragon:
ForeverZeroDragon Featured By Owner Feb 18, 2011  Hobbyist General Artist
silk spectre, what a beautie :D
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:icondarkknightjrk:
DarkKnightJRK Featured By Owner Jul 27, 2010  Student Traditional Artist
Awesome stuff--shame you could design more, but it looks like you were influential in at least one costume. :)

I'm trying to figure out what that is surrounding both of them there--some kind-of clear cape?
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:iconcherry-mary:
cherry-mary Featured By Owner Jul 14, 2010
Latex? LOL her name is Silk Spectre not Latex Lass! How can she be Silk Spectre if she doesn’t have any silk on her?
(Please don't take offense I'm a big fan of your artwork .^^;)
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:iconadamhughes:
AdamHughes Featured By Owner Jul 15, 2010
No offense taken. :-)

The director felt they couldn't have a female streetfighting crimefighter in silk lingerie, so they asked me for my input. I suggested latex. I actually suggested a gossamer silk wrap, but it was rejected. If you need any rationalization, she's actually Silk Spectre II, inheriting the name from her mother, who actually wore silk when she fought crime.

:-)
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:iconcherry-mary:
cherry-mary Featured By Owner Jul 19, 2010
XD Yes, that’s a good explanation. She was never that thrilled about being a super hero anyway so it would be in character for her not to care about the silk thing at all. Thanks for humoring me I always appreciate it when people can take a joke. lol
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:iconkickmaster123:
kickmaster123 Featured By Owner Nov 7, 2009
that looks better then her movie adaptation.
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:iconkaffepanna:
kaffepanna Featured By Owner Nov 7, 2009  Professional Traditional Artist
it still kills me that to see her without that poncho/cape of yours. PERFECTION.
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:iconziggyman:
Ziggyman Featured By Owner Mar 30, 2009  Professional General Artist
You really help a lot to the visual imaginery of the movie, Adam.
Reply
:iconartema:
Artema Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2009  Hobbyist Digital Artist
"Dude! Do her outfit in latex! You can make it have the same lines as her comic outfit, but it'll look cool onscreen and all the cosplayers will go nuts; it'll be a big fan-favorite!"

lol! As a cosplayer, I thank you from the bottom of my heart for thinking of us. :D
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:iconadamhughes:
AdamHughes Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2009
You're very welcome!

I have many cosplayer pals, and ya gotta look after your pals.

:-)
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:iconartema:
Artema Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2009  Hobbyist Digital Artist
That's so cool. \o/ It's always nice to have a friend in high places, lol.

I wouldn't be surprised to see someone cosplay your version of SS, too. Lord knows we love our obscure variations. x3
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:iconadamhughes:
AdamHughes Featured By Owner Mar 5, 2009
I think my cosplay pals are referring to me when they say "I have low friends in high places".

I look forward to a summer of Silk Spectres, of all designs!

:-)
Reply
:icontextosterone:
textosterone Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2009
Pretty much reading on anything/everything I can in prep for re-creating your latex-y version for SD Comic-Con. So glad I was able to view and read your story. Now I know who to blame for every pin-prick I get from constructing this monstrosity.

Thank you for your contributions and hard work. I've always admired your work and am glad to know more of it exists in the things I take the most pleasure in :)
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:icondsantiag:
dsantiag Featured By Owner Feb 25, 2009  Professional General Artist
First off, let me say that I admire your artwork, sir! Damn near perfect all the time. Secondly, I admire your writing in your Artist's Comments section for this series of drawings. Very enlightening, humorous, friendly, and fun to read! Well done!
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:iconadamhughes:
AdamHughes Featured By Owner Feb 25, 2009
Thank you very much!
Reply
:iconsir-real:
Sir-Real Featured By Owner Feb 15, 2009  Hobbyist General Artist
Yeah, the Silk Spectre is definetly hot in any version.
Reply
:iconpeppermint-polly:
peppermint-polly Featured By Owner Feb 11, 2009
Your mention to the cosplayers was part funny, part lovely, and full of win.
Reply
:iconhawkeye:
hawkeye Featured By Owner Feb 10, 2009
Gorgeous version of her!
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:iconmaxgarcia:
Maxgarcia Featured By Owner Feb 8, 2009  Hobbyist General Artist
I love the dynamism of his female figures.

Hug
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:iconbrianbuster:
brianbuster Featured By Owner Feb 8, 2009
she looks like morgan webb of g4 fame. great job.
Reply
:iconsailorbetch:
SailorBetch Featured By Owner Feb 7, 2009
:iconomfgplz: AH!!! I now see that you DID indeed do a design for Silk Spectre!!!
This is very remarkable. I love how you kept the sheer fabric aspect in. I like it. :D
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:iconschizoidentity:
SchizoidEntity Featured By Owner Feb 7, 2009
I admire you so much...!
Reply
:iconslownsilent:
slownsilent Featured By Owner Feb 7, 2009  Student General Artist
Oh man. Wow. Now I just can't wait for the movie! These are great. Can't believe you had a piece of this movie action.
Reply
:icongorgonbreath:
gorgonbreath Featured By Owner Feb 7, 2009  Hobbyist
As always, great work.

Correct call on the mask; as I recall, neither the modern Silk Spectre, nor her mother, operated incognito.
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:iconbetotron:
Betotron Featured By Owner Feb 5, 2009  Professional Traditional Artist
I die to see this movie!!
Reply
:iconel-inker:
El-Inker Featured By Owner Feb 5, 2009
really beuty!
Reply
:iconsean-izaakse:
sean-izaakse Featured By Owner Feb 5, 2009
Oh and I dunno if you've seen this cool representation of the Silk Spectre by Ruby Rocket [link] it's actually not bad. Not as hot as the latex version, but still cool.
Reply
:iconhd-2:
HD-2 Featured By Owner Feb 5, 2009  Hobbyist General Artist
LORD, HOW LONG TO DO these girls?
Are perfect.
drawing many girls, but takes a long time.
a quick tip?
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:iconadamhughes:
AdamHughes Featured By Owner Feb 5, 2009
A quick tip?

Take as much time as it needs!

:-)

-AH!-
Reply
:iconhd-2:
HD-2 Featured By Owner Feb 6, 2009  Hobbyist General Artist
A simple clue, but that is worth a lot,
mainly coming of a master.
:)
Thanks, Master!
Reply
:iconucok-zs:
ucok-zs Featured By Owner Feb 5, 2009  Professional General Artist
Very nice artwork, Mr. Adam! :)
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:iconigm-transformer:
igm-transformer Featured By Owner Feb 4, 2009
very nice
Reply
:iconseapeny:
SeaPeny Featured By Owner Feb 4, 2009  Professional Photographer
Yay your idea!! I love that feeling. :D Awesome sketches. :thumbsup: I'm so excited for this movie.
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:iconmarmeladejam:
marmeladeJAM Featured By Owner Feb 4, 2009
These are gorgeous.
And thanks for giving Snyder the latex idea. Brilliant!!!
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:iconmarron:
marron Featured By Owner Feb 4, 2009  Professional Digital Artist
I really dig these sketches, too, but I agree that the mask is a little much. Still great concept pieces, though!
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:iconbard1:
bard1 Featured By Owner Feb 4, 2009
Yeah! I remember seeing the first trailer and Silk Spectre was coming down the stairs almost sideways, and was sexy as hell! And I thought that was skin until I noticed the folds and thought they nailed it:) Good thing they went to you first!

I don't know the actress' name but she nailed the look! My only wish was that they kept NiteOwl stocky:{ Maybe he still is, under the rubbersuit?
Anyway..great designs! I almost picked up that Watchmen Portrait book, but I didn't know what it was:P
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:icondegrassiaddict:
DegrassiAddict Featured By Owner Feb 3, 2009  Student Traditional Artist
great character designs. I would wear those clothes. :lol:
Reply
:iconenmity88:
EnMity88 Featured By Owner Feb 3, 2009
"Bless his zombies-that-run-fast heart" :lol:
Love these! From 1-10 she get's a :hump:
Seriously those are amazing, though for me the domino mask is a little much.
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:iconadamhughes:
AdamHughes Featured By Owner Feb 3, 2009
I didn't care for the mask either, but the director wanted to see how she'd look in one.
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:iconaurianfae:
aurianfae Featured By Owner Feb 3, 2009
She looks awesome! I was never too keen on the original version. Maybe it was too eighties for me, or maybe too... lingeree. But I really like this design! :D I'm looking forward to see the movie.
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:iconjordilupo:
JordiLupo Featured By Owner Feb 3, 2009
Jeje :clap:
Reply
:iconroseredautumn:
roseredautumn Featured By Owner Feb 3, 2009  Student Traditional Artist
wooooot! good for you. I really like the designs, and can't wait for this movie.
Reply
:iconmanicouch:
manicouch Featured By Owner Feb 3, 2009
Even though she's not my favorite, this is still awesome! You did her justice. :]

Also, l;sadhgffjgksdflkas WATCHMEN.
Reply
:iconbamfcentaur:
BAMFCentaur Featured By Owner Feb 3, 2009   Digital Artist
You're right; the cosplayers have gone nuts. I'm one of em :XD: I've got a movie-version Silk II costume that's about 90% done:
[link]

I love the version on the right! Great sketches! I always love seeing your work
Reply
:iconadamhughes:
AdamHughes Featured By Owner Feb 3, 2009
LOL, thanks for having my back. I'm friends with a few cosplayers, and I know the secret to success in any venture is KNOW YOUR AUDIENCE. I have friends who have LOVED awful, awful films, just because the costumes were worth the price of admission. The big secret to grabbing the fancy of the genre audience: make your characters cosplay-cool.

It's nice to know I can be right sometimes! Whee!

-AH!-
Reply
:iconbamfcentaur:
BAMFCentaur Featured By Owner Feb 3, 2009   Digital Artist
And by right, I meant left. *facepalm* But they're both fantastic.
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:iconlexikimble:
LexiKimble Featured By Owner Feb 3, 2009  Professional Digital Artist
I've been working on my Silk SPectre costume since I saw the first photos. The latex idea was brilliant (and very hot), I'm really tickled that it was your idea.
Reply
:iconmonamourmalade:
MonAmourMalade Featured By Owner Feb 3, 2009  Professional General Artist
Wow, I wonder if they will credit you/Thanks To you at all for pretty much coming up with the idea. It would have been awesome if you had more involvement with the film, but even this is great.

Like others have said, it's great to see sketches of an artist's work, not just the finished piece.
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