This painting is another request response. In this case, the prompt was:
Tanka-Loka is a spirit of nature that takes the form of a stag. Larger than a horse, he has a shaggy, black hide, with a silver mane down his neck. His antlers are dark grey at the roots and grow whiter as they branch out.
I was intrigued by this request because I wanted to work on my fur-making skillset, and because the color scheme reminded me a lot of a drawing stage I went through myself- for a while, I drew practically nothing other than a lot of hooved critters in shades of black, white, and grey.
The aforementioned fur: I made this fur in stages. First, as usual I laid down my basic colors, and then used a 50% brush and eyedropper to fade from one color to the next. Then I did some hightlights, shadows, and shaping. At that point I just threw on a shaped fur texture with layer overlay on to see how far I'd gotten, and to my surprise that made it practically done. I had to erase away some where the texture was too much, and find a more granular texture for the hooves, horns and nose, but that was about it.
Background: This is a sad excuse for a background. Lazy. On the bright side, I think it was the push I needed to start really playing with brush adjustments.