A long, long time ago, I promised my own artisitic interpretation of Great Lord Cthulhu, the best-known of H. P. Lovecraft's morbious Great Old Ones. That promise was not made in vain--in fact, I have been tirelessly attempting a reconstruction ever since. Cthulhu is terribly difficult to draw. The goal is always to capture the raw horror of Lovecraftian lore, while avoiding Earthly analogues as much as possible. Now, granted, Cthulhu is described as having various anthropomorphic features, but it was my goal to steer away from that. You see far too many bat-winged, claw-handed squidy demigods in Lovecraft art. But alas, those pieces have their grounding in the literature. From the titular Call of Cthulhu:
"...simultaneous pictures of an octopus, a dragon, and a human caricature.... A pulpy, tentacled head surmounted a grotesque and scaly body with rudimentary wings. Another, recovered by police from a raid on a murderous cult, "represented a monster of vaguely anthropoid outline, but with an octopus-like head whose face was a mass of feelers, a scaly, rubbery-looking body, prodigious claws on hind and fore feet, and long, narrow wings behind."
In all of Lovecraft's descriptions of the beast, the octopus head and narrow wings persist. As for the anthropoid outline, perhaps this is a case where man sees himself in all things. Merely having a head and two arms might give Cthulhu his hominoid characters according to the madmen describing him in the literature. Claws on the hind and fore feet? How about claws instead of hind and fore feet? The octopus head is more suggestive of a boneless, muscular body. Perhaps Cthulhu is more mollusc than tetrapod? Perhaps Great Lord Cthulhu looked something like this:
Here, the arms end in horrible tentacles, the lower body is a sort of hellish caterpiller, and the wings are not wings at all, but elongate spineous processes. Bear in mind this is only a DRAFT. It's the first Cthulhu drawing I've done that I didn't absolutely hate. Let me know what you think! Lovecraftian beasties are terribly hard to get "right." And remember, I've drawn one other: Dagon, from the story of the same name.