Late, but I had to throw my opinion into the hat for this piece.
I’m a huge fan of the unlikely-hero archetype and this definitely portrays that very well. I love the concept, and adore the art style.
This type of stuff always brings back those memories and feelings I used to get watching Saturday morning cartoons, before life made me jaded and bitter as it seems to do to so many of us as we age.
My favorite part of this piece is how the composition uses negative space to really drive it home how much smaller the hero is versus the monstrous bully.
As far as the technical aspects, the textures are incredible and lend themselves very well to the art style. The facial expressions tell a story, and the lighting is spot on. It has that old west, showdown at sundown feel to it or the old classic “meet me in the parking lot after school” routine. Everything from the art style to the composition gets a solid 5 stars from me, great piece.
I’d love to give you constructive criticism, because I’m often that guy in the room that does so for the attention, but honestly I can’t see anything that I can pick out in this image.
As far as any racial undertones or racism that this image supposedly screamed to one unfortunate viewer, I only noticed the child was “African American” as opposed to “a hero” after reading that comment. The last time I checked the color of your skin doesn’t ever dictate whether or not you have what it takes to stand up against the odds in favor of the greater good. When a person sees those racial undertones, I feel it speaks more about the viewer than the artist.
I’m glad that the majority of viewers saw this as intended. I look forward to seeing more of your work.