I’ve been asked to do an illustration cover for a Harryhausen fanzine with the subject of Gwangi. I decide to take as inspiration for the background a matte painting made by Gerald Larn for the film showing some weird rock formations entering the valley. Then I added Gwangi.
It is not a matte painting, but was inspired on a matte work, so I think you would enjoy it.
Regards and have a merry Christmas.
Some years ago I had the fortune to visit "La Ciudad Encantada" (the Enchanted City), where the dinosaur scenes were filmed for Gwangi, several times when I lived in Spain. It is just outside the city of Cuenca, in the province of La Mancha, of Don Quijote fame, and is world-renowned for its hanging houses (casas colgadas). The road to the rock formations runs along a beautiful river gorge and there is a marvellous scenic overlook of the river which would be perfect for painting from. The rock formations are incredible, many like giant rock mushrooms. If you ever get the chance to visit it, go for it, it will be well worth your while.
'The Valley of Gwangi' is my all time #1 favorite Harryhausen film. Your cover art is most certainly a fitting tribute... Excellent!
Nice work, it's definitely Gwangi and not just any old dinosaur.
I’m glad you liked the painting.
Martin, yes I went to Cuenca couple of times. It is very close to Madrid where I live, and I couldn’t resist visiting the rocky formations of Enchanted city, and also the cathedral where Gwangi died. Cuenca is a nice place to visit, and even more if you are a fan of Harryhausen.
Thanks Ron and Nick, I really tried to make a truthful portrait of Gwangi.
When I visited Spain many years ago I stayed in Cuenca. I was wandering around the old city and found the cathedral square. I thought it looked familiar but couldn't place it. It wasn't until I got home and processed my film (appropriately enough for a dinosaur movie) that I recognized the cathedral as Gwangi's tomb.
Probably just as well. I'd get some weird looks doing allosaurus impressions on the stairs.