We’re seeing the city of Thark for the first time. As best I could ascertain from the text (and I could of course be wrong), it seems that Burroughs based the design upon the ancient walled Abbasid Baghdad, just on steroids. I’ve followed his lead here. It’s one of those awkward and unsettling (for me) “Great White Hope” moments in the text, here being the non-European used as reference for something old and abandoned – moved on from. We also see middle eastern architecture referenced throughout the work of many artists illustrating the Mars books so there’s also a certain legacy to this approach. But I acknowledge these things as I can.
I continue my current obsession on this comic of cleanly separated fore-mid- and background. It becomes a wee bit trickier here, as I’m also using some deep perspective and angles.
Additionally, the tharks are all a bit too big for the city around them, which can make the angles and perspective look strange if you’re not careful. Your mind assumes certain things about person-to-door/building ratio, and it doesn’t play out well in space when your characters are almost twice that height. Grounding the figures in the space around them helps a lot with this, as does keeping Carter in frame as a POV point. Note how diminutive he is in the top panel.
Finally, thark ladies. They’ve been represented in a multitude of ways as you can well imagine. I just made sure that I followed the books – slightly smaller/more diminutive, longer, sharper tusks, and a lighter skin tone. From there, I’m just using the same body structure as the males, insofar as basic musculature and skeletal decisions. Then allotments for differences in basic male and female anatomy (as applied to tharks of course), and as I go forward hopefully a lot of individuality in body size, shape, and personality within those confines.