I went for a distressed look because, frankly, the wild, nebulous background was too closely approaching tie-dye.
The face of a Deep One, H.P. Lovecraft’s race of fish-people who lived on a reef off the coast of New England in the chilling story ‘The Shadow over Innsmouth’. As frightening as Lovecraft described the ocean-dwelling Deep Ones, those who lived on land in the forgotten town were worse: in a quick glance they may have passed as human, but upon closer inspection one may have noticed their large, unblinking eyes, oddly misshapen heads, or the curious, gill-like folds of flesh on their necks. I shudder even trying to illustrate them. I chose a deep-sea anglerfish as a template to emphasize its alien-ness.
I am quite fond of interpreting the works of H.P. Lovecraft and illustrating the myriad beasties he described.