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Dead Moon: How to Appreciate Luis Royo's Art and Storytelling

Dead Moon: A Masterpiece of Fantasy Art by Luis Royo

If you are a fan of fantasy art, you have probably heard of Luis Royo, one of the most renowned and prolific artists in the genre. His works have been published in numerous art books, magazines, and other media, covering a wide range of topics such as mythology, science fiction, erotica, and horror. But among his many creations, there is one that stands out for its beauty, originality, and depth: Dead Moon.

[Extra quality] dead moon luis royo

Dead Moon is an art book that tells a fantastic tale of love and war between two characters: Luna and Marte. It was first published in 2009 by Norma Editorial, Heavy Metal, and Rizzoli Lizard, and it has been praised by critics and fans alike as an extra quality work of art. In this article, we will explore what makes Dead Moon so special, from its captivating story to its stunning artwork.

The story of Dead Moon

Dead Moon is set in a fictional city that resembles a medieval Asian metropolis. The city is divided into two rival factions: the Yakuza, who control the east side, and the Monzón, who rule the west side. The Yakuza are led by Luna, a beautiful and fierce warrior who wears a white mask with a red crescent moon. The Monzón are led by Marte, a handsome and powerful fighter who wears a black mask with a red full moon.

The two leaders are destined to meet and fall in love, but their love is forbidden by their families and their clans. They have to hide their relationship from their enemies and their allies, while they also face the threats of a mysterious plague that is spreading across the city, killing people and turning them into zombies. Their love is tested by betrayal, violence, and death, as they struggle to survive in a hostile world.

The story of Dead Moon is inspired by classic tales such as Romeo and Juliet, Tristan and Isolde, and Samson and Delilah. It explores themes such as passion, loyalty, sacrifice, revenge, and destiny. It also incorporates elements of mythology, astrology, alchemy, and magic. The story is told through Royo's illustrations, which are accompanied by brief texts that narrate the events from different perspectives.

The symbolism and the style of Dead Moon

One of the most striking aspects of Dead Moon is its use of symbolism and style. Royo uses colors, shapes, patterns, and motifs to convey different meanings and emotions. For example:

  • The red color represents blood, fire, passion, and danger. It is used to highlight the masks of Luna and Marte, as well as their weapons, wounds, and tattoos.

  • The white color represents purity, light, moonlight, and death. It is used to contrast with the dark backgrounds of the cityscape.

  • The black color represents darkness, shadow, nightfall, and mystery. It is used to create a sense of gloom, fear, and suspense.

  • The moon symbolizes love, femininity, and cycles. It is associated with Luna, who is named after it, and who has a crescent moon on her mask.

  • The sun symbolizes power, masculinity, and eternity. It is associated with Marte, who is named after the Roman god of war, and who has a full moon on his mask.

  • The dragon symbolizes strength, wisdom, and transformation. It is a recurring motif in the book, appearing in different forms and contexts.

Royo's style is influenced by various sources, such as manga, anime, comics, movies, and paintings. He combines realistic and detailed depictions of the human body, especially the female one, with stylized and exaggerated expressions of movement, action, and emotion. He also mixes traditional and digital techniques, using pencils, inks, oils, acrylics, and Photoshop to create his images.

The artwork of Dead Moon

Dead Moon is a showcase of Royo's artistic skills and vision. The book contains 128 pages of full-color illustrations, ranging from sketches to paintings, that depict the characters, the settings, and the scenes of the story. The artwork is impressive for its quality, variety, and creativity.

The techniques and the tools of Dead Moon

Royo uses different techniques and tools to create his artwork for Dead Moon. He starts with pencil sketches that define the composition, the perspective, and the anatomy of the figures. Then he adds ink lines to refine the shapes and the details. Next he applies color with oils or acrylics, using brushes or airbrushes. Finally he retouches the images with Photoshop, adding effects such as lighting, shadows, textures, and filters.

Royo also uses different tools to enhance his artwork for Dead Moon. He uses references such as photographs, models, costumes, and props to achieve realism and accuracy. He also uses software such as Poser and Daz Studio to create 3D models of the characters and the environments. He then uses these models as a base for his drawings and paintings.

The influences and the references of Dead Moon

Royo draws inspiration from various sources for his artwork for Dead Moon. He acknowledges the influence of artists such as Frank Frazetta, Moebius, Katsuhiro Otomo, Yoshitaka Amano, Hajime Sorayama, Boris Vallejo, and Julie Bell. He also cites references from genres such as fantasy, science fiction, horror, erotica, and steampunk. He also pays homage to works such as Blade Runner, Ghost in the Shell, Akira, and The Crow.

The challenges and the achievements of Dead Moon

Royo faced several challenges while creating his artwork for Dead Moon. He had to balance his personal vision with the expectations of his publishers and his fans. He had to adapt his style to a different format and a different audience. He had to deal with technical difficulties such as deadlines, printing quality, and digital editing. He also had to overcome his own doubts, frustrations, and insecurities.

Despite these challenges, Royo achieved remarkable results with his artwork for Dead Moon. He created a unique and original work that showcases his talent and his passion. He expressed his ideas and his feelings through his images. He captured the attention and the imagination of his readers. He received positive feedback and recognition from his peers and his critics. He established himself as one of the masters of fantasy art.

The reception of Dead Moon

Dead Moon was well received by both critics and fans when it was released in 2009. It sold thousands of copies worldwide, and it was translated into several languages. It also won several awards, such as the Spectrum Award for Best Book in 2010, and the Imaginales Award for Best Illustrated Book in 2011. It also received praise from other artists, such as George R.R. Martin, who wrote the introduction for the book.

The critics and the fans of Dead Moon

The critics praised Dead Moon for its artistic quality, its originality, and its depth. They highlighted Royo's skillful use of color, light, and contrast to create stunning images that convey emotion and atmosphere. They also appreciated Royo's ability to tell a compelling story through his illustrations, without relying on excessive text or dialogue. They also recognized Royo's influences and references, but they also noted his personal touch and vision.

The fans loved Dead Moon for its beauty, its fantasy, and its romance. They admired Royo's depiction of Luna and Marte, as well as their relationship. They were fascinated by Royo's creation of a rich and complex world that mixes different cultures and genres. They were also moved by Royo's exploration of themes such as love, war, destiny, and sacrifice. They also enjoyed Royo's style and technique, as well as his use of symbolism and style.

The legacy and the impact of Dead Moon

Dead Moon is more than just an art book. It is a masterpiece of fantasy art that has left a lasting impression on the genre and the medium. It has inspired and influenced other artists and creators, who have followed Royo's example and vision. It has also enriched and entertained countless readers and fans, who have appreciated and enjoyed Royo's work and talent.

Dead Moon is a testament to Royo's artistic career and evolution. It shows his growth and development as an artist, from his beginnings as a comic illustrator to his current status as a fantasy icon. It also reflects his personal interests and passions, from his love for mythology and history to his fascination with technology and science. It also reveals his artistic challenges and achievements, from his experimentation with different techniques and tools to his recognition and appreciation by his peers and critics.


In conclusion, Dead Moon is an extraordinary art book that deserves to be read and admired by anyone who loves fantasy art. It tells a captivating story of love and war between two characters, Luna and Marte, who live in a fictional city that resembles a medieval Asian metropolis. It showcases stunning artwork that combines realistic and detailed depictions of the human body with stylized and exaggerated expressions of movement, action, and emotion. It also uses colors, shapes, patterns, and motifs to convey different meanings and emotions.

If you are looking for an extra quality work of art that will take you to a different world and make you feel different emotions, you should definitely check out Dead Moon by Luis Royo. You will not regret it.


  • What is the meaning of the title Dead Moon?

The title Dead Moon refers to the fate of Luna and Marte, who are doomed to die because of their love. It also refers to the state of the city, which is plagued by death and decay.

  • Who is Luis Royo?

Luis Royo is a Spanish artist who specializes in fantasy illustrations. He has published numerous art books, magazines, and other media, covering a wide range of topics such as mythology, science fiction, erotica, and horror.

  • How long did it take Royo to create Dead Moon?

Royo spent about two years working on Dead Moon, from 2007 to 2009. He did most of the work in his studio in Zaragoza, Spain.

  • What are some other works by Royo?

Some other works by Royo include Malefic Time, a trilogy of art books that tell a dystopian story set in the year 2038; El dragón de hielo (The Ice Dragon), an illustrated children's book written by George R.R. Martin; and Goddesses & Custom Made, a collection of artworks that showcase Royo's free expression and commissioned works.

  • Where can I buy Dead Moon?

You can buy Dead Moon online or in bookstores that sell fantasy art books. You can also visit Royo's official website ( for more information.



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