Muertos, my Mesoamerican canine character and a high priest of an ancient death cult.
He has some kind of unusual pigment disorder related to melanism. Even though most of the members of his breed/clan/pack are fairly light or tan colored, he was born with pitch black fur and very dark skin, paw pads and mouth. But unlike to melanism, his irises are very light grey, almost white. This kind of genetic mishap has been circling within the community for centuries, and every time a dark pup is born, they're taken away from their parents, isolated in the temple and trained for executing sacred rituals. A stylized canine skeleton is tattooed to the black one's skin for distinguishing them from the commoners, and they're referred as the adjutant of the death, a half-divine being with the task to deal with the religious sacrifices and to operate as a link to the hereafter.
Muertos is not a new character, really. I think he was created in the same years as Masque and Radon, 2009. He's never been among the most active characters of mine, even though I'm quite fond of his design and concept. Muertos was inspired by Mexican holiday Día de Muertos and several Pre-Columbian civilizations, such as Aztecs, Incas and Mayas and their mythologies.
When I first created him, it didn't really cross my mind that the word muertos ('dead' in Spanish) was a piece of a language that certainly was not known in Central America, at least in this character's time period. That's why I've been thinking of renaming him to Xibalba ("place of fear" in maya mythology, sort of an underword) which would be a bit more suitable. Nothing quite bugs me like this kind of little inaccuracies. On the other hand I'm against changing my character's names, so I haven't really decided yet. Xibalba. Muertos.
Another piece from 2012. Staedtler pigment liner and Gimp.
Character, artwork ©GhoulShoe