This pic was done totally on the computer in Photoshop 7 with no references, and I am really proud of it! The character was drafted to serve on a nightmare ship of doom, forced to leave his beloved behind with no explanation. He vows to return for her.
That's what I was thinking while I was working on it, anyway. It turned out a bit different than I thought and I don't have a clear story for him, but that black sailor hat is definitely the mark of some ghoulish, dark ship that it wasn't his choice to join up with, and is keeping him against his will.