The Temple Thief

For this illustration, my goal was to push the "Good Human fights Evil Monster" trope that is often used in fantasy art towards something more unexpected. 
This concept features a reinterpreted 'hero' character, who has stolen a religious artifact from a temple guarded by a large snake. Having outsmarted the Temple Guardian, the Thief is seen gloating rather arrogantly at it as they make their escape. 
I want to take time to thank Ilse Gort who was kind enough to give me a portfolio review— and who was the one who ultimately pushed me to redo this piece.

Illustration ALT Text: Illustration of an androgynous elven person triumphantly mid-vault over a rock with a golden snake artifact stolen from a temple clutched in their fist. They glance over their shoulder and smirk at the Temple's guardian, a gigantic green vine snake who is tangled up in a bunch of vines as they make their escape. The temple, made of grey stone, is overgrown by various tropical plants. A beautiful tapestry with snake imagery on it billows outwards from the entrance, insinuating that the thief has just exited from that direction. The sky is a beautiful sunset gradient. Artist's signature sits in gold in the lower right corner, with their website