Here's a piece I did for a portfolio application. The point was to make something in the same vein as the old-school Mario / Kirby characters. I was always a fan of "Super Mario World 2: Yoshi's Island", so I looked at a bunch of the designs in that game for inspiration. The main character is a young, rocket boot -wearing swashbuckler; he has just taken some loot from his arch-nemesis, the skull-masked pirate captain below. I'm working on some additional character concepts (bad guys, bosses, etc.) that I'll post here in the future, or should I say, fut-arrrr me mateys!
OK, please don't beat me up for that last pun.