Introducing the High Druid. The teaser from the 13th Age press release states, “A champion of the Wild, the High Druid might shake the Empire to pieces or point to a new way to live.” Once again the evidence of Lee Moyer’s stunning painting talents are on full display. Below are my pencils and the early thumbnail version. Thanks for your interest. Check back for more developments on the art of 13th Age. In the meantime you can read descriptions of the Icons at Pelgrane Press, vote for your favorite, and even enter a contest.
I intend to continue posting behind-the-scenes development of the key Icons from the upcoming RPG 13th Age (at least the images that are, at present, available online). Here’s the description of the Lich King from the 13th Age press release: ” The Lich King was a powerful wizard who ruled the land in ancient times, and has risen from the dead to reclaim it.” Here he is in all his undead glory as reanimated by the incredible coloring talents of Lee Moyer. As you trace his development backwards you’ll notice that my original thumbnail had him more “freshly dead” or zombie-like, if you will, but our final version of the Lich King has been dead long enough to have decayed significantly.
And now a *Bonus Image*! Here’s a Lich as envisioned by D.A. Trampier in the Advanced D&D Monster Manual by Gary Gygax circa 1977. And with that I’m suddenly inspired to get back to the drawing board.
Happy Friday the 13th! I have a relevant announcement for today. The numerical synchronicity has me giddy, but furthermore, I’ve been keeping my mouth shut about this project for months now and I’m thrilled to be able to share the news. I’ve been drawing character designs for a new game by two very influencial game developers, Rob Heinsoo and Jonathan Tweet. You can read about the game here and in the press release. Both links have preview art. I’m also working with an admired colleague, Lee Moyer. Aside from designing the book, Lee is creating symbols, maps and turning my crunchy pencil drawings into refined full color paintings. Feast your eyes on the Archmage, the first character image we developed for the 13th Age. (I’ve included my pencil drawing below so you can fully appreciate how Mr. Moyer brought the image to life.) I’m thrilled to be a part of this project and I look forward to sharing more as it progresses.
I managed to do a little drawing during ECCC. I started this Dr Strange (reading Lovecraft) without a commission request and kept chipping away at it, but didn’t finish until I got home. The Creeper piece was done for an entire sketchbook of Creeper drawings. There were some really nice pieces in that book, and yes, I was intimidated. I wanted to have rain pouring down on the Creeper through the grate in true Ditko fashion, but fortunately for the sake of time and sanity my table mate, Dennis Culver, talked me down from that ledge. It takes experience to get comfortable sketching at conventions, I’ve found. I’m amazed to see people who crank them out in the double digits. Some artists manage to get commissions before the show and do a lot of the design layout prior, so they can focus on the rendering exclusively during the Con. That’s a sweet arrangement. Anyhow, I did a couple other commissions and if you, Dear Reader, were the recipient and want to send me a scan of the piece to post on my blog, please do so (find my email top right of this page). I had a request for a Sandman in another sketchbook, but the timing didn’t work out. I wish I had asked to see the book, though, and I’m wondering which Sandman it was. I assumed Gaiman’s…but which Gaiman version…hmm, apparently I wasn’t prepared to do a Sandman. Oh, but next time I will be;)
What a great time I had at Emerald City Comic Con this year. It had been 4 years since I tabled at this or any Comic Con and I admit I was hesitant. Turns out I should have been embracing it with open arms because it was a profound and positive experience. I’m not going to name drop like crazy here, but I will say that it was great being a part of the Periscope Studio island of tables. I sat between two of the finest Super Friends a fellow could hope for, Dennis Culver and Dustin Weaver and I had the distinct pleasure of rooming with a superb Spanish comic artist whom I knew only through email, Alberto Jiménez Alburquerque. My Dad joined me at the Con on Friday and Saturday (and took me out to his favorite restaurant in Seattle, Cedars) and I was able to experience the Con beyond my table vicariously through him. I wanted to stay at my table as much as I could because the people who stopped by to browse, chat and occasionally support me with a purchase were really wonderful. Thanks to everyone who came by, and hopefully you’ve found your way to my blog so you can receive my appreciation in this form. Let me tell you…I had such a great time that next year I’m going to announce that I’ll be there before the event, not after like I’m doing now. Yes, that’s unfortunate, but that’s the only thing that was unfortunate about the entire weekend. Thank you, Con Goers and Dear Readers!