The Three were among the first dragons to walk the world. The Red is a living engine of destruction. The Blue is a sorceress, perhaps even the original mother of all sorcery. The Black is queen of shadows and assassins. Unlike the Great Gold Wyrm, who must fight alone, the Three have learned to join forces. –From the 13th Age icon teaser description.
Behold The Three digitally painted by Lee Moyer. Not only are these mamas ancient, they are also enormous. Look for the Where’s Waldo Priests for a sense of…”scale” (sorry). This behind-the-illustration post gives you a much closer view of those guys, but they are ultimately inconsequential in comparison to the awesome majesty of The Three!
My pencil drawing (after receiving Lee’s request for plenty of “crunchy pencil detail.”) You’ll notice that my choice of color for the dragons was different than the final. Decisions, decisions – all part of the process!
And here’s the promised closeup of our dark priests, Larry, Curly and Moe:
As an extra bonus here’s an early thumbnail where I happened to accidentally not draw most of the dragons’ anatomy. Hmm…you’d think I was hesitant to draw thousands of scales or something. I haven’t confirmed this with Lee, but looking at this image and the final, it’s my guess that he may have appropriated this version of the Blue sorceress dragon in the final. Ah, Process, you are the Black dragon cloaked in vague shadows until you strike as quickly and decisively as a deadly assassin!
The Diabolist controls fiends and tampers with forces even the Archmage avoids. She likes her victims screaming and her chaos pure while claiming that the demons she summons would otherwise overwhelm the Great Gold Wyrm who seals the Abyss. There are two differences between her and her demons: First, she likes keeping destruction personal rather than universal. Second, she’s capable of kindness, so long as it comes as a great surprise. –From the 13th Age icon teaser description.
Lee Moyer’s deliciously diabolical digital painting of The Diabolist (in a sense 3D;)
My pencil drawing:
Early thumbnails included demons in the shadows of the Diabolist before we decided on a graphic background suitable for a most notorious Icon.
The Emperor rules the world’s greatest human kingdom, known as the Dragon Empire for the mounts of its mightiest warriors. All the signs suggest that the age is turning, but will the Empire fall or shift to a new balance? –From the 13th Age icon teaser description.
The final illustration of the Emperor digitally painted by Lee Moyer:
My pencil drawing:
An earlier sketch that had the key ingredients, but didn’t have the necessary amount of refinement that the Emperor demands:
Earlier thumbnails included the Emperor with a tamed dragon. Think Ernst Stavro Blofeld (of James Bond fame) and his cat. That approach was too ripe for parody. We’re not going for Dr. Evil here. Whether the Emperor is a corrupt ruler or not has yet to be determined.
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.
Just a sketch of a guy with an interesting face. The latest thing I’ve seen him in was “The Debt.” And according to IMDb he’s in the John Carter movie. There’s some information for you as I attempt to make this blog “informative” and “current.”
For me, Christmas can, at times, feel like an extreme sport. I did this sketch a little while ago for a kids’ soccer team, The Blue Ice Dynamites! It seems appropriate now, what with all the snow and ice (not that we have any here in Portland, OR). In the midst of Christmas preparations and two boys revved up with anticipate for the big day I need to keep my eye on the ball if I want to stay in the game.
I was working on one Civil War comic and now I’m working on two. I may not be drawing much else for a while, so I’m going to blog some of my sketches for these projects. Here’s the first. This is one of our main characters (in a way) for the adaptation that Jonathan Hennessey and I are currently working on. His script called for a panel of the character looking up toward the ceiling and the iconic Nina Simone photo sprung to mind. I updated the hair and removed the bling to make her more modern, but hopefully the Simone spirit is still there.
The next sketch is from the other Civil War project. Here we have an antagonistic paymaster, and the following panel in sequence…the reaction shot. There was an image reference for the paymaster (and that hair is not much of an exaggeration), but I added a little extra Daniel Day-Lewis as Bill the Butcher. (I’ll line up with everybody else to watch DDL play a nasty, dangerous man, and I’ll sneak him in my comics whenever possible;)
And one more sketch to celebrate one Mr. Frederick Douglass, the original Man! Forget that Old Spice knock-off. Fred Douglass is where it’s at!
BONUS PHOTO! “Douglass, you Dawg!”
(Actually that’s his wife Helen Pitts and their niece Eva.)