11/25/15 - Drawlloween / Inktober stuff
Ok, so Stray is way behind schedule, luckily I don't think anyone has noticed (at least no one has said anything to me about it). I'll be able to get back on track after the holidays...hopefully. In the meantime I participated in Drawlloween and combined it with Inktober, it was a lot of fun to do a new piece everyday. Although, some days were rather hectic and were combined into other days. I really need to make time everyday to do some doodling like that. Here are some of the better pieces I did. If you want to see them all you'll need to check out my Instagram account and give me a follow if you're so inclined at SlainValor.
9/24/15 - Stray, The Blood Devil's Eye - page 15
Still behind schedule. Hopefully I'll get caught up soon, but that could be tough (the last eight pages are still mostly incomplete). Here is page 15, halfway through the story!
8/15/15 - Stray, The Blood Devil's Eye - page 14
Gah! Falling behind schedule. Remodeling a new home and a few little vacations will do that. Working on getting caught up to the original schedule. Will post the pages as I finish them until then. On a side note, my new studio is coming along nicely.
7/14/15 - Stray, The Blood Devil's Eye - page 13
To make up for last week's page being two days late...you get this week's page two days early! Enjoy!
7/4/15 - Stray, The Blood Devil's Eye - page 12
Bah! Two days late, sorry about that. Here is page twelve.
6/18/15 - Stray, The Blood Devil's Eye - page 11
6/4/15 - Stray, The Blood Devil's Eye - page 10
5/21/15 - Stray, The Blood Devil's Eye - page 09
5/7/15 - Stray, The Blood Devil's Eye - page 08
Back to our story. Page eight.
4/27/15 - Orc Shaman with Spirit Bear
And in case you thought I've only been working on the comic here is an orc shaman with his spirit bear on 9 x 12" gray toned paper using a clutch pencil with 6B lead and a white charcoal pencil.
4/23/15 - Stray, The Blood Devil's Eye - page 07
4/9/15 - Stray, The Blood Devil's Eye - page 06
3/26/15 - Stray, The Blood Devil's Eye - page 05
Page five. Our story continues!
3/12/15 - Stray, The Blood Devil's Eye - page 04
2/26/15 - Stray, The Blood Devil's Eye - page 03
2/12/15 - Stray, The Blood Devil's Eye - page 02
1/29/15 - Stray, The Blood Devil's Eye - page 01
Page one, our story begins.
1/15/15 - Stray, The Blood Devil's Eye - cover
As promised we begin the story of Stray, The Blood Devil's Eye. Here is the cover. Page 1 in two weeks!
1/12/15 - Rejection and Rebirth
My holidays were bookended by a couple of rather large rejections. First, I was rejected for the 2015 GenCon art show now that they've changed their entry policy. It's too bad, I had a great time last year. Then I submitted two of my best pieces to the Infected By Art book Vol 3. Apparently my best wasn't good enough, either that or my style didn't fit their vision cause I was rejected for that as well. So what about the rebirth then you ask? There's a certain project I've been working on and off on for the last 12 years. That would be my character Stray's comic book. It's partially done and has been in a state of limbo for a long time. I've gone back and forth on how I wanted to proceed on it and I'm just going to bite the bullet and put it out as is. As much as I would like to redo the entire thing I just don't have the time. I get this off my back and I can move forward with something else for Stray. So, starting January 15th I'll be putting up a new page every other week. With that schedule I believe I'll have the time to finish the later pages, some of which need done from the ground up. If it looks like I'm doing pretty good maybe I'll tighten the release schedule but we'll have to see how this plays out first. As a teaser here is the back page ad that appeared on Shattered Realm #1 back in 2008 (with a few updates).
11/22/14 - This is only a test.
A rough sketch trying out some new paper and seeing how it takes ink washes, which isn't too bad. 13x20" ink wash, about an hour and a half.
10/25/14 - CotC wrap up and a pumpkin!
Con on the Cob was awesome this year. My best year in sales there, hanging out with old friends, making new friends and plenty of inspiration to go around. I did have a fanboy squee moment when the artist guest of honor Fred Fields was looking at my stuff and said my Sword Girl looked very Brom. Wha?
New art for the Halloween season. This is what happens when you plant your pumpkin patch near a cemetary...don't do it! 9x12" ink with digital colors in Photoshop.
10/15/14 - CotC!!
Con on the Cob starts tomorrow! If you're looking for a fun, relaxed con head out to Hudson, Ohio. Tons of artists to talk to and hang out with and games to be played. I'll be there along with a plethora of artsy scalliwags. I'll be debuting this new piece I've been working on for quite a while. This is the direction I finally see my artwork going...and I like it. Thanks for looking.
10/4/14 - Doodlin'
Just a quick sketch on toned paper to keep sharp. About an hour. 9 x 12", 6b clutch pencil and white charcoal pencil.
9/26/14 - Busy, busy.
Ok, GenCon was awesome inspiring. Met up with some old friends, reconnected with a really old friend and made some new ones. Saw a lot of cool art and products out there. My newer stuff was rather well received so I feel I'm definitely on the right track with just letting the art flow the way it wants to. I have another major piece that I'm really digging how it's turning out. In the meantime the cover I did for Fireside Games' Castle Panic is now out in the wild. Available at local hobby stores and Books-a-Millions across the country.
Got busy with a freelance project right after GenCon (something to do with the above perhaps?) so didn't have time to post this piece I cleverly titled "Sword Girl". Till next time.
7/24/14 - On style.
I've always heard not to worry about searching for your style to just do art and your style will develop. But, I've always felt I've been all over the board with different styles and nothing really stuck out as distinctly mine. Being influenced by the early Dungeons & Dragons art I wanted to be a fantasy artist when I first started taking this art thing seriously. At some point I got sidetracked into comic book art for quite a few years, because I like the idea of telling stories with pictures. Then I swung back to wanting to do the fantasy art (with maybe a comic book or two on the side in the future). There are a lot of amazing fantasy artists out there and looking to emulate them I was working on really pushing my painting skills (both digital and traditional) but not making much headway. It was a struggle and I couldn't really figure out why, after much introspection I realized it was because it's not how I was comfortable working. Looking back at my older stuff I could see something trying to peek out but I kept trying to force it to be something I saw in other's work. So, I decided to just do art the way I wanted to, the way I enjoyed working. After a long journey down a curving road I may have let my style be what it wants to be.
My new art mantra: "Inspired by fantasy and influenced by comic book art, I merge these styles using digital techniques along side traditional pencils and ink."
4/18/14 - The ArtOrder Tiny Painting challenge!
Once again I participated in a challenge over at The ArtOrder. This time around it was to make tiny paintings. Jon Schindehette put the call out for submissions to be included in a booth at Spectrum Fantastic Art Live May 9-11 in Kansas City, MO. The challenge? They had to be 3x3". I ended up doing three oil on canvas paintings which will be featured in Jon's booth along with 111 other artists with a total of 276 tiny pieces of artwork. If you're at the show be sure to stop by and check them out.
3/28/14 - Happy accidents?
So...this accidentally happened. I had no plans on ever coloring this one when I made it. I thought it was just fine as a black and white ink piece I did for the Easley homage over at The Art Order (see earlier post on 2.15.14 for full details). Then I got curious as to what colors would I use to color it, so I roughed in some colors, made some tweaks, some refinements and a few more refinements and the next thing I know it's hours later and there it is. The art has to flow.
3/15/14 - of Gen Con and Dragons
I was accepted into the Gen Con art show this year. I admit I'm freaking out a little. It's kinda like the real thing, going to have to step up my game in art and booth set up. Been working on new pieces and show collateral lately. Here's a dragon I finally finished, started it at last year's Con on the Cob in October (14 x 16.5" 4B pencil). So many scales...
I've been playing Blizzard's Hearthstone a bit recently and really love the look and feel of the user interface and all the details in that game. Was inspired to make a convention sign for myself with a user interfacey kinda look to it. Which, apparently, loses all it's detail at the thumbnail size below, not cool, click for full view.
2/15/14 - Jeff Easley homage
Jon Schindehette of The ArtOrder put out the call for submissions for an homage for master illustrator Jeff Easley. Having grown up being influenced by the original AD&D covers and illustrations I knew I had to be a part of the birthday surprise. While I enjoyed Jeff's works I never really got a full appreciation of them until I saw some of the originals at a GenCon fifteen years ago. The printing process really doesn't do his work justice, printing darkens the colors. The dragonfire literally glowed on the board, it was amazing. For the homage piece I wanted to capture the feel of the AD&D interior illustrations, a little of the old school style to honor an old school master. Also, I've been itching to do a large, highly detailed pen and ink piece so took this opportunity to do just that. You can see my submission below or at the Art Order site here. The original is 18 x 24".
1/11/14 - Simple is not always easy.
Sometimes the simplest of pieces are the hardest. Every line, every shadow has such an impact that they have to be just so. It takes time getting them there and I had to walk away from this one a couple of times to clear my perceptions and come back for a fresh view of it. You've got to power through the ugly stage to get to the good stuff of art, and the majority of pieces go through an ugly stage. Vamp (8.5 x 20" digital)