Rollplay is a series of live tabletop RPG campaigns streaming on TwitchTV.
I worked with JP, the creator of Rollplay, when I did the poster for Rollplay: Nebula Jazz. He contacted wanting to do something for the 5 year anniversary of Rollplay. This turned into an idea for putting every character from Rollplay history into the poster. I have been watching Rollplay for a couple of years, so I thought "That would be fun!". Little did I realize how many characters there actually were. Good God!
I started going through show wiki's to find character info from all the shows that came before I started watching. I was quickly closing in on 100 characters. I started to panic. This was going to be a lot of work. Thankfully, JP did come up with the idea of putting most of the characters from West Marches on a list (upper leftish), since there were around 45 characters from that show alone.
Usually, when I'm hired for a job, there is at least a short brief of the characters. Clothing, weapons, personality, etc.. But this wasn't your average job. There were no official descriptions to go from. But I knew these characters each had a pretty defined look, from the evolution of the characters during their respective shows, and what the fans of the show expected.
I quickly realized that I wouldn't have time to watch all of the show intros (where the characters are revealed). Let alone all of the episodes of each show to get the little inside jokes and important changes to each character. Thankfully, there is a dedicated fan base with some talented artists. Some of the shows had wiki's with character descriptions and more importantly, fan art. I started collecting fan art in my reference folder. It was immensely helpful. Especially for the shows that I hadn't gotten around to watching.
This is just a small sample of all the fan art from the show. I tried to include one from each person. I'm sure I missed some. But that's what I could still find in my reference folder.
At this point, it's just time. We were seriously up against it to get done on time for the Anniversary show. I was putting in 16 hour days just sitting in front of my computer. It's like handwriting. You can only go so fast before it becomes illegible.
Color!!!! I can finally see the finish line when I get to this stage. I started fooling myself that I didn't have that far to go. I could not have been more wrong. I was cursing everyone and everything, muttering under my breath, and talking to myself.
As the last day approached, JP and I were frantically going back and forth to make sure my sleep deprived mind hadn't forgotten anything, and all the logos were right, etc..
And with a 26 hour day to cap the madness, I'm done. I slept for a day and laid in bed and watched Netflix for the next.
You can pick up the poster over on the Rollplay Teespring store
And if you are curious about what in the hell Rollplay is, you can go to the Rollplay viewers guide, all the shows are archived on YouTube so you can catch up.
Seven Worlds is an RPG that I did a couple covers for. I've posted one. It's also in my gallery. The kickstarter is getting ready to start, so I thought I would share it again, along with the other one I did. Both are wraparound covers.
Here they are and go check out the kickstarter announcement here
This one was a bit crazy. Lots of characters, lots of scale, two dragons, etc.. And not a lot of time. Had to do a quick turnaround due to complications that I'm not privy to.
Thanks to Hal Mangold and Green Ronin Publishing for the opportunity.
The sketches were really rough. Thankfully Hal knew we were just getting things laid out and wasn't worried about it.
I've started to do my final drawings with those primitive tools called pencil & paper. I tend to enjoy it more, I take more care with the drawing, and it seems to yield better results for me.
Not to pull a "draw a circle, draw an owl", but there are plenty of step by step paintings out there. My method isn't much different. And I don't save all those steps. So we will jut go to the final.
A bit was added to the right and bottom for bleed. And I had to lose the horns in order to conform to D&D 5E dragons. (I really liked those horns)
And the final cover with all the dressings. They adjusted the color, contrast etc.. a bit.
I haven't been able to reveal a lot of work lately. I've had a project that I've been working on for over a year and a half. And it won't be released from NDA purgatory till somewhere around November. There are a few other smaller projects that are under the same restrictions for the time being.
So in an effort to actually use this blog, I'll catch you up on the last few months.
In November of last year, I moved from Richmond, VA back to my home state of Iowa. I love Richmond, but it had become very difficult to see my friends and family that still live in Iowa. I hadn't seen most of them for 5 or 6 years since I moved to Virginia. So here I am. That covers the personal info. Now on to the art.
First, lets talk about the art annuals. I was nominated for an award in the Expose 12 book from Ballistic Publishing. The image nominated is my cover for Rifts: Tomorrow Legion Players guide from Pinnacle Entertainment Group.
It's an honor to be nominated. And the art that will be in that book looks amazing. So click the link above and check out the book.
Another surprise was getting accepted into the Spectrum Fantastic Art Annual. I haven't submitted to Spectrum for a few years. There is no political reason or grudge. It just seems that some other expense comes up at the same time every year. This year it was replacing all the brakes on my old truck. I decided not to die in a fiery car accident instead of getting my work into an annual. So how did I get in? The lovely people at Monte Cook Games submit work from their projects for the artists every year. That is incredibly kind of them, and provided a wonderful surprise.
The painting was an interior image for Gods of the Fall.
I always struggle to make work for myself. I work quite a bit, and try to keep a somewhat balanced life. Meaning, I hang out with friends, play video games, watch movies, read, etc.. So my time is limited.
I've been making an effort to fit some personal work into my daily schedule, Hence a lot of movie drawings on my instagram. Along with figure drawings, and digital brush experiments. Here are a few of those.
I've also been getting the itch for traditional media, to give me a break from staring at a computer screen all day. I love working with ink. I am incredibly rusty at it though.
Then there are the t-shirts. This is another effort to stretch my comfort zone a bit. I used to work in T-shirt shops for years. There is something I find attractive in the limitations that screen printing provides. Technology has changed quite a bit since then, and you can get just about anything on a shirt now, but I prefer to keep the limitations in place when I plan the shirts. It makes me come up with solutions I wouldn't typically think of. You can check them all out on my threadless shop.
I have done a few finished paintings. All of them were meant to try out different techniques than what I typically use in my paid commissions and more importantly, just have fun.
I've been upping my geek cred by watching people play roll playing games on Twitch tv. The series is Roll Play by itmejp. They play several different games in different RPG settings. The painting is of Carriless Firm (played by Geoff Robinson) from Rollplay:Blades. All characters play hired killers. It's a lot of fun to watch, or just listen to.
Also in the the Rollplay family of shows is Court of Swords. The gm Adam Koebel has a knack for killing off the party members. It gave me an entertaining idea for a painting.
The final painting started as a study of Gil Elvgren techniques. I've always been a huge fan of his brushwork. During this time, I was playing Fallout 3 (I'm way behind on video games). Anyway, the wonderful Moira Brown runs a shop in the game. She is such a unique and entertaining character. So...the Elvgren study turned into a Fallout 3 poster.
And lastly, I did a podcast interview for boardgamecloset.com. The episode was focused on a few artists from the gaming world. My interview is somewhere in the middle, but just listen to the whole thing. It's a good show. http://boardgamecloset.com/episode-7-all-about-the-art/
That's it. You are all caught up. I think.
Some character designs for Green Ronin's Blue Rose rpg.