Sticks the thief

A weird little dragony, lizard guy, Sticks steals to for survival and for fun. He can't help but take, but only from the well off. Stealing from the weak is stealing from oneself in his mind. He hangs to the shadows, waits in the ally ways, and slits your purse before you feel the wait leave your person. 

As always Sticks is a character I would love to play in an RPG and really explore. I could add him to one of my campaigns but I think his concept is too much fun to just be a passer by for my friends to meet 

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Nora TrollBleeder

Sorry for not posting in a while! It's been a little crazy, I left my old job and started a new one and I'm juggling multiple Dungeons and Dragons games, and the general chaos of life.

But that doesn't mean I don't have new art share. Here is Nora Trollbleeder, dwarf cleric of the forge. She is definitely a character I would like to play in D&D, I just don't get to be a player as much as I would like to. Any way. quick insight into her character. She works as a smith with divine gift from the dwarven god of craft, where she forges some of the best weapons in the empire. But left her forge to help in the front lines when her brother is slain by a troll and vows to kill it herself. 

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Cyclops Stormcaller

Sorry for the lack of posting. October is always a busy month with NY Comic Con and Illuxcon along with the general busyness of life.

But no fear!

With all the drawings I've created, very few get finished with full color. But I'm trying to change that by taking some of my favorite pieces and color them to send out as examples to art directors. So I pulled out the Cyclops Stormcaller I drew inspired by the Critical Role source book. I really liked the description and lore Matt Mercer created and knew I wanted to draw it.

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Digital color to me is always a balance of cools and warms and not losing the drawing under all the layers of color. The base colors always start either warm or cool then the shadows/highlights will be the opposite with glazes of color on top to unify. My method is probably not perfect but so far its been working for me. So back to coloring I go!

Ice Giant

Over the past few months, I've been drawing lots of huge creatures compared to the normal bunch of goblins and halflings. So why not add an Ice Giant to the bunch. When I get stomped I like to look back at old work to inspire myself on how much I've improved. 

Let's start with the new Ice Giant:

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and here's the original piece from a few years back:

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I hope it shows improvement! Especially going from ink and digital to graphite and digital. Which both were a huge step for me. And the growth will continue as I start to color the new Ice Giant,

Spector in full color

Digitally coloring my drawings is my preferred method, but that does not mean it isn't a wrestle match to get color theory to be on my side. But when color theory and I get along, we get colored monsters. Behold the Spector that lives in the Dwarfish ruins in the Dragon Spire mountains (yes my friends have already faced this creature in Dungeons and Dragons)

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For me, digital colors lets me experiment with out the constant worry of ruining the drawing like it does when I watercolor. In college I watercolored as my main method, but between working with Chris Gash and Cory Godbey (post college), digital grew on me. Now its mostly a balance of cool and warm, darks and lights, and not loosing the drawing under layers and layers of photoshop. But hey, feel like I'm getting some where now!

Cyclops StormCaller

Recently Green Ronin published the first Critical Role campaign guide and it was a great read with some cool art work. One of the creatures that caught my eye in the book was a cyclops that Matt Mercer designed. A cyclops with the power to control the storm due to his birthright was something I couldn't pass up drawing and wanting to include in my own D&D campaign. I think this guy might end up being an antagonist to the party.

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Classic RPG Monster: Spectator

Another creature completed and ready to share, a Spectator. Seen as a minor beholder and not as threatening but still has the capability to obliterate adventurers. One of the first threatening beasts my D&D group fought while we were low level characters trying to save the city from a hoard of undead, kobolds, evil twins then a beholder. It was a wild ride. I wanted to draw my version of what that beast looked like before the party killed it or more like paladin Adira causing damage as my character was probably knocked out. 

Hill Giant

Another of the classic RPG characters I've been working on is the Hill Giant. Huge, strong, swinger of bats, but not that smart, the hill giant wanders the rolling grasses in search of sheep to steal from the near by farms. Watch out that he doesn't smash your house with his bat or foot.. or he might sit on it. Who knows?! 

I drew this character with out a background to use as a paper miniature for a future Dungeons and Dragons adventure for my friends. In the future I will probably release a download pack of paper miniatures through the DMs Guild.

Zorn, reimagined

In college, I starting playing Dungeons and Dragons with some friends of mine. We would take turns dungeon mastering and playing characters. During one campaign based on the dark soul series (if I recall correctly) I played a warforge (a magical robot) knight. I liked the idea of the character still and decided to reinvent the character to be a non-player character that the players have the potential to meet in the City of the Iron Conclave; a mysterious city run by these magical automatons in a weird Disney world like recreation of what a city should be. But Zorn is a little different from the other automatons. 

Here is her updated design:

Just for full, I searched my tumblr for the first drawing I made of Zorn while we were playing through the adventure. Then I redrew her again a few years later thinking I might play the character again. And added the new drawing as well.

I like to think I got better at drawing.

K'Varn Revealed

I don't create fan art often because I like to draw my own worlds. But Critical Role will be the only show that constantly inspires me. A D&D game played by a group of voice actors that is honestly better then most TV shows. I'm in!

Here is a drawing of their first major villain for their online stream. K'Varn the evil scientist beholder of the under dark. He controls a vast army of mind controlled denizens of the darkness. Through many battles of war camps, castles, and strange lands Vox Machina barreled into K'Varn's layer and a difficult battle Vox Machina killed the beholder. Returning to the land above with their rescued friend Kima of Vord

Here's the progress towards the color version:

Gnome Barbarian

Another creation of the random dice rolls on my RPG Character Concept chart. All I do in Roll a 12 sided dice to create a random concept. Sometimes its easier to let fate choose then think. It's a create little exercise to try when I'm stumped. It has led to a bunch of finished drawings and characters for my Dungeons and Dragons game.

Here's the chart I created if you are interested in trying it out yourself. Would love to see your results if you use it

Igor Warren, Night Maggot Rogue

Having last week off from my full time job I was able to spend time not just finishing the Parade of Wisps illustration but also color this illustration as well. 

While I feel that my digital skills have grown in the past year, I still have a ways to go in my speed. Its a great amount of experimenting before I get a final result that I am pleased with. I am starting to dungeon master a game for my friends and can imagine this character showing up in their adventures. 

Goblin Week

This year I slacked on Goblin Week, I was busy drawing aliens instead and a bunch of not very original goblins. But I did finish a goblin just in time for the end of Goblin Week! 

Based on the classic Dungeons and Dragons Goblin, I sketched this little gob solider as a spot illustration that could be in an RPG manual next to some stats. Now back to sketching!

Dwarf Rogue Enforcer

I sketch a lot and most of what lives in my sketchbook never becomes anything. Recently as a warm up before working on drawings, I've been rolling (an 8 sided die) to create random character concepts so I don't just draw gnomes and goblins. So far the project has gotten me to do more research into heavy armor, which I am not skilled at drawing. Along with cross bows which require a good amount of time to get the perspective and mechanics correct. 

Here is the first drawing I've created using the random dice created character, a dwarf rogue enforcer for the Night Maggots Igor Warren.

Classic Creatures: The Beholder

A Beholder is a strange monster created in the early history of Dungeons and Dragons. Each eye stalk shoots a different ray of death, not instant death, but enough to put fear into facing a Beholder deep in a dungeon.

I designed this Beholder a few months back and its been sitting on my desk waiting to be finished. Spent a few hours rendering the piece over the weekend as one of the last things I made last year and added to my stack of 2016 drawings. 

If you are interested in owning this drawing. Make sure to check out my shop along with copies of my sketchbooks.

NOTE: I thought it would be interesting to have the Beholder's large eye be a door. And the group of adventures would find a huge key, not knowing what it opens. Turns out at the final battle that the key is the only way to get some relic from the Beholder guarding it literally in its hard.

Bog Crawler Warlord

Back in November I posted the original Bog Crawler. Since then have added the leader to the Bog Crawlers of the marshy swamps. This Bog Crawler has been through battle with scars, jagged fins, even missing an eye. This isn't the standard minion in a level 1 dungeon. Mechanic wise, I see the Warlord as a low level spell caster that is able to boost the stats of near by allies. 

I plan on creating a mock up of the bog crawlers with stats to show how my artwork can be used for RPGs and other books.

Classic Creatures: The Roper

Over the past few months as a break from Fablewood, I've been drawing monsters/creatures pulled out of RPG books. From an Ice giant to an Effreet, classic Orcs, and now a Roper. I've been pulling versions of creatures from a variety of games and decades of art to put my own spin on beasts that have been drawn numerous times.

Found in deep caves and the Under Dark, Ropers disguise themselves as rocks then snatch foes with its tentacle arms, dragging it's prey into it's massive maw. Though a Roper isn't nearly as deadly as the other denizens of the Under Dark.

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Ice Giant Portrait

Right after returning from Illuxcon, I wrote down a few goals that I wanted to work on. The list included more textures in my graphite drawings along with continuing to work developing digital coloring techniques. In a test of new textures, I created this portrait of a ice giant. While drawing I referenced Ram horns for a different take on how I normally draw. Along with adding hatching to create a rougher texture for the skin.I definitely learned some new techniques on the Ice Giant.

Efreet of the City of Brass

The past few episodes of Critical Role Vox Mochina has been exploring the Fire Plane for a vestige (to help defeat the Chroma Conclave of dragons.) Matt Mercer (the DM) described the awesome efreeti guards of the city and I knew I had to draw one. So while watching episodes I worked on the design and rendered the final drawing. I didn't want to use the cliche genie (djinn) seen in pop culture, so I pulled from a variety of cultures to create it's own style. That if I decide to draw more beings from the Fire Plane will draw from the same pool of cultural inspirations. The Efreet also joins my growing collection of reimagining classic RPG monsters.