The Night Maggot

halfling_rogue_spy_internet Over at the Art Order, they were holding a challenge to create an illustration, concept, etc. based on 4 cards randomly assigned. I got chain mail, crossbow, tattoos, and half mask. I sketched out a bunch of ideas and decided to create a halfling spy crawling up a building. Then figured I could create an illustration for Oribs.

The assassin guild The Night Maggots, is a very secretive organization living in the darkest corners and deep in the sewers of Muruspatria (capital city of Orbis). Getting in contact with the Maggots is a difficult task, when some one wants a contract done, they either have to find a Maggot in the sewer or go through a chain of people to get to the group. It costs a large amount of gold to have an expert assassin kill a target since they won't stop till the target is down. Joining the guild is even more difficult then finding them. They secretly hide among the crowds watching the best thieves, magic users, and fighters to recruit, even the process to join is top secret and is unknown to people outside the Maggots. But it is easy to know when a Maggot has  killed, one bolt to the chest.

Monster Monday- July 14, 2014



This week's monster is an orc warlord ready to rally the troops into battle. Orcs often find there way into my sketch book, along with goblins and treefolk and lots of other creatures. This piece started out as a thumb nail on a scrap piece of paper and evolved into a drawing. Currently I am flatting color in photoshop for the drawing and plan on working on it over the next few days. 

Continuing to prepare for Illuxcon in September!

Happy Birthday J.R.R Tolkien



Today is J.R.R Tolkien's birthday and in his honor I made a toned paper drawing of Fingolfin from the Silmarillion. Fingolfin faced off with Morgoth and was the second high king of the Noldor. Tolkien's books have been a huge influence on my childhood and now my adulthood.

As a kid, I always wondered who J.R.R Tolkien was because he was often mentioned with Narnia creator C.S. Lewis. In sixth grade, my mom purchased me a copy of The Fellowship of the Ring. I carried it to school everyday and it took me all year to read the book (that was clearly above my reading level). Also in sixth grade I did a report on J.R.R Tolkien for my English class. The next year in my English class I did a book report of The Hobbit. I created an illuminated book of the scenes and characters of the book (which ended up inspiring my thesis). In High school, I continued to read Tolkien's works of the Last Tales and other texts. Many of the characters and creatures were drawn in my sketch book while sitting in class. 

In college, Tolkien no doubt was inspired my work. I focussed on character design and fantasy illustration. I did an independent study of watercolors for the Hobbit. And created two digital illustrations in another independent study for my final semester. And I am still continuing to sketch new illustrations for Middle Earth. It's hard for me to think of what direction my work and life would be like with out reading Tolkien. 

Monster Monday- August 19, 2013

Monster Monday- August 19, 2013

Here's the ink drawing for a watercolor I'm about half way done with. Its a part of series of 3 paintings about Tree Folk. This is the last piece in the series. I am experimenting with textures in the current 3 watercolors I'm working on and it's really adding to the pieces.

Next week I will have a new drawing for monster monday. The past 2 weeks have been really crazy.

Radagast the Brown

Radagast the Brown

The Hobbit has been a favorite of mine since I was 12 and did a report on the book for my English class. (the year before I read The Fellowship of the Ring) At a young age Tolkien's middle earth has shaped and inspired my illustrations.

A while ago I was sketching bored after a full shift on the boardwalk and sat down to draw. Lately all I have been wanting to do is create a new Tolkien piece, I feel my design, composition, and painting skills have all improved since I finish my 5 Hobbit illustrations in my independent study last fall. This time I'm thinking of illustrating a piece from Lord of the Rings or The Silmarillion. I just need to find a scene that inspires an exciting image to add to my portfolio before I attend Illuxcon in September.

Tree Folk of Autumn

Tree Folk of Autumn

This painting has been sitting on my desk of over a month and I'm happy to share a new painting. Lately I've been drawing many tree folk in my sketch book and am planning a small long term project with the wandering trees.

I experimented with some new techniques on this piece. The red watercolor was becoming more pink then I wanted, I then mixed some Doc Martins ink to create red. For the Tree Folk, I tried a different bark pattern then I usually use and it turned out great.

Creating Goblin on Gargoyle

Yesterday I posted my newest illustration of Goblin on Gargoyle and today I am sharing how I created it. 

ImageMost of my illustrations start out as ideas in my sketchbook, personal or client work. I don't like to leave to much open room for major design ideas once I start drawing on the watercolor paper. This is one of many pages from my 2 sketch books I filled last semester. The idea stuck with me for a while.

After creating a small comprehensive drawing of the piece (which I some how lost) I draw on the watercolor paper. I knew that I wanted to have the Goblin in the foreground and not an open background. So I took the basic ink drawing into photoshop and played around with it. 

ImageHere's the ink drawing I used in photoshop with penciled in ideas of where I wanted buildings to be. Drawing naturalistic backgrounds are a lot easier for me to design then structures. But luckily a pesky art history credit needed to get covered last semester and I took an architecture class. Though it was a modern architecture course, I still learned about old and new construction techniques and helped me have an understanding of how to think about structures. 

I am no photoshop wizard and I basically worked under my line drawing to place shapes of buildings and architecture. Spending about an hour in photoshop saved me hours of time drawing by hand. 


After I tape down the watercolor paper, time to pull out the palettes. I work from 3, the 2 on the rights hold color and the 1 on the left is mostly my for mixing colors. Don't forget your color wheel, it may seem elementary to have one, but has proved to be very important. That color wheel is from my color theory class I took 2 years ago.


A progress shot while I am working on the illustration, I like to work on the main focus of the piece first. Then secondary elements. Usually before any rendering happens the whole piece gets layers of washes. 

When all color is done, any part that needs to be white gets a few layers of gouache, I am not very good at keeping the paper white. But it also makes highlights much easier. After scanning and a little photoshop, its ready for the internet.



If you are interested in seeing more progress of pieces while I am working, follow me on twitter, PMCillustration or follow on instagram, paigeconnelly45





Elf Knight

Elf Knight I have many paintings lined up for the next few weeks and wanted to get some of the pieces that are close to done finished. Here is a little practice piece I started a few weeks back at school. Elf armor found it's way into my sketch book after I created a ink drawing for my friend Ginette's birthday. As I have stated before, I don't draw elves often, so it was a nice change. The elf knight was great practice for the larger pieces that I have planned to be working on in the next few weeks. I have a goblin assassin piece and I need to finish The Green Man as well. Plenty to keep busy as I continue the search for a part time summer job.


Elf Lord

For my roommate's birthday I wanted to draw her something really cool. We are both huge Tolkien admirers, Ginette is an elf person, I am a dwarf person, and Claire likes people (most importantly Rohan, as Jared said 'it takes Lord of the Rings to get Claire to say she likes people). 

So I broke out the sketch book to throw some ideas down. I don't draw elves very often so I had to find designs that I liked, I prefer stronger looking characters so I gave the elf lord a strong jaw line and cheek bones. Around the portrait of the Elf Lord, I wanted to create a frame, something I have not experimented with. Art Nouveu reference was used, but I tried to put my own twist on it. And is definitely something I want to continue experimenting Paige Connelly

After filling 2 pages of my sketchbook, I pulled out some illustration board and got sketching. It took a while to draw because of the frame, I wanted to make sure I was happy with the design before I inked the image. Got my trusty FW ink and brush and inked the Elf Lord creating the final image 

by Paige Connelly

Sketch Book

I am a illustrator who has always drawn. I've been keeping a sketchbook since I was about 10 years old and can't imagine the thousands of pages I have filled. Lately I have been working in a new sketch book book, a brown toned hardcover book produced by Strathmore. I've been searching for months for a hard cover sketch book that is not white paper, I need something with a binding so I am not tempted to rip out a drawing and forget a failure. It's important to keep all the drawings to show the progression to a liked drawing. The nice thing about sketchbooks is its an exploration and doesn't have to be 'finished' like an illustration. It's about problem solving and not creating perfect images. So I've decided to share some pages of my sketchbook in hope to get others to fill some sketchbooks of there own.



Incase anyone was wondering I draw with a simple pen and use a white gel pen for the white ink.