Monday, February 13, 2012

LOTR, D&D, and KOA:R - Two Months of Fantasy Acronyms

My girlfriend was bitten by a dog, on her hand. I passed out twice.
It's a long story... -_-

Hi Guys! Still not dead!
It has been an incredibly busy few months-
I'm not even sure where to start. So much has happened, and none of it has been blogging :/

I suppose I should apologize for my long absence and lack of content- I'm truly sorry I've been so missing from the web.
Things are kicking into high-gear at 38 Studios with the project I'm working on and I've been obliged to spend any free art time at the office keeping up with the pace of crunch-time at a video game studio!
The big news around here is that we launched our first game! Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning is out! and it's been reviewed! Which is thrilling news for us at 38.
It's not the game I've been working on per-se, but it is set in the same world, and I do have a design or two that made it into reckoning in a kind of round-about way :)
So...if you see one of these...

An Aurochs

Then slay it for me! ^_^ or maybe take a better screenshot? haha. It's a really minor ambient bull-type creature. But it's SUPER neat to see my first real creature design in my first real video game! I drew it, and my roommate Brandon sculpted it and it somehow snuck on in there!

Anyways, just about as notably. Felicia Day played our game. O_O I watched it happen live, spellbound. PICS BECAUSE IT HAPPENED!


And there's more! is up, and there are all kinds of hidden goodies and information about the world of Amalur to find. Among them are the racial pages for the:

and the...

I didn't do those paintings! (done my incredibly talented coworker, Devon) but they are based on my designs for both races (costume, face, hair design etc) which is super exciting! (if a little confusing, sorry :p)
But that is probably my absolute favorite part of my job- getting to conceptually develop the different cultural aspects and queues for fictional fantasy races. Trying to work towards something iconic and original, but still playing on classic fantasy-types. It's a blast. The light elves in particular were one of my baby-races. Maybe sometime in the future I'll be cleared to show you guys some of the concept work that went into these!

So we've been pretty giddy around here about all of that. But my job is still only beginning, and there's even more exciting stuff coming up from us in the near future! stay tuned. :) I'm going to geek about these things. It's going to happen. Hope you're interested ^_^

So that's what's been happening on the professional front. I've been trying to keep doodling in my spare time (which is all I have time for, at this point!) I really want to get back to Jellybots at some point, but it doesn't seem like now is going to be the time. In lieu of that I've been kind of sketch-journalling and persistently in love with Prussian Blue watercolor :p

Which brings me to another significant event of the last few weeks. I played my first ever game of Dungeons and Dragons. It was...amazing.

I work for a video-game company on an MMORPG, love the Renaissance Faire, and started an event at RISD called Thunderdome which is basically diet LARPing, but I have never played Dungeons and Dragons.

My girlfriend was actually the one who got me to consent to play. Reason #163 why she is the best. She was our veteran player, and her brother was our DM. It was a small party of 4 of us, and three were total noobs...he was very patient.

We set out to do it right- holed up in my dining room with a cache of pringles, cheetos, mountain dew, cookies, spaghetti and token carrots with hummus, for what wound up being a 10-hours-straight, 5am blitz.

I played a Halfling Rogue named Wren. Becau
se hobbits matter very deeply to me and rogues are the best.

Over the course of the night we decided Steven's Dragonborn warrior was really a half-artichoke man, almost died ALL of the time and barely made it through some excruciatingly slow stop-and-explain newbie combat. We were so giddy and giggly by the end of the evening, it didn't matter. Except to Andeniede, who couldn't land a hit to save her (or our) lives.
A few hilarious (to us) scenarios and jokes came out of the evening, which inspired me (when I woke super late the next day, feeling like the cheetos and the mountain dew had forged an alliance in the night and were fighting their way up my esophagus in hopes of hurling themselves out of my face.) to do a few little doodles.
Because of popular demand (and because our DM refuses to oversee another adventure unless I post them) here are my D&D doodles :p

Next time, we're starting at noon and eating celery sticks.

Herschel the Half-Artichokian was a favorite character of mine.
I am particularly proud of his artichoke-frondy pectorals.

Yay! And because that's not nearly enough artwork, I'm just going to empty my sketchbook of watercolor doodles!

I've been rewatching and re-reading the Lord of The Rings (probably because I have Hobbit fever), and I'm just all-over-again in love with them. It's so easy to dismiss the series as stereotypical of the genre that it created, but it really is still just the greatest. Why? Because hobbits. But that's a whole different rant for another blog post, maybe. Still- it remains my greatest, deepest fandom :)
Most of these were drawn in a single sitting while watching The Two Towers on New Years' Eve (gosh, it HAS been a long time since I've posted!)

And some assorted other doodles for your viewing pleasure, and because you're all just so patient with me :)
Oh, and as of today this blog has exceeded 500 followers! which is a big deal to only me!
:D I'm really really thrilled to know that at least some small percentage of that number are out there reading my blathering and looking at my doodles. Hopefully if you stick around I'll make it worth your while by doing something neat! Thanks so SO much for all your comments and support over the last few years. It's been a great encouragement to be able to share and receive feedback on my work and my thoughts.

I hope I didn't keep you all waiting too long, and that you're all still out there reading! Thanks, and may God bless you and bring you peace!

Much love!



criz said...


I love your drawings so much, they have this ... huggable roundness to them ^_^

Anna said...

Yay, you're alive! :D

Glad to hear things are going so well for you - the game looks awesome, and it sounds like it was bunches of fun to be involved in.

Loving your doodles - even to those of us uninitiated in the hilarity, the half-artichokian and the Cloood of Dooogers are still entertaining! XD

David Campbell said...

The game looks amazing it must be hard work but amazing fun to work on a project like that.

The watercolour sketches are beautiful. I really like the one of the little girl jumping in the puddles...

Glad to have you back!

Kirbish said...

Holy Moly, you're working on that game? That game that I've been looking at and thinking "Well darn, that looks like one of the more interesting games this year!"

Okay, so you only designed a bull and some other bits and bobs, it's still awesome finding out an artist you love worked on something you're interested in :D

Your sketches are awesome man, those watercolours really bring some life to them. It's amazing how warm you make them seem despite using entirely blue paint :)