First up was the ever popular and always epic American Illustration party. This year I was fortunate to have my first ever spread in the book with two entries accepted (Cthulhu Santa and Valentine's Oz). Highlights from the party include getting an elusive compliment from my old boss and chum, Peter de Sève, hanging with Frank Stockton over fruity drinks, and having some beautiful arm candy in the form of my girlfriend. I also ran into some SVA students I knew formerly from my hometown of Danbury, CT. Keep an eye out for Brian Schiering and Jensine Eckwall.
Second up was my last minute decision to attend Illuxcon in Altoona, PA. The majority of my buddies from Racebrook were showing off their wares at this fantasy art convention and had invited me for two years now. I was convinced it conflicted with the AI party and I couldn't attend. Two weeks before, I realized I was mistaken.
With little time to spare, I jumped into world where "bags of holding" and "lamps of lighting" were not jokes and "making a saving throw versus dragon breath" makes complete sense.
|I love dwarves and figured showing that I could paint armor and human flesh would be a plus. Here is the thumbnail, sketch and photoshop bump up.|
|A big, resounding thanks to Lars Grant-West for being a pal and taking a look at my sketches. He helped me out bigtime with the dwarf proportions, and his suggestion of the head tilt added loads of character. A second thanks to Donato Giancola for suggesting I go a bit more nuts with the armor decor.|
|Same dealio, thumbnail with a bit of PS, and a refined sketch.|
|These were fun as hell to paint. The level of finish demanded for this type of work is a bit more than I'm used to, but it really was a blast getting in there and figuring it all out.|