One of the biggest reasons I love gaming of all types is the way it brings people together. I’ve met so many amazing people by simply being interested in a certain video game, or a tabletop game, or even a collectible card game. Some of the most lasting friendships I have were forged through those shared passions. You can learn a lot about the kind of person behind the keyboard or on the other side of the table in such a short time. A lot of it is in their play style and how they react to a challenging situation (or an overwhelming victory).
Recently I started playing World of Warcraft again to get a little more online hang out time with some real life friends that are more than a little scattered across the country. In no time I was meeting a ton of new players from the guild and getting to know each of them through chat or over the headset.
When news that our guildie Kimilyn had passed away broke, I felt compelled to make something to honor a fellow gamer whose own passion for the game and specifically the PVP aspects of it drove me to play a little harder when I was lucky enough to step into a battleground with her. She was kind, caring, fun, and utterly ruthless on the field of battle.
Kimilyn’s guild note says it all: “PVP.thats it.PVP.nothing else”
Diving a little deeper into the WoW art this past week with another commissioned portrait piece for a friend. This time a Blood Elf Deathknight! Learned a little about metal coloring work with this piece, and fought myself with the color tones the whole way but I actually like the final quite a lot. It’s fun to challenge myself with textures and materials I’m not used to rendering/coloring. And with every portrait I get a little more comfortable with where this style is heading, making my ambition grow more and more to create full scenes. Stay tuned.
I love working on fan art. I don’t do it often but I have a blast when I do. There’s just something fun about creating imagery based on characters, places and things you spend so much time with. Be it video games, movies, tv shows or comics. It’s also great practice. So much so that this piece helped me solidify the direction I’ve been wanting to go with my digital color work.
I have tried in the past to do a full digital style like this, but I’ve never been happy with the lines that come from it. This piece used ink line work, from the Pentel Brush Pen, that I just did on a whim in my sketchbook while I sat around waiting for an appointment. This was the lead up to the Triumphy piece I shared earlier, and set how I wanted to work on them. The colors and technique is more refined in the other piece as well, but without spending the time here, I wouldn’t have even had that commission pop up!
Recently I spent a few days at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center as the start of what I hope will be a continuing project. I’m going to be continually profiling the military life through images and possibly even start doing some casual interviews/talks with people. The idea here is to give a behind the scenes look at a place many don’t get to see and show it through my own eyes and hands. Continue reading →
Spent a day at Penn Station in Baltimore last Friday drawing the constantly shifting and changing crowd and staff. It’s fun to try and catch a likeness in a matter of minutes or in some cases seconds. This is the start of a new sketchbook and a break from the white paper sketchbooks from the past. I’ve done toned paper work before and loved to work that way so this change isn’t completely new to me. Continue reading →
Another day, another locale. In this case, an old locale with a new purpose. Just at the corner of the Inner Harbor in Baltimore is a rag tag collection of tents, tarps and signs denoting the ongoing protests of Occupy Baltimore. It’s small, but it’s there, and the people holding up in the cold winds intend to continue this show of dissent.
The real importance are the people down there that really believe in what they’re doing. They are real people with names and faces and families. To that end, I give you Vince:
11″x14″ Compressed charcoal on drawing paper
Vince has a job. Vince has a wife with a job. It’s not enough and he’s out on the corner to say something about it. There he hopes someone will take notice.
A day on by the harbor is always a good time. I don’t think I can remember a day I haven’t enjoyed just being near the water. It’s not the beach, but it’s a welcome change from the crushing weight of the city and roads. The water lapping against the hulls and wharf it makes for a calming soundtrack while putting a little charcoal to some paper.