Gearing up for Spectrum Fantastic Art Live! I am SO stoked about going to this convention. It’s my first illustration show to ever attend, and I managed to snag one of 15 slots for a workshop with the utterly amazing Iain McCaig!!! This is the guy that designed Darth Maul! (And Jar-Jar, but I don’t hold the annoyance of that character against him lol.) There will be more top-tier artists attending and showcasing at this exhibition than I’ll know what to do with. I have a feeling I’m going to be spending the weekend walking around in a fanboy stupor, babbling at any art director or illustrator that I recognize.
In either case, it’s going to be a prime opportunity to start networking for real and show my work around to some of the most prominent ADs in the business. I’ve been busting hard to become a working illustrator, so the journey really begins at SFAL.
Here’s a portfolio piece I’ve been putting together here and there over the last two weeks. I’ve always loved the works of Matt Stawicki, so I wanted to try a cover design while referencing his style through the cover to Dragons of Autumn Twilight, which is one of my top 5 illustrations of all time.
As you can see, it’s an absolutely masterful example of scale, painterly impressionism, color and design. I wanted to emulate the basic style of this as much as I could while still keeping my own spin on the drawing. There were a lot of pitfalls and trial/error, but I’m pretty darn happy with how it turned out. Now I just need to get faster.
I came up with the idea while looking over one of my pieces from last year, the Ascension 1 cover image. I always liked how it turned out, but looking back I see so many flaws. I decided to take that whole “humans vs. giant beasts” trope and do it over, this time showing the aftermath of a big fight. I got some great feedback on this from Facebook crit groups, and wound up doing a comp design as well as the final art.
One of these days I may actually write a story incorporating this team of daredevil colossi slayers. I might find a way to work them into the larger story I’ve had simmering in my head for the last year. Who knows, time will tell, other random cliché.
Hope you enjoy!
I forgot I had a folder of WIPs, so here’s a gallery on how I put this together.