Kinky, nasty perverted art for Exquisite Corpses

I hope I got your attention with that headline. I’ve been doing a bit of work on my upcoming ‘Exquisite Corpses’ book, specifically interior illustration, and have decided to take the art in a hard R rather than a PG 13 direction… simply because this project is something I am doing for ME… and I want the book to look the way I think it ought to, rather than the way I think many game related stuff has started to look over the past years. Slick, colorful and safe for all audiences just isn’t me… and as I worked on this, more and more subversive elements began creeping in. Around the time that I drew a happy headless crabman mutant with an erect penis that featured an eyeball on the tip grabbing a woman I started to think that I was beginning to find the aesthetic for the book that I wanted.
So, here are some samples. Enjoy.

Welcome To Aldeboran

I have been calling my campaign world by several names over the past years — at one point it was ‘The Vales’ since there were different regions (Silver Vale, Red Vale, East Vale, etc.,). It has also been called ‘Hinterlands’ or ‘Northlands’ since most of the action took place is an area that was considered remote and removed from the more ‘civilized’ lands to the south and east. I also called/call it ‘Aldeboran’ (after the sun that the earth-like planet revolves around) or ‘Tellus’ (after the planet itself) but I go back and forth between wanting it to be a planet as an astronomer might define one… or just a ‘world’ which might just be a bubble in space, or moss on the back of a giant turtle… or a clump of dirt floating in space or whatever.

‘Aldeboran’ is an alternate spelling of ‘Aldebaran’ which is an actual orange giant star only 65 light years from Earth and in the constellation of Taurus. The name is arabic and apparently means ‘The Follower’ because when observed, it appears to follow The Pleiades. Lovecraft associated Aldebaran with Hastur, one of his ancient gods, so the name seemed apt.

Most of the action takes place on the large continent divided into several smaller kingdoms. Some of the places are Lenaria — an ancient empire to the east which once rules the Hinterlands where most of the action has taken place. Lenaria was 90% destroyed by meteors a few hundred years ago (or was it fire from the sky — or even some sort of stange curse or magic or weapon?) but the Lenarians still dabble in powerbrokering in the new world (they are a rip-off of the Melniboneans from Moorcock — powerful sorcerers with gigantic galleys, armies of slaves and dragon air cavalry, they worship the Dragon Goddess). The remaining islands of this once mighty empire share the names with German photographic lens formulas of the late 19th/early 20th century (Thambar, Xenar, Tessar, Summar, Summitar, Noctar, Elmar, etc.).

The big city on the continent is Eord, capital of a kingdom of the same name… which is also known as the City of Seven Walls… it stands at the entry of a strait which leads from the Inner Sea to the eastern Sea… from the inner sea you can sail north to the ice sea… from the eastern sea you can sail south to kingdoms down there or east to Lenaria.
South of Eord lie the Vales, including Red Vale and The Red Mountains… home of the dreaded red dwarves (who are cannibals who consider everyone else as potential food). North lies a forest kingdom of Elves (named, quite unimaginatively, Alfheim), and Aluria, a kingdom of Amazons as well as other various wastelands. There is also a large swampy land known as ‘The Sinking Lands’ which is ruled by a very powerful magic user… and to the west lies Thool (or Thule) which is ruled by a priesthood who have evolved (or devolved) into creatures with enormous brains and frail bodies. Of course, they maintain armies of lesser intellects to serve and protect them. There is also the ruined city of Tana Tak, which is said to be overrun by flesh eating ghouls, but great ancient secrets are said to be buried deep beneath the ground. There are various other kingdoms, some swamplands to the south (which are littered with gigantic stone statues rumored to be the petrified remnants of gods).

I used to take the ‘science’ of world creation quite seriously, but later just decided to have fun with it. Although I haven’t run adventures there for years, it started out as a middle earth/greyhawkish place and has since evolved/devolved into Flash Gordon land / Land of the Lost / Planet of the Apes… with occasional ruined rocket ships, flesh eating apes, mutants, death rays, wierd cults, etc.

After discarding the rather pompous and unoriginal pantheon of my highschool years, I just toss in any and every god of religion I can think of, with Cthulhu cults rubbing elbows with pagans of every stripe, authoritarian churches and cults modeled on worst case scenarios from the real world and a heaping teaspon of the Mythos of the Subgenius mostly for my own amusement. If a player wanted to worship some other deity, I would have no problem shoehorning at least a small chapel or shrine in somewhere — like in Ancient Rome, new gods are making themselves known all of the time…

Exquisite Corpses update! (2/22/2010)

I know it’s taking a painfully long time, but I hope to have ‘Exquisite Corpses’ up and offered on Lulu shortly. Since it’s more than just a document (it’s a book with swappable monster parts divided between feet, bodies and heads where the user can combine different bits to create new creatures), a pure PDF option does not seem practical. As it is, I think I’m going to have to go with a comb or spiral binding just to keep tghe pages from falling out.

Here are some previous entries on the project:

And a sample from the work in process:

In the illo above, on the left is one of the ‘basic’ creatures (a lizard man). On the right, we see the lizard man head on a fungus body with a snake tail instead of legs… which is one of the thousands of critters one could concievably create out of the 26 ‘basic’ creatures which can be combined just flipping the pages. The book also contains (more or less) system-neutral game mechanics that will help drag and drop such creatures into your game.

Guesstimated pagecount is ~80 to 100. I’ve still got a lot of art to do for it, as well as some ‘appendix’ sections that will allow users to add special qualities to their critters…



I love the comic books that were published before I was even born — especially the old ‘pre code’ horror comics. If you like such things too, be sure to visit ‘The Horrors of it all!’
Every day or two, the blogmeister scans and posts a pre-code horror comic story in it’s entirety, with great commentary and sometimes period advertisements as well (“Are you a 90 lbs Weakling?”).
Well worth the visit!