Some old artwork

I was looking through an old hard drive a few days ago when I came across a lot of B&W (and even some color) illustrations that I did some time ago, some of which have been published. Since I enjoyed this stroll down a visual memory lane, I thought some others might too. I’ve added whatever I can recall about the illustrations in case anyone is interested.

Click on the image for a closer look.

I can’t remember the year — 2001? 2002? The above illustration is from the roleplaying game, “Spaceship Zero” published by Green Ronin and written by Toren Atkinson (who also illustrated much of the book). The above image is of the ‘Spaceship Zero’ being battered by meteorites.

I did a lot of work for Goodman Games’ Dungeon Crawl Classics over they years — I can’t remember the title of this one but it involved a quest across the desert. One of the ‘events’ in the adventure describes the players (who are pictured here atop a sand dune) being attacked by desert bandits… and the desert bandits are driven off by a swarm of locusts. As usual, I drew with pen, brush and ink on paper. This is one of the few drawings where I added a ‘zipatone’ style texture (tone) to the sand.
I can tell this one is from 2001 because I helpfully thought to write ‘2001’ down in the corner next to the guy’s foot. As I recall, someone contacted me and asked me to do some gratis illustrations for their (wait for it) super hero RPG set in the Renaissance. And they wanted me to include all of the characters they had been playing over the years. And I was doing all this for free. I didn’t really like the idea of the game that much, but was trying to “break in” to RPG illustration… so I agreed.
Initially I was enthusiastic, but every time I emailed the guy a drawing, he would first say, “Looks great!” and then later email me back with a laundry list of things that the rest of his group had decided needed changing. After they rejected this drawing because they thought the soles of this guys shoes looked too modern, I decided that the advice I had been given before by another artist (“work that people don’t pay for is usually not regarded as valuable”) was good advice and bowed out of the project. I don’t do ‘freebies’ anymore.

This is another Goodman drawing… of some kind of demon idol. There was another drawing of the same statue with a special arrangement of the hands of the idol, and the players were supposed to re-arrange the fingers of the idol to get past a trap or something — but I don’t remember what that was. I have copies of all of the modules I worked on for Goodman and should look it up.

Another Goodman illustration — this of a party of hapless adventurers dying in the desert.

There are a few color illustrations from this time, including this one from the back cover of the Goodman adventure entitled, “Dreaming Caverns of the Duergar” I think. Here we see two duergar armed with flails charging forward to defend a statue of a dragon.

5 Comments on “Some old artwork”

  1. Blair says:

    Oh man, the story about the renaissance super hero vanity project cracks me up.

    Wacky coincidence, Toren's workplace is in my neighborhood!

  2. Talysman says:

    For the first illustration (Spaceship Zero,) did you use a clay-coated posterboard, fill in large black shapes with ink, then scrape ink away with a stylus or matte knife/x-acto knife? I'd read about that technique years ago and always loved the effect.

  3. limpey says:

    Hey Blair, if you know him I hope he is doing well.

    Talysman: I have heard someone refer to that as 'scratchboard' technique. I have never used it but have been eager to try.
    For many of the drawings I used to use a combination of technical pens and india ink on a crow pen with various sizes of brushes and india ink, then I go back in with a fine brush and white gouache to take away a little black here and there, add highlights, etc. I'm using the technical pens less these days… the few times I manage to sit down and draw.

  4. Jim says:

    Love your work. Some of it reminds me of Erol Otus. šŸ™‚

  5. Shane Mangus says:

    Great stuff, man! Now how do I get you to illustrate for some of the future projects I am working on? šŸ˜‰

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