2015 post-mortem

I had originally wrote a draft 1600+ words covering the last five years, but then I realized this week it was no longer necessary. All my previous blogs cover the last five years fairly well, but the short of it is that 2012 defined my life in a negative way, and I never forgave myself for spending so much just to re-learn what I had already received for free. I am finally able to let it all go this year.

Finally getting a day job has accelerated this year and I really haven’t made a lot of time for finished work, other than the Blizzard Heroes of the Storm contest piece. Most of my sketches were posted to Instagram as I still haven’t taken time to scan my sketchbook drawings going as far back as October 2014.

My goals for 2016 will be to set up an oil painting space in my room and start working more traditionally hereafter, hopefully achieving a good balance between digital and traditional.

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Forest Song of Ashenvale

Forest Song of Ashenvale

Painted for the Nymph ArtOrder Challenge. I was pretty intrigued by Mr. Schindehette’s breakdown of the various variations of nymphs across different landscapes in his research of the subject matter for the presentation of the challenge. I looked over all the different types and thought, “what’s my stake in this? what’s the story I will tell?” The encouragement from Jon to “take this challenge and turn it into something useful” for my portfolio had me considering the Warcraft version of dryads.

My heart leapt within me when I saw that Jeremy Cranford was going to be one of the judges. My brain defaulted to Warcraft mode and I put the project in the back of my mind for a while. After two/three weeks of failing to produce something for Udon’s Warcraft Tribute book (for lack of good composition and other technical challenges that left me unsatisfied with the images I had in progress), I decided to just set that aside and refocus on the Art Order challenge.

Over a boring Army Reserve drill weekend, I did a quick sketch of an idea that I had in mind, and an accompanying thumbnail value study. It’s amazing how having a good composition and value plan can make or break an image. Getting home, I went into the virtual reality of Azeroth to take screenshots of dryads and the forests of Kalimdor for my reference, and the work in progress can be seen in the previous blog entry. For the dryads in this painting, I mixed and matched design elements from the existing in-game models of dryads (older dryad game models had barely anything, while the newer ones had too much stuff) as to establish some hierarchy among the three figures.

Art Order Challenge: Nymphs; work-in-progress

art order challenge wip
Here’s a progress shot of my work for the current Art Order Challenge: Nymphs. One of the subcategories of nymphs are dryads, for woodland areas. When I saw that Jeremy Cranford was going to be one of the judges, I knew exactly what I wanted to do for this challenge: the dryads of the Ashenvale Forest. In other words, World of Warcraft  themed fan art (and this falls in accordance with Jon Schindehette’s portfolio building guide; to do the work I want to be doing).

Funny thing, I got further on this painting in progress in the course of 2 days, while the two artworks I planned for the Warcraft Tribute book by Udon Crew took me two to three weeks to get to half of this point. Amazing how much time you can save with a good composition thumbnail. Those two other artworks aren’t going to be finished by submission deadline for the Warcraft Tribute, but that means I’ll actually be able to share them since I won’t submit them. I might go back to try to finish later on with better planning, since the themes and subject matters of those fan-arts are quite close to my heavy metal heart.