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Finlly got home ! (again).. Borin' holidays these. Happy New Year to you boys as well, hope this one turns out MUCH better than the last. 2009 was right bollocks for me...
Right, thought I'ld pich in with some Viking-oriented REFs.
I found a Viking Tarot Deck somewhere on the net, what was interesting was Fenrir as "Death" I think it was (I've included the card in the REFs here, the wolf with the sword in mouth).
As for the Aces, to continue with Tom's "rider" idea (when I said I thought it was a good call if the aces all had something in common, that they could all be riding something, a dragon, a horse, whatever) : another suggestion is maybe the common thing they could have is an aureola ? Sorta like with the Orthodox icons ?
Great moodboard Nic, not a bad start for 2010 I would say. Hope things will turn out better this year.
Chances are I'm going to be stuffed with work next week so I've already made some first sketches.
The Tower is a difficult one, and I'm not sure yet what direction I'm going to take it. For the Ace of Wands I did a male and a female. I believe it has to be a male but not sure about that. Horses and dragons would be my two favourite animals, but that can change.
Aye I agree with Björn : the second one is a strong base to start on, nice elements forming up already, and the tower still needs to be a character hehe That's why I was interested in the Tower card actually, how to translate a "tower" into human-ish- form.
Yes, I know it's not a character yet, but it's a start. I'm thinking there are two directions, one starting from a building like the sketch and then trying to humanize it. And the other way is to start from a body and build or 'dress' it up with rocks wood etc. I don't know yet but it sure is a challenge, thats why I picked it.
The second really reminds me of old conan comics. awesome.
I got to start my wips on the ace of pentacles today. A really early rough sketch was of a dude with a pentacle tattoo on his back but it was so dark. Pentacles is a possitive happy card. So now im posting this wip. Its in the right direction. wanna hear your thought son it. Oh, and its not going to be a trace of lineart when Im done rendering.
I will add flowers and mountains in the bottom of the card and clouds around and behind the pentacle. Im thinking of making the pentacle look old and relic like.
Last edited by B-Man; January 2nd, 2010 at 05:48 PM.
Very nice sketch Björn, damn those legs look sweet. Maybe it would be nice if the pentacle is carved into a rock or something. Is it possible for you to make a version of here riding a dragon ore a wolf ore something? You're absolutely right about the positive sphere the card should have but I'm curious about the other darker sketch, post it if you like.
Here's another sketch for the Tower. It's more of a character because it started as a human figure, maybe I put him on a giant monsterdragon. I believe the Tower card is one of the most darkest.
snappy snap b-man crack out the big wip!!! great start you guys!
Excellent work, you guys. I'm keeping my eye on that Ace of Pentacles design especially. I really like where its going.
Tommoy - Great work! I especially like the second one of the dragon rider. I like what you're doing with the Tower too. Very imposing, very hulk-esque as he should be. Loving it all!
B-man - Sweet work, I like the youthful approach you have going for the character and the incorporating a literal interpretation of the symbol into your design.
Busy weekend with work and what not, but I hope to get some real progress done in the next few days. I'm gong to do my best and incorporate the "rider" element into my ace design. Still fleshing out some ideas for Death really trying to think outside of the box.
Awesome sketches so far guys and a nice nordic theme.
The color version of the dragon rider is coming along great. The last one not so sure about, while the blue water contrasts well with the orange glow the drawing doesn't work for me, I liked the B&W version better.
Maybe you guys should clarify if the tower indeed cannot be a building. A building, if important enough and sentient enough, could be a character imo. Worth clarifying with the moderators. I really liked that initial building sketch by Tommoy in #94. Also the idea of starting with it and trying to "humanize" it seems real interesting as an approach.
B-Man: Always keeping them sexxy and you know I'm a big fan of your stuff! Great so far. Glad to see you've decided to take part of this TCHOW.
Good luck guys!
Tommoy - Your killing it! Love what you did with the dragon rider. Also I don't mind the direction you're taking with the Tower, keep plugging away, I'd like to see where it goes
A mockup of Death. I wanted to incorporate a ruin stone into the piece. They were like Norse grave stones. I gotta figure out a way to spruce her up though, Norse out her wardrobe a bit more. May go with this, overhaul it, scrap it, still up in the air.
Just a thought. The cards are really tiny with the dimentions that was given so size the cards and see that your focus point dosnt get to tiny. I see there could be a problem with a big mount. Meybe its just me that worry too much about how the images read on a tiny card. anyway its woth thinking about.
This is the set size..
See what I mean? Tom your awesome viking gets so tiny.
And tim that is looking great. maybe it would look cool if you add some more detail to the cloaths, like patterns in the fabric or something.
I've been wokin' to finish this illustration of mine due in next week, get that out of the way so I can concentrate on TChoW properly (should be done about tomorrow I reckon). That being said, I've sketched away a few Tarot ideas in my book but they don't quite do it for me just yet. At least I've got a few leads. I'll post some sketches real soon though !
Tom : The dragon rider's coming along, can't wait to see what freaky weird dragon-thing you come up with . I'm not so sure about the Tower yet though, it's a little too "first degree" for me I think? Maybe think about the fact that the tower is supposed to be a culmination of earthly prestige ? And that it shatters when the fool figures he should be "building" himself rather than something material. I don't know what that would spell out drawing-wise though, dunno if making the Tower vain-and-covered-in-gold type of thing would be a particularly good way to go. I DO believe it should be a guy and that he should be huge and invulnerable type of thing. That feels right. I also think the choice of the hammer as a weapon is quite appropriate (if he needs a weapon, I just noticed he has none in the second version).
Hmm, maybe he should be some big assed giant warrior creature being struck down by Thor's lightning ? All screaming in pain and rage. Like, have Thor half his size in the background or something.
Or how's about having some greyish-stone-monster-giant shattering, falling apart from the chest like his skin was to dry and brittle and from within there's a golden light that shines out and melts away the stone. And inside you can see maybe a young teenage Viking, or some fair maiden or whatever, some enlightened and/or "pure" character ? Just bouncin' quick thoughts, maybe some part can give you some sorta inspiration.
Björn : I always loves the nekkid! hahaha But maybe some sort of Nordic theme would help tie the character in. For the time being I see some miscellaneous chick, probably in the grand canyon ? Tom's suggestion that you carve the pentacle into stone might help, something like the stones at the København National Museum or the Stone at Tjängvide http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tj%C3%A4ngvide_image_stone maybe ?
If the ace of pentacles is supposed to be a good omen for material gain, new opportunities, I definitely could see some Viking raiding party, burning down a church and leaving with a ton of gold in the Drakkar ! The Ace character peering over the edge of the dragonship, hanging onto a rope perhaps. hehehe But hey, that's twisted old me...
But ya, no, semi-clad women is always a winner just have to make sure she has enough clothing for us to really get the proper information from it, describe the character, what she does, where she's from, etc.
--I was wondering if we were gona go with a rider theme for the Aces ? Or an aureole maybe ? Have we trashed the idea of having a common point for them all ?
Tim : I'm diggin' the value work, but like you said you need to Norse-her-ass some Dunno if goin' with the classic sickle is gona "cut it" though ? (f+ck what a WONDERFUL pun that was... hehe ) As she is now, I get a vampire feeling more than anything else.
Death calls up big change and subsequent "resurrection" of the querent right ? So maybe you could make her a Valkyrie ? They chose the worthy amongst the dead, that really rings to the card's meaning, embracing change and all. Or a Norn maybe, since they weave life and decide (although blindly) who dies, where and when, and all things in life. And one of the Norns is an old hag so you can make her look all deathly.
I dunno, I might have gone with a male character and a skull (like I said before, I dig them skulls hehe) peerin' right at the viewer, askin' for some sacrifice somehow. Ya I know I know, generic right ? But there was just something about the "black armour and white rose" Tarot bit that felt just right I guess.
Alright, that was my quick feedback for the day. I hope to get started on some productive sketchin' tomorrow and have something worth critiquing to show by the day after !
Björn : Ya I was worried about that myself. But the way I figured is : we do the pick in those proportions as if it were a regular ChoW, and if (because as I understand it, it's still only a possibility ?) Daestwen chooses to print the cards then she can focus on a certain part of the illustration ? Which would sorta suck because then you lose our original vision if it gets cropped but... Is it better if we render mini drawings in the end ?
That being said, I just went back here and reread the dimensions Daestwen wants. They really aren't that small, about 3 inches wide by 6 tall ? That's a He-Man right there! On my screen at least, the dimensions you posted of the Ace of Wands are about half-sized. So if you double them it starts becoming decent I reckon.
Well Im glad to hear that. No I think render it big and if Daestwen wants to make it smaller she could resize. Sounds good. I ahve been looking around and most dont seem to bother thinking of size. Later problem I guess.
For the ace of pentacle I would like to see her like Freja, like an (demigod?) Yeah I was gonna do the stone thing. The raid party is a good Idea. Im gonna look into that.
As for mounts, Im gonna have it in the chariot card and I could add a flying chreature in the background of the ace of pentacles. Or, redo the whole thing.
Tim, the grave/ruin stone seems a good idea for Death. I like your sketch a lot, the hood looks really good, some vague suggestion of a scull with glowing eyes would be nice but thats just a thought. A little more 'death' wouldn't hurt though.
Björn, point taken, it's a fact the dragon takes a lot of space. I'm gonna try to lay the focus primarily on the character, that should help. It's also possible I make the dragon a bit smaller or bend the tale some other way.
Björn, I've made a little sketch of Ace of Pentacles on a owl, but it could be anything of course. Its just to get a idea of the mounting aspect. Tim, you could consider Death riding a dead horse or something. I know Tower isn't mounted, but let me first get Tower sorted out and then maybe...
Nic, thanks for the suggestions. I'm struggling along with the Tower, here are a few scribbles.
I thought of somthing while taking an epic shit this afternoon. What if we skip the mounts and go for pets instead. Each character has its own pet. Could be any animal even made up. I just thought its easier to work together with the character and not loose focus of it and it makes composition easier. I know its har to get a mount working for the tower but a guardian pet dragon is easier or a pack of vissious vultures. Its still early right nothings set in stone?
Nic - Im still a fan of your aureola idea. it kinda passed unnotised but I trired adding it to see what it looks like. Its awesome for composition and symbolics.
Tom - I like this first tower of these two alot.
edit: the manage attachments is not loading for me at the moment Ill try adding the wips later
Last edited by B-Man; January 5th, 2010 at 06:13 PM.
Haha, talking about a epic shit. This sketch I've made earlier didn't make it because it looks like she's the Ace of Epic shit
Björn, I like your idea of pets, this opens up possibilities for the Tower. Personally I like the Towertower also. Its not a character yet though, I've tried give it some arms and a face, but that ruins the Tower effect.
Not to butt in or anything, but if you are struggling for ways of incorporating a story with your figures and animals, why not push the Norse-ness of your cards and even try to make the characters into some Norse deities? The chick with the pentacle could easily be Freyja (she has a magic necklace, a falcon cloak and a chariot pulled by huge cats which is all cool imagery) and you have a Thor and maybe an Odin already.
Or, barring that, you have 4 aces = 4 horsemen of the apocalypse
Loving the progress, keep going!
Alright, I finished that other piece ! Good to go for a while here, I got an illustration contract in architecture commin' up but it shouldn't be that much of a drain on time I hope.
Hmm, first up I'ld have to agree with Jessi : I don't see the point of having animals on each card. The major arcana already have character on their own. I mean, I can easily see Death on a horse for instance, but I can not wrap my mind around the Tower having some sort of ride/pet.
That doesn't mean I don't think it's a good idea for the aces : the aces are the "potential" of the suit right ? It works for me here, more importantly it makes the Aces stand out as a bunch of their own. Again, what I think would be cool is to have a common element to our aces, if Björn likes the aureole idea in stead for instance, hey it's all good to me. I'm not completely sold on the four horsemen angle though what with all the imagery surrounding them and their Judaeo-Christian meaning, but some sort of an offshoot could be decent. Maybe something from the Ragnarok, although we wanna be careful not to focus on the grim here with all our aces (as the Apocalypse would suggest).
I was also exploring the lore for inspiration as Jessi mentioned. Finding similarities with the cards and the Valkyries or Tyr etc. like I mentionned before. I think it's a good approach as long as we don't get caught up in a rigid pattern : it's some great material but as far as we're concerned here I reckon we also wanna do our own thing.
Tom : Yaaaa, I prefer the dragon to the brown-snake somehow ! The tower's gona be a hard one, but I like a challenge hehe Shoot some ideas our way if you like, that helps me when I'm havin' a hard time. Get some exterior point of view.
B-man : can't wait to see that sketch man. Ya I agree, aureoles can often help quite a bit with composition. Hmmm, you remember how I was suggesting the pentacle on your ace be a carved stone ? Maybe it could be some freaky Norse aureole all made of light with rune stones floating around the perimeter... I dunno, just a thought.
Alright, a few quickies for right now, the ones that weren't rubbish. More to come. Tried having Mimir speaking to the querent through Judgement, maybe Wotan holding his head up to the viewer... I prefer the version with Judgement calling up all the dead memories from the ground with his horn though, perhaps a Heimdal-ish Judgement (Heimdal would warn all the Aesir with his horn from the Bridge).
Thanks to the people who comment on our sketchbook, it's really helpful
So its not a necessarity to incorporate animals, that makes Tower a little easier
Using a Northern light effect in every card could be useful for the consistency.
Nic, I like your sketches, the last one appeals most (nice storytelling) composition wise the other two are better though.
Did a little more work on the Ace of Wands.