Sunday, October 28, 2007

Europe! PARIS - London - Rome

This summer we went to Europe for 2 weeks.

Rainy night in Paris

Paris was quite an adventure. We arrived at 10pm from a 14 hour flight. The airline lost our luggage, so we didn't have any of our tour books with us. At baggage claim they asked what hotel we'd be staying at, but we were staying at a friend's apartment and we didn't know the phone number! So we were in doubt if we'd see our luggage even if the airline found it.

The Louvre is freaking huge!!!

We caught a taxi (that wasn't really a taxi - be careful in Paris!) and got a ride to the apartment. He dropped us off and we wandered around the street until we found the address. We had the key and got into the foyer, but it turned out there were dozens of apartments there and we didn't have the actual apartment number. So we wandered the streets of Paris until we found a 24 hour internet cafe. With hope we looked up our email to see if our friend had sent us the apartment number. He gave us tons of great info, but no apartment number! We found out he was currently in Sweden and left a phone number.

Sketches of statues in the Louvre

The Louvre is an endless collection of amazing classical art

Our phone card was in the luggage and we had no luck using the phones to call Sweden. By chance we contacted a friend in the US through instant messenger who was able to call Sweden for us - just in the nick of time. We got the apartment number and promised our US benefactor some fine European chocolates when we returned to the States.

Sketch inside the d'Orsay

When we arrived back at the apartments, tired, cold and wet (it had been raining all night) we were looking forward to a hot shower and some rest. The apartments had no numbers on the doors! Molly had the clever idea of ringing the buzzer of the apartment number while one of us ran up and down the halls listening for which door the buzzer rang behind. Well, that worked and we finally made it in. We found out the next day that all of Paris is basically closed on Sunday so we couldn't get even buy any decent clothes or toiletries.

The d'Orsay had some incredible paintings

We were in a great location in Paris and did enjoy the rest of our time there, but that first night, in addition to some fierce jet lag, took its toll. When we went to the Louvre, and later to the d'Orsay we were so tired that we ended up taking naps on the benches there. I'm disappointed at how little drawing we got done there. In addition we were paranoid about missing our luggage call, and didn't stray far from the apartment.

I was most impressed with the architecture in Paris
We stayed only a few blocks from Notre Dame

At the last hour on our last day in Paris the airline delivered our luggage! It was so nice to change into comfy clothes and have our toiletries.

Mass in Notre Dame was beautiful

Early the next morning we rushed to Charles de Gaul airport to catch our plane to London. Even though we allowed for 2 hours at the airport we just barely caught our plane, they almost didn't let us on!

More on our Europe saga later...

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Dungeoneer RPG layout test


I've been going over the first pass documents of the 3 books in the Dungeoneer RPG and preparing some preliminary layout designs. My goals in the layout are 1. Legibility and 2. Cool Looking. I want to avoid wall to wall block of texts with no space to breathe, but I don't want so much graphics that the book is illegible and unusable during game play. The approach I'm experimenting with here is a double-page spread that introduces a major chapter, which you can see in this example from the world guide. This spread introduces the major nation of Ilbor Paidan. The rest of the chapter will be more functional and less graphic intensive. I'll put up an example of that when I get one I kind of like. For now enjoy this sneak peek.

Sunday, October 7, 2007

Dungeoneer RPG documents have been delivered

Richard Plockington, the primary author of the Dungeoneer role-playing game has delivered the next-to final documents. He recently ran a playtest at the local Gamescape in San Rafael California, which went quite well. Fun was had by all! (you can see some of Richard's design work on such excellent Dungeon Crawl Classics as The Sunken Ziggarat )

I'm in the process of doing a final review, making sure game terminology is used consistently and some minor organizational changes. The document will then go to Goodman Games for a final edit, which is due in mid-November. After that I'll take the final edited document and lay them out with art and graphics for the boxed set.

Currently the contents are looking something like this:
  • 3 booklets
  • 220 cards
  • 100 peril/glory tokens
  • dice
  • character sheets
The booklets are: player's guide, dungeonlord's guide, and world guide.

Note this is not final and it is possible the exact contents may change a bit, but this is pretty close to what it will be. We are working hard to have it to you early next year!

More Gathering Magic

A couple more Magic: the Gathering cards have been revealed by Wizards of the Coast. Kinsbaile Skirmisher and the ridiculously-fun-to-illustrate Boggart Mob. Did these in acrylics, it felt good to have real paint under the fingernails. :)


Thursday, October 4, 2007

Demon Swarm

She's in a whole lotta trouble, or maybe its the demons that are really in trouble. Another simulated pen & ink sketch. I was trying to create a lot of movement with vertical space, using all diagonals trying to avoid any horizontal shapes.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Gathering some Magic

I've had the good fortune to work on the latest Magic: the Gathering card set with the astounding Jeremy Jarvis, who in addition to being the art director is a terrifyingly talented watercolor illustrator in his own right. The set is called Lorwyn. Wizards recently posted online some of the cards I did here. So I guess its safe now to post them on my blog. These were done in photoshop at a resolution of 3000 x 2400 pixels (that's 8x10 at 300 rez)



Update: Nath's Buffoon was featured in Magic Arcana on October 16, 2007.