Monday, June 30, 2014

Tongue Monster

I worked up this drawing a little while ago and a space in the blog schedule has finally opened up for it. RAWR! TONGUE MONSTER! ...or something like that. Just having some fun with pencil on paper and this little guy took shape. Hopefully it offers up some good nightmare fuel. One of the process photos I posted on Instagram has ended up my highest voted images... which I find very odd since I have posted finished paintings and wonders of the world. But humans and there 'likes' are fickle, unpredictable, and often complete misguided. Silly humans...

Tongue Monster
9 x 12
Pencil on paper
© 2014 Christopher Burdett 

If you haven't gotten your fill of Tongue Monster yet, you are in luck! I managed to remember to take a couple of photos as I was working on this drawing and I can now share them with you. More of an insight on how I build up and go about making my drawings...

All images of course © 2014 Christopher Burdett

Still not enough? Well, I did manage to capture a quick little video of my pencil actually making contact with the paper while I worked on this piece. Enjoy, because that is all I have for this piece...

Scribble, scribble, scribble...

That is all for another exciting Monday, see you back here on Wednesday! Until then...

For more samples of my work or to contact me regarding my availability head over to my website: www.christopherburdett.com

Friday, June 27, 2014

Fresh from the drawing table... Beetle (Giant) - Fire!

I have for you another drawing that is fresh from the drawing table. This time around it is a Beetle (Giant) - Fire! Working my way through "B" is going to take awhile, but it should be a fun ride... because there are a bunch of giant beetles to be drawn! Tackling the first one this week, the (Giant) Fire Beetle... I picked this one to be first because of REASONS, which I will share later. I present to you my version of a Beetle (Giant) - Fire… 

Beetle (Giant) - Fire
© 2014 Christopher Burdett 

The Fire Beetle has mostly been portrayed as a fire spitting creature, or at least a creature that blazed hot internally. I decided I am just going to go for broke and have a giant creepy insect that was literally on fire. Is it a demon? A devil? A creature from the elemental plane of FIRE? Yet another accidental (or purposeful )horror created by wizards? Who knows... but most know to keep their distance from this burning nightmare. Nothing like a five foot tall burning insect that seems a little too smart for its own good. If the bite does not get you it might just decide to sit on you for a slow roasted treat.

My first 100 original Dungeons & Dragons Monster Manual redesigns (A - Z): Aerial Servant, Ankheg, Ant (Giant), Ape (Carnivorous), Ape (Gorilla), Axe Beak, Axe Beak (version 2), Baboon, Badger, Barracuda, Basilisk, Baluchitherium, Bear (Black), Bear (Brown), Bear (Cave), Beaver (Giant), Beetle (Giant) - Bombardier, Beetle (Giant) - Boring, Beetle (Giant) - Fire, Beetle (Giant) - Rhinoceros, Beetle (Giant) - Stag, Beetle (Giant) - Water, Beholder, Black Pudding, Blink Dog, Boar (Giant), Boar (Warthog), Boar (Wild), Brain Mole, Brownie, Bugbear, Buffalo, Bulette, Carrion Crawler, Catoblepas, Cerebral Parasite, Chimera, Cockatrice, Coutal, Crab (Giant), Demon Type III (Glabrezu), Demon (Juiblex), Demon (Manes), Devil (Ice), Dragon (Red), Elemental (Earth), Ettin, Eye of the Deep, Flightless Bird, Frog (Giant), Fungi (Violet), Giant (Hill), Goblin, Golem (Flesh), Hobgoblin, Homunculus, Hydra, Imp, Intellect Devourer, Ixitxachitl, Jackal, Jacklewere, Jaguar, Ki-Rin, Kobold, Lich, Lizard (Giant), Lizardman, Manticore, Mind Flayer, Minotaur, Naga, Neo-Otygugh, Nixie, Ochre Jelly, Ogre, Owlbear, Peryton, Pixie, Purple Worm, Quasit, Ram (Giant), Roper, Rust Monster, Sahuagin, Salamander, Shambling Mound, Treant, Troglodyte, Troll, Umber Hulk, Unicorn, Vampire, Wasp (Giant), Wight, Wyvern, Xorn, Yeti, and Zombie.      

That is all for another exciting week on the blog, see you back here on Monday! Until then...

For more samples of my work or to contact me regarding my availability head over to my website: www.christopherburdett.com

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

The Star-Touched Grove - Process


Way back in November of last year I brought you a piece I did for Dungeon Magazine illustrating a tentacled bear and his pet porcupine grub. Two great things that go better together! RAWR! Today, at long last, I have the process and steps that went into this piece. So that we are all on the same page, here is how the final piece turned out...

The Star-Touched Grove - Dungeon Magazine Issue 219
© 2013 Wizards of the Coast

Stop me if you have heard this before... I started this piece off with some THUMBNAILS. Imagine that! Anyway, the assignment was to depict a druid that had been corrupted by the taint of the far realms and in his bear form (wait for it) HE HAS TENTACLES! The druid also has a couple of little porcupine grub pals and at least one needed to be in there too. I got some of my favorite bear and insect reference together and got to work on some thumbnails...

The Star-Touched Grove - Thumbnails
© 2013 Wizards of the Coast

"B" was the instant favorite and was selected for this assignment. It was time for some drawing... and that was what I did. Here is how the final drawing for this piece turned out as I built up the details and fleshed out the piece...

The Star-Touched Grove - Drawing
© 2013 Wizards of the Coast

The drawing was approved without issue (if I remember correctly) and I was good to go on getting started with the painting. In just 10 easy steps you too can have a tentacle bear... or not. Here is a progression of the image as I painted it...

The Star-Touched Grove - Process steps
© 2013 Wizards of the Coast

This piece was really straight forward. The biggest over all issue was to make sure everything read well since there were two creatures, lots of tentacles, and a tree leaking star juice in the background. I like to crop in really close to my subjects... and this can both help and hinder me, but in the long run I have made it work. As an added bonus, here is an animated version of the painting coming together...

The Star-Touched Grove - Animated progression

The painting was turned in and accepted without revision. Well, there was one note, and that was from Kate, my AD on this piece... she really wanted to see the nose of the bear to be blue to match the tentacles. Unfortunately, she was overruled by other folks at WotC and the nose remained as I had painted it. She sent me a mocked up image with the nose blue and I agreed with her, it would have been fun to see a blue nosed tentacle bear...

If only... the blue nosed tentacle bear...

As always, this piece turned out as well as it did because of the ever present and helpful art directors at WotC, thanks Kate! Again, here is how the final piece turned out...
The Star-Touched Grove - Dungeon Magazine Issue 219
© 2013 Wizards of the Coast

That is all for another exciting Wednesday on the blog, see you back here on Friday!  Until then...

For more samples of my work or to contact me regarding my availability head over to my website: www.christopherburdett.com

Monday, June 23, 2014

Ree-Yees

While I had others to blame for Cad Bane, this time around it is complete my fault that that I made a Ree-Yees painting. Ree-Yees is one of the MANY aliens seen in Jabba's palace in Return of the Jedi that I have been in love with for the last... 31 years (can that be right?). It was only a matter of time that I produced a piece featuring a Gran, but I figured I would cut to the chase and make myself that is based on Ree-Yees. Here is my portrait of Ree-Yees wandering around on Tatooine or perhaps Kinyen...

"Ree-Yees"
  5 x 7 - acrylic and pencil on board
Original - SOLD
© 2014 Christopher Burdett

Why am I making these little Star Wars portraits? Because I want to. I can say that it is to better improve my traditional skill set... but these pieces are really for me and satisfy an aspect of my creative impulse that I have ignored for a long time. Don't try to read to much into it. Even though I am working at 5 x 7 for my final I have continued to work much larger for the initial drawing. I just draw better at 9 x 12 at least, if not larger, so the  drawing for this painting is nice and big...

Ree-Yees - Drawing
9 x 12
Pencil on paper
© 2014 Christopher Burdett

As with the rest of my traditional pieces I have tried my best to document the process. I am still very much trying to find my way while working traditionally, so this is as much for me to reflect on how the painting went as it is for you to judge me and laugh... or learn, I guess that is an option too. Here is a bunch of images of Ree-Yees taking shape...

All images © 2014 Christopher Burdett

Here is another handy dandy animated gif of all those images so you can look at them all at once...

Ree-Yees - Process progression

Is the animated gif not enough? Here are a couple of other photos I took along the way while working on this piece...

My workspace before I began to paint... I think I covered up all the secrets...

The dashing model posing with the finished painting.

That is all for another exciting Monday on the blog, see you back here on Wednesday! Until then...

For more samples of my work or to contact me regarding my availability head over to my website: www.christopherburdett.com

Friday, June 20, 2014

Hezrou - D&D Arena of War

I did a double take earlier this week while playing the mobile game, Dungeons & Dragons - Arena of War. They added some new monsters to fight and one looked REALLY familiar. It looks like my redesign of the Hezrou demon that I did for D&D Next has made its way into the game!

I am going to continue to keep my designs for the Hezrou secret since I didn't officially design it for Arena of War, but I have some screenshots from the game so you can get a feel for the monster. The model of the Hezrou is a bit more simplified from my design, but that is to be expected... and it appears to have an extra finger. Enough talk, here are some screenshots from the game of Hezrou...

Hezrou showing off his... uh... its good side in D&D Arena of War ...RAWR!
© 2014 Wizards of the Coast

That awkward moment when you walk into a forest clearing and ther is a 12 foot demon just standing there... AWKWARD....
© 2014 Wizards of the Coast

Shhhhh.... I think he is sleeping...
© 2014 Wizards of the Coast

Insert techno beats here... RAWR!
© 2014 Wizards of the Coast

Oh no! Now he is playing peek-a-boo... those adventures are going to be stuck there all day.
© 2014 Wizards of the Coast

This is but the first of the many monsters that I designed for D&D Next. You can definitely expect more in the coming months as we approach the release of the core books for the new generation of D&D. RAWR!

That is all for another exciting week on the blog, see you back here on next week! Until then...

For more samples of my work or to contact me regarding my availability head over to my website: www.christopherburdett.com

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Pusbibble - Blood Bowl: Fowl Play

My contribution to the upcoming expansion to Blood Bowl: Team Manager, Fowl Play, was spoiled on the Fantasy Flight Games website yesterday. What that really means is that I can now share it here! What makes this piece even more special... to me, at least... is that this is my first traditionally painted piece for FFG. I present to you the newest star player for the Nurgle’s Rotters, Pusbubble...

Pusbubble
8 x 10
Acrylic and pencil on board
© 2014 Fantasy Flight Games

I was tasked to create this little Nurgling that was super eager to play, though he might not be as big and powerful as his horrific plague carrying brethren. I was approached about this assignment while driving home from Gen Con last year. At a break from driving I checked my phone and there was the email inquiry. At first I was not going to take on the assignment... but then I got to thinking about doing the piece traditionally and suddenly the assignment got a whole lot more tempting. ...well, you can see how tempting it was, because I am sharing with you the finished painting.

When the expansion finally gets released I will share with you the process and steps that went into this painting, as well as some thoughts about why I decided to do this piece traditionally.

I will leave you with an image of how the final production card is going to look...

Pusbubble in handy card form.

That is all for another exciting Wednesday on the blog, see you back here on Friday! Until then...

For more samples of my work or to contact me regarding my availability head over to my website: www.christopherburdett.com

Monday, June 16, 2014

Fresh from the drawing table... Baboon!

I have for you another drawing that is fresh from the drawing table. This time around it is a Baboon! "B" is just full of mundane monsters, but being mundane is no reason to not get all the time and attention the more fantastical monsters get. With that in mind I created a baboon that would inhabit my D&D world. I present to you my version of a Baboon… 

Baboon
© 2014 Christopher Burdett 

What is more frightening, a guard dog or a guard baboon? The dog has a mouth full of teeth... but that baboon has a mouth full of teeth, two arms with monkey strength, two legs with more of that monkey strength, and a brain with the smarts to mess you up. My money is on the baboon every time. Even the half blind older baboon... you know he has been around the block and you are not the first group of adventurers to cross his path... and he is still on duty. As a Dungeon Master that baboon would be surprisingly powerful and its chains would snap at the WORST possible moment for the players. ...cause that is how I roll and the players need to be scared of EVERYTHING.

My first 100 original Dungeons & Dragons Monster Manual redesigns (A - Z): Aerial Servant, Ankheg, Ant (Giant), Ape (Carnivorous), Ape (Gorilla), Axe Beak, Axe Beak (version 2), Baboon, Badger, Barracuda, Basilisk, Baluchitherium, Bear (Black), Bear (Brown), Bear (Cave), Beaver (Giant), Beetle (Giant) - Bombardier, Beetle (Giant) - Boring, Beetle (Giant) - Fire, Beetle (Giant) - Rhinoceros, Beetle (Giant) - Stag, Beetle (Giant) - Water, Beholder, Black Pudding, Blink Dog, Boar (Giant), Boar (Warthog), Boar (Wild), Brain Mole, Brownie, Bugbear, Buffalo, Bulette, Carrion Crawler, Catoblepas, Cerebral Parasite, Chimera, Cockatrice, Coutal, Crab (Giant), Demon Type III (Glabrezu), Demon (Juiblex), Demon (Manes), Devil (Ice), Dragon (Red), Elemental (Earth), Ettin, Eye of the Deep, Flightless Bird, Frog (Giant), Fungi (Violet), Giant (Hill), Goblin, Golem (Flesh), Hobgoblin, Homunculus, Hydra, Imp, Intellect Devourer, Ixitxachitl, Jackal, Jacklewere, Jaguar, Ki-Rin, Kobold, Lich, Lizard (Giant), Lizardman, Manticore, Mind Flayer, Minotaur, Naga, Neo-Otygugh, Nixie, Ochre Jelly, Ogre, Owlbear, Peryton, Pixie, Purple Worm, Quasit, Ram (Giant), Roper, Rust Monster, Sahuagin, Salamander, Shambling Mound, Treant, Troglodyte, Troll, Umber Hulk, Unicorn, Vampire, Wasp (Giant), Wight, Wyvern, Xorn, Yeti, and Zombie.      

That is all for another exciting Monday on the blog, see you back here on Wednesday! Until then...

For more samples of my work or to contact me regarding my availability head over to my website: www.christopherburdett.com

Friday, June 13, 2014

Yucatan Adventures - Ek Balam

Concluding my Yucatan adventures we arrive at last, but certainly not least, to Ek Balam. Not knowing what to expect from Ek Balam the fact that a temple facade featuring the mouth and face of the Earth God was uncovered in the last 20 years was a surprise not thought possible. There is plenty to see at this site, but the real treasure is the surviving and AMAZING temple facade. If you are wondering, yes, it was always all white. Imagine a red building, white temple facade of a massive God face and a king or spiritual leader standing in the mouth covered in golds, reds, blues, feathers, skins... speaking to his people... it must have been something! The view from the pyramid's top was also very impressive. I present to you, Ek Balam...

The figures along the were most likely ancestors of the leader found buried within and exhibit recognizable birth defects attributed to inbreeding.

Temple facade wants to NOMS you. Figures hold the eyes of the God open so that it will be ever vigilant. There are both animal and human teeth in this toothy snarl.

Well worth the climb up the pyramid... Do not miss seeing this in person when visiting Ek Balam.

The wind was cool and refreshing up here and something in the distance was burning. You could see all the Ek Balam from up here. A Mayan could see their entire world from the tops of these pyramids.
 All images © 2014 Christopher Burdett

This concludes all of the ruins that we visited in the Yucatan. While I would not miss seeing any of them or returning to any of them... Uxmal was my favorite over all. There were the fewest tourists and vendors and the most isolated as well as it having the most unexpected treats in the best condition. When visiting, be sure to go to all of these sites... but Uxmal is not to be missed.

That is all for an very Yucatan filled week on the blog, see you back here on Monday! Until then...

For more samples of my work or to contact me regarding my availability head over to my website: www.christopherburdett.com

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Yucatan Adventures - Uxmal

Continuing my adventures across the Yucatan, today we arrive at Uxmall (Ooshmal). Uxmal is officially one on my new favorite places on the planet. I can not speak highly enough about the quality and quantity of amazing things to see at Uzmal. The carvings are beautiful and plentiful. A lot of the carvings depict Chaac, the rain God, and I will definitely need to create something Chaac related in the near future. I present to you, Uxmal...

Again, out of the jungle rise amazing structures of stone.

Chaac!

I think this is my favorite photo that I took on my adventures.

Everywhere there are faces and amazing carvings.

From the top of the pyramid you can climb looking back at the main pyramid.

All images © 2014 Christopher Burdett

That is all from Uxmal, tomorrow we wrap up the adventure at Ek Balam, which held a unexpected treat.
That is all for another exciting Thursday on the blog, see you back here tomorrow. Until then...

For more samples of my work or to contact me regarding my availability head over to my website: www.christopherburdett.com