Off the Artboard #2: And They Shall Know No Fear…

2D or otherwise!

Anyone who has read my section in “About Us” knows I have of late gained a massive interest in Warhammer 40k.  Thereby giving me +100 to my “King Dork” abilities.

Honestly, I didn’t even know much about it until “Space Marine,” which was my favorite game from last year.  Purists might scoff at my console-game entry into this vast universe, but, to quote James Rolfe: “To be a fan of anything, you have to be exposed to it first.”  Since discovering the incredibly deep and detailed world of the far future, I have read several novels, collected many art books, played through the Dawn of War series, watched the fun Ultramarines movie, and even started my own army (pics of my first painting attempts coming soon!).

Though I began my knowledge with the Ultramarines and read books about both Space Wolves and Grey Knights, it’s the Librarian-Knowledge-Centric Blood Ravens from Dawn of War that appealed the most to me.

I utilized this overwhelming interest to exercise more of my recently acquired, albeit limited, Illustrator skills.  While I’m still in the “look what I can do with polygons” phase using only the limited tools that come with Illustrator (the preloaded color options, shapes, etc), and creating objects and/or figures that just stand there, I was impressed with how much could be done using just what was learned in a few Google-found tutorials.  This has been a fun exercise in making something I’m interested in to try and learn to operate Illustrator and make using all the tools and functions second nature.  It was also an exercise in mass-production as I started with the basic marine and used parts from that piece to create the others.  I also created two artboards of “stuff,” weapons, insignia, and symbology that could be used over and over in various places to prevent having to re-create anything.

How impressed I’ll be with these early efforts next year only time will tell, but for now I give you my 2D squad of cartoon-style Blood Ravens!

Tactical Marine
My first effort. Basic tactical marine all cartoon’d out.  I gave him a standard bolter and a couple of grenades.
Assault Marine
This one was a nice exercise in different equipment. Making that chainsword was a blast and the first part of the Blood Ravens’ motto can be seen on its blade.
Devastator marine
A heavy-support devastator marine with heavy bolter. This one proved tricky and needs the most correcting. I made him a veteran just to mix up the colors a bit.
Captain/Chapter Master Gabriel Angelos
Captain Angelos with the Godsplitter. Making the artificer parts of his armor were an immensely fun challenge. Also he’s the only one with a human face. He’s still a cartoon but mostly recognizable!
Davian Thule
The final piece of the squad, Davian Thule as a Venerable Dreadnought. This one was obviously the most difficult, I could borrow very little from the others. It was also the most fun to build! There’s some canonical text on his armor.  Davian Thule was my favorite character in the Dawn of War series.  I wanted to ensure his venerable dreadnought state got the respect it deserved.

These were fun creations and made for nice self-taught Illustrator tutorials.  They’re still 2D flat objects, but are pretty far from my first “magnifying glass” creation, even though they were created essentially using the same concepts.  Next I’m going to try some expressive orks and maybe more dynamic character art.  These were fun though and hopefully they’ll be enjoyed!

Off the Artboard #1: Byte Me

Since my previous post ended up being a brief novella due to the desire to express my inexhaustible love for Dragon Warrior I thought I would use this as an opportunity to be more graphical and less textual.

This concept came from my friend Ron Peaks at my day job who thought “You can megabyte me” would make a good t-shirt.  He’s a comedy assassin; the humor always comes from nowhere and slays you instantly.

I made these graphics based on the concept and thought (since I go back far enough) it would be amusing to see the history of “bytes.”  These images used several different techniques in Illustrator, two used 3D effects, two used the perspective tool; they all used various combinations of polygons, shape-builder, and gradients.  They represent a lot of what I learned in my first two months of dedicated Illustrator-ing, were fun to create, and made for nice bright graphics.

So here they are!  He was correct, they probably would make good t-shirts…

Kilo Byte Me
With 5.25 Inch Floppy Disk!
Mega Byte Me
With 3.5 Inch Floppy Disk!
Giga Byte Me
With DVD!
Tera Byte Me
With a Hard Drive!
2D Formats
These were the base graphics I created to build the logos. It was fun to revisit the all the various storage media of my past…