It's been a long while since the story section last had any attention. A while back, I gave up on the idea of ever finishing my Star Wars stories, so instead have typed out a rough outline as to what may have happened during the rest of the saga. I've also expanded the names & characters section with images where possible.
Did some work behind the scenes of the game blog page so that the game filters now work much better.
A couple of months back I found loads of old notes about all the old Epic Space Marine games we played, starting from back when I was in high school. I thought it would be a good idea to type them all up as best I could, and upload them all. While I was at it, I also converted the Epic-S and 40K battle reports from their PDF state to HTML, and they can be found on the Warhammer 40K page.
This is the page where I upload my incredibly poor attempts at creating artworks in a variety of different mediums.
So, this long-neglected page finally gets an update, five years after I last tried to create any kind of artwork. It's not like I have ignored this page on purpose though, as I've been thinking about art a lot, and over the last few years I've collected a great many different types of supplies.
I finally got my butt in gear a couple of months back, when I stumbled across a mandala tutorial on Youtube. It struck me as something I could try, looking like something that would need a whole lot of patience rather than a whole lot of skill. While that has ended up being true, I gotta admit, a whole lot of skill would have certainly helped, as this thing took hours.
Rather than just create a typical black and white mandala like most of those I found on the internet, I decided to just go colour mad, and use as many of my supplies as possible, just to get some use out of them.
Ball points, fineliners, felt tips, coloured pencils, alcohol markers, permanent markers, highlighters, paint pens, and acrylic paints all went into the image. The only thing I own that I didn't use was my watercolours, as I didn't want the paper to warp.
The plan was always to have different parts of the image to look like they were on different layers, and originally, I was going to try and do this as I was creating the image. However, it turned out I didn't have enough de-saturated and darker colours to make parts of the image look like they were further away. So instead, I scanned it into my computer and tried to create layers of darkness, and it's turned out alright, though not perfect.
Overall, I'm pretty happy with it, even though it is a bit messy. I'm hoping I can keep some momentum and try something else arty, but I've still got wargaming stuff to paint and several dozen games to get to trying, and I've not done anything towards those for the last few months.
Why does time go by so very fast? I recently realised that we have passed the ten year anniversary of the end of the Toybitus web-comic, and therefore LLAP-Goch Productions. That is so crazy.
This got me thinking about the web-comic, all those old toys I used, and some of the things that I may have done differently. One character that definitely would have been in it a lot would have been the Decepticon combiner called Monstructor. That dude was made from six little Pretender robots and was totally badass. Me and my bro owned that toy when we were kids, but one day he took it to his mate's house and it never came back. Nowadays, that toy is one of the rarest and is worth a bomb, and I've always been annoyed with myself that I didn't try to get it back when I was a kid. But back then, I didn't really care.
To make a short, boring story even shorter, I fancied paying homage to Monstructor in some way. I also wanted to try line work in PaintTool Sai, and decided to try and re-create an image of one of the Pretender shells. This is the shell of a robot called Icepick, and according to his bio he's actually very cheerful. Hmmm, looks like it.
I have very much cheated creating this image, as I just traced over the original, but I just wanted the practise. I pasted the original into PaintTool Sai, and used the curve tool to create the lines. Then I threw that into Photoshop, and used shape layers to add the colour. I'm happy with how it's turned out, but it would be nothing like this if I'd done it freehand.
I recently watched a Youtube tutorial by Ekaterina Smirnova about painting the Blue Ridge Mountains, and as it looked like a good one for a noob I thought I'd give it a go.
Rather than paint along to the tutorial, I decided to try it later in the day from memory, which was pretty fun to do. Definitely made a few errors mixing the paint and didn't get the transitions right, but oh well.
After that I downloaded a program called PaintTool Sai that looks like good software for line work and inking, but I found it has a mode called watercolour, so I tried the picture again using that. Certainly looks better as it was easier to get the colours right, but I didn't get the sky right at all.
And I definitely need more practise drawing tree branches...
For a long time I've had the desire to try and learn how to create interesting art, and I'm adding this page to the site in an attempt to push me into it. In this first entry, I'm including the initial artworks I've created using a variety of different techniques. Hopefully as I create and add more there will be at least some indication of progress, but as I want to try as many different kinds of art as possible, I expect the progress in each area will be slow.
Still, it will be better than none at all...
This was the first time in my adult life I actually tried to create some art of any description. It is of a Dark Jedi character from my Star Wars story The Dark Side Of Do'Naar. I'm using this as an indication of my starting skill level for digital artworks:
In 2012 I dabbled a little bit in a program called Daz Studio. This is my one and only attempt so far to create artwork using it. It is a very basic re-creation of Morgana's splash art from League Of Legends. I'm using this as an indication of my starting skill level for CG style artworks:
This is my first attempt to create a simple pencil drawing, following a tutorial by artist Mark Crilley. I'm using this as an indication of my starting skill level for pencil sketch artworks:
This is my first attempt at watercolour, following a tutorial by artist Frank Clarke. I'm using this as an indication of my starting skill level for watercolour artworks:
Here I've tried to copy an old photograph from the 1980s of Ty Mawr Caravan Park near Borth in Wales, where my nan and grandad used to have a caravan. I'm using this as an indication of my starting skill level for coloured pencil sketches: