Saturday, 21 February 2009

Forging Dragons By John Howe

Forging Dragons John Howe Book Cover

John Howe is a fantasy art legend in my mind and one that has created several paintings and art pieces for such iconic imagery of The lord of the rings aswell as several other fantasy worlds and realms.

And forging dragons is his book which delves deep into the dragon design, more like a process of the way he works giving notes and advice on certain techniques and thoughts of each project within his book. With detailed illustrations and sketches throughout he attempts to evoke the atmosphere of diverse dragons and provide a history of sorts to the dragons mythology with extracts from some other sources which serve as examples for which John can illustrate how he tackles a certain dragon in a different way.

One of the most fascinating things about Johns art is that it is easy to get caught up in seeing his artwork being processed and feeling the desire to draw along with him as you are reading. I find this true a lot with some of the other top fantasy artists, that I just want to get started straight away and almost skip past reading the book, but then I realize I have to read on.

Watch this short video with John giving a little personal introduction to the book Forging Dragons

The exploration of dragons as myth is the fantasy stuff of dreams and it is the imagination of drawing dragons that appeals to many especially from an artist who seems to do it almost effortlessly.

John Howe is an artist to study if you are interested in the intricacies of watercolour painting as he is a master of watercolour, as I once read a book about the process he used for a Lord Of The Rings Gandalf painting for which he built up lots of glaze layers or washes and created a misty fog effect before creating more detailed shades of paintwork at the foreground with Gandalf being the off centre focal point and here is that painting.Gandalf The Grey Painting

See some more of John Howes Work on Lord Of The Rings Concept Paintings

Popular John Howe LOTR Paintings
More John Howe Lord Of The Rings Paintings

Waterstones John Howe - Forging Dragons Synopsis and Review

Monday, 16 February 2009

Epilogue Fantasy Art Gallery

I often am a browser at times and can just spend hours on end looking at the many galleries on Epilogue - The Fantasy And Sci-Fi Art Gallery To look at other fantasy art is the most inspirational thing any artist can do. Of course just like Elfwood there are a mix of professional artists and just fans of the genre but as an artists I believe we can learn from the art of anyone, professional or not.

As you'll find new ideas in the strangest of places, take Youtube for example there are various videos which are from excellent artists and then from people whose drawing may not be perceived as good, but I say rubbish, the very fact that any artist is having a go means they are celebrating the fact that they love the art form of fantasy art and that is good enough for me and inspiring to watch no matter what the result turns out like.

The good and well intentioned forum users in the Epilogue forum entitled The Common Room is a fabulous place to see others work unfinished or not and to discuss each others work.

In addition to the fantasy art forums there is a tutorial section that goes through many things any artist might need to know about certain things like selling your fantasy art on Ebay or commissioning art and many more helpful resource articles.

So if you are into the mechanics of fantasy art and want an extra outlet for your work then Epilogue is a friendly place to get to know other artists and highly recommend getting to know people there.

The Fantasy Art Of Amy Brown

Amy Brown is a fantasy artist and she sketches, paints and creates fantastical images of fantastic fantasy fairy creations. Amy Draws Faeries with a beautiful eye for detail and the fantasy wonder of these delicate creatures and she has many books and ornaments designed by her, but perhaps my daughters favourite is the Amy Brown Fairies Coloring Book.

Amy's fairy artwork has been published in a book entitled The Art of Amy Brown and also a volume 2 featuring more wonderful artwork and Amy has become something of a specialist in drawing and painting fairies and this is a good example to specialize in an area and then build on that success, although quite largely Faery Art has remained her top priority she has been known to dabble in a few other fantasy genres of the art form, but again she is a fairy artist first and foremost.

I suppose one of my favourite pieces of hers(and there are many!) has to be Rose Spell it just has so much to say and the atmosphere of the piece is just really soothing with two fairies stood releasing rose petals into the wind and the stony pillars contrasting against the skies background and the red dresses of the fairies become the focal point with their wings spreading out at the back of them.

Amy has been painting and drawing faeries for years and professionally for nearly twenty years and was inspired by many other artists like many artists should be as well as films of fantasy and creative inspiration. Whenever I think of fairies I simply think Amy Brown.

Amy Brown Fairy Art

Other Fantasy Fairy Art Websites

Fairie Amber
Flower Fairies

Also, check out Kirstens Fairy Art Blog