(This is a mirror site of my webpage karenjcarlisle.com)

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

On a lighter note.. More t-shirts!

As some of you may have realised, I have been concentrating on my writing, in the past few weeks. Blogs have been getting a little heavy and introspective. Today's offering is a little lighter in mood; it was too gorgeous an Autumn day to get too serious.

This week, I have finally managed to get my hands dirty, in the garden, and connect with the earth. However my hands have also been itching to draw something all week. When I finally managed to put pencil to paper, I could not get my fingers to behave themselves (or maybe my brain is to blame). I just could not achieve a satisfactory doodle to emerge. My mind was definately elsewhere. 

Plan B: I sifted through some of pieces of art which have been earmarked for upcoming projects. This image resurrection project has been planed for a Roleplayer Character t-shirt, since the inception of the series. Back in the late 80s, I originally drew it in inks with pencil shading, for a D&D roleplaying tournament game. I love drawing fantasy dwarves - cool beards and lots of leather!  However, I must admit that I have postponed finishing off this one due to the recent Hobbit movie (but it was pointed out that maybe I should get it done, as planned, and strike while the iron is hot! Perfect timing?)

I think I have finally nutted out a few things in GIMP: 
  • how to reduce the pencil shading so I can recolour in blocks, 
  • using layers to colour, without losing the ink lines (I still can't draw with the mouse!)
  • best of all, this time I achieved the blue title on the first attempt! That is a major break for a technophobe, like me. (My husband gets so frustrated that it takes me so long for me to decipher and remember the basics of programmes - but he is in IT, so that is no surprise)

Next, was the hardest decisions. What colours? I didn't want drab, boring browns as often used for dwarves. The drawves, in my campaigns, have flair. They wear strong, jewel colours to brighten up the mountain depths and to remind them of the rubies and emeralds that they adore, mine and covet. They love leather and metal.

Finally, there was the decision on the title to be made. Originally, it was to be emblazoned with Dwarven Fighter. To keep the letter sizing consistent with the other t-shirts, the title was twice the height of the dwarf character image. I toyed with leaving the juxtaposition of heights but this really did unbalance the whole image; the dwarf ended up at almost waist level. I decided to rebalance the image and just entitle it Fighter. Naming it dwarf, would have restricted me for later planned projects and now left me open to draw other dwarves of differing classes. (There is a female dwarf, somewhere in those piles... and I have plans...)

If you head over to Redbubble, you can now find Roleplayer Character #6: Dwarven Fighter.  The original sketch is available as postcards, posters and more!

For the (tabletop) fantasy roleplayers out there - what sort of characters would you like to see on a t-shirt? What would you buy?
Also I do commissions: A4 size characters in ink... :)

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