Showing posts with label Drawing. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Drawing. Show all posts

Friday, April 10, 2020

Inkscape again - Fighters on the Horizon

I'm still tinkering with that limited color pallet and funky looking ships.

I like the design, but need to fix the colors.



Saturday, February 15, 2020

Starship Design - Centaur Transport

The Centaur Transport is a very successful design, for a warship. It is a mediocre transport. The central hull of the ship is of fixed design with 2 mass drivers as propellant. The wing pods are interchangeable cargo spaces. In this image, the right is plumbed for liquids while the right carries 20 missiles in VLS tubes and 12 nose mounted drones.

The ship is a tumbling pigeon design, meaning gravity is generated by having the ship flip end over end along it's flight path. All work is done in the back end of the ship, in front of the spherical weapons room. Typically, the crew only spins up the ship when they are coasting for long periods of time.

While this depiction shows missiles and drones, this is actually the least commonly used loaded out. The ship's mass drivers make a very effective weapon.

When used as a transport instead of a gunship, it uses aerobraking to slow down to orbital speeds before using small thrusters to match orbits. It is a very ungainly design for a transport.

As a gunship it simple barrels in on it's target, VIFFing (Vectoring in Forward Flight) to dodge fire while using the mass drivers to bombard the enemy as it slows down.

The USN Thresher AKA Between the Sword and the Flame

In my last post, Duke Springer and the crew of the Antelope battled a Talitarian scout ship. Quite possibly, this ship is my favorite ship ever.

Rather than doing a mod of it, I have redesigned the ship from the ground up and designed a deckplan and backstory for this version.


The United Space Navy's Thresher Scoutship utilizes bleeding edge technology which is not available except for a few prototype ships. The ship is tiny. After the size, the next notable feature is it's engines.

Interior, with engines off done in Inkscape.
The engines have four nodes which manipulate space-time in some rather horrifying ways. The engine requires that the ship be sealed from the outside while the interior can have NO closed spaces. To meet this requirement, the hull was grown from a single seed of metal. The walls look organic and flowing. The engine is called "the Flame" by the crew as it throws off a flickering light throughout the interior of the ship. Anecdotally, it is reported that any one who enters the engine area while the ship is in motion is erased from the entire space-time continuum as if they never existed.

In the center of the ship is a single turret and four staterooms. While these spaces have doors, they are not sealed to be airtight. The "turret" is a standard crewspace for the gunner which can move like a regular ball turret, but the gun mount on the exterior of the ship is actually a tiny remote piloted vehicle which flies in formation with the ship at all times, as if it was attached to the vessel.

On the starboard side of the ship is a second weapon, called "the Sword". It is a gravometric weapon which will kill any humans in the target area. It can strike inside an enemy ship without passing through the intervening space or shields and armor. "The Sword" theoretically has unlimited range, but the crew must have details of the target point, which means it is limited to sensor range.

It's a surgical weapon, but is subject to considerable quantum uncertainty when fired. It often fires with no measurable results. "The Sword" has one other side effect. It will kill any crew inside the Thresher in front of the barrel. For this reason it is fired with a delayed trigger so the crew can take refuge in the turret area or staterooms.

A final quirk to this weapon is it will not operate unless it is mostly sealed away from the rest of the ship. It does have a connection to the engines. The area which looks like a hatch is welded closed before take off and cannot be serviced in flight.

The engines also have a similar disconcerting quirk. They must be operated from behind. A crew of three engineers are stationed in the back compartment and cannot leave this area while the ship is in operation. The engines require exactly 688.5 kg of mass to be located in this space and three living people. No one knows why.

This is just enough room for food, water and air for three days, plus 3 people and 3 space suits. Typically these crewmen stay suited for the duration of the flight as it makes weigh distribution static.


Wednesday, February 5, 2020

Updated Designs - Blockade Buster Ships

I didn't like how the quarters looked in the last version, so I updated them. I might have to thicken the walls, it's a start.



Tuesday, January 21, 2020

Sketching With a Heavy Hand Tonight

I'm doing a series of sketches based on my game play of Star Smuggler. Click the link to read the review and download a copy. 

I am sick of the vector art right now. My hand has gotten heavy from a lack of practice plus I am using a mechanical pencil which requires a very light touch. This is probably not helped by the fact that I have been using a Wacom Bamboo for a few days in a row.

Many of these characters are based on what I have seen the TV show Rebels on Disney+, plus a bit of Robotech and reality thrown in. This woman is what I think Emily, the Pilot/Navigator of the Antelope looks like.

Her uniform is sort of based off of a British Submariner's fire fighting kit, mixed with a police officer's bullet proof vest. 

As a pilot/navigator, she doesn't often carry a weapon, therefore doesn't have any holsters. By the Star Smuggler rules, there is barely enough room for her and one other person in the cockpit, therefore she very little in the way of gear that might hang up on something. This is inline with real world tankers.

This guy on the right is also a pilot. He is wearing the minimum amount of kit for flying in space. He is wearing a dress uniform which does have the capacity to accept a helmet on the neck ring, but while one duty, he would be completely suited up in a space suit. He holds his glasses in his left hand. His helmet does have a prescription visor and a HUD, but in his dress uniform, the helmet is mostly for show.

He has a logo on his chest for his unit. The armor like piece on his chest is merely a high-tech unit sash for easy identification, plus it pulls his neckring down tight. Notice that he is fully gloved like Emily above. Unlike Maverick and Han Solo, pilots don't like freeze or fry their hands off while flying.

I will likely add some sort of ceremonial pauldron to one or both shoulders. This guy's outfit is for show, so he'll need to be reworked in mission ready suit.

Deadeye on the right is dressed for combat. He carries a heavy side arm, with some sort of explosive rounds. Unlike the two characters above, he is mission ready.

The cap that he wears over his helmet is cloth, meant to deaden the sound of his gun should his high-tech "ears" fail him. He has heavy body armor plainly visible, but also wears a bulky fabric vest for storage on top of it.

The backpack contains a very limited amount of air and re-breathing apparatus, an evaporative cooling unit and a small short range radio like the Apollo astronauts.

Unlike an astronaut, he has only limited capabilities in a vacuum. This armor is mean for planets with low atmospheric pressure or extremely polluted air. The fabric portions of his suit would probably be a hindrance in a vacuum. Exiting an airlock would probably cause frost to form and perhaps particles of ice to drift around him in a cloud. His undergarment is skin tight to prevent it from balloon in low pressure.

The next person only has a nickname: "Delta Vee". This is my motorcycle's name. Yes, I named it. Like the motorcycle, her clothes are going to be black, teal and purple.

She has three different logos on her uniform. The larger of the two is based on Kingdom Hearts. When I redraw her, this heart area will be more padded or quilted keeping with the idea of softgoods. I think the center will be black, the striping purple and the rest of the outfit, teal.

Zoom in a bit closer, you can make out the second heart on her shoulder. Emily has a braid of some sort on her shoulder, while this woman has embroidery. Between her neck and chest is her knickname: δV or Delta V. This should be an upper case Delta, Δ, to match the Rocket Equation, but I like to soft lines of the lower case δ. I might use a more scripty V to match the δ.

She is probably a mercenary or pirate, with a military background. She carries a light side arm, with a sideways magazine owing to the fact that she is pilot. Should she be trapped behind or worse, in a downed fighter, her pistol needs to clear obstructions like Sten type gun. She is probably not the best shot with a pistol, so she carries a lot of ammo with an extended mag. She might not carry many magazines, but what she has is enough for a slow shooting pistol.

In this iteration, she has a cape. I am not sure if that will stay with her in subsequent drawings. Perhaps she wears in when traveling, but not in the cockpit.


Wednesday, January 15, 2020

Progress continues...

I'm still working on my Inktober project in January... I know, it's lame.


New Markers, New Drawings - Uncle Sean's Cabin

This is a tiny cabin based on many of the cabins at Schoellkopf Scout Reserve.  SSR is a wonder campsite located in Wyoming County, NY.

I have been there several dozen times over the years and it is full of fond memories. On my most recent two trips, we spent time sprucing up the cabins and campsites. I often paint during the day and sketch at night.

This cabin is a cross between Phillips Cabin and Schoellkopf Cabin pictured below. It could probably be used for a hunting lodge in a D&D setting. In my campaign, it's a structure due east of the city of Nace.

While it looks tiny, 25 by 25 feet square in the wilderness is quite spacious and homey.



Build your own Cabin with Legos. Reasonably priced at $29.99. Click the image link to order from Lego.com. I receive remuneration every time you order something, which helps me keep this website going.

New Markers, New Drawings - The Stargazer's Tower

This whimsical tower was the home of an astronomer and astrologer. The man retired many years ago, after serving in the war against the elves. Although it doesn't look like it, the telescope can be replaced with something ol' Harvey called a "Cannon" or perhaps, "Canon". No one is sure. Whatever it was, it helped the magician stop the elves from entering the valleys his tower looks down upon.

In recent years, the tower has been inhabited by 12 students of the stars. They don't seem to be much good as magic users, but the men and women who live here are pretty special when it comes to observing the stars and laying horoscopes.

One of them is even familiar with the foreign principles of card reading, while another has invented a game where the players pretend to be tradesmen in the distant future, trading in luxuries on a "stock exchange" and "social medias". Whatever those are...

Monday, January 13, 2020

New Markers, New Drawings - The House

I was trying to draw a Roman villa and it came out more like a Frank Llyod Wright. Buffalo is loaded with Frank Llyod Wright homes. They are beautiful and I drive past many every day. 


Tuesday, October 1, 2019

#Inktober2019 Day One

I'm warming up today. Just a simple geometric pattern in ink. I won't finish it, it's not the sort of thing to finish. It is just play while my brain and hand warms up. Sometimes work is just play with a purpose. I kind of like the design.

Anyway, this is my first Inktober. I wish I could do a drawing everyday, but I won't. I want to do one or more projects to completion this month. I want to go back to the way I used to draw.

I picked my first subject, Magik from the New Mutants. I particularly love/hate the version of her on the cover of the 50th issue. The style is very nineties, jagged, slashy, primal. It seems to fit with the character. In this particular issue, is not sexed up, but actually reverted to a younger child. There is a sense of disquiet as she battles her way through her demons. I like the fact that they are "her demons".

Anyway, I want to do a copy of this cover but in my own style. It won't be anything like the drawings I have done recently. It will be part experiment and part return to where I started. I'll
be posting updates throughout the month as it proceeds.

If I get to another work, I post that here, too.

Here is to beginnings.

Thursday, September 26, 2019

Session Update - Save Vs. Disease

My players, their children have all failed their saving throws vs. disease. Another session will buy it due to cold and flu season.

So this weekend I want to try something different. I want to do an inked action scene on 14"x17". I normally work on images no larger than 8x11. I started laying it out. Excuse the low quality phone images. This doesn't fit in the scanner.


I have 3 characters converging on a central character.

The lightly drawn figure on the right is an archer readying a shot. She is wearing a pallas, a sort of cloth garment worn over a toga.

The figure on the left has been blindslided with a bolt of energy. She is not quiet on the ground. She will be wearing a gown and doesn't appear to be a typical combatant.

The third foreground character is a man with a sword and buckler or target shield.

The woman in the middle is a magic user with some interesting magical items and powers. First, she has a custom spell called "Disruption". It is very much like a magic missile, except it does 1d4 per shot, shots can hit any living or non-living thing with a to hit roll. It never increases in power, but the number available increases every two levels instead of three. She does not wear any "protective" magic, per se. She wears a wolverine pelt, with an intact skull as a stole. It can be commanded to attack, making defense rather moot. I have only hinted this magic item with a snaking line through the middle of the sketch.


I'm not sure if this is the one I will be working with. I think I can find some images which will help me get the proportions correct. Something is very wrong with the bow right now and I should have drawn a horizon line first.

Not bad for a first shot at something I've never tried before.

Wednesday, August 28, 2019

That Horse Has Wacked Out Poo Brains, Part 2

More horse drawings and paintings. I find horses to be fascinating, but daunting as subject matter. The blue horse painting was done a Pinot's Pallet on our 15th anniversary. My wife also made a matching painting. There was no good classes that week, so I came up the the idea of incorporating a heart shape, a copy of a master and a horse. My wife had no idea what she was painting at the time.

Rough sketch for painting below.

Franz Marc style copy of a master.
Acrylic. 
The above painting as it was being worked.
I believe this is my wife's copy. 

A robo-horse from Robotech. 

That Horse Has Wacked Out Poo Brains, Part 1

I like drawing horses. I have collection of Equine themed artwork in a variety of media.

Horse Skull, chalk and charcoal
The waterhorse was for my wife, Kitty, before I gave her the nickname "Kitty". In the front leg of the first image, you can see where I was trying to work in a "J" and an "E". I was flummoxed as to how I would get an "N" in there, so I abandoned that plan.
Waterhorse - in progress. Sharpie .05

Waterhorse - complete. Sharpie .05

Waterhorse - Complete. Permanent Ink and Skin.
The tattoo artist was very good and there were only small changes. 
5 minute horse - completed, oil paint and post processing

Thursday, June 27, 2019

Drawing from the Past

This week, artwork has been on my mind. In July, I am going to challenge myself to learn to draw hands and feet. Those are tough subjects, especially if you have little skill. If only I drew more, I would be a better artist.

For inspiration in this self-challenge, I found a book Drawing for Printers by Ernest Knaufft. It was published in 1899 and is available at Gutenberg. It is a treatise printers, not a how to book. Since I also like writing, it may be beneficial for a couple of purposes.


At the very least for publishers of Old School Gaming products, this sort of book captures the style of early game publishers. If you would like a more modern look at publish games, check out A Brief Study of TSR Book Design by Kevin Crawford. I did a review of it about a year ago. I wish I had found it before I started developing my BD&D/AD&D supplement, Zero to Hero


Sunday, November 13, 2016

Monday, December 28, 2015

Quick Doodle - Stave Church

I’ve been doodling to get back in the habit of drawing. Tonight’s offering is a Norse themed church.