Last year, I sent this page to Karl at Crooked Dice Games as he’d asked for ideas for jetbikes and beasts with their riders. Following this he asked me to work up the guy on the dino-bird (amongst others) at the bottom left.
Here’s the refinment of the designs. I had a good look at ostrich riders in the middle east for the position of the rider and ostriches themselves. I based the riders’ hats a little on the late John Mollo’s costume designs for the Rebels on Hoth from The Empire Strikes Back (1977) and I looked at comics genius Alex Raymond’s Frigia Lancers (from his 1930’s comic Flash Gordon) for inspiration too.
John Mollo on Wikipedia
Alex Raymond on Wikipedia
I worked it up in Manga (Clip) Studio and Painter with a bit of Photoshop as well. The outrider has an option for hands without a his laser rifle (he’s whittling a Chirroc bird from a piece of wood) and there are a few alternative heads.
A link to the post on Crooked Dice Games’ facebook page:
Crooked Dice Games on facebook
Late last year Karl from Crooked Dice asked me to draw concepts for a pair of Colony 87 Bounty Hunters that were reminiscent of Don Quixote and Sancho Panza. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Don_Quixote
Above are my initial sketchbook pages; the Don Quixote character would be an aging but still tough bounty hunter and the Sancho Panza equivalent would belong to the Colony 87 squat humanoid race. (Though there’s an Insectoid Alien option here which Karl felt was a bit too monstrous!)
This page is where I refine the Don Quixote look, though I wasn’t quite sure about Sancho Panza and wanted to define the alien/human variant race more.
The pages show me inventing the high-grav worlder bounty hunter and his gear. The ‘Wheel Ships’ I imagined they travel in are built around a super-dense fragment of one of their worlds. I’m adding various high-tech elements to his gear and seeing what works.
You can see more on my Facebook page of the final images – https://www.facebook.com/Will-Beck-Illustration-911094838907212
OK that was a long month of May! I’ve been meaning to get more of my artwork online I’ve just been a bit too busy to do it (I’ve loads more Crooked Dice Games’ Colony 87 creations and many other images as well).
Here’s a page of rough sketches of extraterrestrial animals that I drew before the full page here:
This Colony 87 concept page shows an alien menagerie that the Alien Pet Merchant could be selling to those that can afford them. The Eel-lion, Testudo-bird and Varkdog are influenced by creatures in images created by Moebius, the other creatures are my own inventions.
Looking at it again I wasn’t sure about the Eel-lion, I think it should be thinner and slippery like an eel, I shall redraw this some time as I do like the other designs.
Crooked Dice Games – Colony 87 Alien Pets
I realised I haven’t shared all my Colony 87 designs with people who look at my website so now I shall remedy that!
Here we have a pair of socialites. My client Jon Boyce (former owner of Colony 87) after looking at my initial sketchbook pages (which can be seen on my Facebook page) decided he didn’t want the retro 1930’s Blade Runner look and wanted more of a looser, layered look with one of the characters wearing the kind of hat you could see in a Moebius (Jean Giraud) drawing.
When Crooked Dice took over from Jon we resurrected an idea of Jon’s for a Alien Pet merchant. My first sketches were heavily influenced by the sleazy snake-seller in Blade Runner. Returning to this idea I thought he could be wearinge a frame (similar to that on by the Colony 87 water carrier) in which the merchant could carry his creatures. Here’s the final concept:
Crooked Dice Games’ range of Colony 87 miniatures can be found here:
Colony 87 characters and creatures from Crooked Dice Games
Some more of my miniatures concepts have been release by the talented people at Crooked Dice Games. These were turned into 3D creations by sculpting-ace Mike Anderson.
The chap on the left is a rather aged, slightly poor-looking Tech Merchant, displaying a variety of Star Wars themed data devices and assorted technological odds and ends. He has a crude bionic lower leg which he probably built himself!
On the right we have a data courier, a bit like Johnny Mnemonic but he physically carries the data. He’s got more of a cycle-courier build, a Moebius-style Sci-fi snood with built in communicator and a data slate attached to a memory-wipe device (if stolen by anyone it wipes everything in his shoulder bag). A link to Crooked Dice Games where you can purchase these two characters for yourself or just admire the miniature painting:
Colony 87 Tech Merchant and Messenger on Crooked Dice Games
On my Facebook page you can see some of my sketchbook pages where I’m figuring out what these characters should look like (with the assistance of Jon Boyce, who commissioned me!).
A new wave of Jon Boyce’s science fiction Colony 87 miniatures are on their way, concept drawings by me and sculpts by the excellent miniature sculptors Mike Anderson and John Pickford. Here’s a link to the Facebook page.
Colony 87 on Facebook
The brief from Jon was to draw a “female, deep space pilot wearing flight suit covered with pockets, cabling, tubing etc. Hard-seal connection at neck, calves and forearms. Helmet is removed and under arm in classic pilot pose. Mature, but attractive – think Helen Mirren. One side of head is shaved.”
My process is to created a reference sheet from all sorts of images I’ve collected from the internet and my own books; ranging from space suit designs by Fred Freeman of ex-Nazi rocket scientist Wernher Von Brown’s First Men to the Moon (1960) book, (Retro-future Space Suit) to actual space suits and movie space suits from science fiction films. Then produce a sketch of my initial ideas to send to the client (in this case Jon Boyce).
Colony 87 returns! The kickstarter here:
(Return to Colony 87 – 28mm sci-fi civilians)
This was funded within hours and the miniatures have been sculpted by the excellent miniature sculptor Mike Anderson.
These are concept drawings for the second wave of Science Fiction civilians for Colony 87 miniatures:
These are some of my initial sketchbook pages for this commission.
The first was a SF Recordist, a scientific type to accompany a noble or other advisor recording everything (smells, sights, Electromagnetics, as well as sound). Jon Boyce (my client) suggested I look at a tank crew head gear and Gaff’s (Edward James Olmos) hat in Bladerunner. I also wanted him to have a different body shape, so I based his size on the movie Dune’s Piter De Vries (Brad Dourif) combined with the Hannibal Chew (James Hong) from Bladerunner’s hat. A stenographer’s typewriter provided a retro look for his personal computer.
For the mechanic I had the idea basing her on Firefly/Serenity’s Kaylee(Jewel Staite) as a starting point and the welder/junker started out based on a photo of a Japanese industrial worker.
The Advisor was meant to be a power-behind-the throne character so I examined various fantasy and SF advisors – the tall hat was a reference to Turkish historical viziers and also to the sinister fellows that follow Emperor Palpatine in The Return of The Jedi.
Jon Boyce had a very specific idea for the Priestess so essentially I recreated his small drawing and the Planetary Botanist was an idea that had been requested by several people in the first wave. The broad-brimmed hat was a nod to Moebius’s drawing of Planetologist Kyne for Alexandro Jodorowsky’s Dune project. I thought he might have had some injuries examining alien plants so a bionic hand seemed appropriate.
My previous post: Colony 87
A commission I had last year to draw concepts for a Science Fiction 28mm miniatures range Kickstarter has been funded within a few hours!
Here are some of the sketches (an amphibian-alien trader, human trader, a pair of nobles with a freakish pet and a porter with a some sort of servo-yoke). The designs were influenced by, amongst many other things, Ridley Scott’s Bladerunner (1982) costumes by Michael Kaplan and Charles Knode and the nobles costumes in the David Lynch Dune movie (1984) by Bob Ringwood. I tried a gothic-arch hat from Russian history for the female noble though we settled on a simple cowl.
These have been sculpted by the talented miniature designer Mike Anderson.