Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Gaining Velocity: Darker Forces is in print!

Yes! Gaining Velocity's Darker Forces is in print at last!

All Star Comics in Melbourne just got their reader copy before the launch on Tuesday at Gasolina in Melbourne!

Us South African comic artists who participated are super jealous and cant wait for our local launch.
Keep an eye for updates on the local launch and the Velocity facebook page!

Neville's pics swiped from the facebook page ;)

Monday, January 20, 2014

Illustrating in Oils

I'm really glad I've made the decision to go back to oils.
To me there really is nothing like holding a real painting in your hands.

I hope to encourage more illustrators to turn to traditional media when they can, because I really believe there is a time, and a place for both digital, and traditional.
However I feel nowadays, illustrators don't even consider the traditional route, which is a shame.
I have nothing against digital art and I feel equally comfortable in both mediums. But there's nothing like holding a physical painting/illustration/comic art page in your hands when it's all done.
Also, when you do commissioned art for reproduction traditionally, you end up and an additional asset, that can be sold for as much or more than you charged for your time on the project.

So whenever I'm working with a client that I know won't have a million changes, and I feel confident about the creative control I have in the project, I prefer to go traditional, at least in part.

With this in mind I've started a follow-along tutorial thread for artists who are interested on Legion Ink. 
Follow along here:,2103.0.html. (members only area, so you'll have to sign up)
I'd love your input!


Note my home-made easel ;)

Friday, January 17, 2014

A new addition to my portfolio

Its a great feeling adding a new piece to the portfolio!
And I am especially pleased with my game box art illustration for Demise of Nations from Noble Master Games that I have just completed for a happy client.

The battle scene was illustrated traditionally with inks on bristol board, and then colored digitally in Photoshop. It's a wrap-around DVD cover, so I had to make sure the composition worked as both a  landscape spread, and on its own as a portrait format image for the front cover.

I love doing lots of research, especially for historic illustrations, and I spent a fair amount of time looking up war elephants and roman horses for this one.
This image depicts the battle of Carthage during the Third Punic War. Turns out that the Romans didn't really have a standard uniform in this early period, but I ended up making the decision to give them all standard uniform and brass armour for artistic reasons.
As for the war elephants, I chose African elephants and purposefully exaggerated their size for effect.
The Carthaginians would have used the extinct and much smaller North African elephant of the time, which actually looked like a mix between African and Indian elephants.
That's the end of my art-research history lesson for today!

Deon de Lange

"Deon de Lange, Demise of Nations game box art" click to enlarge

Friday, January 10, 2014

Gaining Velocity: Darker Forces launching soon!

I recently took part in Gaining Velocity's South Africa/Australia comic project, Darker Forces.

Darker Forces continues an alien invasion story by South African comic creators Moray Rhoda and Daniel Hugo in two halves.
Darker Forces: Degeneration is the Autralian collaboration with 34 artists, each doing one page.
Darker Forces: Devastation is the South African collaboration with 34 artists, each doing one page.

There are loads of preview pages to be seen on Gaining Velocity's facebook page and the art is outstanding, so go check it out!
It's been really interesting to see each artist bring their own unique style to the same story page by page.

The Australia launch is just around the corner on January 26th in Melbourne - if you're in the area, check the facebook event page for more details.

Keep an eye on my blog and on Gaining Velocity's facebook page for an announcement about the South African launch!

Monday, January 6, 2014

My back-of-the-toilet-door reading material for 2014

I got my corporate superhero calendar from the designer, Hiram Austin, from Redeye Designs today!
It came out beautifully and the clients are super happy with it.
The illustrations are printed at full size, which makes for a nice and big calendar that displays my lines with every detail.

I'd be keen to do another calendar - hopefully color next time! 

Friday, January 3, 2014

Drawing Dogs

This is a digital prep sketch for a private commission I'm working on.
I must say, regardless of how good your understanding of human anatomy is, each new animal type that you have to draw comes with a new set of anatomical knowledge that you need to study up on.

Photo reference is obviously essential, but as soon as you need to deviate posture from the photo reference, and your knowledge of the relevant anatomy is not at least backed by a few hours study, you'll run into problems.

Image from: An Atlas of Animal Anatomy for Artists - Ellenberger, Baum, Dittrich & Munch