An ongoing project by Blanca Martinez de Rituerto and Joe Sparrow.

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Sunday, 25 August 2013

REDUX MONTH: Frost Giant

My second image for Redux Month, redoing the Frost Giant. This is a case of me liking the design, but not liking so much how the image itself was acually made. I found the image a bit cramped, to its detriment.

So I've still kept the whole vaguely arctic circle thing to it. I like to think this particular Frost Giant retired after a few battles, then he and his favourite winter wolf buddy decided to retire to a comparatively peaceful life on sheep herding.

I know in a lot of fantasy games and some fantasy lit, giants are usually pretty dumb brutes. But in quite a few fairy tales and such, giants tend to own and manage large portions of land. In Cornish stories, they have castles and rich tin mines. Adventurers usually find a way to take this from them. Puss in Boots steals a kingdom from a giant, which includes vast farmlands being kept by various farmers. This goes as far back as the Odyssey (probably even further back), where Odysseus comes across an islands of cyclopes, where they keep great herds of goats and sheep. Odysseus and his crew (the ones that haven't been eaten by Polyphemus), manage to escape by clinging to the underside of the sheep.

Wednesday, 21 August 2013

REDUX MONTH: Spirit Naga

Hey! So here I am, finally, with my first choice for Redux Month on Dungeons & Drawings. The Spirit Naga! You can see the old (rubbish) version here.

Something I've learned over the last couple of years is to (as a friend put it) "own my mistakes". I'd like to think I'm fairly critical of my art (like 70% of the time, anyway), and I think it's a good ability to be able to look at the things you do and dispassionately asses what you've done well or badly, and how you can improve. A big part of this that I have to really work at is the acknowledgement of the fact that sometimes I'm going to do things that fall short of my expectations! You have to be able to get over that stuff without freaking out. I used to quite often upload an image here, and then tweak bits of it and reupload it, sometimes for days on end. Nowadays I do feel more confident with my work, and I'm more content to draw a line and say "it's finished" and leave it on the blog and to hell with it.


From time to time it's fun to indulge in some exercises like Redux Month, when we can look back at our past art with a collected, critical mind and see how we might do it differently now! The old Spirit Naga was a panic-upload that I didn't work on for very long - snake bodies are always hard for me to make interesting, so I just knocked it out. Here I've tried to make the design more interesting (and colourful!) whilst also invigorating the pose a bit. Hope you like it!

- Joe

PS If you're wondering, the green bracelet things are what I thought might pass for Naga jewelry. The little dangly bits are supposed to be like earrings, although as I was drawing them I thought it might be cool if they contained bells, or something that would create a disturbing jangly sound as the creature moves around.

Sunday, 11 August 2013


Sup peeps.

Dungeons and Drawings has been up and about as a blog for three years now. And while the blog has 200+ pics of them and we try quite hard to make all of 'em good, the truth is that there's quite a few that we feel we could've done a better job on. But since we like to do a different image every week, that stops us from just doing the same monster over and over until we're satisfied with it.

That's what anniversaries are for.

So for the next four weeks we're gonna be looking at the images we've been unhappy with and redo them.

My first choice for Redux Month is the Satyr, the goat-legged creature of Greek mythology. While I'm not as unhappy with that image as I am with others, it's one I felt I could definitely do better. The old version seemed a little too rough to me (I was using nib pens and real art materials aren't something I'm especially good with) and the colours didn't seem as well thought out, resulting in, I felt, an overall quite dull image.

The newer Satyr is inspired by the Valais Blackneck, a really awesome breed of goat, half black, half white. The kids are especially cute. They look like they're wearing clothes!

Friday, 9 August 2013


Delvers are huge, subterranean creatures known to be relatively placid in temperament. Since they consume earth and stone for sustenance they are of little threat to humans (although homicidal Delvers aren't unheard of). However, their diet is one that unfortunately makes them natural predators of creatures such as Earth Elementals and juvenile Xorns.

An adult Delver can grow to 15 feet in length, and contact with them should be avoided as they secrete an acidic slime to aid their tunneling which is harmful to humans. Delvers can digest metal, but the substance has an intoxifying effect on the creature which is also somewhat addictive. Miners should beware Delver copper junkies!

This was a fun image to make, I feel pleased with it right now. The design is sort of a cross between a star-nosed mole and a slug, and discerning viewers will notice the hapless Xorn cruched between its gummy jaws.

Sorry for the long lack of posts, usual story of sudden freelance work plus summer break delaying things somewhat. I've got another image to post on Sunday and then the next few weeks will feature something a little special! Stay tuned.

- Joe

Thursday, 1 August 2013


Marids are the water based version of genies (with Efreet as fire, Djinni as air and Dao as earth) and in classical mythology are thought of as the most powerful of the genies. They match the other genies in D&D mythology though, with some especially powerful ones (padishah) that may act as rulers. Rulers that don't especially get listened to because marids like to do their own thing, whether it's chilling in a palace, gathering pearls or capsizing ships. Honestly, it kinda sucks to be the padisha sitting on the Coral Throne, since the other marids really want that throne.

Like other genies, marids have a number of magical abilities, some of which are tied to their element, and are able to grant wishes if compelled to, a mood which can last a very short time since they're quite fickle beings.

Post somewhat late due to job responsibilities and being in Spain with my folks for the past week. It is crazy hot down there. My grandma hit the big 9-0 last weekend, though it's surprising how little she shows her age. It was a lovely celebration with absurd amounts of food. Feliz cumple, abuela.