Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Eddard Stark - Game of Thrones - SPOLIER EDITION!


Eddard Stark
Game of Thrones © George R.R. Martin

By Corey Breen
Photoshop

Once I heard about HBO adapting Game of Thrones for TV, I was like, "cool, but what's Game of Thrones?" I did some research, and was told by a good friend of mine from college (thanks Ryan!) that is one of the BEST fantasy series ever written! That it was four books, soon to be a fifth this summer. So, seeing some commercials on HBO about the show, that it looked like a Lord of the Rings for adults, I ran out and picked up the novel, Game of Thrones. I had thought that the book as thick as it was, contained ALL four of the novels to date. Lo and behold, it was ONLY the first book of the series, which is called A Song of Ice & Fire. I was like, "whoa, this is gonna be daunting." The book is HUGE, and then they're are four more! But I was determined to give it a shot.

Well, fast forward about 3 weeks now, and I'm well into the second novel, A Clash of Kings! Suffice to say, I am in LOVE! Game of Thrones was the BEST book I have EVER read, period. HANDS DOWN! I'm not kidding! I flew through it. And now I can't get ENOUGH of it! The show, the novels, anything! It's actually been REALLY cool too, watching the show, because it's like it's been INSTANTLY adapted as I read it. It was great to read the book and just tune in every week and watch it unfold in live action, all over again, just like it was in my head.

It's so GOOD too! The casting is SUPERB, especially Eddard Stark and Tyrion Lannister! WOW! They are BRILLIANT! But... now I am ahead of the show by FAR! So I know what's gonna happen on the show, since it's been pretty much word for word the same. Some parts have been added that weren't in the book (which have been great), and some parts kind of rushed on the show, that were longer in the book (as with any adaptation). But all in all, I think the rest of the show is gonna play out exactly like the book did. So in that sense, I know whats coming up, and that's why this is a COMPLETE SPOILER for anyone who has not read the books and is just watching the HBO show. Yes, Eddard Stark is not long for Westeros.

This was a tough call. Should I post this or not? I decided that the books have been out there for like over 10 years, so it's not REALLY a spoiler. I'm sorry if this ruins the show for some of you, but real fans of the show should read the books first. Seriously, READ more. Reading is AWESOME! LOL Anyway, if you want the spoiler, highlight the above paragraph and the below paragraph! Anyway, Eddard Stark is doomed. Now he is gone. And I am so UPSET about that! Eddard Stark has now become one of my FAVORITE all time characters, right up there with Snake-Eyes, Batman, Blacksad, Starman, The Rocketeer, Luke Skywalker, Hunter Rose and Cerebus. So I wanted to do a drawing of him, in honor of him, one that I felt was good enough to do him justice. For if ANYTHING, he deserves JUSTICE! Let me tell you, when his fate played out in the book, I had to put the book down, and take a moment to compose myself, I'm not kidding. It was THAT powerful to me. I don't know HOW I'm going to face watching it adapted on the screen this weekend. Although, who knows, maybe it's not even this upcoming episode titled "The Pointy End". What if they decide to CHANGE the book completely and keep Eddard Stark on the show, because they love what the actor, Sean Bean is doing with him. COULD THAT BE?! Highly doubt it, because so much is predicated on his death, but I guess we will find out together this Sunday or next!

So, as for the piece itself, I can't tell you how HAPPY I am with it. I think it's one of my BEST pieces yet, and I'll tell you why. Firstly, it's because I really feel I nailed the character, the pose, the posture, the mood, the Throne of Swords, the blacks, the colors, and the textures. I really think it just all comes together as one, when sometimes my pieces wind up becoming very flat with inks, then just cartoony and too colorful with colors thrown on top not really matching the style. I think this piece really captures what my art can be.


But mainly, why I'm so happy with this piece is because I feel I have now really nailed down my process. My favorite process, I should say. First, I sketch out the piece on 8.5 x 11 laser color copy paper (it's real slick like heavy duty copy paper). I like real slick surfaces to draw on where the mechanical pencil just glides like ice onto the smooth surface. When I'm happy with that, with usually means I have to add on other pieces with tape if I go outside the size constraints of 8.5 x 11. So I wind up with this piece meal poster, all taped together. It looks pretty pathetic actually, but it's just how I do it. Everyone who see's it, is like "why don't you just draw on bigger paper?" Because this is hoe I freakin' work, ok?! So sue me! LOL

Then I throw that on a lightbox and draw a very detailed, very TIGHT line drawing onto Letraset Marker Paper. This paper is AMAZING! It is so SUPER thin, that you have to be careful, but it's like the most AMAZING paper I've ever drawn on. It was like MADE for me, that's how much I LOVE it! I'm doing ALL my concept art portfolio work on it, by the way. After I do a complete line drawing, I scan that in at 600 dpi. I mess wit the threshold and levels, getting the pencils to be a nice darkness, where I can finally bitmap the image. That is the start of my "digital inks". Then I zoom in, clean up all the line work, making sure nothing closed up on me, and I didn't lose anything like line weight when I played with the values of the grayscale image. Then I start filled in blacks, and redraw things and lines, getting nice crisp lines and fills. After that, I begin to color it. I LOVE to just use the pencil, at a opacity of 55%, on multiply. This let's me give a flat color off the bat, but when I go over, it darkens that color EACH time. SO it starts to look layered like I was painting. I LOVE this look. You just have to be careful it doesn't get muddy, especially reds.

Then I clean up those colors, making sure I didn't color out of the lines, as they say, and TA-DA! My finished piece! I am REALLY happy with this process, and I think it shows in this piece. But as always, let me know what you think! PLEASE! And do yourself a favor and go read Game of Thrones, and then the other books in the series like I am. Don't just watch the show. I am SO happy I'm reading them all now. I'm sure I will be drawing more characters from the books and show in the future.

Here is the process of the above piece, step by step:



Eddard Stark
Game of Thrones © George R.R. Martin
By Corey Breen
Pencil Sketch 8.5 x 11


Eddard Stark
Game of Thrones © George R.R. Martin
By Corey Breen
Pencil Sketch 11 x 17 cleaned up in Photoshop
Pieced together by four 8.5 x 11 Laser Color Copy Paper


Eddard Stark
Game of Thrones © George R.R. Martin
By Corey Breen
Finished Pencils on 11 x 17 Letraset Marker Paper


Eddard Stark
Game of Thrones © George R.R. Martin
By Corey Breen
Digital Inks Line Work


Eddard Stark
Game of Thrones © George R.R. Martin
By Corey Breen
Digital Inks Final

PS- I LOVE stories where the hero dies, and dies early. I don't know why, I just do. Makes them a martyr I guess. Proves that the story is SO serious, and that ANYTHING can happen. That there is a lineage and a progression. It establishes a history, and a time line, that it's not just a story of the month, like, "this month, Spider-Man fights Doc Oct." I really like when you get SO invested in the characters, especially who you THINK is the main character (who can NEVER die, right?!), and then all the sudden, they DIE! FOR GOOD! And then you get this progression of who the next hero is, but you're weary because now you know they can die at any time! Hey, just like life, unfortunately. That's just good writing, if you ask me!

Now, off to continue reading A Song of Ice & Fire!

CjB

PPS- One of the GREAT things about working digitally, is you can quickly tweak ANYTHING! For example, if you notice, in the digital inks stage, I actually moved some of the skulls downward, and then extended his right boot, for it looked way too short in the pencil stage. Looks much better now, right? Also, in the final color stage, I felt I drew the piece a little thin. As in, the chair and Stark himself were kinda skinny looking. So I just free transformed and stretched the piece just a TAD to give it more girth. I think that really helped too. GOTTA love using the digital aspects as just another drawing tool! The amount of work it would've taken to fix stuff like that before? Unimaginable!

2 comments:

H. Bruce Miller said...

I like the drawing, but he looks much more like how I imagine Aerys Targaryen (Mad King Aerys, last of the Targaryen line) than like Eddard Stark -- cruel, ruthless and crazy. Why did you draw him that way?

Corey Breen said...

Mostly because he gets the shaft In GOT. Basically he tried to play it by the book, and he got killed. So this is more of a tribute after the fact, that he is PISSED he got killed, and this is my way of pay him respect. By showing his anger after the fact and that he was denied a chance at justice for Bran and failing to honor the seven kingdoms, the realm. I would be angry, no? lol I also feel it is he who will have the last laugh after death, and justice will come. I'm only just now finishing Clash of Kings, so please don't tell if he does get justice in the form of his kin or whatnot, for that is what I am hoping for and why I drew it the way I did.

Thanks for commenting!

Share

Share/Bookmark