Tuesday, March 29, 2011

The Art of RPG

Here is my long due first blog post, and I though I should give a little introduction about myself and my relationship with RPGs.

I am a french Ballroom Dance Teacher living and working in the fantastic city of New York, USA. I grew up a big fan of the Star Wars universe and when I was introduced to the Star Wars RPG in 1992 I discovered the joy of being part of that beloved universe. I also was lucky enough to have a group of good friend sharing the same passion and together we made the Star Wars universe a part of our teenage and later life. No toys, costumes or conventions for us; just our imagination and some good old pens, paper and six-sided dice.

An attribute of mine, I tend to go overboard once I set my mind and dedication on something, so it wasn't long before I own almost every rulebooks, handbooks, complements and journals from the Star Wars D6 line. The best in my opinion. I, or should I say we -my friend and I- only strayed away from this game on the occasion, having a try at Dungeon and Dragon of course, 2ed, and I discovered a great interest in other genres, particularly the universe of Shadowrun, being more on the sci-fi side, but we never got to develop more than a curious eye in these different games.

I left France in 2000, and to fulfill my interest in RPG I turned toward Pbp games. It was much later, in 2008 that I started doing artwork, inspired by my years of gaming, by my imagination and maybe desire to hang to it.

You see, for me RPGs are more about storytelling than stats and rolls. Though I wouldn't do without the former two, for it brings a sense of scale and randomness, and helps at the identification of a character, what I love is the creativity of a group put together to build a story, with its drama, action, twists, laughs, loses and victories in a given universe.

And in my case it usually starts with a picture. I see a piece of artwork -a character, a landscape, a scenery- and let my imagination run its course. I let the story begin. And I found myself frustrated when I was lacking this image that would start it all. Whether it's a character I would not find any interest in, or a place where a tentative description only would not inspire me to act in it.

In a sense I could say I was frustrated at my own lack of imagination. And it's a funny thought process to realize that lack of imagination lead to the creation of artwork, perfect medium for expressing what is in one's mind. So instead of surfing the web to find the perfect picture that would inspire me for the development of a character I though, why not make it yourself?
But I am to this day still a lousy drawer, so digital art has pretty much been my only option. I discovered in 2008 the tools that would help me create my art, and fell in love with the result.

So since RPG brought art to me, I am happy to help other gamers spring their imagination by bringing art to them. And if my specialty has been more sci-fi related, mostly Star Wars, I'm open to put my skills to different genre, and make characters and games come more alive with a simple piece of art.

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