Recently I’ve  worked  on several wizards. When  I think of the archetype of the wizard I’m always trying to approach it in a way that is interesting to me personally  and not a rehash of a bored stereotype. The most intriguing wizards in my opinion are those of Clark Ashton Smith and Jake Vance novels, not to mention  those referenced  on various doom metal and Black Sabbath albums.  They are mysterious , dark, and often indefinably beyond human.  They also happen to be the only one of the four iconic classes from the classic role playing game that doesn’t directly translate to an occupation in reality. Are they artists or scientists, or something entirely different ? As long as they are strange outsiders, they remain interesting to me.

Included in this post are the sketch and final ink of an illustration (above) , showing the corruption involved in the pursuit of magic over a lifetime. This is a key aspect of the Dungeon Crawl Classics Role Playing game scheduled for release in Feb. 2012.

Following these, are the initial inking of the art to appear on he spine of the DCC RPG (above) and finally (below) a wizard inspired one night by a discarded sketch for the above corruption illustration and a pure indulgence into the ink used for the spine art. Although the bottle of Higgins Ink  is labeled “brown” you can see the true color is not exactly so uninspiring. I’m not sure why this is, but I’m happy with the resulting art.

………and while I’m at here are a couple more Gnomish spell caster types, which I might explain more about later.

…………and here are a  few more spellcaster/wizard related images from the archives:


About dk

Doug Kovacs is an Artist and Illustrator who lives in Chicago
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One Response to Wizards

  1. fanofyours says:

    Really, dude? You think that no occupation in the real world parallels the wizard? Academics. To me, wizards are academics, professors and the like. Of course they can’t cast fireballs or prismatic sprays, but they have remarkable powers of persuasion. Artists are bards. That’s obvious. And Jack Vance wizards are silly. By the way, do you know that Liane the Wayfarer has his own wikipedia page? Kind of makes your wikipedia page seem irrelevant, doesn’t it? Look it up.