Friday, January 15, 2021

Lizardfolk Miniature - The End of a 25 Year Journey

I have something special for you today. It is not every post that I can share the end of a twenty-five-year journey. Before I get ahead of myself, the main reason this post exists is that a miniature has been made that is based on the Lizardfolk painting I produced for the Dungeons & Dragons supplement, Volo's Guide to Monsters. While you may be familiar with this piece, from the first time I posted it or the process of its creation that I posted, let's begin with looking at the final painting.

Dungeons & Dragons - Volo's Guide to Monsters
11 x 14 - Digital 
Art Director - Kate Irwin 
© 2016 Wizards of the Coast LLC
This is still one of my favorite pieces that I painted for this book, and upon its completion, I was told that it was highly likely that it would eventually become a miniature. I was told that production was excited about it becoming a miniature, which meant it was possibly going to happen. Over the past few years, I was patient. I continuously checked the galleries of every released set of miniatures, and finally, after five years of waiting, my Lizardfolk is now a miniature. Here is the miniature in all its plastic glory.

Lizardfolk Miniature

Lizardfolk Miniature Turnaround

Why is this so special, or should I say more special than any other time one of my pieces or designs becomes a miniature? Well, that is where twenty-five years comes in and my love for reptilian monsters. From the space lizard Bossk from Star Wars, the Lizardmen from Dungeons & Dragons, or the snakes I had as pets as a child, my formative years were filled with reptiles. To this day, I would rather paint and draw scaly creatures over all others, even insects, which is saying a lot. 

While I was aware of Dungeons & Dragons from its early days, I didn't start playing it until Second Edition. A group of people I had considered friends were playing, and I was eventually brought into the game. None of the payer races or types really struck a chord with me, but by chance, I was shown more options with the Complete Book of Humanoids, and that changed everything. I played frog creatures, dinosaur creatures, but first and foremost, I played a Lizardman by the name of Targus. 

Through Targus, I went on many adventures and annoyed my fellow players to no end. I played Targus as an innocent alien, a being ignorant to the world of man and elf. He didn't really understand shops, buying things, and money. He didn't understand cooking food and why everyone else didn't begin feasting once an animal or man was slain. I played Targus the way I thought a Lizardman would around a group of elves, dwarves, and men. I had fun, and eventually, I was pressured to roll up a dwarf. I made sure they wished for Targus's return. 

Naturally, I drew most of my characters back then. I depicted Targus twice on paper, once as a freshly found warrior of the swamp and later as a more mature team member. I always preferred my first version of Targus. In 1996 Targus was born, and in 2016 when I was asked to depict the new playable Lizardfolk, I was so excited. It meant I could now shape how people saw their liard character, and I could paint Targus as I thought he would be today. A span of twenty years separates them, but to me, they are one and the same. I simply did a lot of practicing in between.

There are back again - The first twenty years.

And now, another five years have passed, and my painting is now a miniature, completing the journey. It was the miniatures that were my gateway into the game. Now that Targus is a miniature my game, my character has become part of everyone else's game. I couldn't be happier with the miniature either. From the gourd bottle, hooks, and fish on his belt to the armor and weapons, this miniature is incredibly faithful. The open mouth is a nice change, and due to molding and assembly, I assumed the second sword would be removed.

The final five years of the journey.

The life of an artist is a funny thing and strange as well. You never know what the next assignment will be or where it will take you, or where you can take it. Twenty-five years ago, I would never imagine in my wildest dreams that a D&D character I rolled up would eventually be in a book or become a miniature. While it is in no way official, know that when you see the Lizardfolk miniature, that is it really Targus, and he is ready for adventure!

That's all for another exciting week on the blog. See you back here next week! Until then...

For more samples of my work or to contact me regarding my availability, head over to my website:

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