A place wherein this Dwarven Cleric can share his love of maps, dice, miniatures, and all things involving gaming and general geekery--not to mention the occasional witty non-gaming observations--whilst escaping from the humdrum existence of his routine Terran existence.

Hail and Well Met, fellow traveler! May my Stronghold provide a place for enlightenment and amusement, and somewhere to keep your dice dry. Enter and rest awhile.

25 October 2012

A Giant and a Ranger Walk Into a Stronghold....

I've been meaning to write this post for two days. Unfortunately, a barometer-induced migraine intervened and I've spent many hours with an ice pack and pain medication in a dark room instead.

Early Monday afternoon the mailman brought me a great surprise: a well-packed, stiff envelope from Ireland.

Yes, I said Ireland.

After months of back and forth e-mails (mostly from me apologizing for real life getting in the way of PayPal payments), Jay Penn relinquished two of his babies to my care on October 19th. I was surprised to get them so quickly, to be honest. Only three days in transit from Ireland to The Stronghold? Really?

Somehow I doubt it was the doing of the USPS.

But I digress. For those of you not familiar with Jay Penn's work, well, first of all: SHAME ON YOU!! But second of all, Jay Penn is known for, besides other things, giving pictorial life to the pages of Loviatar by Christian, which I may have discussed here on occasion.

Back in July, I stumbled across a link to Jay's website, Realms of Faerie. He was in the midst of a "31 Day Drawing Challenge" project. It just so happened that the day I visited his particular picture just clicked with me. I had to have it. As I said above: after several months of e-mails back and forth, it arrived on Monday in perfect condition (something I was really truthfully worried about) and ready for framing (if I can find a suitable frame and a reasonable professional to help me do it right). I think it'll look great in my study.

I don't know exactly why, but it spoke to me. I'm not well-versed in artistic theory; if you must know, when it comes to art, I somewhat ascribe to the theory put forth by Justice Potter Stewart when describing pronography: I know it when I see it. In other words, I know what I like when I see it. I generally like watercolors. And there's something about the "twist" of the giant figure overlooking the serene farm and under the watchful eye (or not-so watchful eye in this case) of the manor house on the hill. It all looks so "normal" until your eye falls upon the hazy giant figure.

During the time we were working on getting the watercolor to me, Jay decided to offer for sale a limited run of prints of his cover art for Loviatar #9: a fellow named Morgan Stringman, who certainly seems more than capable of taking care of himself. See for yourself. And pick one up for yourself while they last!

So I picked one of those up as well. I love the fine line-work and the action suggested by the drawing, not to mention the details. The attraction was helped by the fact that, over the years, I also have had several rangers amongst my players. Those characters share a soft spot in my heart; one of them even looks a bit like Morgan. This one is going to look terrific hanging on my study wall too. I can hardly wait.

I can't say enough about Jay and his artwork. I'm a big fan; it's simplistic, I know, but it's true. I think he's summed up best by Christian's words: Someone needs to come along and take Jay Penn away from Loviatar. He's too damn good to be illustrating this humble rag. His work should be on the shelves of a FLGS and he should be signing copies of his work at GenCon.

I wholeheartedly agree: he's good. Very good. (But please, Jay, don't leave Loviatar!) I'm just proud to say, "I own a couple of Jay Penns." And thanks, Jay, for trusting me with these two of your children. I'm honored.

Check him out. You won't be disappointed.


christian said...

Jay is so amazing! Man, I love his work. I have been writing quite a bit at destination unknown, trying to invent a few new things, but also trying to re-imagine and re-purpose a few others.

A thought that has occurred to me is that if Loviatar does not come back, perhaps the content from the zines - along with Jay's artowrk - can be presented at the blog. I wonder if that might provide Jay a new avenue of customers/fans?

While a single issue of the zine may sell 110 copies, a single post gets a few hundred hits over time.

I dunno, just a thought.

I hope your head feels better soon!

Tim Shorts said...

Jay is fantastic. Loved the work he did for the zine. Excellent choices Boric. Absolutely love the shadow of the giant picture. I would have snagged that one myself. And of course the picture of Morgan, fantastic.

I sympathize with on the migraines. Although I've never been hit in the head with a barometer to cause one, but I'll take you word for it.

PS. You owe us a monster today.

Boric G said...

Thanks to you both for the comments. As a follow-up, head is better; migraines are a part of my life, unfortunately.

@Tim: I know, I know.... I'm late today because of court and a hospital stay for my mom. All is better now and I'm typing furiously. (Don't tell anyone, especially Christian, but I'm cursing the 3.X stat blocks right now!)

Jay Penn said...

Just so you know, Tim, the Morgan piece is still available in both print form ($12) and the original art is still up for grabs (quite a bit more).
You can check out my blog for all of the details.

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