The Fantasy Greeting Card series I completed contained a total of 5 images. Shown here are the original cartoon drawings for the remaining 3 cards as well as the finished products in their full-color glory. Amongst these three cards are my least favorite, and most favorite in the series. Again, digital coloring was done in Photoshop.
The first card was one I called “Spirit of the Season.” The idea behind it was that the holiday spirit, when fully embraced, can take those who normally appear as rivals and bring them together to share in a moment of friendship.
Here, a Dragon and a Nome-like character have met in a show-covered forest. Rather than a violent battle (or more likely, the Nome being swallowed whole in about 3 seconds) the two are old friends. The Nome is returning home with a small tree to celebrate the Yule holiday, and the Dragon has provided a comfortable fire and warm mug (in my mind, I always thought of it as hot chocolate for some reason) for his old friend. The serenity of the moment is infectious as even woodland creatures that would find themselves as predator and prey watch calmly from just beyond camp.
The next card ends up as being my least favorite of the 5 Fantasy Greeting Cards. This Dragon Snowglobe was a good idea in concept, but I feel that I missed the opportunity somehow in the final image.
The conflicting perspectives, while meant to be a playful approach to the illustration, have always not sat well with me. And while I was purposefully keeping these cards in a cartoon style, the end drawing of this piece seems a bit too simplistic, and more detail was needed I think.
The final image was my most popular by far and sold a number of prints when it was first released through Dancing Dragon (now designtoscano.com). Maybe YOU even bought one.
By NOT showing the most fantastic element of this card, the image became more intriguing and drew the viewer in. The single lit holiday tree engulfed by the Dragon Shadow made the scale of this card feel larger than the small space it filled. The use of more modern looking elements such as the house seemed to work in my favor far more than if I had used a more fantasy-based dwelling. I really had fun playing with the light sources on this card.
In ALL of the 5 Fantasy Holiday Cards I made, I used the mouse to actually color the entire piece. I did not yet own a Wacom Tablet, so that level of digital illustration was still a ways off in my future. Just goes to show what you can make even when you don’t have the latest equipment or technology.