Tuesday, 1 June 2010

Flaming June.....

Flaming June; it's raining outside so that sounds about right. Nobody has taken me up on my offer of showing 'other' work, such as non Fantasy [I don't have much ready to post anyway] so let's see what's still in my art file at present. From Fabled Lands a couple I missed out.

From the Fighting Fantasy series.

Update: thanks to Andrew [see his post] he's been able to identify where the following three illustrations came from. Much appreciated! All I can add is, well, one was from the FF series.

The Dragon of course comes from 'Warlock'. I liked him, still do but of course his wings. Just a wee bit short, or small, really. But here's the real lowdown. You heard it here first. He comes out of his cave, he pumps his wings full of blood, and a dash of magic, and they swell and spread, like a butterfly. After all, it would be really dangerous to have fully developed wings in a cave. Don't believe me? Check out Renaissance paintings, they knew.


  1. I really like the Fighting Fantasy and the Warlock Dragon piece. For one, I'm partial to the whole "Swords and sorcery" theme so ethereal warriors with spooky blades and detailed dragons are right up my alley. Personally, I think your pieces that have a "focus" are the best pieces. In other words, those with a centerpiece to catch the viewer's attention: a warrior, a dragon, or whatever. Some of the sweeping shipyards and coasts are nice but seem kind of busy without that "focus." But hey, love it all regardless. Thanks for taking the time to interact one on one with the fans.

  2. I guess people missed your little message about posting non fantasy work, I for one would love to see anything you have drawn/painted.

    I read you on the depressing weather, I live in Surrey U.K and I suppose you are next door in Kent or Essex? Its been really cold too the past month with the exception of the weekend before last....we need a holiday mate! :)

    I always loved that Warlock Dragon piece, I really dig the way you render stone, grass, brickwork and backgrounds.It really does frame the subject the dark background sets the Dragon out from the detailing.It must have taken you ages to hone your fine line drawing style.

  3. I started a forum posting on Dragonsfoot.Org
    to direct viewers to your blog.You should start
    an Russ Nicholson Art section over there my friend.(if you feel inclined?)

    I tried to include a link but messed up twice!Lol!


  4. I am so glad that I have found this blog. I have been a huge fan of yours, Russ, since the Fiend Folio.
    In a previous comment your work was compared to Arthur Rackham. I would also add Edmund Dulac. Please tell us who influenced you as a young artist.
    You said in a previous comment that you worked as a comic book illustrator in the UK. Please tell us the titles. I would love to see these. Plus have you thought of writing a bibliography of your work?
    Keep us informed on any new projects you are working on. Keep posting those fabulous pictures. And thanks for all the inspiring art you have given us.

  5. Hi Russ. Your sea / water is really amazing, it has so much life and movement in it. It's almost like another character in the picture!

    A small request, could you mention which book each image is from? That would help find the book (you still get royalties for the reprint FF stuff... right?!?)

    Look forward to seeing more, and yes non-fantasy is interesting too!

  6. Thanks Atom for the Dragonsfoot posting, some interesting comments there - the most ironically amusing being from Marco, when he writes, 'Somewhere I got the impression that there are a lot of people who aren't very fond of his stuff.'
    Ah, sad but true. I think there is a FF ballot of artists where I score very well in 'best' category and just as well in the 'worst' category. Not many people can say they are both 'best' and 'worst' in the same sentence! lol.

    To Zhu Bajiee - appreciate your comments, especially about my drawing of water, where you say it has so much 'life and movement', which was my intent. But I had to chuckle when you also remark,'(you still get royalties for the reprint FF stuff... right?!?)'. The simple answer to that is no, I do not. I did for a few years from the Puffin books for sales abroad [except the USA and the Commonwealth countries]
    but that's not the case any more. But I do own the artwork - I'll do a post on this at a later date. Titles - mmm, I will eventually get round to doing so, if anyone can help please do.

    Lastly, for the mo', to C.R.G., Dulac was [is] a favourite, but the list could go on for pages - maybe a post showing the work of some? As for comic art - I have to confess a 'secret'. I will reveal all in a later posting. This could prove shocking ... hehehe.

  7. Hi Russ, love the work! I've actually been following your solo gamebook stuff for ages so, off the top of my head, here's a quick run-down of where the pix in this post come from:

    1 - Gates of the World. from Fabled Lands 1: The War-Torn Kingdom.

    2 - I've never seen this piece before, but it looks Fabled Lands in style though it's not from the 6 Fabled Lands books I have. Maybe one of the unpublished latter 6 books?

    3 - The ghost clutching his head comes from Golden Dragon Fantasy Gamebooks 4: The Eye of the Dragon.

    4 - The spectral host hovering over the surface of Lake Nekros comes from Fighting Fantasy 23: Masks of Mayhem.

    5 - The three Erewornian warlocks descending to the ship's deck are from Dragon Warriors 6: The Lands of Legend.

    6 - And the dragon is of course from Warlock of Firetop Mountain.

    I'll go back and annotate your other posts if you want! :-) Good to see all this work again!



  8. Andrew, you are a life saver! Please, by all means do annotate the others, I'm sure it will be of interest to all - especially Zhu Bajiee.
    Your remark about picture 2 is interesting - I thought it was for one of the six the Fabled Lands titles - possibly never printed?

    Also, interesting to think of the 'gap' between 'Masks of Mayhem' and 'Warlock of Firetop Mountain' nearly four years. How time flies - I preferred it when I was younger and when a day [a good day that is] could go on, and on, and on. The exception being a schoolday lol.

  9. No worries - just updated the other posts Russ! I remarked on your Maps post that Fabled Lands 4: Plains of Howling Darkness has almost zero "incidental" pieces (unlike the other five books), so perhaps some of these mystery pieces of art were destined for that book. Having said that, they look a little more detailed than your average Fabled Lands filler art.

  10. Fair comment, Andy, in hindsight I think you are right - it's work that was used on Warhammer book projects.

  11. You could well be right Rick!