Battler Art Step by Step – Dark Magic Guardian

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This is the 3rd guardian I have done, which seems to be a little bit golem in nature, so when this guy came up as a winner I had a pretty good idea what I was going for from my description:

Dark Magic Guardian – This onyx beast is charged with guarding the most valuable tomes in the depths of Mount Zurat.  Its halberd crackles with black lightning and it hefts a magick nullification shield, this guardian stands ever vigilant against those who would steal the secrets of its masters.

So, golem, halberd with black lightning and greatshield, pretty simple!

I began as I usually do, I kind of just read and reread the description text until some sort of idea pops into my head.  Then I go into refining it and putting it together in different ways.  Finally I sit down with my moleskine sketchbook (the best sketchbooks ever) and rough out my ideas.

After a couple of roughs I found the pose I was looking for, then it was just a matter of putting it down on some bristol!


Golem-y face? check.  Magic devouring shield with runes? check.  Giant runic halberd? check.

Onto tones!


This is where I am just roughing out the lighting and some materials with a grayscale layer that I then color balance to warm or cool.  I have a scan of canvas painted over roughly with burnt umber oils that I use for this step.


Colors on this were a little tricky.  I ended up doing the fiery version first, because the warm and cools looked so good together, but that wasn’t what was in my description.  I needed “black lightning”, whatever the heck that looked like.  So I went about doing a slight recolor and shelved the fire version for a variation I could include.



And here are the finals!  A black lightning version, and a fiery version.

Download the assets here :

Check out the video time-lapse here:

Thanks again for reading!

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