“Demonstrating the Craft,” With E.M. Gist

Watts Atelier Instructor E.M. Gist is well known for his horror, fantasy and sci-fi illustrations, but the skills needed to paint the imaginary creatures and characters in his illustrations are all honed by studying reality.

Taking a look at Erik Gist’s demos from this term can help the aspiring fantasy illustrator understand why studying from realty is important.  A still life lesson with a few metal objects and and apple can later be remembered when rendering armor and a red dragon’s hide; And portraiture and the ability to capture a likeness is always important for the illustrator, especially when working with specific intellectual properties and well-known fictional characters.

By practicing the fundamentals and understanding how to draw, paint, and render everyday objects, we can better serve ourselves when and if we branch out into the realms of science fiction and fantasy.