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Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Some art comparison and the first entry in the gallery of rejection

So I've been drawing Beyond Reality now (off and on obviously) for about 8 years and although the progress with the story has tended to falter I've always enjoyed seeing how my ability to draw has evolved. I know many artists are immensely critical of their own work but for some reason the art style I've cobbled together is one I've always enjoyed. Sure I can see it's full of technical flaws and I know there's lots of room for improvement but I seem to be in the rare position of actually being able to enjoy my own art. Of course that's probably just self-delusion considering I thought most of my first drawings were pretty good. Lets take a look:

Hopefully eight years from now I can look back on my current art and see that I've improved just as much. Anyway, that's the last old art I'll force on anyone here. Which brings me to my second item:

For the last several years most of my energy has been going into finding and keeping a job that can pay the bills and help me knock a few chips out of my student loans. Fortunately I've recently gotten a new position which has not only better pay but more freedom so I'm left with a lot more energy I can devote to my other interests: attaining internet fame and making a living from my writing. Along with restarting Beyond Reality and creating this blog I've resolved to get involved in more events, contests and schemes to help hone my skills and spread myself around. That way I seem less like a crazy person speaking into the cold, endless void of the internet. Yelling into an endless well of advertisements and pornography. 

As part of this I'm creating the Gallery of Rejection showcasing all of my failed attempts and rejected submissions. Please understand this isn't meant to be a place where I gripe about how "I should have won" or complain about those who rejected me. It's the internet and there are thousands and thousands of immensely talented people out there trying to do the same thing, many of them much more talented and deserving of recognition than I am. Rejection is inevitable and I can't deal with it I have no business trying in the first place. Instead this is more of a place where I, and hopefully others, can look back on what I've tried in the past without feeling angsty or discouraged. Some of these entries will be for contests or events with major stakes, others might be nothing more than friendly competitions. In the Gallery, all are equal.

The first item in the Gallery comes from a contest at Piazo publishing called RPG super-star. I entered, along with hundreds of other aspiring RPG writers. The first stage of the competition involves the creation of an original magical item, complete with stats. It's worth noting that as part of the terms of the contest this item does belong to Piazo now. My submission was the Cape of the Night Stalker.

Cape of the Night Stalker
Aura: Moderate Evocation and Transmutation; CL: 11th
Slot: Shoulders; Price: 27,000 gp; Weight: 1 lb.
This lightweight cape is fashioned from pitch-black cloth and has a clasp decorated with obsidian. The cape grants the wearer 60 foot darkvision so long as the cape is worn and also draws upon the power of darkness and shadow to enhance the wearer’s physical and mental abilities. When the wearer is in an area of dim light they receive a +2 enhancement bonus to both Strength and Charisma. In areas of darkness the bonus increases to +4. Treat these as temporary ability bonuses. 
Once per day the wearer may speak a command word that causes the cloak to dissolve into an insubstantial fog of pure shadow. This functions as a deeper darkness spell which radiates from the wearer continually until a second command word is spoken, causing the cape to reform around the wearer’s shoulders. While transformed the cloak ceases to grant any other bonuses to the wearer.
Requirements: Craft Wondrous Items, Deeper Darkness, Darkvision, Bull's Strength, Eagle's Splendor; Cost: 13,500 gp 

There you go, the first of many to come. By the way, if anyone knows of any other interesting writing or art contests, especially those related to webcomics or role-playing games feel free to let me know.

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