Design Retrospective Series Launches!

Season's Greetings,

We're well into the holidays now with the end of the year rapidly approaching. I've posted a new video in the Drawing Commentary series. The Design Retrospective is a detailed look back at the work I've done since I started doing 2D drawings in Rhinoceros. The first video shown here looks at a sample of works from 2006-2013. I know these are very long videos but if you're interested in how the processes have evolved over time, check them out!

That should do it for now. We'll be updating the site with projects as we launch into 2018!


Stoneskin King Garion

This year's Halloween project features an entirely new character that exists in the Summoner's world. Here's the Stoneskin King, Garion:

Just like all of the other entries, there's an accompanying lore post for Garion as well:


After six long months, the Stoneskin King returned to the city of Irusekh and its people. While unwavering in his constitution, the leader of the Naetherspawn was haggard and weary. His detachment of twenty warriors returned with only three and all badly injured. After they had been taken to the royal palace at the heart of the city, Garion informed his advisors of what they had witnessed. The demons had begun organizing themselves into an army with a structure and zeal that had never been witnessed before. They appeared to be awaiting the return of Megiddo and had begun bolstering their numbers using arcane rituals and artifacts. The frequency of raids in the lower realm had been on the rise with many living in constant fear. Garion’s forces had encountered a raiding part near the eastern continent. The demons attacked with skills and weaponry beyond anything the Naetherspawn had seen. Even with their sharply forged battle disciplines, Garion’s detachment was overwhelmed and barely escaped the skirmish with their lives.

Shrugging off his own injuries, the Stoneskin King ordered his advisors to see to his wounded warriors and inform the families of those lost. He stood before the remaining council members in the palace and ordered them to prepare for the Rite of Awakening. If the war to decide the fate of the realm was quickly approaching, Irusekh would need to be prepared. It was time to awaken the demonic blade, Khelboros-Nil.
Finally, before Garion could retire to his chambers and rest, one of his advisors stepped forth to recount a recent story to the Naetherspawn ruler. One of the Skypiercer Knights’ greatest warriors, Thalgre had recently fallen in combat. Though his story was fragmented, the advisor recalled the presence of a foreigner in Irusekh that had slain Thalgre. Garion commanded his advisor to assemble any and all witnesses of the event for questioning. If this new entity also threatened the people of Irusekh, it would soon face the wrath of the Stoneskin King himself


For the various stages of the construction for both Garion and Khelboros-Nil, check out the imgur album linked here. The WIP album contains shots of the sword not used in the video.

This particular entry was meant to introduce another character that will become important in the later chapters of the Summoner's story. As you can tell from the background lore and this post, Garion is from the same race as Thalgre, featured a few events ago. I like the idea of building a narrative with different characters that share similarities and differences in their background and motivation. While this project was a bit more straight-forward than previous years, I intend to work on some follow-on pieces in the coming months.

Stay tuned and Happy Halloween!


Lore Post: Chronicles of the Stoneskin King


This year's Halloween project is finished. I'm working on the showcase video for it which will be going live on 10/31. As a sort of intro to the project, I've prepared some lore which will establish the setting and character.

<Chronicles of the Stoneskin King>
The proud Naetherspawn inhabit the sprawing city of Irusekh high above the rest of the realm on the skypeak. Fairly secluded, they keep to themselves and rarely interact with the rest of the races. In order to prepare for conflict, the Naetherspawn constantly train and hone their abilities in combat. Those that have encountered their warriors have noted their exceptional battle prowess.

Over the many generations, the Legacy of the Cloudborne chronicles the rulers of the Naetherspawn kingdom. Highly decorated warriors and commanders that show unwavering loyalty their people compete for the throne and the right to lead Irusekh. The longest ruling leader in the legacy was the revered Garion. Named the “Stoneskin King”, Garion was one of the few of the royal line to have served in the frontlines of war. In the great Battle of Bloodspire, Garion led the Irusekh Skypiercer Knights against hordes of demons that threatened to breach the city’s gates. One of three great detachment commanders, Garion slew hundreds of demons and brought his entire battalion back without a single casualty. His skill and fierce devotion to his people earned the respect of even the governance council beneath the throne. When the time came for the throne to revolve to the next ruler, Garion ascended with little competition, officially adopting the title of Stoneskin King.
Garion ruled for many years with a stern but fair hand. He was beloved by his people and the Naetherspawn flourished. When rumblings of the demon lord, Megiddo’s forces reached the skypeak, Garion turned his watchful eye to the skirmishes happening far below the city. The encroaching forces of chaos in the realm concerned him since Irusekh had gone many years since an attack by hostile groups. Even the dragons which the Naetherspawn had a tentative alliance between had been strangely silent. Against the advice of his governance council, Garion decided to investigate the matter personally. He took a detachment of his most trusted warriors and departed the city. It has been three months since the investigation party embarked and Irusekh has heard not a word from its king…

That's it for the intro lore post. See you on Halloween!


Fall Stuff!


It's Fall, the weather's getting cold, and it's time for an update! I heard that the reception to our Monster Hunter face pins at PAX West was pretty good! As a way to prep for the next event, we'll be putting together a new series of Monster Hunter face pins. It will include some of the more recent ones as well new ones going up soon! I also need to finish uploading the last of the Clans chibis on the Redbubble store. Series 2 of those will be starting up soon too.

See ya!

TK out!

PAX Update


This is a short update post to let everyone know that I'll be at PAX West this weekend. I posted a note on Twitter announcing I'll be handing out some of our Monster Hunter vinyl stickers at the event. I'll also have our Monster Hunter face pins as well. I don't have a specific plan for handing them out but there's a good chance I'll be hanging around the Capcom booth throughout the weekend. If they end up demoing Monster Hunter World, I'll definitely be there handing out stuff to people in line.

Hope to see you there!


Let's Play Updates and Upcoming Events


As we proceed into the later part of Summer, I figured it would be good to do an update post here. After a short break while I was on vacation, the content in the regular spots is continuing as usual. My Twitch streaming schedule was on hold during the break but will be starting up again this weekend. Also, with PAX West coming up soon, I've started preparing some things to take to the event. I want to bring our usual Graphic Buttons as well as the vinyl stickers I didn't get to hand out last year. There will be a more detailed post coming when the event gets closer.

In Let's Play news, I haven't done a good job of announcing the latest here on the site. I just started posting the episodes from our most current Quick Look series featuring the brutal NES game, Digger T. Rock: The Legend of the Lost City. This series will be shorter than the others and is meant to be highlighted look at the game. The LP is also unique in that it features some commission work for the first time! I asked Unlucky Angel, one of my contacts on-line to draw a title card for the Quick Look. He did a great time on short notice and I'm super happy with the results! Check out the first episode of the QL here:

That's it for this post. I still need to draft up a product review of the pose figures I've acquired recently. That will most likely happen before the end of Summer if I get a spare minute. In the meantime, if you're looking for the most up to date news on content or streaming, follow me on Twitter @Zanshinretsu. Updates are pretty frequent there.

Thanks for stopping by!


New Let's Play Series Starts on Youtube!


As we proceed further into Spring, I thought I'd highlight a project that launched today. As I teased on YT last week, I'm starting a Let's Play series! This content is meant to mix up the usual schedule of Speed Drawing videos while giving me a chance to play through some old classics. The first series will be a play through of 8-bit classic, Blaster Master. This challenging game from the NES is full of interesting twists. Check out the first episode here:

New episodes will go up Tuesdays and Thursdays until the LP is finished! I'm going to try to have at least one play through going a month right now. Thanks for stopping by and tuning in!


Clans' Stickers Are Live!


I haven't been posting on here much lately. I've got a handful of projects in the queue but not much to report in on. I did want to mention that I've started uploading my Clans characters on our Redbubble store! Based on Chibi Series I made as a way to highlight the various races, the designs are available on a bunch of different products. I'd like to do a product test to see how the print quality turns out on the stickers specifically. Also, I've named each of the characters in the different concept pieces. This information is going to synch up with the Clans' Collab stuff Zan's been working on. I'll be going back to add the information and store links to my DA posts.

TK out!

Long Overdue Project Summary and Spring Updates!


It's well into Spring and several months since the last update here. My apologies. The studio is very much active, I just haven't had time to summarize the latest projects due to some things going on behind the scenes. My weekly Youtube and DA upload schedules remain the same. Youtube videos go up two days a week, either Monday/Friday or Wednesday/Friday and DA uploads go up Monday/Wednesday/Friday with the Monster Hunter Circulars getting uploaded at the beginning of the month. I've got some interesting things cooking in the near future and I'll probably go into some greater detail when it gets closer to launch time. You can also expect a post from TyvridKizuna at some point in the future too.

That being said, I want to talk a bit about the holiday project I posted eons ago in the Winter. This is is Krampus Avatar Sahgrel:

Front View

Close Up

Side View
 As expected, I drew some inspiration from the increasingly famous Krampus monster when designing Sahgrel. It had been ages since I did a full-size free-standing monster so this seemed like a good time to get back into it. If you're curious about the construction and skin phase, I've set up an Imgur album to keep this post from getting too cluttered. Overall, I like the dark color scheme on Sahgrel. It creates a good shadowy palette, something fitting for monsters like the Krampus. I didn't establish any lore for this piece but based on his name, I imagine Sahgrel serves as a vessel for some incarnation of the demonic Krampus spirit. If I were to work him into the Summoner world's lore, perhaps would be some sort of malevolent force that behaves a lot like the Krampus we know.

I think that's it for the project summary. I'm working on some other mache pieces including the Holy Dragon I posted earlier with the WIP shots. I hope to finish that one up in the next couple months. A lot of time has been set aside for design work and streaming so that's where most of my effort's been going. The weekly streams on Twitch have been a great way to interact with people while I work so thanks if you've tuned in! Announcements for upcoming streams will continue to be posted on DA and Twitter.

See you in the next post!


Project Wrap-up 1: The Four Gods of the Aegis

Happy New Year,

The posts have been a bit sparse here on the site. I've been traveling recently and have been sick with a cold for a while, slowing work a bit. As a way to tie up the recent Mache projects, I'm preparing a couple of posts to summarize their development. Here is a compilation video from the Four Gods chapter of the Faceless Summoner:

While a smaller group of masks compared to the Summoner's debut, I felt like the Four Gods were a good way to focus on the narrative aspects of each piece while trying to further the overall story. I like the idea of working in more character dialogue to flesh them out.

As hinted in the brief "teaser" at the end of the compilation video, the story will continue at some point in the future. The next installment in the Summoner's tale will be more complex so I can't give a definite release date at this point.

Stay tuned for part 2 of the wrap-up where I'll break down the development process behind the recent holiday project I posted on Twitter.