Recently I finished preparing a Skillshare course about designing fantasyarchitecture. I presented there many architectonic details drawn from imagination, talked about the rules accompanying medieval builders and highlighted many frequently made mistakes in designing fantasy architecture. An important part of the course are “case studies” - four detailed illustrations summarizing four chapters of the course.
I explained there a designing process based, among others, on historical and constructional aspects. In this blog post, I’ll shortly present how they were drawn step by step. Today it’s time for a little, medieval town square.
1. If you don’t know, what is presented here, I don’t blame you. Luckily for me, shortly after that (i.e. before I forgot what I was thinking about) I began to draw a full-size, neat sketch.
2. If you don’t know what to draw, just start with a horizon line placed in 1/3 or 2/3 of the height of the frame. Drawing vertical lines in 1/3 and2/3 of the width of the frame should be also helpful in setting the composition. I added also a few other divisions. Easy stuff so far 😊
3. Probably now you can see, that there will be two fragments of buildings on the foreground (on the right and the left) and some houses with a bridge/gate in the background. Medieval towns quite often had irregularly shaped roads and “squares”. That’s why there are two different vanishing points for these two foreground buildings, as they are not meant to be parallel. It’s also time to decide how high the floors should be.
4. Defining actual shapes of the buildings. Do you see the striking similarities with the first concept sketch?
5. Marking the most important details, which should give some character to the scene.
6. Further delving into the details…
7. Erasing pencil lines and leaving only the fine, ink drawing.
8. Seems like a big step forward in comparison with the previous one, but this part in fact required relatively little thinking and lots of arduous work. The one important aspect here was a decision about the light direction.
The next post will be dedicated to the third “case study” from the course - “Swamp Fortress” (I hope that the title is a bit intriguing).
In the meantime, you can take a look at how this medieval town square was colored with watercolors in sepia tones!