The Discovery of Fantasy

Fantasy has been a passion of mine since I was about 12 years old. My introduction to the genre was by a humanities teacher who was standing in for our English teacher who was ill at the time. As is the usual practice when a teacher takes over for a lesson, he gave us something to do to fill the 2-hour lesson. In this case, it was to read a comprehension and finish the story, and this turned out to be a passage from a book I had not heard of called Lord of the Rings. I came home quite taken by the short fragment of the story and wanting to learn how it ended. I assumed it was a small paperback similar to the books I was reading at that time, so I asked my Mum to buy it for me, when she bought it home it was three rather large volumes.

To cut a long story short, I got engrossed in the story and could not put it down, I also had a rather nasty boil on my eardrum about halfway through and was in bed in the early hours of the morning in agony, my father sitting with me said don’t try to sleep just read when you get tired you will fall asleep. That trick worked so well the book became something very special in my life and on finishing it, I found myself craving more books in the genera. In the span of my life, I have devoured every fantasy book I could find and am more of a fan now than ever, I have read Lord of the rings over 25 times so far.

The Discovery of Boris Vallejo

I first discovered the art of Boris Vallejo in the late ’90s when I was looking for pocket watches for a magic stage act I was developing. I found a fantasy styled pocket watch that was selling for rather a lot of money and it claimed to be the art of Boris Vallejo, and this led me to investigate the name and a 30-year love for his art.

Boris is responsible for the artwork on all of the Conan and Gor books of the ’70s and ’80s he was born in Lima, in Peru and now lives and works in Pennsylvania with his wife, Julie Bell.

My love of the fantasy Gernera in fiction led me to love fantasy art, and I remember as a child seeing the pictures of floating islands in the air and all the covers of the books I was so keen to read. Boris Vallejo hit the spot for me as he was on som many of those covers and was such an inspiring artist, the idea of dragons and sword and sorcery was what took my imagination on wid rides.

For as long as I have been into photography I have been excited by manipulated images, we tried to do this in the late ‘70s and ‘80s when I was learning the darkroom but it was so difficult to make believable art. I have been keen on drawing and painting alongside my photography but have never had the talent for that as I had for photography, this is changing now with the ability to create art in photoshop and 3D model in DAZ 3D studio.

Now I am finding talent for drawing on the screen and creating digital art.

I have gathered a lot of Boris Vallejo images on my pinterest board as copyright would preclude me displaying a large body of work here:

Stephen Barney Pinterest – Boris Vallejo

Linking Fantasy DADA etc to Assignment One

I have spent some time looking at assignment one and thinking about how I might attempt it — the brief calls for two sets of around four images. The first four done in a traditional cut and paste collage style with found images or my images, then part 2 to make four more images digitally with my original source work.

My thinking is to research some of the Dada practitioners like Hannah Höch and use this influence to create a set of four images which I will base on the style of Boris Vallejo.

In Part 2 I will create original digital art but to make this about photomontage and construction, I will shoot pictures of peoples faces use these in DAZ 3D studio to create posable fantasy figures and beasts then shoot or digitally create the fantasy landscape for them to sit in so that I can create images in the style of Boris Vallejo as a counterpoint to the collage versions.