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The Universe of Dragons

August 7, 2009

Galerie Daniel Maghen is a fantasy-themed art gallery in Paris, France. In addition to selling fantastic artwork, they produce exquisite books (with my new favorite, Jean Baptiste-Monge). They’ve also done some collections with American artists like The Universe of Dragons (you’ll never guess what that book is about).


When they contacted me to do a piece for their collection, I was absolutely excited, but pressed for time. So I opted to (digitally) blow the dust off of an old favorite of mine “A Golden Afternoon” done in 1997 for Dragon magazine.


This was quite an ambitious piece for me at that time. I conjured up an image from Kenneth Grahame’s The Reluctant Dragon as the basis for the image. I remember I was looking at a lot of Maxfield Parrish and Scott Gustafson then, and I think their influence can be seen in the handling of the background and environment. Of course, I am nowhere near the painter these masters are, but I was happy with the final painting nonetheless – I felt I had grown a bit after completing it.

One thing I never was truly happy about, though, was the boy. At that point in my career, I had hardly rendered a child in any of my work. As time went on, I was able to understand a little more about the anatomy and structure of little ones. And so, I was able to create a new head for this reprint. Now I am reeeaaallllly happy.


There is a great gaggle of contributors in this collection (the second volume, I might add) like Tom Kidd, Todd Lockwood, Paul Bonner and William Stout (to name some favs). If you are interested, it looks like you can order the book directly from the gallery or through Amazon FranceStuart Ng may even have it. Also, check out Volume 1, its got some nice images in it as well.


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Never Abandon Imagination Tony DiTerlizzi: Never abandon imagination.

Imagination is a world of possibility that exists within each of us. It is what makes us uniquely human. It is our creative fingerprint that touches and influences the world around us. Imagination is essential to art and science; to innovation and prosperity. It gives us hope, calls us to action and leads to change.

Whether it’s fairies, dragons, robots or aliens, all of my children’s book characters are siblings born of my imagination – an imagination strengthened through years of encouragement from family, teachers and friends. While so many others abandoned it during their transition from childhood to adulthood, I fiercely held onto mine, hoping for a day when I could share it to inspire the next generation of dreamers. Innovators. World changers.

Imagination empowers us to envision and create a reality of what could be. We must hold it dear, foster it and never abandon it.