Eon (Illustration) Entry: Michael Dashow


… and a really good start too. Sorry I can’t offer anything helpful here Mike, but I’m mighty impressed with what you’re doing and have no crits or suggestions at all. I’m also glad you kept with the idea of being true to the book and not needing to put clothes onto the Frant. (The description of the Frant is three pages into Chapter 27)


this is great … I love seeing the progress here. I would add … I like a little more detail and express in Patricia’s face. As well as bringing out the face in Olny. Just a thought.


Thanks for the notes, folks. Glad my work-flow was helpful.
And Mark, glad you like the Frants with no Pants. Unlike the other Mark who looks at Frants with no Pants askance. Will I cover him up? No chance! He should prance and dance among the plants with no pants!

(sorry, it’s really late at night and I’m a tad punchy.)

I’m also too tired to get any further with this tonight. I’ve been adding details for the last 6 hours, and my eyes are bugging. I’m mostly done with the city, I think, aside from the cubes and maltese cross at the front.

I can’t decide how intense to make the city. Darker pops more, of course, but lighter pushes it back into the distance more. Anyone got an opinion? I’m too tired to see anything tonight… Catch you all later!



at first glance I like darker, but thinking about it… if you can see the clouds over the city it only makes logical sense to make it look more distant.


I like the dark blue of the plate with the star design in the darker version, but to me the lighter version reveals the lovely design surrounding the axis. so my pick is teh lighter one. that dark near navy blue around the star would look nice on the lighter version, however ^^.

Ultimately though you’ll have to test it wih the characters in play aswell.

and finally i don’t think i have ever had a 6 hour sitting on any one thing in a painting, let alone on detailing for a city ( i have on a painting in general). It shows your artistic stamina and patience, incredible work!.


Personaly I kind a prefer the dark one, but with the inside maybe a bit clearer as the beam should lighten it up.
Incredible work Walrus!!!
love it


Another vote for the darker version, here.
Incredible work either way, Mike. :slight_smile:


I vote for the darker version!

This is a very breath-taking rendering of the EOS novel. I’m sure that something epic will come out once you have assembled all the piece together and raised the curtains!:slight_smile:


bleh , lol, that’s what I get for posting early in the am… my post made no sense what so ever. I prefer the darker one


LOL! Dr Suess couldn’t have done better! A marathon painting effort and you still found time for poetry!

Lighter or darker? Like LightSovereign I’m thinking it will all be easier to judge when the characters are visible and the balance of the whole scene can be looked at. Superb work Mike.


Ah, I should have turned those layers on when I flattened everything to post. I’m not totally working on everything all seperately. I have a lot of layers in the file that I show or hide as need be, including the current version of the characters.

Ivy - you’re quite excused, especially given how coherent I was early in the morning for my last post! :lol:

I’m still not sure which version I’m going to go with (more votes!) but I’d like to give LightSovereign’s idea a try. that is, the lighter body but with the darker front. To quote from the story:
Beyond the cubes-and several times as broad-was a cylinder, rotating around its central axis, the line of the singularity. Its outer surface sparkled with thousands of lights; the side facing her was dark but for a series of five radiating arrays of beacons.

[/i] So maybe the drak front could be the way to go… Have to see how it looks. At this point, when I’ve got all the big points covered, artistic license trumps complete story accuracy.

Working on the front of the city was actually a lot of fun. I took a cylindrical mesh, and applied some techno-textures to it on a per-face basis. In Max, you can fool aorund with how they’re applied by rotating the W axis in the material editor (W as in UVW.) So it was like a big kaleidascope. Apply a black and white texture, rotate it and move it around, render it out, and then load into Photoshop as a selection. In the end I used 4 different iterations of that on the front face.

Anyhow, thanks for the notes and opinions, all!



Awesome work, once again, walrus. I think the lighter version of the city gives looks better. Also, I 'm not sure how it would look, but you might consider putting shadowing along the walls of the corridor where the axis city blocks out the light from the plasma tube.


It’s a good idea, Max… but don’t comfuse the Plasma Tube with the Flaw / Singularity. The former is where all the light comes from, and it surrounds Axis City. This scene takes place inside of it so we won’t see much of it, but I do need to add traces, especially where it intersects with the tips of the vanes of the city. The Flaw is the beam going down the center, which only provides light here because I exaggertated the heck out of it. But it wouldn’t provide enough light for the entire Way. (But I can see why you’d point that out, it does look like that’s how I drew it. Hmmm.)

Thanks for the note!



I’m still working, bouncing around the piece and alternating between characters and tech. Today and yesterday were Frant days, and sometime in the past week I got to reworking on Patricia based on suggesstions by Angel and NinjaA55N (thanks again, guys!) Bonim suggested more work on Olmy’s face, and I did that too… but no matter what I do to it and how good he loks close up, it all gets lost when you see him smaller like this. :confused:

The biggest challenge was working on the Frant’s shawl. And here are the details on how I did that, in case someone might find it helpful…


So in the book, Bear describes the Frant thusly:

“Its shoulders were wrapped in silvery fabric; otherwise it wore nothing.”

So the task was to paint something looking a bit like silver lame. (that’s as in “la-may,” not “lame,” which I hope this isn’t.)

  1. I started with some photo-reference, in this case, my wife wearing a scarf.

  2. Google Image Search is your friend.

  3. I painted all of the cloth details, using the pictures above it as reference. This is where most of the time was spent.

  4. It’s looking okay all by itself but it doesn’t really fit in the picture yet. I used the Curve filter to add some more hilight detail in the middle of the darkest areas, and then added a Hue/Saturation Adjustment layer to bring in the turquoise colors from the environment.

  5. Using another Hue/Sat Adj.Layer with a mask, i adjusted the middle section to be darker, bringing in blues from Patricia’s jumpsuit which it would be reflecting. (You can’t see it in this post, so check out it’s position in the previous one: The frant is directly behind her, so it made sense for his cloth to pick up her outfit’s colros.

  6. In a new Layer set to multiply, I added colors from the green side-light and some other reflected shades. Also, I added a shiny glow to the left.

So there we go. It lost a bit of that silver lame chromey feeling, mostly in the last step. If anyone has any suggestions on making it better, I’d love to hear. But if not, well, here we are, it’s something!



Nicely done warlus, escelent contrast. I am still waiting to see all your composition set up.


no suggestions for the silver lining :). though i am impressed that olmy is picting, uber cool. and the new layer of cloud is really impressive, yes please show all elements together, or are you just teasing?..

sorry not very imformative…



Okay now Mike, this piece is starting to look seriously good. What a cool bunch of updates. Your guidelines on how you did the cloth make good reading too. Thanks for that.

As for the lame look (said with appropriate pronunciation) I think it still looks good. Something with that metallic look to it should, I suppose, have a bit of a hard edge to its specular highlights and possibly also some almost whitish specular areas. Those bits seemed to get softened and coloured a bit along the way, but I’m not actually suggesting you change anything, I’m just offering some food for thought. Because your standard of illustration is out of my depth here and I don’t want to waste your time.

As for trying to make Olmy look good at a distance I sympathise with you - what more can you do for a bloke with no nose? But personally I think Olmy is already looking excellent.

That picting stuff is really cool too.


No comments at this stage from me…just gogogo!! :smiley:

Happy New Year, Mike! Finishing this is definitely is gonna be a good head start for the year!

Good luck!


Hello Mike:) great update:) perfect cloth image:)
I wanna wish you luck , happiness, heath and alot of fun in new year:)
Happy new year:)