Insider 03/15/2010 - Chris Walton

My name is Chris Walton, and I draw stuff. Giant robots? Check. Rampaging monsters? I’m your huckleberry. Daring dames? Sign me up. Badass warriors? Hold onto your seats. For almost four years, I’ve had the spectacular privilege to draw all of these as Privateer Press’ concept artist.

While I’ve been drawing for as long as I can remember, my other passion is model soldiers and wargaming. Since I was twelve, I’ve juggled my time between art and assembling, painting and playing with miniatures. For a very long time, I never considered the possibility of combining both interests, but that all changed when I began looking for freelance work in the tabletop gaming industry as an illustrator.

My job here at Privateer Press involves taking rules briefs and initial concepts from our development team, then creating the unique look for each miniature. This requires an in-depth knowledge of our game worlds, which dictates what details are appropriate for each character and model. Once a drawing is finished and approved, it’s passed along to the sculptors who create the models you and I game with and to illustrators who produce the awesome artwork adorning pretty much everything that leaves Privateer Press’ doors.

What’s the coolest aspect of my job? That’s easy. I like that everything I have a hand in ends up as model on someone’s gaming table. I know plenty of artists who would kill to have even one of their drawings turned into a 3D model, and I get to see it every day. That’s pretty awesome.

For the last couple of years, I have had the chance to illustrate No Quarter’s Gavyn Kyle Files, creating new art of the Iron Kingdoms’ movers and shakers. It’s a great way to take a break from concept art and flex some of my illustration muscles.
In future articles, I hope to show you how we concept miniatures and move them from a 2D image to a real, physical object. Maybe I’ll even drop hints or sneak an image or two in of what’s coming down the pipe. Until then, cheers!