Book of Fates, art for the first 14 chapters

Hello adventurers, we wanted to share some art from the first 14 chapters of Book of Fates, our new webserial that you can read at www.bookoffates.com

We know we’ve been spamming it a fair amount on this blog, but still feel like oversharing it – we’re proud story-parents you see, and we just can’t stop talking about it. So let’s do – let’s have a look at all the art that has been done!

 

It began with our protagonist — the Eternal Knight — who had landed on the Forgotten Shores of Ferax without memory or understanding who he is or why he’s there. On the beach, he meets a strange old fella and by the grace of the Fates decides to talk to him. So far, so good…

 

The old man leads our protagonist away from the beach and offers the Eternal Knight a weapon from his hidden salvage cache. The Fates need to decide between a sword and a shield, a battle axe, and an oar.

The battle axe and the oar were neck in neck in the polls, but at the last minute the oar came out on top. That’s right, our Eternal Knight is an oar wielding bad-ass.

 

Well, I’m glad there aren’t any dangerous monsters around that would need to be fought off with blades. Scratch that — a MONSTER ATTACKS! The knight hacks, he slashes, but the monster is too strong. The Fates had to decide if the knight protects his newfound ‘allies’ on the beach or sacrifices them for a killing blow. I’m not going to spoil it here, you just have to read to experience how shameless our Fates really are. We love you guys, but you sometimes you don’t think things through.

 

The land of Ferax is overtaken by a curse that turns people into mutated plant monsters. The real reason why our monsters look like this is because my wife has a serious obsession with plants. We have like a gazillion houseplants and every week they multiply. And now they’re in our fantasy story too. Is there no end to this madness? Just kidding, I like plants too (and I love you, honey!)

 

The Eternal Knight loses his oar because of selfishness, but meets a young elven mage who will help him get it back. She says she’s an apprentice, but she can pack a punch with air magic. She also speaks a lot — like Anne from Green Gables lot.

 

We gave our readers a chance to smash this flying tower into the monster’s lair, but the Fates had other plans. Namely, loot. We really have no idea how our readers make their decisions and sometimes (always) we’re worried what we’re getting ourselves into.

 

The Eternal Knight gets a new companion, Compie the companion box. He’s snarky and shifty, but our Fates decide to trust his guidance anyways. Silly, silly fates…

 

In this chapter the group accidentally step on a mushroom man and then try to make peace with them by becoming their prisoners instead of fighting them off like real warriors would.

 

All bow down to the Mushroom King. The Fates sure did.

 

This might look like a strange decision to make, but each of these are hats, and have special magic powers. It was a big moment really.

 

And like all underground dungeons, you need a dragon.

 

Bad stuff happens here. Guess whose fault it was? The Fates.

 

Need a hand? Ha ha.

 

 

And this is the end of the first arc! Book of Fates is a fantasy series which we will keep publishing week by week and make a book out of it one day. But more importantly, it is our way of challenging the image of a solitary writer. Instead of waiting for a finished novel, we invite our readers to share in the transcendental experience of playing god with us. This project would not exist without our readers joining us in breaking the rules of storytelling and publishing. We’re writing this story against all known publishing methods, out in the open, each week reacting to the audience’s choices, sharing their anxieties, rooting for mischief, and celebrating victories. This project is a collaboration and a dialogue, and while you wait for your favorite fantasy writer to finish the next thousand-page novel, you’re welcome to hang out with us at www.bookoffates.com or our discord-server.

 

Love, Silver and Kaya

 

Run Freak Run print giveaway

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Click to zoom in.

Hey gang. We’re raffling three Run Freak Run A3-sized prints (no frame included) in celebration of Book of Fates reaching its 6th chapter! All you have to do to participate is to be on the Book of Fates newsletter. We’ll randomly select three winners and then mail the posters to them free-of-charge, no matter where they are in the world. 

 

If you have already signed up, then all the work is already done and you just have to wait patiently for the results. We’ll close the raffle in two weeks from today (5th of September).

 

So, if you want a chance to get some fancy Run Freak Run prints, sign up to the Book of Fates e-mail newsletter and hope the Fates are on your side.

Click to zoom in.

 

Cheers,

Silver and Kaya

RFR page sketches

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Preaparation is the key small

In the beginning of RFR’s production Silver bought me a Moleskine storyboarding notebook which I started using right away to sketch out the first couple of chapters. Over time, as we had more and more of the story written out, I kept adding new chapters to it.

It’s full of scribbles, each uglier than the previous, only readable to me, even if just barely. Still, this notebook marks the first, and possibly most important stage in drawing a comic book: thumbnailing the story.

Thumbnailing is not about pretty pictures; it’s your roadmap and your comic’s visual plotline. It’s crucial to be prepared and ready, knowing your overall goals and each page’s content before you zoom in on the individual panels. It’s all about story pacing, and page composition and flow, already marking places for drama and suspense. This is where I decide between a silent, one panel page, and a ten panel, action packed sequence, or how to best compose the blacks and whites and lights and shadows that the comic is basically made out of.

You will add the character acting and nuances when you get to drawing the actual panels, but for storyboarding you’ll have to think more like a storyteller than a portrait painter. The key is to always understand how each page works with multiple pages forward and back. If you have this, 80% of your decision making is basically done.

Optimally, you’d have all your story written out by the time you start thumbnailing. This is one thing we learned from RFR: have a script or at least a plotline ready before you start drawing anything. Having to make changes in writing is much easier than having to decide to throw ten inked pages out the window because the story needs to go a different way after all.

All that said, I wanted to give you a little peak into this scribbled mess I’ve been calling “RFR thumbnails”:

Smiles,
Kaya

How to paint – A misty environment

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For some time now we’ve been wanting to get back into making youtube process-videos, but since we were always pinned down by RFR and DotWQ release deadlines we pushed it off in order to keep our sanity. Now that we’re still in the early pre-production of two of our next projects we have some time to experiment, and I recorded the process of a quick painting to see what are the technical challenges we’d have to overcome.

It all seems pretty straight forward; just get FRAPS, press record, and edit. It’s pretty heavy on our old hard-drives but it’s manageable, and we still haven’t tried voice-over which is absolutely essential for any real educational videos.

We’ll keep on experimenting, uploading the videos, and posting them here as we go. I will probably continue doing tutorials on environments, composition, and light and shadow, while Kaija will most likely cover the character related things, like anatomy, fabrics, portraits, photographic compositions, light, and so on. To be honest, we don’t know what we’ll achieve with this, but it should nevertheless be a fun experiment. :)

And we hope you will enjoy it.

Love,
Silver

tweet tweet me @runfreakrun

Unreal RFR posters

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unreal

Two around the world.

Color us surprised, when we saw posters of Two in the new Showtime TV-show, UnReal. We gave the permission to use RFR posters on the set about a year or so ago, and since productions like these take months to complete and surface – we kind of forgot all about it. But thanks to a helping hand on Twitter  we got to experience a surreal and fun moment that filled us with pride and joy. You can check out the trailer for the TV-show HERE. :)

These posters are very nostalgic for us because they were one of the first promotional materials that we did for RFR. That was about three years ago and it’s just such a strange feeling to see them pop up again. But in a good way. The whole event also reminded us that we have Run Freak Run-posters in our online stores, should you want them hanging on your walls too!

In our Society6-store, you can find the “Red nun” and “Black eyes” posters framed or unframed and even as clothing apparel. Check them all out HERE!

 

rfr

I want this!

 

rfr2No, I want this!

We also have a small amount of these huge “Many faces of Two”-posters. You can get them on our ETSY-store, next to a small selection of RFR-originals (Just ping us an email if you want to know the availability of a certain page you’d be interested in but can’t find on the store.)

poster_groups

This, this, this! (Out of print, sorry!)

On that note, we hope you have a wonderful Sunday, and hope you are enjoying the latest RFR pages.

Cheers,

Silver and Kaija

DotWQ part 2 released!

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“She’s the kind of pain in your ass that you can’t walk off.”
– Vision

rain_cover_5

Halou!

We’re happy to announce that Daughters of the Witch Queen part 2 is now released.
We’d like to thank our proofreader Laura, our advance copy readers, and everyone who has hit us with encouraging email during the past months – it’s been great to improve these books with you. :)

This time the book is almost twice as long as part 1, touches more on the subject of magic, and definitely opens more questions than it closes.

Start reading!

DotWQ is only on Amazon Kindle at the moment. But fear not if you don’t have a Kindle device: for you can get a Kindle-app to any smartphone, or tablet, and you can read any amazon purchased kindle-books in your internet-browser over at Kindle Cloud Reader.

New to the series? Get DotWQ part 1 first. :)

Concept art!
This time we have an info-graph on the Tree of Powers, the different branches of magic in DotWQ. And an illustration of a mermaid. See if you can find out what magic Rain uses.

magic_infograph

Mermaid_side_04

Start reading Daughters of the Witch Queen part 2!

New to the series? Get DotWQ part 1!

 

We hope you enjoyed the preview, the pictures, and look forward to hearing any feedback from you.

 

Cheers,
Silver and Kaija

Twitter: @runfreakrun || Like us on Facebook, make us feel fuzzy.

Art give-away finished – looking for next ideas!

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update1

 

Just before last December we announced a Run Freak Run winter art give-away, where we randomly picked out a winner of one of our favorite RFR pieces to date. The only thing you had to do to be included in the lottery was to be signed up for our newsletter.

Today we’re happy to announce that Two and Priscilla are making their way to Jared in Massachusetts, and based on talking to Jared we’re more than confident they’ll get a great home from him. :)

Now we’re on a lookout for new ideas for giveaways, or competitions. If you guys have anything in mind, please let us know and we’ll steal it, and take all the credit.

update2

We’ll miss you guys. – Click to open in full size.

 

 

We’ve also been doing some new RFR inking recording, but due to some technical problems we lost our last recording. But we’ll keep trying and no doubt succeed with the next page, and like always, send it to our newsletter first and then get it on the blog too.

update5

Sometimes the record sizes grow out of whack and our software crashes. Might be time to look in to new codecs.

But the inked page itself is safe from any harm; you’ll see it in its full glory eventually in the comic, but here’s a couple of sneak peeks of the work in progress. :)

update3

Sketch vs. inked page. Everything is drawn at least thrice.

update4

“Har har har STOMP!”

 

On Daughters of the Witch Queen side we’re working on the first editing passes for part 2, and we’ve just began the second pass on part 3. The novelettes are growing larger and larger with each part because there’s more story to unravel, new characters to meet, and information to reveal. We also have a full magic system to make sense of.

We’re consciously trying to limit ourselves to the 40-60 pages/part so we can keep releasing them with a reasonable speed, while also leaving some time aside for illustrations, since that’s something we love doing too.

We’re not quite ready to announce part 2 release date yet, but -soon-.

Oh, and we’ve also started to work on DotWQ website – We’re aiming to blow your minds with it.

 

Love,

Silver

Hit me up at twitter @runfreakrun or send us an email anytime, it’s extremely fun to talk you guys. :)

 

 

 

Creature concept and one day free Amazon promotion

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First of all, let me start by letting you know that today Amazon has a one day free promotion for Daughters of the Witch Queen. Go get it while it’s still possible!

You can read the story on either your Kindle-device, or on Amazon’s browser-reader at http://read.amazon.com/, or on any Apple or Android device that has the Kindle-app installed.

As you may have noticed, we love telling stories through pictures. And, as you may have noticed also, even though the next project we’re working on (Daughters of the Witch Queen) is a novel, we’ve been creating concepts and illustrations for the story as much as time allows. But it’s not just all about the pictures: we’re taking on a mindset of sprinkling information in with them, and widening the world beyond the story we’re creating.

And for anyone who’s not interested in the story itself, these pictures can act like puzzle pieces to the world; a little random at first, but soon you’ll be able to piece together the big picture.

_White Lie_SMALL

 

Smiles,

Kaija

Some unplanned sketching

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On Friday Silver found an app for drawing on your iPad, and I’ve taken to it for some reason. For two days straight, instead of absent mindedly picking up the iPad and playing a round of Alto or Two Dots, I’ve gone to draw a new sketch. The app is called “Forge” and it’s been really fun to play around with, so I thought I’d share the love:

Sketches_01

 

If you happen to pick up Forge, I’d love to see what you’ve created with it :) And if you’re interested, I’ll be posting these sketches regularly on instagram and twitter.

https://instagram.com/nonsense_and_sense/

https://twitter.com/KaijaRudkiewicz

 

Smiles,

Kaija

DotWQ Wallpapers

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To celebrate the upcoming release of part 1, we felt inspired to create a couple of Daughters of the Witch Queen wallpapers, one of which we’ve already released to our newsletter-list.

In the future, we want to talk more about the Magic-system behind DotWQ, and will be doing blog-posts and infographics to help that. It’s very fun and inspiring to work together with text and images and we’re excited to start sharing more with you guys. It’s a long road, but the next year and more should be very full of our best concept art work; of not only of the magic-system, but of different characters, of both the humans and witches, of the world, of it’s creatures, and important scenes from the story. We don’t want those pictures to be just random images either, so we’re trying to pool them together in ways that you could enjoy the story, even without reading the books. We’ll go deeper in to our plans in future blog-posts, as we have more things planned out.

Nevertheless, we hope you enjoy the wallpapers we have now :)

tldr: We’ll try our best use our skills as concept artists to bring this project to life, but that’s a subject for another time. Enjoy the wallpapers!

dotwq1

Click to open!

vaga_wallpaper

Click to open!