Here is another painting that I did for the 4th edition of Dungeons and Dragons. This one was an illustration for the Monster Manual. The creature is called a Drider, which is kind of a cross between a dark elf and a giant spider.
This was a really cool subject to paint although I wouldn't like to meet one of these creatures!
I love this one's aggressive posture and expression. I see a little panic in her eyes. It's as if Drizz't himself trespassed onto her layer and she is both pissed and afraid of her own annihilation. The arachnid features are near flawless as if you took them from a black widow spider. You even threw in the pedipalps which is what most of the drider drawings lack.
Awesome picture. Looks terrific. Captures a great deal of emotion.
Just a couple of nitpickings: 1. Driders are male. Being turned into a drider is the punishment a priestess of Lloth (always female) can exact on a sacrilegous male. 2. Driders are always described as having bloated torsos. Whatever might be said about this particular drider, bloated does not come to mind.
I've always been confused though. Why would becoming a Drider be seen as a punishment. Spiders are symbols of Lloth so it seems backwards that becoming part spider would be seen as a punishment when it makes you closer to your goddess.
Ah, but they mostly lose their sense of self, become slaves to primal instincts and the goddess' whims. Every time a drider is described as having any kind of personality left, it's usually as an exception to the rule. They live miserable lives.
For males it is not an honour to become one with the symbol of Lloth, for males are not meant to enjoy such honour in that world-view. One might argue that all drow are already slaves to Lloth's whims, but nonetheless the punishment of becoming a drider also represents a loss of self and literally becoming Lloth's creature and losing one's free will.
That's how I made sense of it being a punishment anyway.
I really enjoy how you make your scenes come alive. I especially feel it in the drider, I can look at this and imagine the fear of facing something like it as opposed to "this is a nice picture". Well done.