Enter a world of fantasy imagined by artist Davis Engel. Enjoy this portfolio and see more of his art by visiting his website.
I was born and raised in Tucson, Arizona. I’ve been making stuff all my life, whether it’s a mess of Cheerios on the kitchen floor, musical compositions, visual effects films, 3D models or drawing. I’ve dabbled in many art forms but have settled on digital painting—it’s where my heart is at. I love telling stories visually first and foremost, and I feel that painting captures all the things I love most about those creative worlds.
Speaking of creative worlds, it is what I do. I’ve been at this since I was a little kid. I’ve been designing open spaces and maps complete with lore and characters since I could pick up a pencil, really. Eventually, I’ll create a graphic novel (maybe a novelization) complete with its own history, cultures and realistic world detail that will hopefully captivate a large audience.
I have to admit that my background in 3D and visual effects has somewhat spoiled my approach to painting: I approach problems that most painters have developed solutions for by natural observation and practice with mechanical breakdowns of lighting, atmosphere and perspective learned from tinkering around in 3D space on my computer. I tend to over-render things as a result and not discriminate what details I should exclude in favor of artistic quality.
Techniques I focus on now to avoid this and breathe life into my paintings are accurate but loose mark-making, implied detail and broken color. Once I master these techniques I’ll have the style and presentation I want.
My goal in art is to develop an ideal mixture of realism and stylization in my work. I love images that look like real life, but through an almost impressionist lens. I want to learn how to say a lot of this realism without actually “saying” it all, with a good economy of strokes and clever use of mark-making. Ambitious much?
Right now I’m struggling to make a living in the trading card game art business. I’m sure I’ll get there soon, but I’ve got some ladders to climb first before I reach the bar my lifelong influences have set.
I grew up on epic fantasy films, games and books, and am greatly inspired by the literary works of J.R.R. Tolkien and C.S. Lewis. My artwork is inspired by the paintings of John Singer Sargent, Richard Schmid, Daniel Gerhartz, Craig Mullins and Jaime Jones.
Other major influences include Jason Chan and Michael Komarck. They all have amazing and distinctive styles, and someday I hope to match their caliber and join the top ranks to push forward in an ever-changing art world.