Shop Mobile More Submit  Join Login
Smaug The Magnificent by mike-nash Smaug The Magnificent by mike-nash

'Smaug The Magnificent' - Inspired by The Hobbit by J.R.R Tolkien. 

Smaug is an iconic dragon, well known within the realm of Fantasy literature, and plays a key role in The Hobbit as the chief terror looming over the story. Ferocious, proud, cunning, greedy and egotistical, he is quite the character, with many a self-proclaimed title, such as Smaug The Magnificent. It became clear that trying to tackle Smaug, armed with either paintbrush or sword, meant needing to go all out. I felt pressure to create something that would suit his reputation, yet not stray too far from some kind of realism and authenticity. Regarding the practical side, as the detail of Smaug's armour grew, I realised I would need to pay equal attention to his surroundings, else risk them feeling sparse and unfinished in comparison. What followed was an attempt at a careful balance of detail, colour, lighting and composition to maintain cohesion and legibility. The result truly is a labour of love and I hope to have done justice to Smaug and Tolkien's world, which so many of us enjoy!

Video Process

Part One - youtu.be/4T4_s2sEgGk

Part Two - youtu.be/m4AjaL0oQYw

Part Three - Coming Soon

Art Portfolio - www.mike-nash.com

YouTube - www.youtube.com/user/MikeNashArt

© 2014 Mike Nash

My sincerest thanks to lovelessdevotions for suggesting this as a DD and to Lyricanna for featuring it. Also, thanks to everyone who has commented. Even though I may not reply to every single one, I do read them and am very flattered! I appreciate the support!

Add a Comment:
 

Daily Deviation

Given 2014-06-20
Smaug The Magnificent by mike-nash.

The suggester said: "The artist carefully endeavoured to capture the magnificence of this legendary dragon and the resulting piece is a stunning molten marvel." ( Suggested by lovelessdevotions and Featured by Lyricanna )
:iconserenityphotography8:
SerenityPhotography8 Featured By Owner May 31, 2015  Professional Photographer
Stunning beyond words
Reply
:icon47x:
47X Featured By Owner May 2, 2015  Hobbyist Photographer
Holy wow!
Reply
:iconfoxycooper:
FoxyCooper Featured By Owner Oct 24, 2014
wow!
Reply
:icongjtproductions:
GJTProductions Featured By Owner Sep 25, 2014
:iconclappingplz:

(P.S. Not a big fan of that wyvern design in the movie, FYI. Things like this are much better IMO.)
Reply
:icongraindolium:
Graindolium Featured By Owner Sep 5, 2014
y tat ton dragon mec , j'avais pas vus celui là encore  =P (Razz) 
Reply
:iconwinterkeep:
Winterkeep Featured By Owner Aug 22, 2014
outstanding one more time with your art... !

This Smaug looks realistic, I like how you painted his  legs and the tail, like a Komodo dragon.

and of course these colours...
Reply
:iconmike-nash:
mike-nash Featured By Owner Aug 23, 2014  Professional Digital Artist
Thank you! Referencing Komodo Dragons and Crocodiles helped me maintain some kind of reptilian realism. I like my Dragon's to slither on their belly rather than run like a Dinosaur!
Reply
:iconsaskewoo:
saskewoo Featured By Owner Jul 15, 2014  Student General Artist
This is incredible, he feels huge and imposing in this painting! And the attention to detail is simply stunning.
But I also actually really loved the other one you had on youtube which you unfortunately took down :(
Reply
:iconspankingfemfatale:
spankingfemfatale Featured By Owner Jun 25, 2014
This is gorgeous! =D
Reply
:iconstasy-macalister:
Stasy-MacAlister Featured By Owner Jun 22, 2014
Wow! Amazing! Like it :3
Reply
:iconmalcamon:
Malcamon Featured By Owner Jun 21, 2014  Hobbyist Artist
This is unbearable glorious.

-bows head-
Reply
:iconmike-nash:
mike-nash Featured By Owner Jun 21, 2014  Professional Digital Artist
I'm so happy you think so! Smaug is supposed to invoke that exact feeling. It was a big challenge, I'm glad you feel I did him justice!
Reply
:iconsherlock221bnw1:
SHERLOCK221BNW1 Featured By Owner Jun 21, 2014   Digital Artist
That is amazing. I have no words.

How did you pick your colors, because they are gripping and demand attention. Just like Smaug
Reply
:iconmike-nash:
mike-nash Featured By Owner Jun 21, 2014  Professional Digital Artist
I'm so pleased you think it's effective, especially as it's quite a limited palette! It's all harmonious colours really, with just a touch of blue in the upper corners for contrast.

Smaug was described as a red/orange glow in the darkness, so I tried to do justice to that!

I was mindful to head toward an orange/gold palette instead of yellow. Yellow can look sickly sometimes, when it gets darker and more toward green, so I wanted to avoid that. I feel the impact is actually coming from the contrast, there is a full range of dark to light tones here, which is giving the colour extra punch!
Reply
:iconsherlock221bnw1:
SHERLOCK221BNW1 Featured By Owner Jun 21, 2014   Digital Artist
Most people (myself included) paint him more red/orange. But after re-reading the passage it fits it perfectly. The glow in the background and all. 

Good call in the avoiding yellow, its such a hard color to work with. I can hardly ever use it consistently because of the whole green issue.

The amount of detail is insane. How long did it take?  And did you have a digital drawing Tablet?
Reply
:iconmew2010:
mew2010 Featured By Owner Jun 20, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Holy hell this is insane...
The colors, the details... it's just so perfect!!
Reply
:iconlava-java:
lava-java Featured By Owner Jun 20, 2014
The detail is mind-boggling! :wow: Just... wow. Incredible job!!
Reply
:iconekaiaistari:
Ekaiaistari Featured By Owner Jun 20, 2014   Photographer
Truly Magnificent!! :worship:
Reply
:iconsingingflames:
SingingFlames Featured By Owner Jun 20, 2014  Hobbyist Writer
This is, quite possibly, the most impressive dragon I have ever scene. I love all the little details, the individual scales, the tension in the skin of his wings, it all adds up to a realistic and superbly painted dragon. Smaug has never looked better! :wow:
Reply
:iconmike-nash:
mike-nash Featured By Owner Jun 21, 2014  Professional Digital Artist
Thank you for mentioning 'realistic', I tried hard to make his design feel magnificent, but still rooted in some kind of reality. I like to try and make fantasy seem real, that place where history and fiction sometimes blur together. I like the idea of that!
Reply
:iconbahamutdeusmodus:
BahamutDeusModus Featured By Owner Jun 20, 2014  Professional General Artist
Love the look of the whole picture; his scales are impressive, and I particularly like the 'tentacle-like' horns on his head. It's a really unique design, and I knew it was supposed to be Smaug right away without even seeing the title. :giggle:
Reply
:iconscr1b3:
Scr1b3 Featured By Owner Jun 20, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
WOW!!! This is really cool!! 
Reply
:iconelzahir1989:
ElZahir1989 Featured By Owner Jun 20, 2014
AWESOME!
Reply
:iconcaritox3:
caritox3 Featured By Owner Jun 20, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
wow awesome! :D
Reply
:icontzarinaregina:
TzarinaRegina Featured By Owner Jun 20, 2014  Student General Artist
Amazing level of detail! 
Reply
:iconlord-darcy:
Lord-Darcy Featured By Owner Jun 20, 2014
:iconcongratsddplz:
Reply
:iconmangakidart:
MangaKidArt Featured By Owner Jun 20, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Knew it was Smaug before I even saw the title xD This piece is fantastic and so precise, congrats to you~
Reply
:iconthegalleryofeve:
TheGalleryOfEve Featured By Owner Jun 20, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Congratulations on your well-deserved DD!!! :iconflyingheartsplz::iconlainloveplz::iconflyingheartsplz: :clap::clap::clap:
I’m very happy for you!!! :iconloveloveplz: :tighthug:
Reply
:iconstarcrosst:
StarCrosst Featured By Owner Jun 20, 2014
The detail is absolutely fantastic. But my favorite aspect is how he's "breaking out of the box", how you didn't keep to the standard rectangular canvas. It really makes it stand out, even more than the minute details and color scheme does. Those scales must have taken months.

Congratulations on a well deserved DD!
Reply
:iconmike-nash:
mike-nash Featured By Owner Jun 20, 2014  Professional Digital Artist
Thank you so much. Yes, those scales did take months! I had to take time away from it several times, but I wanted to make the effort.
Reply
:iconsolarmew:
SolarMew Featured By Owner Jun 20, 2014
geezus X.x how did you not want to kill yerself drawing out every single little scale? x.X i got dizzy just watching the video *faints*
Reply
:iconmike-nash:
mike-nash Featured By Owner Jun 20, 2014  Professional Digital Artist
I went crazy several times!
Reply
:iconsolarmew:
SolarMew Featured By Owner Jun 20, 2014
:thumbsup: =D
Reply
:iconchieflolcatz:
ChiefLolcatz Featured By Owner Jun 20, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Smaug is not magnificent but the art is 
Reply
:iconangelofdarkness089:
AngelOfDarkness089 Featured By Owner Jun 20, 2014  Hobbyist Writer
Stunning! :wow:
Reply
:iconapeanutbutterfiend:
Apeanutbutterfiend Featured By Owner Jun 20, 2014  Student General Artist
whoohoo!! congrats, Mike! I watched your youtube video on this, love your videos and artwork.
Reply
:iconmike-nash:
mike-nash Featured By Owner Jun 20, 2014  Professional Digital Artist
So pleased you are enjoying the videos!
Reply
:iconapeanutbutterfiend:
Apeanutbutterfiend Featured By Owner Jun 21, 2014  Student General Artist
yep, sure am :nod:. Which recording software do you use to show your progress while you work if you don't mind me asking?
Reply
:iconmike-nash:
mike-nash Featured By Owner Jun 21, 2014  Professional Digital Artist
I use Screenflow, for Mac. Or you could try Camtasia for Windows :)
Reply
:iconapeanutbutterfiend:
Apeanutbutterfiend Featured By Owner Jun 22, 2014  Student General Artist
ah, thank you so much Mike! I just downloaded hypercam 2 last week but I will look into Camtasia as well. thanks again!
Reply
:iconakudemyfan:
AkuDemyfan Featured By Owner Jun 20, 2014
This is really amazing! Really liking how the wings come over the upper line. =) Awesome work with it!

Congrats on the well deserved DD! :aww:

Faving!
Reply
:iconlaughbutts:
LaughButts Featured By Owner Jun 20, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
JUST CHILLIN' ON A CITY
Reply
:iconvampirequeeneffeffia:
VampireQueenEffeffia Featured By Owner Jun 20, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
It's so beautiful I'm crying :tears:
Reply
:iconmomotsukinezumi:
MomotsukiNezumi Featured By Owner Jun 20, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Wow...this is gorgeous, no wait, it's magnificent, no, no, not good enough, it's...majestic and glorious and awe-inspiring and breathtaking enough to make me want to risk expiring from lack of oxygen because I'm willing to forgo breathing if it means I can keep looking. 
Reply
:iconelite944:
Elite944 Featured By Owner Jun 20, 2014  Hobbyist Artist
Awesome!
Reply
:iconfrostednipps:
FrostedNipps Featured By Owner Jun 20, 2014  Student Artist
This is beautiful 
Reply
:iconplueschopossum:
Plueschopossum Featured By Owner Jun 20, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Wow! I mean... this is just... wow!! :clap:
Reply
:iconfeathery-blue-otaku:
feathery-blue-otaku Featured By Owner Jun 20, 2014
amaaaaazing.
Reply
:iconeclipseofphoenix:
EclipseofPhoenix Featured By Owner Jun 20, 2014  Hobbyist Artist
YEEESSS!! LOTR! This is intricately detailed- I love how you made the light play on each scale, which are done in beautifully! You should make it into an Emoticon, or something!!!
Let me hug you! Tight Hug 
Reply
:iconthinkerofthoughts:
ThinkerOfThoughts Featured By Owner Jun 20, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Smaug the unassailably wealthy.
Reply
Add a Comment:
 
×




Details

Submitted on
February 14, 2014
Image Size
4.9 MB
Resolution
2170×1148
Link
Thumb
Embed

Stats

Views
10,408 (2 today)
Favourites
2,001 (who?)
Comments
111
×