Dave's Art Evolution - Galactic Warrior

    I got into superhero creation back in 1981 or 1982, my memory's a bit hazy on that point now. I made my first batch using AD&D rules, because while there did exist some superhero RPGs out at that point, I wouldn't get my first one (V&V) until later in 1982. They were all, of course, 8th level Fighters, because the level title for that was Superhero. (More on this below.) While most of the characters in that first batch got remade over and over, the Galactic Warrior is the only one to have come up consistently and still be in use now (as a sort of space cop in my Academy of Super-Heroes setting). I did merge Ram Jet and Missile Man into one guy who got reused up through ASH as well, but I decided to use Galactic Warrior for this little retrospective.

   Dates for the earlier ones are approximate. I didn't start dating my drawings until 1987...although one year I wrote the month on 'em, just not the year. D'oh.

Version 0 - 1981

    No drawing here, but I figured I'd toss this in for completeness. Shortly after getting into D&D in early 1981, I was inspired by the level title for 8th level Fighters: Superhero. Since I wouldn't discover Villains & Vigilantes until Fall of 1982, I tried making up superpowers by giving them spell-like abilities. Having "Fly (2/day)" isn't as useful as you might think. The initial team was a grid of nine small sketches in pen, made on a piece of regular writing paper. I think I worked on it during Mass one Sunday, and then wrote up the stats later that day. I lost those sheets long ago, though, so I'm going from memory.
    Here's the ones I can recall from the grid. I can't remember the last two, but I'm pretty sure Union Jack wasn't one of them.

Version 1 - 1982?

    This isn't the oldest version, but it's the oldest I still have. I can remember two older ones, one in just pen, another "colored" with a yellow marker. This was part of an 11x17 "poster" of five heroes, including: Ursurper, Ruathua, Phantom (who added chartreuse to his yellow costume...what was I THINKING?), and Union Jack (yes, I made my own version of the character many times over the years, having seen him in an Invaders comic in gradeschool, I think it was the Golem issue). The group was just called "Superbeings" at the time. I had given up on Ant-Man and the Lieutenant Galactic Warrior, decided Missile Man was a villain, and also ditched the two I can no longer remember.
   Drawn in number 2 pencil with Crayola crayons for color.

Version 2 - 1984?

    Yes, I got a lot better in about two years, but I had no real design sense, or I wouldn't have put that smaller arrow pointing right up at his groin! I'd discovered some anatomy book, hence the profusion of leg muscle lines.
    I also have a group shot pic with this design (on 11x17 paper), but he's mainly behind Ruathua. Union Jack is also almost entirely behind Ruathua, and Ruathua's face is blocked by Usurper's leg. My composition skills sucked. Phantom is on his own, and had picked up some brown chevrons to make him only slightly less tacky. I'd also added Opposite Man (a sort of Ultra the Multi-Alien, a mix of human, reptilian and insectoid), Weapons Master (who I revised many times over the years) and Dragonfly (a sort of heroic Wingless Wizard type who used antigrav generators for a lot of stuff and had a polearm that had dragonfly-wing blades). This group, called the Pantheon of Super-Heroes, was all made up in Marvel Super-Heroes RPG rules. Why were they the Pantheon when Ruathua was the only one with any divine blood? I dunno.
   Anyway, I'd replaced the striped mask with a motorcycle helmet, and the glowing sword and dagger had become lightsaber tech. Lots and lots of arrows in the design, and the Lieutenant was gone. Done in pencil and colored pencil. It would still be a few years before I started inking stuff.

Version 3 - 1986?

    I'd started tinkering with "inking" using a black colored pencil at this point, and my "innovation" was to cut out the figure (leaving spots for tacks) and tack them up on the wall in the blank spaces on older pics. Other than tweaking the belt and the boots, no real change to the design at this phase, and I didn't do a group shot in this style.

Version 4 - 1986?

    Shortly after finishing the cutout series, but before I started inking things in 1987, I did another group shot in a new, cleaner style. Which also gave everyone stumpy legs. The leaner roster of the Pantheon of Super-Heroes was down to a massively revamped Opposite Man (white on the right, black on the left, he would return an anti-energy version of your attack), Ruathua, Paradox (a renamed Usurper), Galactic Warrior, Union Jack (who now carried an SMG) and Weapons Master. I simplified the Galactic Warrior design a bit, mainly changing the helmet and bringing the boots back to the version 2 style. I also dropped the light-dagger.
    Done in number 2 pencil and colored pencils.

Version 5 - 1988

    One of the last pieces I did before going to college, and BOY can you tell it's a late 80s design! I was revamping a lot of my "old" PSH charcters now that I'd started inking (using a fine point felt-tipped pen, and doing so very badly) and started keeping drawings in a pad rather than tacking them to a wall. I never did a group shot of the PSH after the 1986 one, though. You'll note that GW got his first pistol here (that lump on the original's chest was a pouch of mini-grenades), and lost his helmet in favor of a visor. And yes, most of my drawings from that era had huge thighs that were badly attached to the pelvis. I still hadn't learned that you need to be careful with the direction arrows are pointing when you incorporate them into your designs.
   Part of "Dave's Pad III". Each pad has had from 30-70 pages, and it wasn't until around XII that I started looking for white paper, having found that cream-colored paper scanned badly.

Version 6 - 1993

    This is essentially the final design, despite being over a decade old. While drawn before I started writing ASH, it's the version from the Raiders campaign that I mined heavily for ASH. This is a Santari member of the Galactic Warrior Corps. The lightsaber is gone entirely in favor of a Tsaran blaster pistol (switches between particle beam and focused Cerenkov radiation). I think the buttons on the boots were supposed to be hardpoints for connecting armor bits. The shoulderpads contained a small air supply, and he's removing the breathing mask. In worldbuilding, I restored the blue and light blue Lieutenant scheme, but never drew it. I also added red and white as a color scheme for rookies, with Delta Rose's superhero outfit in the 1970s being based on her GWC uniform.
   Drawn with a technical pen and colored with markers in "Dave's Pad X". Yes, the ship's kinda tiny, he kinda wedges into it and uses a VR interface to pilot. The right pod has cargo or can carry one very uncomfortable passenger. It's otherwise all engine, gun and control surfaces.

Version 7 - 2005

    The Lieutenant design gets its first drawing in 23 years! And she gets a hazardous duty hardsuit, to boot (her regular duty suit is basically the same as Version 6, but light blue instead of yellow, dark blue instead of brown). Veturna Severa has integrated Tsaran blasters in the right gauntlet of her suit, with a clip on top for energy supply. This is a standard energy clip, and can also work in a pistol or rifle. The elongated helmet contains a small air supply and rebreathers. Note the thing on her helmet that looks like a 5, it's the symbol from the ship in Version 6. It's the logo of the Galactic Warrior Corps, a T!rir ideogram.
   Drawn in Pentel fine point pen with Fibracolor markers and some white paint marker for highlights, in "Dave's Pad XVI".

Version 8 - 2007

    Essentially Version 6 outfits but with better boot treads, plus designs for the Lieutenant (blue and light blue) and Patrolman (red and white) uniforms. The Patrolman is a Pranir, his undyed furry feather crest poking out from under his helmet. Pranir have four mutually opposed digits on each hand, kinda like the insectoid guys from Star Frontiers. The other two are Santari, although the Lieutenant may actually be a Scytharian cyborg, with enhancements that let her tote that Tsaran cannon around. Note the specialized spherical grips on the Pranir's Tsaran blasters. Pranir have to be careful not to grab the accumulator spheres (the orange Kirby Krackle things) instead of their grips.
    Drawn with Pentel liquid gel for inks (and I made several inking mistakes I tried to cover up), mostly colored with Prismacolors. Prismacolor is lacking in browns, though, so I went back to the old Fibracolors for the main brown. Done in "Dave's Pad XVI".