About MadAgs

I'm a stay-at-home writer and blogger. I enjoy a multitude of creative pass-times from books and games to crochet, painting and much more. I live with my wonderful boyfriend/raid-leader and our five adorable cats in Winnipeg, Manitoba.

WOTP Moved To A Shiny New Page!

Hey guys!
I’ve moved the blog over to Walk Off The Path – Now a shiny new location with an easy to remember url!

It’s also prettier and has cake! Well no, there’s no cake but it is quite pretty and would love to have you drop by and shoot the breeze on your favorite books and things.

So, come on over!

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Mass Effect Screenie a Day – Goodbye Shepard

Tomorrow is the official day. Tomorrow is when we finally say, in Saren Arterius’ immortal… uhh quite mortal words:

Paragon outcome scene in end battle in Mass Effect

Paragon outcome scene in end battle in Mass Effect

I just want us to take a brief moment to mourn and honor the life and legacy of one of the galaxy’s most famous spectres.

I mean Shepard of course, not Saren. He was a traitor to his people, a murderer, a sociopath, an embodiment of all things that are wrong with the idea of a government agency without oversight or rules. And he bloody well deserved what he got, the bastard.
Huh, so many years and I still hate this guy’s guts. Read Mass Effect: Revelation by Drew Karpyshyn to learn more about this character.

She-Hulk, Storm, Wasp and More – Fan Art Interview w/Ayhotte

Today we take a quick jaunt around some Marvel ladies fanart with an interview with Canadian Ayhotte and a gallery of her smashing gals!

Black Widow by Ayhotte (click to see original)

Black Widow by Ayhotte (click to see original)

Can you tell me a little bit about yourself? Where in Canada are you from? What do you do when you’re not painting?

My name’s Audrey, I grew up in Quebec but went to school and worked in Ottawa for a few years. Drawing is a thing I took a liking to pretty early on, I think it came from watching a lot of animated shows and playing video games. Either way I never thought I could make a job of it until my late teens but hey, it worked out.

 

Spiderwoman by Ayhotte (click to see original)

Spiderwoman by Ayhotte (click to see original)

How big is art in your life, is it something you are doing professionally?

I’m presently freelancing full time so I do get to make art as a living. I enjoy the freedom it gives in some aspects, though it regularly means working long hours, nights and weekends. I wouldn’t hate having more time to put on my personal projects, haha.

 

Maybe we can start with your gorgeous Storm. We’ve seen her iterated in different ways in the comics and in the movies, what do you think about her different representations. Do you have a favorite for example?

Thank you for your kind words about my Storm painting! She’s such an iconic character, she can pull off anything they make her wear and still be recognizable decades later. I think she’d make a potato sack look hot. Personally I love the mohawk look the most. I also love seeing her in civilian/designer clothing, Kevin Wada’s pieces come to mind.

 

Storm by Ayhotte (click to visit original)

Storm by Ayhotte (click to visit original)

You’ve painted a lot of fantastic women from Marvel including your Jane Foster Thor which is to die for. Who is your favorite female character today and has that changed over the years?

My favorite character… If we’re talking favorite character in the Marvel universe I’d have to go with She-Hulk as she’s my eternal crush (and the one I have the most of on my book shelf. I would kill for a laywer/hero tv series starring her). Miss America Chavez would be a close second, she’s the main reason I liked the Young Avengers run she appeared in. I’ve been out of the loop of hero comics in the past couple of years but I hear she got her own series now, I’d love to check that out eventually.

But if we’re talking favorite characters in general then that’s a much tougher question… that has changed so much over the years, and mostly depends on what piece of entertainment I’m presently high on.

 

Marvel or DC or both, where do you stand?

Will go with Marvel for the simple reason that I’ve read and watched way more of it. Nothing against DC, it just kind of happened that way.

You have a super cute piece with Wasp, any feelings on Ant-Man‘s brief look at Wasp and the upcoming Ant-Man And The Wasp movie? Good, bad, bit of both?

Ant-man was a lot of fun despite Wasp getting benched, but I’d definitely be happy to see a sequel with more of her. Heck, I’d prefer to see her get her own movie but I’ve learned not to hope for that much in this department. I did like the costume we had a peek at. It’ll probably get redesigned though, as they always do.

 

Wasp by Ayhotte (click to see original)

Wasp by Ayhotte (click to see original)

So if you were casting a Jen Walters Netflix series…?

Oh dear, I have no idea. I’ve never put much thought into actors and casting, I just tend to cheer or complain after the fact :P. It would be nice to see some news faces. However I do wonder how they’d do her She Hulk form. Full cgi would be expensive, maybe a body builder in front of a green screen? But the fact is there are more possibilities now than ever for that. (Just not a supermodel in green please oh god.)

Oh horror if they cast some no-muscle, tiny thin girl to play Jen! OK, that doesn’t bear thinking on!!

Shulkie by Ayhotte (click to see original)

Shulkie by Ayhotte (click to see original)

 

If we’re talking Marvel Cinematic Universe which female superhero would you like to see get a movie?

I’m kind of excited for the Captain Marvel movie, it seems to be on the back burner though. Either a Kamala Khan or America Chavez movie would be pretty timely nowadays. Also I’d put up with Jeremy Renner for a buddy comedy with Kate Bishop and Hawkguy.

 

Captain Marvel by Ayhotte

Captain Marvel by Ayhotte

True, that movie is still a few years off but at least we get to see Brie Larson play the Captain in the next Avengers movie. Yeay!

Scarlet Witch is one my personal favorites. You drew her in her traditional costume, how do you feel about Elizabeth Olsson’s SW and the look and movement design Joss Whedon imbued the character with?

Haha this is a character I love too so I might be overly critical, but here goes: I thought Wanda’s design in Age of Ultron wasn’t bad. Not really sold on the Civil War look though, maybe I’m just too in love with the red and pink suit. Regarding Olsen, I love her in everything but I wish they had considered keeping in Wanda and Pietro’s Romani heritage. The Avengers as a team doesn’t have that much diversity to play with already.

 

Scarlet Witch by Ayhotte (click to visit original)

Scarlet Witch by Ayhotte (click to visit original)

Jane Foster’s Thor is quickly becoming as iconic a look as Mjolnir itself ever was. Not a light hearted story for sure but what do you think of Jane’s new Valkyrie look?
Where else would you like to see a drastic change in look applied? If you could anything?

I love Jane Foster’s Thor form, impracticalities aside. It’s fun to look at, it’s fun to paint, can’t ask for more.

 

Thor by Ayhotte (click to visit original)

Thor by Ayhotte (click to visit original)

 

Thank you so much for sharing your art and thoughts with us, Audrey! I appreciate being able to share these fabulous portraits with my readers and I hope you’ll find time for lots more fan art in the future!

 

You can see more of Audrey’s art and fan art by visiting her gallery on devianART.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

MindSpace – Oraius V

This week I’ll be going for a more muted color scheme for our weekly space fix. Canadian artist Xiox321 has a big collection of vibrant and fantastical space art which he even offers up in different wallpaper sizes for download. So also with Oraius V planet he’s envisioned here:

Oraius V presentation piece by Xiox321

Oraius V presentation piece by Xiox321

You can get the whole collection of sizes, which go all the way up to 7680×4320, from this link. If you fall in love with his art style they are also up for sale in print format from Curioos!

Oraius V by Xiox321

Oraius V by Xiox321

Why Eden Prime Was Ignored – Mass Effect Screenie

Eden Prime is the first planet you visit in Mass Effect and probably the or onr of the most successful extraterrestrial colonies of humanity. The planet is remarkably suited for human habitation and is of course in large part a farm planet as a result. Though I wonder what the transport cost of food must be in space.

Eden Prime, Mass Effect 1

Eden Prime, Mass Effect 1

It’s located near the Charon mass relay, a name which is itself a diabolical counterpoint to the heavenly naming schemes of the planets in the system.

The agrarian planet is described as a model for sustainable colonization. But it’s located on the doorstep of the Terminus systems, a lawless area of space practically hiving with scum and villainy. So it comes as no surprise to the experienced older races that the farmers on Eden Prime get hit by the Geth whom nobody has seen outside the Veil in centuries.

All of the above is information you can pick up in-game or on the wiki. So here’s my question: Below I’ve marked in green the Terminus Systems to Galactic North, The Perseus Veil and Rannoch where the Geth live/lived, and Eden Prime in the Exodus System.

So how exactly, dear council, is that a colony built on the borders of the Terminus Systems?

the-eden-prime-story

My careless scribbles across a map made by Am-P on deviantART. See below for actual map please.

That’s all I want to know about Eden Prime and why the council couldn’t lift a finger for those poor colonists.

Am-p’s Mass Effect Map

Angel Blue Eyes of Miranda Lawson – ME2 Screenie

Without a doubt, the simultaneously most attractive and competent addition to the Mass Effect character gallery in Mass Effect 2 was Miranda Lawson.

Miranda Lawson , ME2

Miranda Lawson , ME2

The genetically tailored perfect woman who proved by that very nature to be intractable to her self-absorbed shallow millionaire dad’s plans for her. That’s right people, perfect women come with free will, whodathunk?

Miranda Lawson, ME2

Miranda Lawson, ME2

Miranda’s skills have a pretty far reach as she’s the one in charge of the Lazarus project tasked with bringing Shepard back to life, she runs a large information network of her own and in her copious free time she’s a deadly active operative for Cerberus.

Despite all her accomplishments she never seems to feel they are worth as much as anyone else’s because of her origins. Her father would have spared no expense plying those crafted genes with the best schooling money can buy. Miranda’s background story therefore, is a question of nature vs nurture or more specifically a question of talent vs. training.

Miranda Lawson, ME2

Miranda Lawson, ME2

Miranda’s voice actor, Yvonne Strahowski (Chuck, 24, The Handmaid’s Tale!), also imparted some of her looks to the badass Cerberus Operative though sadly not her glorious hair. I suppose as perfection goes even futuristic genetic manipulation can be off base.

Miranda Lawson ME2

Miranda Lawson ME2

Her dry and acerbic commentaries throughout ME2  are always a highlight for me but if you gain her loyalty and bring her on the final mission to have her blow off the Illusive Man to his face and hang up on him is just such a high point of the story.

I think the most important reason people love Miranda is how utterly capable and ruthless she is. Her devotion to practicality certainly speaks to my own preferences.

And there is something so uplifting as a woman to have a character like Miranda in a game. Really makes you feel like women can be more than just the packaging.

Miranda's Ass, ME2

Miranda’s Ass, ME2

>.>

Yes, that was a bit of sarcasm because frankly, the male-gaze camera in ME2 is so over the top with Miranda that I can’t imagine it wasn’t meant as a subtle barb on itself. As is the physical properties of her suit. That has to be bodypaint, anything else makes no sense to me.

 

Harley Quinn, Catwoman, Daenerys – Fan Art Interview w/ Yaşar Vurdem

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Yaşar Vurdem is an illustrator, graphic designer and art student in Kayseri, Turkey. Besides his art, he enjoys science fiction movies and plays League of Legends. I cornered him for an interview so I could learn more about the man behind the heart-throbbing art you’ll see below!

Yaşar Vurdem

Yaşar Vurdem

Most of Yaşar Vurdem’s works displayed below are fan art pieces, because that’s my angle and it’s an area of creative arts that often gets relegated to dusty corners because of the inherent copyright issues. But, and this is usually true with anyone I interview here, Yaşar has so many more original and amazing pieces in his gallery that I really must urge you to treat yourself to a visit in one of them. They’re all linked below.

Red Ridinghood by Yaşar Vurdem (click image to see original)

Red Ridinghood by Yaşar Vurdem (click image to see original)

What else can you tell me about yourself? Where do you want to take your art for example?

I like to work on portraits. I think about writing a book. Which includes my art. About psychology of human and women who reflect our moods. I want to revive people’s inner world (with portraits and creatures).

My book will be like this. I will reflect reality with surreal portraits.

 

Harley Quinn by Yaşar Vurdem

Harley Quinn by Yaşar Vurdem (click image to see original)

Let’s talk about movies and TV. I sense that Margot Robbie‘s Harley Quinn from last year’s DC movie Suicide Squad must have seized your imagination, what is it about that character or actress that caught your interest so?

At first, she is so cute ^^ Margot Robbie… She (Harley Quinn ed.) is crazy… Someone who was very logical before. Her feelings are reflected in her body. We can see her soul mood. Effects of life!

 

Harley Quinn - Suicide Squad by Yaşar Vurdem

Harley Quinn – Suicide Squad by Yaşar Vurdem (click image to see original)

Most of your gallery consists of portraits of women done in a style that seems to blend Giovanni Bragolin with modern feathery Japanese art styles. Where do you take your inspiration from?

I like Japanese art. I often check old paintings and sketches. I’m very inspired by the old masters, Rembrandt for example and I’m really big fan of William-Adolphe Bouguereau‘s works. His colors and lights are just perfect. Really great for understanding human’s nature and skin…

 

Leaves by Yaşar Vurdem

Leaves by Yaşar Vurdem (click to visit original)

 

Marina Nery Portrait by Yaşar Vurdem

Marina Nery Portrait by Yaşar Vurdem

What does it take to get you fired up to do a fan art piece?

My fanart’s are sudden decisions. Unplanned works. I start working on it When I feel I have to do

 

Jhin Deadeye fanart by Yaşar Vurdem

Jhin Deadeye fanart by Yaşar Vurdem (click to see original)

What are you aiming toward as you firm up your individual style?

I’m aiming to improve anatomy and colors of my works. You could say I’m aiming for a line between realism and surrealism.

Gemma Ward by Yaşar Vurdem (click to see original)

Gemma Ward by Yaşar Vurdem (click to see original)

Gemma is here captured in her role as Tamara the mermaid in Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides.

As a counterpoint to for example your Leaves piece or Marina Nery portrait above, your Durotan is so lifelike you almost expect him to blur into movement at any moment. The style here is quite different than the majority of your works. What were your thoughts working on this piece?

Durotan Fanart by Yaşar Vurdem

Durotan Fanart by Yaşar Vurdem

About my durotan portrait… Something beautiful can emerge at a time when you least expect it. This is the best example of it in my opinion. At this work I focused on different brush strokes and textures.

And it certainly shows, the lighting alone is breathtaking!

Game of Thrones caught your interest or certainly your beautiful rendition of Daenerys seems to indicate so. Are you a fan of the series, books or both? Was there anything in the TV series visual style that attracted you in particular?

I’m a fan of the GOT series. I like John Snow too as a series character. But I like to paint women in my art so thats why I go for Daenerys.
I like that how she looks natural.

 

Daenerys Targaryen by Yaşar Vurdem (click to visit original)

Daenerys Targaryen by Yaşar Vurdem (click to visit original)

Your Catwoman piece is also an exception among your other gallery pieces. Crisp and clear lines and the subject is active instead of passive. What were the circumstances that led you to draw her so?

I paint my catwoman in just 3 days. 4-5 hour’s in a day. I aimed at details and subject on this work. Her leather dress caught my attention very much.

I focused on so many details for it. The details were screaming at me like this Hey! Paint us paint us ! 😀

 

Catwoman by Yaşar Vurdem (click to visit original)

Catwoman by Yaşar Vurdem (click to visit original)

So what’s next for you?

 

In my future work, I will continue to focus on portraits and details. I’m planning to add special meaning to them, as I said earlier. 🙂 I’m really glad you like it.

Thank you so much for sharing your art and thoughts with me, Yaşar! I hope we’ll be seeing many decades more of art from you, my friend and I really do hope you write that book, it’ll be spectacular!

Please like and share this post so more people get to see the art style of Yaşar Vurdem. Who knows what sort of art or design gig might lay in wait for a talented young artist somewhere?

Deadpool by Yaşar Vurdem (click to visit original)

Deadpool by Yaşar Vurdem (click to visit original)

You can see more of Yaşar Vurdem’s art on:

deviantART

Twitter

Facebook

Instagram

Behance

Art Station

The Greatest Love Story You Never Knew – Kalros & The Reaper ME3 Screenshots

 

41b-me3-walk-off-the-path

In a war that has thrown the entire galaxy into violent upheaval, they meet across opposite sides of a battle that only one of them will survive.

41c-me3-walk-off-the-path

They were from different worlds. His destiny was writ large across the stars of the galaxy and the eons of time. Hers was forgotten, doomed to wither away with the dust of ancient history. In the middle of the greatest war ever experienced by the sentient species of the Milky Way, they find each other.

She as the last defender of a broken and war torn planet, the last mother of her people. Firey and tempestuous!

41d-me3-walk-off-the-path

He is the stoic conqueror tasked with subjugating and civilizing her barbaric lands.

41a-me3-walk-off-the-path

The clash of their wills will spell the greatest romance time has ever seen.

41g-me3-walk-off-the-path

Their passion will scorch the skin of Tuchanka with the fire of a hundred suns.

41e-me3-walk-off-the-path

The Krogan will sing of their embrace for a thousand years.

41f-me3-walk-off-the-path

But only one of them will survive the battle that fate has forced upon them!

41h-me3-walk-off-the-path
Kalros & The Reaper

 

BWAAAARP!

 

MEA – Liam Kosta Hosts New Weapons & Biotic Training Video

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The Mass Effect Andromeda Initiative site has a new training video up for Pathfinders and this time the topic is weapons and mobility Liam Kosta is hosting it. Because that’s not distracting at all with a cute voice like Gary Carr‘s!

 

liam-kosta

There’s not a lot of new info here but the video is quite pretty and well worth watching. Don’t forget to sign in on the site to get that neat helmet once we complete all the training vids!

Here’s a quick overview of what Liam touches on in the video and some interjected speculation of my own:

weapons-and-biotics-training-01

Ranged Weapons

Arms and armor are designed to be customized multiple times in the field.

As mentioned before in the first Combat Trailer I’ve discussed here there are four main types of guns: Pistols, Shotguns, Assault rifles and Sniper rifles. Also as a reminder from the link above, SMGs are sorted under the category of pistols.

 

weapons-and-biotics-training-02

We’ve had specialized ammo as one way to customize a weapon in Mass Effect before but this time we are hearing about laser shells for shotguns, grenade augmentation for pistols (reminiscent of the Scorpion in ME3?) and electrical conduits which appear to add an electrical beam to the weapon, (presumably as an alt-fire ability?).

Melee Weapons

You’ll need finesse to wield an Asari sword or strength to wield a Krogan hammer.There’s a quick overview of biotics and tech skills, which we have a deeper look at in the Profiles and Favorites training video from yesterday. The imagery here is much sharper than yesterday’s trailer.

weapons-and-biotics-training-03

Jump Jets

We’re shown the hover and side ways dodge augmented by a jump jet. Remember that if you go the route of Adept, your Jump Jet is replaced by a Biotic lift skill.

Go to the official Andromeda Initiative site to watch the Weapons & Biotics Training Video.

Or you can watch it right here, courtesy of Bhageera_Fr who was quickest off the mark to get the video uploaded to youtube.

Maeko Matsuo – The Daily Mass Effect Screenie

Maeko Matsuo is the head of Port Hanshan’s Elanus Risk Control Services security forces. She challenges you when you disembark on Noveria with your squad. Unlike her underling, Kaira Stirling, she is cool even in the face of your undiplomatically pointed guns.

Maeko Matsuo, Port Hanshan, Mass Effect

Maeko Matsuo, Port Hanshan, Mass Effect

She’s an ex-marine and with more than just a touch of Japanese about her name and expressions. This is a lot more human cultural reference than we’re generally given in Mass Effect which focuses more on all the cool aliens rather than the internal differences of the tribes of humanity.

She is voiced by Kim Mae Guest who has done a tremendous amount of video game voice work including Hana Murakami (Zhu’s Hope) also from Mass Effect and Dawn Star from Jade Empire.