Cover artwork for In Flames “Battles” special EMP edition

Recently I was comissioned to create an artwork for an EMP exclusive special edition box for the release of the brandnew In Flames album: Battles.

I started with this simple thumbnail and we decided to go with this one.

Next step was a rough mockup in Photoshop to represent the main elements:

The basis for this artwork is a traditional drawing and an acrylic underpainting:

First acrylic color layer:

Second color layer:

I scanned the traditional image and finished the artwork digitally:

In Flames Battles cover artwork

That was my finished result.

For the final box cover art the art direction department edited it and turned it into this:

You can order this special edition box at the EMP Merchandise Online Store:

Blind Guardian Tour Shirts 2016

This year I have once more had the pleasure of creating art for one of my favourite bands, Blind Guardian. I am always excited when the band approaches me to talk about artworks related to the music of Blind Guardian. These new paintings are linked to their latest album Beyond the Red Mirror. I would like to use the opportunity to share the new artworks with you.

If you are interested you can order the shirts from EMP. The pictures of the T-shirts below are linked to the shop.



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Working with the band is a real pleasure because they know exactly what they want and understand how the creation of art works. Working with them is both challenging and gratifying.



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Thanks for taking the time to view this post. It means a lot to me.

“Companions at the Forge”- My assignment during my Smart School Mentorship Lessons

This artwork was one of my assignments during the mentorship with Donato Giancola at the Smart School Spring Semester 2016. The lessons have been interesting and inspiring and I learned a lot. Thanks to the feedback of my mentor Donato and my fellow students I was able to go beyond my boundaries. It was fun to learn online together with students from all over the world. I’ll miss our weekly online meetings. Thank you to Donato and the Smart School Team for this instructive semester.

This is my progress of the painting during the thirteen weeks of the mentorship.

My initial idea: A dwarf forging an object with the help of a dragon.


Followed by thumbnails to play with the idea and get a view from different angles


The thumbnail in the lower right corner was my favourite. The next step was this rough drawing


In my sketchbook I continued playing with the idea and I came up with this rough drawing which I liked because it showed the companions working even closer.


Donato recommended to turn the viewer’s angle to make the composition more interesting. It was fascinating to see how much better this angle worked.


Then I introduced color…


…which was a little bit too early although I enjoyed to play with color ideas. The advice from my mentor at this point was to work on the anatomy first and shoot reference material. Most of the time I am the only model available and I had to work around the dragon with one of my softtoys. It worked well for me to get an idea of the lighting.



During this workshop I developed a new awareness of what fascinating objects hands are. To get rid of the practice of drawing linked sausages like in the drawing above I practised with Anatomy Lessons of the Great Masters to refine my hand drawing skills. Even in quick studies I try to avoid to draw the hands in the abstract form of cylinders and be aware of the overlapping forms which are most interesting.

I did some more detailed shots of the hand with the gestures I needed for this painting. These are the next steps: The linedrawing with acrylic and the subsequent first layer of acrylic color.



Ready to start with the oil painting.



The final artwork with a more advanced lighting and fire effect. It was an amazing journey to develop this painting.


Thanks for reading! If you have any comments or questions, please use the comment section below.

Love and Passion cover artwork for Felix Olschewski

It was my great pleasure to create the cover artwork for Felix Olschewski’s brandnew album Love&Passion. Although Felix’ vision for the cover was very specific he gave me a lot of freedom in terms of style and composition of the artwork. Being one of the first people to hear the full album I let the songs affect me and this is the outcome when the music shows through in my artwork.

The final artwork:


The first scribbles for Felix’ consideration:



Studying the movement and the anatomy of wolfes with drawings was necessary to get the right feeling for the pose of the wolf



The final pose for the wolf from my sketchbook. From there I continued with digital painting and did a collage of traditional watercolor effects that I’ve scanned combined with digital painting.


Check out Felix Olschewski’s website for all details considering his great piece of art.

AC/DC Shirt Design – My dreams come true

What could be better than seeing your favourite band (AC/DC, who else?) live, screaming, jumping and rocking with the crowd for two hours?

Two weeks ago I could not imagine what the answer might be. But now I am very happy and utterly excited to announce, that two of my AC/DC T-Shirt artwork designs got approved and are available immediately and exclusively from EMP at the EMP Online shop. The pictures below are linked to the shop. There you can have a closer look at the shirts if you like.

These are some of my dreams as an artist come true. Thanks to everyone involved who made this possible.

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Tourshirts on the road

After designing two tourshirts for the Blind Guardian Tour 2015 it was great to see them in Düsseldorf on the merchandise booth and even more exiting worn by Blind Guardian Fans. After a few years of working for the band it is nice to see my artworks from the past years “on display” in the crowd. The show was excellent and I enjoyed singing some of my favourite songs very loudly :).

This is the new “The Grail will Break the Final Seal”-Shirt available at the merchandise booth:



And this is a happy artist 🙂





The Blind Guardian Tour 2015 is coming….

…and I am very happy to present the official tourshirt that I have created. It has been a great pleasure to create this artwork based on the stories of the “Beyond the Red Mirror”-Album. This Shirt is available at the EMP Webstore. Dear Blind Guardian Fans, enjoy the concerts! I am very much  looking forward to see the band live in Dusseldorf. See you in the front row \m/!

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If you love to wear Blind Guardian shirts or want to change shirts during the concert for the songs that unite Blind Guardian fans in an impressive choir have a look at the “Bard’s Song”- and the “Valhalla” shirt that I created a while ago listening to those songs. These are available at the EMP Webstore as well.

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Never a day without a line

This is my favourite drawing of last night’s figure drawing session. Although I know there are some anatomy issues with this drawing I don’t care because I love the drawing. It is my art and it was a pleasure to draw it. I almost gave up at the first few lines but then I carried it through and was rewarded with a good artwork.


One more drawing on toned paper from this session.