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Karsa Orlong

#1 User is offline   llRobinll 

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Posted 06 October 2015 - 07:45 PM

Hi guys, first post here.

For a concepting/previs projected I created some concepts for Karsa Orlong how he first appeared in Deadhouse Gates.
I sculpted him in 3D with Zbrush and then finished the images in Photoshop.
The project is finished but any type of feedback is still very welcome, hope you like it!

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#2 User is offline   Itwæs Nom 

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Posted 06 October 2015 - 08:30 PM

so, I'll start
1. I must admit I wouldnt say its Karsa if you didnt tell me, primarily because this guy looks pretty old. He definitely went through a lot, but that doesnt make him look old in this way. This Guy looks like Karsa's fit grandpa.
2. Also the hair, iirc hes shaved and bald except his plait(is that a suiting word?)
3. Then I would say its his face. Firstly (maybe it wasnt stated yet) he has shattered glass tattoo on his face. Next problem I would say is his face expression, he should look more arrogant and self-centered and badass and 'youre just a little shit to me'.
on a second note
1. You caught him being giant perfectly
2. omg this is actually freaking awesome. He is 3D? can you print him? I belive there are poeple here who would pay for 3D Karsa.

This post has been edited by Charlie Nom: 06 October 2015 - 08:31 PM

"Yeah but then it's endless rain and SAD and everyone compensating by getting endlessly irritatingly high all the time"
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#3 User is offline   Felisin Fatter 

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Posted 07 October 2015 - 02:50 PM

This would be before the slave tattoo, right? So that didn't bother me.
My first response was also 'too old'. He is barely an adult when we meet him and a few years later the claim that he's only 17 gets accepted without question, can't imagine that if he looked like this. I picture him as a huge, muscled, arrogant 17-year-old. So no wrinkles, probably beardless. This picture also looks a bit too, I dunno, thoughtful? Wise? Karsa was a very rash and aggressive boy at this point. I agree it is a really good fit for Karsa's grandfather though :rolleyes:

And it's a beautiful picture, very much a giant. I love all the details, like the ritual scars and the jewelry. And that wooden sword is awesome.
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#4 User is offline   Dolmen 2.0 

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Posted 07 October 2015 - 03:23 PM

All things above considered this is a great piece of work.

I like how the High res feels authentic, all the little bits and pieces really complete the image of savage barbarian Giant.

Sadly it isn't a Karsa I'd agree to. the amount of work put in alone is daunting.

I sir, Salute you for the effort and skill it took to get this looking just so.

Do you have a gallery somewhere where we can find more of your work?
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#5 User is offline   Itwæs Nom 

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Posted 07 October 2015 - 03:49 PM

 Dolmen 2.0, on 07 October 2015 - 03:23 PM, said:

All things above considered this is a great piece of work.

I like how the High res feels authentic, all the little bits and pieces really complete the image of savage barbarian Giant.

Sadly it isn't a Karsa I'd agree to. the amount of work put in alone is daunting.

I sir, Salute you for the effort and skill it took to get this looking just so.

Do you have a gallery somewhere where we can find more of your work?



I found his ArtStation
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#6 User is offline   Puck 

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Posted 07 October 2015 - 04:43 PM

I agree with the above on pretty much all counts.

First off, the image itself is amazing! So much detail and so well done, this is really great! I love it :rolleyes:
The sword looks really cool, too.

On the down side: it is nowhere near Karsa, or any Teblor, actually. It would make a great Imass warrior, though. I recently bought a special issue of Natinal Geographic on Neanderthals and that guy up there looks pretty much exactly like one, and also how I would imagine a living Imass.

As others have already mentioned, Karsa - when he first appears in DG - is said to look like 17, have an "face tattooed like shattered glass" (<- quote from DG) and wears his hair in a braid - though there's been a long-running debate over whether his head is shaved otherwise or whether it's just all his hair pulled back into a braid.

There's also an issue with proportions (which are really well done, btw, just not for a Teblor). The Teblor are giants compared to normal humans, and their anatomy is even different on the inside (four lungs, for example, iirc), and as such their exterior has to accomodate for that. Iirc Karsa is said to be nearly as broad as he is tall, basically huge all around. Different facial structure (more blunt, more angles, etc.), and different head/body ratio (it's 1 to 7 1/2 right now, which is human, as you surely know).

Bottom line is: rename it 'Flesh & blood Imass" and I'll bow in awe, and many other people here probably as well.
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#7 User is offline   Itwæs Nom 

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Posted 07 October 2015 - 04:48 PM

 Puckstein, on 07 October 2015 - 04:43 PM, said:

Bottom line is: rename it 'Flesh & blood Imass" and I'll bow in awe, and many other people here probably as well.



GIANT Flesh and blood Imass
dont forget Imass are even smaller than people, this guy looks pretty big
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#8 User is offline   Puck 

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Posted 07 October 2015 - 04:55 PM

 Charlie Nom, on 07 October 2015 - 04:48 PM, said:

 Puckstein, on 07 October 2015 - 04:43 PM, said:

Bottom line is: rename it 'Flesh & blood Imass" and I'll bow in awe, and many other people here probably as well.



GIANT Flesh and blood Imass
dont forget Imass are even smaller than people, this guy looks pretty big


No, that's not a giant. Did you read my post before the bottom line?

Yes, Imass are shorter than humans. My point is, this guy up there looks much closer to an Imass than a Teblor. I never said it's a perfect rendition of an Imass, but take away a head and it would be, to a t. Also, he's 7 1/2 heads tall, by my count, which is standard human height. A Teblor should be 10, at least, going by the descriptions we get in the books. What makes him look big to you is the big image size and the superb rendition and choice of angle.
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#9 User is offline   Itwæs Nom 

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Posted 07 October 2015 - 05:39 PM

 Puckstein, on 07 October 2015 - 04:55 PM, said:

 Charlie Nom, on 07 October 2015 - 04:48 PM, said:

 Puckstein, on 07 October 2015 - 04:43 PM, said:

Bottom line is: rename it 'Flesh & blood Imass" and I'll bow in awe, and many other people here probably as well.



GIANT Flesh and blood Imass
dont forget Imass are even smaller than people, this guy looks pretty big


No, that's not a giant. Did you read my post before the bottom line?

Yes, Imass are shorter than humans. My point is, this guy up there looks much closer to an Imass than a Teblor. I never said it's a perfect rendition of an Imass, but take away a head and it would be, to a t. Also, he's 7 1/2 heads tall, by my count, which is standard human height. A Teblor should be 10, at least, going by the descriptions we get in the books. What makes him look big to you is the big image size and the superb rendition and choice of angle.


Maybe Toblakais have also bigger heads? No? Ok.

But after cutting his head off, making him smaller than human, putting him next to human and looking at it in small size, he just seems like small giant to me.
(that human is from another of Robins work, hope he wont be mad at me,but its just for comparison)

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This post has been edited by Charlie Nom: 07 October 2015 - 05:41 PM

"Yeah but then it's endless rain and SAD and everyone compensating by getting endlessly irritatingly high all the time"
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#10 User is offline   Puck 

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Posted 07 October 2015 - 06:16 PM

:rolleyes:

Uhm.. Unfortunately 'taking a head off', in artist-speak, means something.. different from what you seem to assume that it means. At which point any further argument ceases to matter. I have made my point clear and will exit the discussion before I start looking for a facepalm-smiley in ernest. Next time, please make sure you don't cut around on other people's artwork, btw, that's not correct etiquette.
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#11 User is offline   Itwæs Nom 

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Posted 07 October 2015 - 06:28 PM

well, uhm, this is embarassing...

gosh...

Im sorry Robin?

I think I'll leave too and just feel ashamed deep under my bed.

feel free to laugh/cry, or whatever you find is suiting reaction for my stupidity, at me.
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#12 User is offline   llRobinll 

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Posted 07 October 2015 - 08:28 PM

thanks for all of the comments guys!

I have to say I completely fogot to say I changed some things (the point of this project was to learn as much as possible - thats why I made him older and added a lot of hair..) but you've spotted all of them.
And i'm probably wrong but I recall reading Karsa to be 80 years old but since Teblor live way longer he's still young for teblor years. And I'm imagining any 80 year old living being to be quite weathered, but you guys are completelly right that he still looks way to old.

And about it resembling an imass, good point. I just pictured the teblor as a pretty primitive race so that's why I added some neadethal characteristics, but I see how it clashes with the imass now you mention it.

@Puckstein: I don't recall reading a teblor is almost as broad as tall but again, I'm probably wrong. But I'd like to mention that making him almost as broad as tall wont make him look like a giant at all, more like a dwarf if anything.

@Charlie Nom: don't worry man, you can get out of your bed, it's all good.

And I don't know if you guys know but I never really got how big teblor actually are, it's quite inconsistent in the books. This is how I image the size compared to humans:

Posted Image





I might make a more accurate version in the future and when I do I'll make sure to ask the advise of you guys!

also, here is the 3D model for those interested

Posted Image
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#13 User is offline   Itwæs Nom 

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Posted 07 October 2015 - 09:07 PM

so Im back, tho still feeling ashamed and sorry

Regarding on how far are you in series, you can find info about races and characters and pretty much everything on Malazan Wiki. But I wouldnt suggest going there until you finished atleast main 10 books because its also full of spoilers.


About their height, there is nothing concrete(is that word a synonym to 'exact', right? cause our english teacher keeps telling us it only means made of concrete but Ive seen it used as I use it now) on wiki, but I think its stated somewhere that average human is as tall as average Teblor's chest is.
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#14 User is offline   Puck 

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Posted 07 October 2015 - 10:06 PM

 llRobinll, on 07 October 2015 - 08:28 PM, said:

And i'm probably wrong but I recall reading Karsa to be 80 years old but since Teblor live way longer he's still young for teblor years. And I'm imagining any 80 year old living being to be quite weathered, but you guys are completelly right that he still looks way to old.


You say it yourself, Teblor live longer. The point in DG is that Karsa looks like 17 years old. A giant 17-year-old, but he passes for 17. Of course, in HoC we find out that he is actually 80, but also that Teblor live longer and mature slower, which boils down to the same thing: he is and looks like he's barely out of his teenager years. Even taking into account what happens between the start of HoC and the Whirlwind Rebellion, he's still a youth.

 llRobinll, on 07 October 2015 - 08:28 PM, said:

@Puckstein: I don't recall reading a teblor is almost as broad as tall but again, I'm probably wrong. But I'd like to mention that making him almost as broad as tall wont make him look like a giant at all, more like a dwarf if anything.


You're right, I had a misconnection in my brain and was thinking of another character. However, the point that the Teblor have a different inner architecture, so to speak, and thus that their outer appearance reflects this still stands. Also, I just did my research, and the Teblor are descended from the Toblakai who are descended from the Thel Akai, who were made of stone, so they are unlikely to look like neanderthals. And in his very first appearance in DG, Karsa is described as being so muscled as to seem wide and as having a flat face.

This is all, of course, not helping much in the aftermath. Uhm, I'm not sure how to put it without coming off as overly preachy, but research should be done before a project, especially if it's - if I understand it correctly - for uni and the point is to learn as much as possible (they go hand in hand). Especially if all it takes is an hour on the internet, and you're still free to cast your findings aside after said hour. That, of course, is not supposed to diminish the work you put into it. It's just that character design is a tricky thing no matter from angle you go at it.

Edit: About the height: Karsa's said to be seven foot tall in DG. Whatever that means.

This post has been edited by Puckstein: 07 October 2015 - 10:07 PM

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#15 User is offline   Andorion 

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Posted 08 October 2015 - 01:49 AM

 Puckstein, on 07 October 2015 - 10:06 PM, said:

 llRobinll, on 07 October 2015 - 08:28 PM, said:

And i'm probably wrong but I recall reading Karsa to be 80 years old but since Teblor live way longer he's still young for teblor years. And I'm imagining any 80 year old living being to be quite weathered, but you guys are completelly right that he still looks way to old.


You say it yourself, Teblor live longer. The point in DG is that Karsa looks like 17 years old. A giant 17-year-old, but he passes for 17. Of course, in HoC we find out that he is actually 80, but also that Teblor live longer and mature slower, which boils down to the same thing: he is and looks like he's barely out of his teenager years. Even taking into account what happens between the start of HoC and the Whirlwind Rebellion, he's still a youth.

 llRobinll, on 07 October 2015 - 08:28 PM, said:

@Puckstein: I don't recall reading a teblor is almost as broad as tall but again, I'm probably wrong. But I'd like to mention that making him almost as broad as tall wont make him look like a giant at all, more like a dwarf if anything.


You're right, I had a misconnection in my brain and was thinking of another character. However, the point that the Teblor have a different inner architecture, so to speak, and thus that their outer appearance reflects this still stands. Also, I just did my research, and the Teblor are descended from the Toblakai who are descended from the Thel Akai, who were made of stone, so they are unlikely to look like neanderthals. And in his very first appearance in DG, Karsa is described as being so muscled as to seem wide and as having a flat face.

This is all, of course, not helping much in the aftermath. Uhm, I'm not sure how to put it without coming off as overly preachy, but research should be done before a project, especially if it's - if I understand it correctly - for uni and the point is to learn as much as possible (they go hand in hand). Especially if all it takes is an hour on the internet, and you're still free to cast your findings aside after said hour. That, of course, is not supposed to diminish the work you put into it. It's just that character design is a tricky thing no matter from angle you go at it.

Edit: About the height: Karsa's said to be seven foot tall in DG. Whatever that means.


You were referring to Mappo when you said as wide as he is tall right?

@Robin, How far have you read? There's a height comparison picture on the wiki that might help, though it is quite spoilery.
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#16 User is offline   Puck 

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Posted 08 October 2015 - 09:15 AM

 Andorion, on 08 October 2015 - 01:49 AM, said:

You were referring to Mappo when you said as wide as he is tall right?


No, Kilmandaros. I reread the prologue she is introduced in recently for unrelated reasons.
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#17 User is offline   Dolmen 2.0 

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Posted 08 October 2015 - 09:47 AM

 Andorion, on 08 October 2015 - 01:49 AM, said:

 Puckstein, on 07 October 2015 - 10:06 PM, said:

 llRobinll, on 07 October 2015 - 08:28 PM, said:

And i'm probably wrong but I recall reading Karsa to be 80 years old but since Teblor live way longer he's still young for teblor years. And I'm imagining any 80 year old living being to be quite weathered, but you guys are completelly right that he still looks way to old.


You say it yourself, Teblor live longer. The point in DG is that Karsa looks like 17 years old. A giant 17-year-old, but he passes for 17. Of course, in HoC we find out that he is actually 80, but also that Teblor live longer and mature slower, which boils down to the same thing: he is and looks like he's barely out of his teenager years. Even taking into account what happens between the start of HoC and the Whirlwind Rebellion, he's still a youth.

 llRobinll, on 07 October 2015 - 08:28 PM, said:

@Puckstein: I don't recall reading a teblor is almost as broad as tall but again, I'm probably wrong. But I'd like to mention that making him almost as broad as tall wont make him look like a giant at all, more like a dwarf if anything.


You're right, I had a misconnection in my brain and was thinking of another character. However, the point that the Teblor have a different inner architecture, so to speak, and thus that their outer appearance reflects this still stands. Also, I just did my research, and the Teblor are descended from the Toblakai who are descended from the Thel Akai, who were made of stone, so they are unlikely to look like neanderthals. And in his very first appearance in DG, Karsa is described as being so muscled as to seem wide and as having a flat face.

This is all, of course, not helping much in the aftermath. Uhm, I'm not sure how to put it without coming off as overly preachy, but research should be done before a project, especially if it's - if I understand it correctly - for uni and the point is to learn as much as possible (they go hand in hand). Especially if all it takes is an hour on the internet, and you're still free to cast your findings aside after said hour. That, of course, is not supposed to diminish the work you put into it. It's just that character design is a tricky thing no matter from angle you go at it.

Edit: About the height: Karsa's said to be seven foot tall in DG. Whatever that means.


You were referring to Mappo when you said as wide as he is tall right?

@Robin, How far have you read? There's a height comparison picture on the wiki that might help, though it is quite spoilery.


Funny how after several years the idea of what Karsa is seems to have shifted around in my head? I did a Karsa once, a long time ago. I have sketched him out some over the years but I never really liked the results. Alot of the conversation here highlights why. that proportion issue, it's damn tricky.

The relative heights and proportions are not really fixed in MBotF but the generalities come from the derivitive genetic makeup. In this case I'd just like to highlight Pucks one comment (should Rob or anyone else ever want to give this another try). The resultant Teblor descends from what looked like Stone Giants. But these guys are recorded as ANCIENT. the bloodline has...fleshed out over the years. so how much is other, how much is same?

I think you'd need to think in Marvel Proportions (i.e. the Thing or The incredible Hulk) when modelling Karsa or any other Teblor, small head, big hands, long arms and thick ankles and feet. Something I'd like to see done in the Meticulous detail present here. It also makes me wonder if Karsa might have calsified skin about his back and shoulders, maybe even exagerated elbows and knees to deal with his physical weight ALA Elephants or rhinos. Its not much you'd be changing, but the sum of the minor tweaks would get you those proportions that seem to elude most of the artist that take a crack at Karsa.

Anyways I just want to give you an idea of the range of Karsas available here on the boards, The take is different for everybody:

http://forum.malazan...y-karsa-orlong/

http://forum.malazan...orlong-concept/

http://forum.malazan...tempt-at-karsa/

http://forum.malazan...l-illustration/
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#18 User is offline   worry 

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Posted 08 October 2015 - 09:48 AM

I'm pretty sure Braven Tooth is also described that way. Greymane too. Maaaaaaaaybe Urko, but that might just be my imagination.
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Posted 11 October 2015 - 03:57 AM

This is some great work! It's not how I pictured Karsa, and I agree with some of the above comments regarding age, tattooing, etc, but it's still awesome in its own right.
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Posted 13 October 2015 - 09:00 AM

Awesome stuff, but not Karsa. I agree with everything stated above and would like to add that the shrivelled ears are attached to his belt, not a necklace, and he wears a vest made out of sea shells :)


Other than that it looks fucking insane!
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