Ze Liu: Science Fiction and Fantasy Art Illustrator

By Cassie Rief in Featured Artists > Other Mediums

One thing is immediately clear about artist, illustrator and concept designer Ze Liu: he’s imaginative.

You can see it instantly. . . his work is larger than life and painstakingly intricate; his fantasy illustrations are truly fantastical and made for the big screen (as well as sci-fi games) and the cherry on the top is Ze’s wry sense of humor. He begins his blog introduction with the following sentences:

“Heya, you found my blog! Have a cookie.”

So let’s see what else this Toronto-based artist has to offer. :)

Below, light streams through a heavy mist, briefly casting rays upon an otherwise gloomy kingdom cloaked in darkness. This far-off realm is heavily protected by high-arching mountain peaks and jagged, rocky hills.

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There are multiple tones making up this illustration—from the black mountains in the foreground that swallow up any semblance of light to the whisper of large crags in the distance, and every tinge of sepia in between. A winding river with several waterfalls offers both a mode of transportation and the precious resource of water to residents.

The color values of this illustration tend to be dark, yet I can see a peaceful element in the scene, too. . . as if there are villagers somewhere, just being stirred awake in the faint light of morning.

Zooming far into the future with this next illustration, I can’t help but see something chic and sophisticated about this metal-swathed mysterious figure.

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A dulled, charcoal-colored background makes her “pop” and brings to life her free-spirited graceful movements, which, by the swing of her hair, appear to be quick-paced. The elaborate angles and cutouts in the metal armor are elevated to fine art by Ze’s careful shadowing—we see the light gleam off the top of her armor, while the metal sheathing her midsection is matte with shadow. It’s all beautifully orchestrated and brilliantly done.

Lastly, Ze has created a kingdom with heavy, sturdy and ancient architecture, the better to withstand the tulmutuous energy of a moon-like sphere, shrouded in swirling clouds just off the horizon.

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The clouds are enormous, always threatening to swallow up the realm, not unlike waves building up in a raging sea. At the edge of an enormous deck stands a man, miniscule in comparison with the wonders of the universe he beholds.

Ze comically says, “On my blog, I post my doodles, illustrations, art tutorials, inspirational images, and occasionally inane ramblings and murder confessions.” :) But even if you’re not a policeman with a warrant for his arrest, be sure to head out to Ze’s website to view more of his amazing fantasy art and science fiction landscapes.


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