Concept Art by Dan Norton (Art Director)
The images here are a mirror showcase of the brilliant concept art that Dan Norton has posted on his Deviant Art page. We have put them in one place because all too often gems like this don’t survive the creeping years and the rise and fall of image hosting sites.
To see them on Dan’s site you can head to Deviant Art.
Ratilla. Lord of the Rat men! (Dan Norton May 2012)
Rat men concepts 2. This was used to show how to make multiple Rat men with different variations to the clothing. (Dan Norton May 2012)
Thief kids. These are the kids that showed up in episode 22 of the new ThunderCats series. Albo the frog-like guy, Jenyo the chipmunk girl, and Gusto the possum. I know most folks see Jenyo and call her a flying squirrel, but she is a chipmunk with flying squirrel envy. She does have a very stretchy cape that clasps to her ankles and wrists that allows her to fly though. With Albo, I thought it would be funny to have him steal stuff with his tongue and store it in his mouth. For Gusto, I imagined the Mission Impossible scene with Ethan Hunt in the computer room. This translated to a character that really knew how to use his tail to me. So a possum seemed to hit spot. Oh and though it’s never mentioned, the name of the critter in the corner that guarded the jewelry is called a Burglenot. (Dan Norton May 2012)
Albo. Frogs are always fun! (Dan Norton May 2012)
Gusto. So here’s another pic of Gusto. What I really liked about him was his one tooth and the fact his hat covers his eyes completely. I really liked how he turned out. Though 4c hated all of his bags, too much to draw. Sorry guys. (Dan Norton May 2012)
Ponzi concept. Here is the wollo Ponzi from the episode “Recipe for Disaster” of the new ThunderCats. I plucked him from the OS, though he didn’t have a name. There was also an episode back in the day (can’t remember off hand) where Mumm-Ra became a similar looking guy and he rode a grasshopper. This was kind of in that vein, but our spin on it. In the very beginning I had done a rough of a merchant wagon with a caterpillar as the mount. It just felt very fantasy, the story came after the drawing. I pitched it early on in the process, but it didn’t stick. Deep into developing the next 13 eps did we need a filler to give the crew a break. So we revisited the idea. (Dan Norton May 2012)
Lucy Caterpillar concept 1. First official pass on Lucy as a caterpillar. (Dan Norton May 2012)
Lucy Caterpillar concept 2. Here’s the color concept for Lucy. (Dan Norton May 2012)
Sycorax concept. The beast that is Sycorax. I didn’t come up with the name, only the the rough concept. Todd Casey was the one who really locked onto what made the story work with Mumm-Ra transforming into a creature. Fun episode overall! (Dan Norton May 2012 – note that Dan hinted the inspiration was Godzilla)
Butterfly Lucy concept. This is the colored concept of Lucy as a butterfly. I’ll post the drawing version next. (Dan Norton May 2012)
Cheetara concept 2. Another early version of Cheetara. (Dan Norton May 2012)
Caterpillar Cart concept. This was the very first cart I did as part of a brainstorm session in the early development of the ThunderCat series. I thought it would be interesting to have a cart pulled by a creature that was thought of as slow and flip the script on it. The idea of having it being lead by a leaf is what began to push the story forward. (Dan Norton May 2012)
Soul Sever concept. I’m putting this out there to get a little juice flowing for episode 24 of ThunderCats going. This is the was one of the first pieces I did for development on the new series. I was just coming up with villains as a possible one offs go. I had another character from a MMOPG called Soul Sever, and somehow that just stuck to this guy. The story came from this piece. For now he’ll just be a mystery so you’ll have to tune in! (Dan Norton May 2012 – inspiration was Death)
Comolbur. What do you get when you mix a Kimono dragon, a bear, a skunk, a mole and a well… hell if I know. A Comolbur. Yes, this big guy was the monster that was trying to hunt down the Chib-Chibs in episode 18 of ThunderCats. Somehow it was going to have a more traditional head until I thought about breaking form. Trying to think out of the box. I put the eyes above the shoulders and opened up the mouth. I think I was watching the Thing at the time too. Go figure. (Dan Norton May 2012)
Cheetara concept 3. Here are a bunch of mock ups I did for Cheetara’s costume. I was using color to break up the shapes on her form. Just a lot of experimentation. (Dan Norton May 2012)
Necromech concepts 1. These little guys were the rough concepts of the first necromechs for episode 24 of the ThunderCats. The one on the left was never used. The other was the first one on screen. (Dan Norton Jun 2012)
Necromech concepts 2. More concepts for Necromechs… The originators were Necromechers. The offspring were called necromechs. The junkyard creations were the work of Soul Sever trying to make machines that could hold an organic soul. Though they ended up being merely robots powered by his own hand. (Dan Norton Jun 2012)
ThunderCats necromechs. Here are Panthro and Tygra’s concepts as necromechs. We didn’t have the time or ability to get in both characters as mechs, so we only got to see Tygra. So here is a peek at Panthro’s. (Dan Norton Jun 2012)
Necromech concepts 3. Here is the dreaded Necromega… This is what Tygra transformed into when his soul was trapped in the machine. (Dan Norton Jun 2012)
Necromech concepts 4. more of the Necromega. (Dan Norton Jun 2012)
Ravenmen concept 1. Here are the foot soldiers for Vultaire’s army in Avista in ThunderCats. (Dan Norton Jun 2012)
Dog people concepts 1. These were some of the Dog people concepts for background characters in Thunderia and Dog City. The one on the left got used as the first dog that gets roughed up in episode 1. (Dan Norton Jun 2012)
Dobo concept 1. Here is the very first concept of Dobo. Just a rough thumbnail. I was going for that Anubis like silhouette. (Dan Norton Jun 2012)
Vultare. Ah yes, the final classic villain from the old show Vultureman, or as we call him Vultare. I hope I spelt that right, hehehhe. Anyways, he does have wings in our version. That was the major change. I did try to keep most of his original color set too. But I had to make some changes. Dan Norton Jun 2012)
Feliner concepts 1. This is a new take on the Feliner. An airship from the ThunderCats classic that has been made for the new version. I built it in Sketchup. Took about 3 days. I really tried to keep the iconic shapes and feline motif. (Dan Norton Jun 2012)
Feliner concepts 2. This is the interior of the Feliner. I didn’t have the time to work out the details in 3-D, so I had to work within the interior space that I created from the exterior and make the space work in photoshop. This took about 2 or 3 days. I’ve included the rough version I did and the more polished one. (Dan Norton Jun 2012)
Feliner concepts 3. Here are a few of the exterior call outs for the Feliner in our new version of the ThunderCats. (Dan Norton Jun 2012)
Dog City concept 1. This is the first concept for Dog City. The idea was that the dogs would “move-in” to massive termite-like mounds where they would live in packs. The giant veggies on the mounds were going to be like tumble weeds, except they would be giant spiked balls. Once settled into a nook they would sprout a spine and the leafy part would open to draw moisture from the arid landscape. Because the air was so dry, they sail-like leaf would often shred giving it the almost haunted look. With sharp points and round surfaces, it stands out against the rocky terrain and inspires a bit of fear. At least to me it does. (Dan Norton Jun 2013)
Tygra concept 3. Here’s something to flip your wig. I did an alternative costume sets for Tygra early on and spun it again with a different color scheme. Even with the face, we were exploring looks for the show. (Dan Norton Jun 2012)
Berbils homeland 1. Here’s a loose thumbnail of the berbils home. This set was used for the shot of Panthro getting his new arms. (Dan Norton Jun 2012)
Cheetara concept 4. So, this was another grouping of Cheetara costumes I was messing with early on. We had been talking about a more Final Fantasy approach and I did some really heavy armored / layered looks. Since I did this purely digitally, I just grabbed colors to show contrast for the design. Had any of these taken off, it would have been adjusted properly. (Dan Norton Jun 2012)
Jaga concept 1. Here was the first concept of Jaga for the new show ThunderCats. (Dan Norton Jun 2012)
Berbil Village concept 1. (Dan Norton Jun 2012)
Bird Village concept 1. This was a concept piece for the Birdmen Village for show 14 which got trimmed down to a branch due to constrants. A lot of fun to draw. (Dan Norton Jun 2012)
WilyKit costume alts. Like Cheetara’s alternative outfits, I did the same with the kids. Here are Wilykits. I did use one of the alternative as inspiration for one of the thief kids name Jenyo in episode 22. Can you find it? [3rd from left]. (Dan Norton Jun 2012)
WilyKat costume alts. Wilykat also had some costume alts. Again, all digital, very quick and simple. (Dan Norton Jun 2012)
Mutant gun 1. Weapon concept not used for ThunderCats the new animated series. (Dan Norton Feb 2013)
Mutant gun 4. Another weapon concept not used for ThunderCats. (Dan Norton Feb 2013)
Bug boss 1. This is a character concept for ThunderCats. His story was tied into a character known as Hachiman…..Dun Dunn Dunnnnnn… (Dan Norton Feb 2013)
IronO. This is the original concept piece I did for what became known as the Armor of Omens. We liked to affectionately call him Iron O. (Dan Norton Feb 2013 Note Dan said IronO looks like a Silverhawk for a reason)
Safari Joe. In the very beginning of development we had discussions about how humans played a role in our version. Though we didn’t get to establish how things played out. I did do a version of Safari Joe in the initial pass. It’s rough, but you can see where I was going. Some day I’ll tell what was going to happen… (Dan Norton Feb 2013)
- Otto was a character concept for episode 11 but it didn’t play when we started working out the story. So he became a background character in episode 8. Look for him and his look-a-likes in the sword town. (Dan Norton – Feb 2012)
The Duelist concept. For the Duelist, I had the idea that it could be fun for a swordsman to challenge another for ownership of the sword. Much like a pink slip for a car. So to have him carrying the trophies like a peacock jumped out at me. I also thought it would be great for him to size up an opponent and handicap them by choosing a specific sword to counter the right technique. We didn’t get to cover this in the show, but it was behind the character.
When I designed him. I wanted him to stand out amongst the people of the town so he’s more official, almost military. I based him on the idea of a hybrid Lee Van Clef meets Vincent Price as a muppet. I figured he’s more of a indigenous species of third earth. (Dan Norton Mar 2012)
The Duelist concept 2. Here is the first colored version, different from the final on the show. He felt a bit circus ringleader, so I made some adjustments. (Dan Norton Mar 2012)
WilyKit and WilyKat concept 1. So here I we were still playing with the look of the kids for the show. I was going for a 5-6 year old vibe. (Dan Norton Mar 2012)
Panthro concept 2. We explored the idea of Panthro being older as if he’d been missing for a very long time in the very beginning. I gave him monk beads as if he found some sort of peace within the savage world he was surviving in and tried to really separate him from other Thunderians by making him look a bit more tribal. (Dan Norton Mar 2012)
Panthro concept 1. A few different spins on Panthro. One includes an iron collar and another version of what I posted earlier. These were all done in photoshop as thumbnails. (Dan Norton Mar 2012)
Snarf Roughs 2. Another Snarf. He looked to much like an old man, so we went more animal like so we didn’t repeat the nursemaid idea. (Dan Norton Mar 2012)
Tygus concept 1. This was the counterpart for Tygra in Episode 7. The best pilot in Mumm-Ra’s fleet. Giving him a mustache because of the Star Trek episode where their counter parts had facial hair. Loved that. (Dan Norton Mar 2012)
Another Group Shot. Here is another rough group shot just to explore scale and direction. I have a few others like this I might post later. (Dan Norton Mar 2012)
Claudus and Lion-O concepts. Here are some head shots. Exploring something a bit more serious and intense. (Dan Norton Mar 2012)
Panthera concept 2. Colored concept of Panthera. (Dan Norton Mar 2012)
Kaynar Concept art. So here is the concept art I did of Kaynar. I actually had to add the polearm in the last minute for presentation, so the hands aren’t meant to be holding the weapon. You can see the original on the right. The danger of Kaynar design wise was that he looked to close to many other werewolf type characters if you look at his silhouette. So I added the horn on the shoulder to break him out of the box. This also represents his predatorial nature to hunt larger animals. (Dan Norton Mar 2012)
The Judge. This guy is the one who passes judgement over Addicus during his execution. The idea was based off a woodpecker. (Dan Norton Mar 2012)
Lizard Trackers/ Soldiers concepts. These were some really early Lizard soldier concepts. These were too far into the Sci Fi element and didn’t give room for growth. Besides that they were way to complicated. I like to think of concept art like a haircut, you can alway cut it off, but it takes a lot more to put it back on. (Dan Norton Mar 2012)
Lizard Transport concept. In episode 14 we revealed the new Lizard cruiser. The idea behind the concept was to use an alligator head for the structure to keep in the theme of the design. You’ll see an array of attachable weapons for the wings and front gunner. (Dan Norton Mar 2012)
Captain Toonar. These were some of the original concepts for Captain Toonar. I had put a bunch of spines from the sand creature in his face which would not be removable like a bullet to close to the brain. I wanted him to be in constant pain. Disfigured by the creature. We just couldn’t show this level of gore, not only because of the imagery but also the complication of art. We settled on the missing leg and scars. (Dan Norton Mar 2012)
Mumm-Ra as a Bird. Here is Mumm-Ra in his bird form. I gave him the long tail feathers to break him away from a standard Raven. But it was in the OS show. (Dan Norton Mar 2012)
Sci Fi guns. Hey guys, I thought I’d show you how I sometimes take a pass at creating new weapons to draw. Here I’ve taken a photo of several real guns. I simply chop them up into pieces, copy and paste, stretch and distort until I find a good composition. Then I draw it off to the side. It always helps to find something believable and familiar to base you idea on. It will really lend credibility to the functionality of the concept. These in particular were used to give my team some ideas for the weaponry of the lizard men for ThunderCats. (Dan Norton Mar 2012)
Thunderian Guard. Here are some of the soldier concepts for the Thunderian Guard. The one to the right was going to be the special forces of the group, we just had too many characters that one point and had to scale back. (Dan Norton Apr 2012)
Tiger women. Here are a few of the female villagers from the Tiger Clan from episode 17 of the new ThunderCats series. (Dan Norton Apr 2012)
The Queen. Here is Lion-O’s mom. She’s featured in episode 17 “Native Son”. We had a rough name, Leona. But it was never spoken in the show. And I don’t know that we had it cleared through legal. (Dan Norton Apr 2012)
Kid Tygra. These were the child versions of Tygra I did for “Native Son” in ThunderCats. We beefed up the eyes on the baby version for the final look. (Dan Norton Apr 2012)
Father and Son. This Father and Son were going to be in episode 8 of ThunderCats “Duelist and the Drifter” but got taken out. The scene was to illustrate what kind of bad guy the Duelist really was. After the Father loses his sword and is beaten to bad to go on, the kid picked up his sword and charges at the Duelist. Sadly the kid gets killed. So you see why we cut it out. I didn’t want to lose the design so they were designated background characters. Sadder still is the kid didn’t get used. (Dan Norton Apr 2012)
Tiger Clan rough colors. So this is a rough color sample of the Tiger Clan based on the original designs I did. I tried to keep with Tygra’s theme colors with some variations. I did two versions of the same female cause I liked her design and I just wanted to try some things. (Dan Norton Apr 2012)
Dobo. Meet Dobo, He’s the Pit Master and legend among the Jackals. You’ll see him in the newest episode of ThunderCats “The Pit”. (Dan Norton Apr 2012)
Pumyra new design. Here is the new concept art for Pumyra for ThunderCats. I made some changes to her hair because it felt to 50’s earth-like. But I tried to save as much as possible. There is a fold out crossbow on the reverse of her forearm band, but you’ll have to wait to see it. (Dan Norton Apr 2012)
Dog Gladiators. These Dog men are gladiators of the Pit. What I was illustrating was how to assemble background characters with different materials. There is a mix of Tribal and machine parts going on in the outfits. (Dan Norton Apr 2012)
Pumyra concept. Here is the overall view of the concept for the show. (Dan Norton Apr 2012)
Tygra concept 2. This was the first action pose based on what we were leaning towards as the final outfit. As you may know… Things changed. (Dan Norton Apr 2012)
The Summoner. This character will never see the light of day for the new ThunderCats show unless you find her in the background. But I had a storyline for her all set. We just used to much of it for other stories. I was thinking she was a bit of a forest creature who could summon animal spirits from other dimensions by changing the combo on her wrist tumblers. Oh well….. Fun to just draw her. (Dan Norton Apr 2012)
Lizard Bike. So this is the Lizard Bike featured in episodes 12 and 13 of the ThunderCats. I can’t tell you just how much trouble this vehicle was. We had so many versions of it. In the end, this is what I put down. (Dan Norton Apr 2012)
The Petlars concepts. Here are a few of the ideas I threw down for the look of the petlars. The older looking version stuck, the others were a bit to complicated. (Dan Norton Apr 2012)
ThunderCats concept for issue 0. These drawings were from my old pitch from 2000. I actually did them in the end of 99 or so. I was trying to experiment with markers and jelly pens. I noticed a few folks asking about Bengalli, hope this makes some happy. (Dan Norton Apr 2012)
Panthro concept 3. Here is a head shot I did of Panthro in 2000 with markers for my pitch to Wildstorm/WB. Just more memories…. (Dan Norton Apr 2012)
Fishmen Crew concepts. Here are some of the crew of episode 3 of the new ThunderCats series. In “Ramlak Rising” we saw these guys in the background of Toonar’s ship. I have a first mate and chef I’ll post later. (Dan Norton Apr 2012)
Zyrock. This is a character you’ll never see in an episode of TCats, but he was part of a brainstorm session I had for a story. I was dippin’ into a Western like bit and the character Zyrock was inspired by Native Americans. He would have been a scout for a grazer tribe that the TCats would have meet up with. Who knows, maybe we’ll see him the background somewhere…. Don’t know where though. (Dan Norton Apr 2012)
Tygra gun concept group. This was a shotgun approach to figuring out a design for Tygra’s gun. I tried a variety of looks from Star Trek phasers to steam punk motifs. If you notice in the bottom, right about center. Was where we settled for the look. Was going to color them too, just ran out of time. That bullet train never stops…. (Dan Norton Apr 2012)
the Cell. Hey guys, this is an example of an overview I would do for the storyboard artists to provide direction through a scene visually. I’d try to illustrate not only what was in the space but also let other background artists know what to think about while drawing similar spaces. That way there was clear direction of the type of materials or props that would be used in the scene. (Dan Norton Apr 2012)
Tookit concept. “If it’s missing, he probably took-it”. Tookit, master of thieves, is one of the concepts I got to bring to the table with the show. It sparked from a conversation about what super power would you want, I said the power of convenience. Basically the ability to get what you want through power of circumstance without knowing you need what you want until you have it. On a personal tip, I tend to take things and leave them in strange places (like a screwdriver) and unknowingly require the use of those objects sometime later and conveniently find them lying around. I gave this power a name, Kleptovoyance. This means to be compelled to steal things that would have a purpose but not know what for until the situation presented itself. Ultimately the effect is for the greater good. Still lost? Me too…. Anyways, Tookit’s first appearance is in episode 19 of the new ThunderCats. (Dan Norton Apr 2012)
Character design notes. nomad55 was cool enough to make a ThunderCats character of his own. I’d just like to take a few minutes to show how I come up with character designs based off of the guy nomad55 did. Check his site to see what he did! This really just shows my process. What to look for, what techniques one could use. (Dan Norton giving notes to a fellow Deviant Artist based on his own character. Not used in the show).
Bird men concepts. For episode 14 of ThunderCats I had to lay down some concepts for the bird nation. Here are some of those efforts. The taller one was the executioner who cut the rope Addicus was hanging from. Of course he was wearing a hood. (Dan Norton May 2012)
Bird men concepts 2. This was going to be the judge in episode 14 of the new ThunderCats series but the character didn’t carry the weight of an authoritative figure. She may show up somewhere…. Don’t know where. (Dan Norton May 2012)
Chib-Chib family. The Chib-Chibs from episode 18 “Survival of the fittest”. I’ll post the father at some point. I had fun making these guys. I took the head of a parakeet, the ears of a rabbit and the body of a deer and added the tail of a ….. well, I don’t know what. But it somehow made sense at the time. I wanted the body to be long and sleek so that it could reach out of the way food much like a giraffe as well. (Dan Norton May 2012)
WilyKit and WilyKat’s parents concept. So here are the concepts for the Wily twins. I initially gave a tool belt to the father, but the tools looked a little to modern. The mom was a dangerously close to looking like a waitress at a diner but with some color adjustments, she turned out. (Dan Norton May 2012)
Ratar-O. You dirty Rat! I tried to stay close to the original as much as possible here. You’ll see that between him and Ratilla, I kept Ratar-O a bit fatter to illustrates how he is a bit softer and weaker than his ancestor. Living off the hard work of what has come before. (Dan Norton May 2012)
Ratar-O concept. Here is the basic line art for Ratar-O from the new series ThunderCats. (Dan Norton May 2012)
Mordax. This is Mordax, Ratar-O’s right hand. He’s actually a white mouse who wants desperately to be a rat. In the end, he turns his back on his ambitions as well as his master. (Dan Norton May 2012)
Mordax concept. You’ll see some of the design notes for the show here. (Dan Norton May 2012)
Rat men concepts. These were some of the basic rat men concepts. I was trying to show how they stood and differences in the stature. I also wanted to show where their waist line was and facial gestures. (Dan Norton May 2012)
Ratilla concept. The ancestor of Ratar-O! He was the Conan the Barbarian of Rat men. Brutal and Merciless. As you can see in the upper corner, he’s much bigger and more muscular then Ratar-O. (Dan Norton May 2012)
Addicus and Slithe – Here are the line versions of Addicus and Slithe. Download it and try coloring it yourself. I’d love to see what you do with it! (Dan Norton Feb 2012)
Konqedor – This was the rough idea of the Konqedor as we we’re tooling around with ideas for bad guys in the very beginning. I’d put some flats on the character just to show color breaks. Ended up being close to the final color. The idea at first was to make a twin barrel shotgun like muzzle, so the blade would have sat in-between the barrels. But it was just extra mileage for the animators, so I took off the curve and made it a single barrel musket sword. (Dan Norton Feb 2012)
Thunderian Mount. This was the concept for the Thunderian Mount in ThunderCats. They were used in the first two episodes. (Dan Norton Feb 2012)
More action poses. These in particular are for WilyKat of the new ThunderCat series.
Lizardmech concept 1. This is a concept for the Lizard Mechs for ThunderCats that I did. I had an incredible Mech designer on the show named Karl Oustland as well. He really tore it up.
Swordtown Creatures. These were the concepts of the inhabitants of the swordtown in Episode 8 of ThunderCats. I did a quick flat pass on the color to give the colorist an understanding of what I was looking for. It also helps to define the designs.
Promotional Art. This was the rough layout of the poster for the very first image released to the public for ThunderCats. (Dan Norton)
Snarf Roughs. These are some roughs I did for snarfs new look. We tried a bunch of things. Old, young, more cat like, more dragon like… Just some fun stuff.
Lizardmech concept 2. Here are some more concept pieces for the lizardmen mechs. These we’re just waaaaay to detailed to either build in 3-D or draw by hand… Oh well, fun drawing them anyways.
The race. Here is a rough of the race scene in Episode 10 of ThunderCats. This was to illustrate the kinda feel of the bikes and Thunder Tank passing through the canyons. Just a quickie!
Slithe 2000. Here is an old Slithe I did for my original pitch for Wildstorm back in 2000. (Dan Norton)
Grune the Destroyer Concept. This was one of the first concept pieces for Grune the Destroyer for the new ThunderCats show. (Dan Norton Mar 2012). Well, I tried to assign a theme or shape to every race and character. If you notice the ThunderCats have a lot of round circles on their costumes and Mumm-Ra’s technology has primarily triangles or sharp edges. With Grune being a ThunderCat working for Mumm-Ra, I tried to incorporate a mix of circles and triangular/ pointy shapes to show how he’s apart of both worlds now. We also moved away from the silvers from the old show because many of our color palettes for the backgrounds started at a 50% gray value, so he would have gotten lost. The gold accentuates the brown base and pops him out of most backgrounds. The purple in his weapon shows it was constructed by Mumm-Ra since that’s his color scheme.
Lizard slave 1. Concept for one of the lizards enslaved by the Tcats. Episode 1. re: Gollum similarity: Wink wink… that was the point! Being Rankin Bass produced the animated version and also did the original ThunderCats, I tried to pull ref that brought back that sensibility.
Lizard slave 2. Another Lizard slave from episode 1. (Dan Norton Mar 2012)
Snipps Action poses. This is how I broke down the action pattern for Snipps from episode 11 on the new ThunderCats show. (Dan Norton Mar 2012)
Snipps Action poses. This is how I broke down the action pattern for Snipps from episode 11 on the new ThunderCats show. (Dan Norton Mar 2012)
Alley Cats 1. These are the concepts of the alley cats that attack Lion-O in the first act of episode 1 of the new ThunderCats cartoon. Ethan Spaulding did a rough I worked off of. Ethan’s awesome! (Dan Norton Mar 2012)
Alley Cats 2. The other Alley Cats for the show.
The Gladiators. Here are the Cat Gladiators for the arena from Episode 1 of the new ThunderCat series. (Dan Norton Mar 2012)
ZIGG concept 1. This is one of the action patterns for Zigg of the new ThunderCats. He appeared in episode 11. (Dan Norton Mar 2012)
Berbils transformation. For the new Berbils, I wanted to update them in a way that would surprise the old fans and also ease the burden of the animators for the episode. So I came up with this transformation/ movement. (Dan Norton Mar 2012)
Lynxo concept. This was the new concept for Lynxo in the new ThunderCats cartoon. He appeared veeeery briefly in episode 2 before the Lizard Army attacked. (Dan Norton Mar 2012)
ThunderCats Concept art 4. Early on for the series development, we tried a variety of looks. These are a few examples of the manga versions and a more illustrative take. You’ll also notice the very young child faces of Kat at the bottom. We we’re exploring an age of 5 to 6 years old. (Dan Norton Mar 2012)
ThunderCats Concept art 5. Here is the very first rough group shot of the ThunderCats new series. I had done some individual roughs and wanted to show the contrast of their scale for presentation. You’ll notice that Panthro’s outfit is drastically different, WilyKit is a much older teenager and Tygra’s gear is different too. (Dan Norton Mar 2012)
ThunderCats Concept art 6. Here is a modified group shot based on the first pass. I’ve added color to this one, changed Panthro’s outfit and shrank WilyKit. I’m posting all this art by the way to get the word out on the show. We really need word of mouth advertising since we’re not seeing much anywhere else. May 24th 9:30am! That’s a Saturday, so break out your cereal boxes and blankets and park it in front of the Mother Box. (Dan Norton Mar 2012)
Cheetara concept 1. This was a blend of the more anime style with what would become Cheetara’s final costume..
Jorma the merchant. This was the Dog merchant Lion-O meets with to find “technology” to tinker with. I was really happy with him. Used an Irish Setter as the inspiration.
The Drifter concepts 1. These were the first concepts for the Drifter. I chose a rabbit for the character not only for the commonality of the animal to relay an everyman approach. But it was a bit of a shout out to the WB’s Bugs Bunny. As far as his “Drifting”, I thought what would happen if you took away a man’s hopes and dreams. With absolutely no will, the wind could blow you in any direction. It all went from there… By the way, he was almost a mouse. (Dan Norton Mar 2012)
Final Drifter. This was the final result for the Drifter. (Dan Norton Mar 2012)
Addicus Kaynar action poses. Here are some more action poses for our new Villians for ThunderCats this season. There are a few hero poses sprinkled in the mix as well. This just shows how I approach drawing in general. (Dan Norton Mar 2012)
Lizard Tracker Kask concept 1. For episode 4, I had a trio of lizard trackers to design. This is one of them. Kask’s design was essentially the same as Lizard Slave 1. I just drew on top of him to save time and economize the design bandwidth for the animators. He was going to have 6 short swords, but again, had to think of the line mileage. (Dan Norton Mar 2012)
Lizard Tracker Khamai concept 1. I was going for a mix of lizard types here almost thinking this would be the aquatic tracker but as it turns out, Khamai became more of the chameleon. So in the finished version, his fingers and toes look more like the chameleon. The rest pretty much remained the same. (Dan Norton Mar 2012)
Shen concept 1. For episode 7 of ThunderCats I had to design the first of the Dog people we’ve seen in the series so far. I was going for a cross of a pit bull and a weimaraner. (Dan Norton Mar 2012)
Giantors concept. Based on the OS ThunderCats villain, the Giantor is back. I tried to keep it close to the old version with a bit of flare. (Dan Norton Mar 2012)
Panthera concept 1. Here was my go for Leo’s girlfriend and fellow mutinous, Panthera. Since we didn’t see all the team back in the real world this episode, we worked in counterparts to some of the main cast. One thing I was insistent on was making Panthera much taller than Leo. I wanted to show he wasn’t intimidated by a strong woman and brake convention on another male domination fantasy. No damsel in distress here.. (Dan Norton Mar 2012)
Lizard Tracker concept Sauro 1. This was going to be the body type for the third Lizard Tracker of episode 4. But as it went on, Takahiro Tanaka had a great design in the end and we went with his instead. This guy got a little bland. I’ll post the final version with his costume later. (Dan Norton Mar 2012)
Addicus and Slithe – This is basically what I’d pass over to the incredible Takahiro Tanaka at 4c to put his spin on for final production. (Dan Norton Feb 2012)
Storm Charger. This is Mumm-Ra’s vehicle called the “Storm Charger”. But unofficially, we called it the Mumm-Ride as a joke. Somehow we all grew to like the name and used it internally during production. In this process, I used these drawings to be my template to build it in Sketchup. I did some quick distortion views to see how it stretched. The lines on the side became a loose orthographic for height.