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Thread: Early Castle Grayskull concept art

  1. #1
    Color'licious! JVS3's Avatar
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    Early Castle Grayskull concept art

    Rebecca Taylor, artist and wife to MOTU designer Mark Taylor, has posted a look at very early Castle Grayskull concept art!
    Click here to follow her on Instagram.

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  2. #2
    Heroic Warrior Ivan's Avatar
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    Very very interesting. I love the more oriental elements in the towers. Stylistically looks very different from the final version. It's almost like a cross between 1001 night and a pirate fortress. Very imaginative. Hey Super 7, is it time for a Castle Grayskull 2.0?

  3. #3
    Heroic Warrior jonathan182's Avatar
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    I'm not sure about the more ornate design of the top, but I do like the expanded top area and I LOVE the asymmetry of the skull, very organic.

  4. #4
    Grew up on a horse Baena's Avatar
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    It’s cool to see the influences on this piece as it evolved into what it became.
    The dome, the ledge, the skull itself, hints of symbols and such.

    I love it!
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  5. #5
    Heroic Warrior Lich Leech's Avatar
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    Love this. It has the torches at the side of the entrance like the version from The Art of He-Man. The towers are ornate with a lot of different styles, but they still tilt outward like the prototype castle. So cool!!!

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    Heroic Warrior rankinman's Avatar
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    Interesting, would like to see it colored. That toy woulda been huge.

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    Heroic Warrior DC_WARLORD's Avatar
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    Hmmm....pretty cool. I like the way the skull is actually a little lopsided.

    It's always neat to see early concept art.
    Odd Man Out

  9. #9
    Master of Physics VZX's Avatar
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    This looks absolutely great. He was such a good artist. I love the rope ladder to the ledge, the balconies, the torches on either side of the entrance. I'm not crazy about the lop-sided look of it, though, so I am glad that wasn't used. But, this is a great look for Grayskull, and more so since it is the first version.
    "Everything comes to he who waits."

  10. #10
    Ancient Master of Arts AXOR's Avatar
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    I love it, and I hope to find the chance to draw this version in some future piece

  11. #11
    Heroic Warrior Ivan's Avatar
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    What I find really interesting is the heroic falcon insignia on top of the scull. We know from other sources that Grayskull was not always thought of as the fortress of heroic warriors. It was imagined as the seat of power that belongs to whoever owns it (hence the double flag, or the original Grayskull box art). Some MOTU creators have said they thought it was outright evil, due to the skull.

    This falcon logo, combined with the overall look and feel of the top part – nice looking, ornate, very livable castle – implies that is was the seat of heroic warriors. I am curious where exactly this sketch fits in the process, if it was done post box art, or maybe it was an alternate version...

  12. #12
    Court Magician Super Amigo's Avatar
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    Incredible how you can clearly see the general lines, colors, curves in the early MOTU stickers as well as her amazing Art Nouveau/Psychedelic paintings.

    What an amazing artist Rebecca Taylor is!

    What a beautiful creative couple!

    Thank you for sharing your work with all of us.

    I wish there was a completely original "by Mark Taylor" reproduction of the prototype castle, without any elements from the final toy, just the Taylor's original creation, complete with mat. I don't mind the scale or the play elements, just the original sculpture.
    Last edited by Super Amigo; October 17, 2017 at 07:20pm.

  13. #13
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    Wow, very cool!
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  14. #14
    Master of fear Drunken Fist's Avatar
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    Very interesting! There are definitely some elements I really like, particularly the asymmetry in the skull. It's very cool how things like this from the early conceptual days of MOTU continue to surface after so much time has passed!

  15. #15
    Heroic Warrior Lich Leech's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Super Amigo View Post
    I wish there was a completely original "by Mark Taylor" reproduction of the prototype castle, without any elements from the final toy, just the Taylor's original creation, complete with mat. I don't mind the scale or the play elements, just the original sculpture.
    Oh yes, that's probably my #1 MOTU-related wish!

  16. #16
    Heroic Warrior
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    I like it. For some reason I automatically saw a Disney castle influence in this drawing.
    Vaults of Grayskull - www.vaultsofgrayskull.co.uk

  17. #17
    Court Magician Super Amigo's Avatar
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    I also love how this castle is still conceived as an island or stone formation that rises above a lake.

    Just look how the "jaw" is a small pier!

  18. #18
    Council Elder Tallstar's Avatar
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    https://www.facebook.com/MFAupdates/...65567507248510

    To commemorate Mark Taylor’s birthday . I’m delighted to unveil our latest creation. The original castle Grayskull prototype. Originally drawn by mark Taylor. With his and Rebecca Salari Taylor’s blessing. Thanks to Ken Coleman and Felipe who concepted and built this and brought Marks original sketch to life...,3D model by Felipe Gomez Concept and Final Artwork by Ken Coleman . Thanks so much to the Taylor’s for their notes and blessing. Happy Birthday Mark!

    Full reveal coming real soon.
    "My favorite Harry Potter movie is Troll."

  19. #19
    Heroic Warrior Mark M's Avatar
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    That is very cool looking.

  20. #20
    Heroic Warrior Lokus's Avatar
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    Even after all these years , I am still amazed at the very concept of castle with a giant skull carved into it . Can you imagine the psychological deterrent if a medieval army had to lay siege to something like that .

    Are there perhaps any older fans here who could tell me if this was borrowed idea or completely original ? Did your cliche villain fortress with face exist before Grayskull ?

    Thats an amazing sketch btw.

  21. #21
    Master of New Adventures!
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    This is pretty well known to mystery novel buffs:

    http://mysteryfile.com/blog/?p=52696

    Quote Originally Posted by Lokus View Post
    Even after all these years , I am still amazed at the very concept of castle with a giant skull carved into it . Can you imagine the psychological deterrent if a medieval army had to lay siege to something like that .

    Are there perhaps any older fans here who could tell me if this was borrowed idea or completely original ? Did your cliche villain fortress with face exist before Grayskull ?

    Thats an amazing sketch btw.

  22. #22
    Heroic Warrior Lokus's Avatar
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    Thanks Mr Jack . I appreciate it . My late father loved murder mystery novels particularly Agatha Christie . I don't think he read that novel .

  23. #23
    Outlaw Preacher Dave-Man's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lokus View Post
    Even after all these years , I am still amazed at the very concept of castle with a giant skull carved into it . Can you imagine the psychological deterrent if a medieval army had to lay siege to something like that .

    Are there perhaps any older fans here who could tell me if this was borrowed idea or completely original ? Did your cliche villain fortress with face exist before Grayskull ?

    Thats an amazing sketch btw.

    Pretty common in fantasy literature and art work - I would be surprised if this was not originally supposed to be the pad for the character that became Skeletor. Too cool not to use when they decided he couldn't have it - looks like the kind of place he would want, doesn't it?
    http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.ph...BadassPreacher

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  24. #24
    Court Magician pcrowe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave-Man View Post
    I would be surprised if this was not originally supposed to be the pad for the character that became Skeletor. Too cool not to use when they decided he couldn't have it - looks like the kind of place he would want, doesn't it?
    I saw Rudy Obrero, who did the original packaging art for a lot of MOTU stuff, talk at Power-Con a couple of years ago, and he talked about how when he was designing the packaging for Castle Grayskull, the whole story and mythology of He-Man hadn't been worked out yet. So he drew Skeletor in Castle Grayskull, figuring a guy with a skull face must be the guy who lives in the skull castle. Then once the story got fleshed out more, he realized that Skeletor in Castle Grayskull was basically antithetical to the whole idea--with so many episodes and issues focused on Skeletor getting inside Castle Grayskull!

    Here's a pic of Skeletor in his rightful home

    castlegrayskullus.jpg

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