Dragon Design Exercise


Dragon Design Concept Art Sally Gottschalk Nigreda

I wanted to share a recent design exercise. The topic was realistic dragon. So breathing fire like a flamethrower was off the table as well as flying since I wanted to work on something massive.


Below some more information about the design choices:

The Serpent is a water dwelling animal that spends is entire life near all bodies of water found in the world with exception to areas where the climate is to cold.

Like a snake it grows its entire life and can reach enormous sizes making a big specimen the apex predator of its home waters. Getting to that size though will take the dragon a long period of time and with a lifespan of nearly two centuries not many of those true giants exist in the world.

They start their life as tiny lizard sized baby dragons in swampy areas and small lakes and the female dragons travel great distances back to the waters of their own birth to lay their eggs. It’s mostly on these migrations and when humans encroach on their breeding grounds that they get into bloody conflicts with humans. The females don’t nurture their babies though they stay around for a view weeks to give their small ones a good start.

The Serpent is an intelligent animal with a great capacity for learning during their long lives. They have large gas bladders inside their body they use to reduce their massive weight if they have to go on land and it makes their bodies appear more rounded. They will generally eat anything they can fit into their mouth – like a dolphin/deer or a school of fish – and either swallow it whole if possible or seek to digest the food inside large food sack similar to that of a pelican. To do so the Serpent has glands hidden inside colorful skin flaps at the corners of their mouth that allows him to funnel hydrochloric acid into their food sack and digest outside of their stomach. On land this behavior is seen much more often since the size of the stomach is reduced due to the inflated gas bladders. The dragons are air breathing animals and nostrils are located on the top of his head to stay away from the corrosive acid.

The Serpents skin color adjusts itself over time to the color of the surrounding waters and gives them many different shades. The Dragons skin flaps hiding the acid glands are very colorful as is the actual glad structure running alongside the dragon’s neck. The color of these is genetic and doesn’t change and is also used to choose a mating partner. Strong colors represent health and strength and show the opposite sex weather or not the dragon is a good choice. Both sexes have these colorful glands.

If threatened the dragon can extend those color fool flaps outward which gives him a very threatening appearance and allows him to spit acid onto his enemy. This highly concentrated acid will cause massive burns and might even start fires if it hits the right material.