Last summer, I was asked to design 3 kaiju for the game Pathfinder. Kaiju is a Japanese word for "strange creature" but has come to be known in english as "monster", usually of the gigantic variety. Godzilla is probably the best-known example of a kaiju, but he's far from the only one.
I was asked to illustrate 3 fairly archetypal kaiju for the Pathfinder Bestiary 4 book: a large, reptilian kaiju, a flying, dinosaur-like kaiju and an "insect" monster. The well-known Japanese film equivalents to these archetypes will probably be familiar to just about anyone reading this blog. Because these kaiju were somewhat archetypal, I couldn't go crazy and create really wild, exotic monsters. Nevertheless, I had some freedom to play and I had a good time with these illustrations, especially the insect/crustacean kaiju, which ended up being my favorite.
The illustrations were to be text-wrapped so they don't have backgrounds. At some point, I'd love to revisit this subject and paint a full-fledged scene of a kaiju wreaking havoc and causing destruction!
I've included both the final art and the preliminary drawings. In some ways, I prefer the clean simplicity of the latter.
The Kaiju images are copyright © Paizo Publishing.