How I make Heraldry

There are a thousand and one websites on heraldry and it's peculiar Norman and English vocabulary, but when I'm looking for something to put on miniatures or I have a vague idea, there are two sites I use for the vocabulary and then the visualization.

First, the random heraldry generator at Donjon - http://donjon.bin.sh/fantasy/random/#type=Coat+of+Arms


It can spit out some crazy looking combinations, but that's a random generator for you!

Now if you're like me, you don't eat and breathe the heraldic vocabulary, you really just want to see how this sucker's going to look on your minis or when you're describing it. So let's visualize it from what donjon spits out.

For that, I turn to Drawshield - http://drawshield.net/drawshield/create/



You can copy/paste the output from donjon into that thing and viola, you see what craziness those words creates for you. Plus, if you are grokking the vocabulary (or like me, you have "Heraldry for Non-Heralds" open...  ) you can start adding/changing colors and what-not.

For instance, on the examples above, donjon gave me "Per fess purpure and argent, a rose counterchanged", which gives me a purple/white(silver) background and then a clear rose. Well, I didn't like that, so I added the word "or" after "a rose counterechanged" and got what you see above. I am, though, breaking THE rule of heraldry, which is that you don't put metal colors on metal colors UNLESS it's a charge and you can split the color. And now you're looking at me like I'm speaking tlhIngan. (You see that I'm not caring too much right at this point...)

ANYWAY... hope you enjoy! I've been doing a lot of painting of troops lately, and figuring out the various heraldry of my Duchies. To the point where I've managed to free-hand some shield designs, take a look! They look funky close up, but awesome at tabletop range - which is what I paint for.



PS. If you get a chance, throw the folks at Drawshield and Donjon a sawbone or two... they deserve it for providing such cool resources!

Comments

faoladh said…
That's an amazing tool. Thanks for pointing it out. Both of them, really, but the heraldry visualizer especially. It isn't comprehensive (it doesn't seem to be able to handle things like "regardant", for example), but it's definitely good enough for most arms.
Michael S said…
Yep, definitely comes in handy. I suspect, though, that if you know what regardant is, you probably can visualize the vocabulary. If you said "regardant" to me, I'd hit you for insulting me... :D ;)