Carl Critchlow

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Carl Critchlow was a british fantasy and science fiction artist who was best known for his creation of Thrud the Barbarian in White Dwarf, appearing from White Dwarf #45. Carl made significant contributions to WH40K:RT with concept design and illustrations for the Helsreach setting.

He is also known for doing comic art for 2000AD (including Judge Dredd & Tharg's Future Shocks) as well as gaming art work for Dungeons & Dragons, Star Wars, Magic: The Gathering and others.

Thrud the Barbarian

Thrud the Barbarian is a broad parody of Conan the Barbarian created by Critchlow while 18 and at foundation art college. His design tutor, Bryan Talbot, gave him a design project to produce a comic strip. Having been reading Robert E. Howard's Conan at the time, he based the character on both that and fantasy takes of the character. The initial five page strip was then published in fanzine 'Arken Sword'. When he moved to art college in Liverpool, he carried on producing Thrud strips which appeared in small time comic 'Dead 'Ard', which was drawn by Euan Smith.

After seeing an Advert for cartoonists in White Dwarf, he submitted his Thrud strips and was hired, with him appearing in monthly issues from #45 to #105 and often being voted as the most popular feature of the time. During this Citadel issued a number of Thrud miniatures - and White Dwarf letter pages had a running gag about balancing different miniatures on top of a Thrud model. A trade paperback anthology The Thrudd "Graffik Novel" was published by GW in 1987, reprinting the entire run with a couple of new stories and art pieces.

Later on, while attnding gaming conventions, he found Thrud was well remembered and deciding there was still interest in the character, produced self-published comic adventures running for 5 issues between 2002 and 2007.

Thrud Miniatures

Many miniatures of Thrud the Barbarian have been made including:

  • Citadel SS6 'White Dwarf Personalities' box set (1984)
  • Citadel Limited Edition LE12
  • Citadel Limited Edition LE19
  • Citadel 9079 Blood Bowl Star player 'Thrudd'
  • Zombicide: Black Plague Special Guest Box – Carl Critchlow (2015) [1]

Many of the earlier miniatures can be seen at Thrud Miniatures Collecting Guide