As a boy growing up in a small town in North Carolina, Clyde Caldwell roamed the red sands of Mars and explored the world at the earth’s core with Edgar Rice Burroughs, and was whisked away to other worlds, alternate dimensions and adventures in the future by Isaac Asimov, Robert A. Heinlein and Arthur C. Clarke.
By the time he had earned his MFA degree from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, he had already decided on a career in illustration. Inspired by the artistry of fantasy greats like Frank Frazetta, Roy G. Krenkel and Jeff Jones (to name but a few), he hoped to specialize in the field of fantasy art.
After several years of working as a commercial illustrator for ad agencies and doing fanzine work in his spare time, he began to get cover assignments from professional fantasy & science fiction publishers.
Over the past 30+ years, Clyde has produced hundreds of cover paintings for his chosen field, and is best known for his portrayal of strong, sexy female characters (his favorite subject matter).
His work has appeared as book covers for such publishers as Ace, Avon, Popular Library, Warner books, Zebra, Houghton-Mifflin, and Doubleday…as magazine covers for HEAVY METAL, THE SAVAGE SWORD OF CONAN, EPIC ILLUSTRATED, DRAGON, and DUNGEON, among others…and worldwide as posters, limited edition prints, game module and computer game covers, calendar paintings, portfolios, etc.
For almost 10 years Clyde’s work graced the covers of TSR, Inc.’s game and book lines. For TSR he did paintings for the 1985 through 1993 calendars, including the covers for the 1987 Dragonlance Calendar and the 1990 Forgotten Realms Calendar. He was also the cover artist for the D&D Gazetteer module series, the popular Ravenloft series, and has had work included in several TSR Art Books.
In 1992 Clyde left TSR to pursue a freelance career. Post TSR work includes covers for Baen Books, Ultra-Pro, Armada Comics, SQ Productions, INQUEST Magazine and Bud K Worldwide, as well as gaming art for Wizards of the Coast, Precedence Entertainment, White Wolf Game Studio, Palladium Games, Bethesda Softworks and tattoo designs for Bullseye Tattoos. Portfolios include Kingdom of Knives, Kingdom of Knives, Set 2, and the best-selling, Savage Hearts. Verlinden Productions produced a 150mm resin figure based on one of his paintings.
In 1994 Clyde released ‘Armed & Dangerous!’, a limited edition print featuring “Scream Queen” Brinke Stevens. A set of fantasy art trading cards featuring his work was released in 1995 from FPG, and 1997 saw the publication of Savage Hearts: The Clyde Caldwell Sketchbook, Volume 1 by SQ Productions. NBC 2000 licensed two of Clyde’s paintings for use in a FRASIER TV promo, and three paintings were produced as posters by Impact Posters.
Savage Hearts: The Clyde Caldwell Sketchbook, Volume 2, and a full-color collection of Clyde’s paintings from m/g publishing/, The Art of Clyde Caldwell, were both released in 2002.
In 2009 Clyde’s painting, ‘Dragon Steed’ was licensed for use as a set decoration in the TV series, Eastwick, on ABC. It appeared in several episodes.
For years 2010 and 2011 Tide-mark Press published the Fantasy Art of Clyde Caldwell Calendar. And in 2014, Clyde’s painting, ‘Dragon Spell’ was licensed for use in a documentary appearing in the Extended Edition DVD set of The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug.
2015 saw the publication of the Clyde Caldwell Portfolio by Galerie Nemesis in the Czech Republic.
More recently Clyde has been focusing on private commission work and the occasional personal painting.
Clyde lives in Wisconsin with his wife, Sharon.