Thursday, November 3, 2011

Evolution Of The Cybermen

Here's what all my recent Cyberman posts were leading up to: a poster depicting every version (so far) of Doctor Who's Cybermen.

Obviously you'll have to zoom in to read the text.

I drew my first Cyberman back when I did my Doctor Who Enemies Infographic (which was the version from the episode The Invasion). A bit later I drew the Earthshock version. That's when I decided to go ahead and draw every variation of Cyberman there's been so far.

I didn't know it at the time but after I started researching them I found out that there have a whopping EIGHTEEN different versions of Cybermen! If I'd known that before I started I would have probably said forget it!

I'm reasonably confident that I drew every major Cyberman variation that has appeared on the show; hopefully I didn't miss any. If I did, I don't know that I'll go back and correct it. I've spent the past two or three weeks squinting at reference photos trying to figure out if a white line was a piece of tubing or a fold in a silver jumpsuit. I'm a little Cybermanned out.

Actually drawing this wasn't as bad as it probably looks. Because it's a vector drawing, I could easily reuse parts and pieces. I'd draw a right arm, then clone and flop it for a left arm. Same with the legs and the "handlebars" on their heads. And drawing Cyberleaders was pretty easy-- just draw a regular Cyberman, clone him, color his handlebars black, and there you go! Instant Cyberleader.

At first I was trying to make this a standard poster size, like 12" x 18" or 24" x 36", but try as I might I just couldn't squeeze everyone into those sizes (without shrinking them into oblivion). I finally said "who cares" and just let the art dictate the size. If I ever decide to have it printed I'll figure something out then.

By the way, if you're scratching your head trying to figure out what's different about the last two Cybermen in the bottom row, it's the chest plate. The first three Cybermen in the bottom row all have a stylized letter "C" on their chests (which stands for Cybus Industries, not Cybermen). They come from a parallel Earth in another dimension. The last two Cybermen don't have the "C" because they originated from our own dimension.

If you're interested in seeing how I draw these vector characters, I posted a How To Draw A Cybermen In 42 Easy Steps.

This is a vector drawing, done all in InDesign.

So how do I know so much about Cybermen? I'm not at liberty to say...


  1. Hooray!! Your best poster yet. I'm a big fan of the cybermen, especially the earlier models (Moonbase/Tomb of the/Wheel in Space). They were just plain unsettling in their earlier years, in a way the Daleks weren't. By the 80s, they'd gotten rather comic, alas. Anyway, this kicks ass!

    Will your next poster show us the evolution of the cybermat?

  2. Thanks! Yeah, those Tenth Planet Cybermen were really creepy. The way they'd just open their mouths wide and not move their lips as a voice came out... scary.


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