Friday, 29 January 2016

Heroes of Magnamund Cover

I recently had the opportunity to paint the cover for Cubicle 7's Lone Wolf  Adventure Game, Heroes of Magnamund. I've painted covers before, but not for C7 - I had a few nerves going into it, but it got off to a great start when, along with the brief, I was handed a solid composition suggested by my AD, Jon Hodgson. Jon was originally going to do the painting, but he had too many other things on the go so he tasked me with it. I could go with a fresh sketch or take his as a base, which I decided to do because it was strong enough to show an obvious direction for the piece but left me lots of room to draw it my way.

The focus was on a group of characters leaping into the fray against an opponent just off-picture. There would certainly be an interesting background, but it would play second fiddle to the charge. I had a series of characters to pick from for the cover, and the choices almost made themselves as I found the shapes in the piece. Spear? Got to be this character. Magic? Okay, let's have that one.

Before I submitted the sketch, I toyed with replacing the leftmost character with a druidic type, the herb warden, but stayed with the more magical-oriented character as he seemed the more likely to be heading into a fight.

With the sketch done, I got some feedback about balance in the piece but it was otherwise approved. I'd been having some issues with the ranger as it was, so he was easily removed. The white box shows the bleed I was asked to include, to make cropping and placement on the final cover easier.

With that, I dove into painting the final. A couple of elements were tweaked for balance or anatomical reasons, and a mid-way work-in-progess pic went off to Jon, who approved the progress. Back at it...

Not so much to say about the final stretch - I refined and re-worked certain elements, I made sure it was popping in all the right places and held back where it needed to be, and worked it up until it was done.

When sent and approved, the text was placed (not by me) and this is what came out:

The process in .gif form:

Thanks for looking! :)

Saturday, 23 January 2016

Transcript of a Q&A with the Guild of Games II Group

Last weekend I sat down for a Q&A session with the Guild of Games II group from Hilo University, Hawaii. They asked me a number of really interesting questions, and I had a huge amount of fun talking with them.

Doing it has got me thinking about breaking up some of the questions and writing some posts on them... I'll leave that to sit for a while, and until I've got a bit more time.