Saturday, May 28, 2011

A Sword of Body & Mind is a Terrible Thing to Waste

The 2nd Stoneforge of a commissioned "Sword-themed" playset; this one was supposed to represent Body and Mind. The original concept was "her on the right pointing towards the left with the sword, with a wolf and 4 Squawks charging in the direction she's pointing (Red and Green sun in Bkground). My first take went something like this:

I suggested flying monkeys and a bear riding a unicycle as well,
but I guess not all dreams can come true.

One of the first things I noticed was how similar the whole idea was to the art on the Magic card Triumph of the Hordes:

As I set about attempting to arrange the desired elements in the actual canvas size, I began to realize it was going to be almost impossible to get the desired look and feel. Its a lot easier when you get to produce the art in full-size and then crop it down afterwards to shrink onto a Magic card (as with the art above). Actually painting the image in the space you have to work with using minute muscle movements and physical brushes is considerably more challenging. There was simply too much going on, and too little space to show it.

I decided to try a different take on the original concept, and sent off this sketch as a proof of concept.

My gracious patron was amenable to the idea, and compositionally it was spot on.

From start...

... finish. :)

This project is a good example of how important it is an artist to communicate with your client while performing commissions. I've been in regular contact with the soon-to-be-owner of these alters, ensuring the quality of the work I'm producing meets his high standards.

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