In a bid to get some experience creating some professional game art, I have joined the team at Conflicting Kingdoms to help work on illustrations for their upcoming card game, Conflict. So far there are still a few hundred briefs still to do, but there are around 30-40 artists on the team, so hopefully they will all be finished soon and the game can go on sale. I’m looking forward to seeing the finished version of the game and playing it. In the meantime, I have so far completely finished 4 illustrations for the cards, a set of four abilities and conflicts associated with a race called the Konk. They are a secretive race of monkey-like people who live in the trees of the forest, with ninja-style abilities who hire themselves out as mercenaries to the highest bidder. To keep some kind of consistency in style, the cards are to be produced as coloured lineart, so here’s a quick walkthrough of how I have been creating the illustrations.
I first do a rough sketch on paper and scan it into Photoshop, then do a quick colour over the sketch and post it for approval. Once any changes have been made and the sketch has been approved, I take the sketch into Illustrator and work up the inks using a slightly customised brush tool. Then these inks are taken back to Photoshop and, on a new layer, the flat colours are created based on the colour sketch. On seperate laters, I create shadows, using a multiply layer and some suitable colours for each area of the sketch. You usually need to play around a little with this method, since it can be a little unpredictable how colours will mix using the overlay mode. Once the shadows are done, I add highlights using either an overlay layer or a soft or hard light layer, again this can be a little unpredictable, so a little experimentation is required. As a final touch, I lock the transparency of the inks layers and add a little colour to some areas of the lineart, just to pull the harshness of the black inks down a little, and it’s sometimes also useful for creating rimlight too.
The Conflicting Kingdoms site is still being worked on, but you can join their Facebook group to keep posted on the progress of the game. Here are the final artwork for my first four cards.