The wallpaper archive at the Wotc site is a great place for seeing Magic art nice and big. While looking through there for inspiration, I noticed that my Rootcutters piece was up (always a nice pat on the back to get :). It wasn't called that when I painted it though, which is why sometimes it's hard to remember your own card list, because you usually know them all by different names. Anyway, I remembered that I still had the sketch and some colour thumbs for that on my hard drive so i thought I'd put them up here.
The sketch, for me, was really solid, normally my sketches for magic are pretty vague. I'm always thankful to Jeremy Jarvis for letting these wishy washy sketches go through, as it makes the whole process a lot less like a commission, and more like the development of an idea, allowing me to not feel overly constrained in the finished work, but like I say, this one was pretty tight.
The other thing I still have saved for this piece are some colour thumbs. I do these when I'm not sure where a piece is going colour/composition wise. I just grab a copy of the whole image, shrink it down and then make a bunch of copies of it. Then i just play about until I find something that's beginning to work. Even on the computer i find I can start to treat the finished piece as"precious" and be unwilling to experiment, so this helps break that. Reducing the size of the image forces me to work on the over all composition, as i have a tendency to get hung up on details too much (and it also helps with lag). Doing multiple versions means i can compare and contrast the experiments.
And here's the finished piece. I have to say there's a lot in the pencils I wish I'd got into the finish, I really loved that tail in the sketch.