Friday, July 4, 2014

New Magic - Brood Keeper

Here's a new painting that was just released for Magic's new core set, M15. I really enjoyed working on this piece as it was my first "human" I painted for Magic, and it was the first setting I worked on that was outside of the Theros realm. 

Here's what I got for an art description:

Color: Red Creature
Location: On a mountain peak on the plane of Jund - we can see the savage landscape, volcanoes, fissures, craggy mountains. Reddish, Turner-esque sky.
Action: A female human shaman stands among a clutch of dragon eggs. She holds one of the eggs, which is maybe a bit larger than her head. Her hands glow a bright red, looking like hot metal. Radiating from her hands are cracks in the egg. Perhaps the light from her hands illuminates the young dragon in the egg. The shaman is dressed in savage, Jund attire.
Focus: the shaman
Mood: my power can awaken dragons!
Notes: Jund humans have very slight reptilian touches. maybe she has 'alligator eyes'.

A female shaman with dragons eggs?! Sweet!

Here's a few thumbnails that I turned in to the AD from the description:

But needing to see the dragon in the egg a bit clearer, the AD requested a couple other options with the egg a little more pronounced. So I went back to the drawing board and did these:

Satisfied that the first one hit the vision that they wanted for card, I went ahead with my charcoal sketch. I had a lot of fun working dragon claws and teeth into her jewelry: 

12" x 16" Charcoal and Digital
I enjoyed painting her and the eggs a lot, but I really had a blast making up the volcanic landscape behind her. Here's the final:

12" x 16" Oil on Masonite

And it's my first Uncommon card! So maybe she'll see a little more play than my previous cards?...I have no idea.

Both the charcoal drawing and the original painting are available for purchase. Please contact me at if interested. 


  1. Cool Illustration. I really like the eyes and the glowing red lighting of the figure & scene. Do you now paint right on top of your charcoal drawings (fixed & sealed to board) or do you transfer them to the final surface and save the drawings?

  2. Hey Lance, thanks! I do the charcoal drawing separately and then photograph it, mess around with it in photoshop, and print it out on my Epson R1900 onto Strathmore archival drawing paper. I then mount the printout onto the masonite with matte medium. That way I can retain the charcoal drawing separately from the final painting.

  3. I absolutely love the illustration on this card!! I am considering cosplaying her and I was wondering what your opinion is on what her top looks like because it is hidden behind her arm. :) Is it mostly the feathers that you see underneath or the rope that you see from above?

    1. Hi, Thank you! I'm excited that you like the character, as I really enjoyed creating her. That would be so cool if you cosplayed as her!! Well, I envisioned the feathers to be lining the bottom rim of her top. And the actual top to be probably made of a type of leather. Or maybe like a faux crocodile skin since it would be similar to dragon skin (and match her eyes, which are based on crocodile eyes). It's up to you though, since I obviously omitted that portion, but i'm glad you made me think about it. Please send me photos at if you do end up doing the costume!