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Artist Steph Swanger/Solo29's Art - Star Wars Galaxy 7 Cards

Discussion in 'Fan Art' started by Reckless_Corellian, Nov 30, 2011.

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  1. Reckless_Corellian SW Sketch Card Artist

    VIP
    Member Since:
    Nov 16, 2007
    Hey all,

    With my other thread locked, I thought this would be the perfect opportunity to start up a new one more focused on my professional work(hence, the change in username as well). I will also be posting other things that I'm working on, including commissions, portfolio pieces, etc.

    I'm going to start this thread off with some of my recently approved Galaxy 7 cards I've been working on for Topps:

    [image=[url]http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v291/HSolo29/Misc%20Art/sswanger-swg7-01.jpg][/url]

    [image=[url]http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v291/HSolo29/Misc%20Art/sswanger-swg7-02.jpg][/url]


    Enjoy! :)
    Last edited by Corellian_Outrider, Sep 2, 2012
  2. earlybird-obi-wan Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 21, 2006
    star 6
  3. TrakNar Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 4, 2011
    star 5
    Oh good, you started another thread. That means I can bug you about getting into the business! :p

    For the sketch cards, what mediums do you use? Are you supplied the templates for the sketch cards or can they be done digitally? And in regards to portfolio pieces, will Topps accept a general portfolio?
  4. Reckless_Corellian SW Sketch Card Artist

    VIP
    Member Since:
    Nov 16, 2007
    Thank you, everyone! It's much appreciated! :)

    Trak, the majority of my cards are done with Copic markers, colored pencils, fine tip prismamcolor pens and white gauche for the highlights. I found that's what works best for me and it's actually an alternative to painting. I apply and blend the markers like paint anyway, so I guess it doesn't really matter. :p

    In terms of the cards themselves, Topps provides all the blanks. When you sign onto the project, you agree to do a certain amount and that's how many they send out to you. I've never done a digital card before, but I have seen other artists do so for their own personal portfolios. As of right now, digital cards are not accepted onto actual sketch card sets. Everything is done traditionally.

    As for sending your portfolio to the companies for consideration for future sets, I found that sending 5-8 samples of your best work is the ideal method. It's good to include mostly sketch cards, but be sure to provide a variety of subjects(for example, action shots, landscapes, scenes and portraits). And depending on the company, I also tend to stick with the properties that they have licenses for. If you're looking to get in with Topps, that would include Star Wars, Lord of the Rings, Indiana Jones etc. Aside from sketch cards, it's never a bad idea to include some full scale paintings and drawings for them to look at just to show them what you can really do.

    I hope that helps you get on the right track and if you have any questions, I'll try to do my best to answer them! :)
  5. Corellian_Outrider Admin FF | Art Curator | Oceania RSA | CR of NSW

    Administrator
    Member Since:
    Mar 9, 2002
    star 5
    Welcome back Steph! It is always wonderful seeing your works :).

    I hope the sketch cards are going well, the ones you have shown are amazing. It is nice seeing the different schemes, do you have a preference between colour, mono or bitonal styles? I can not wait to see more of your upcoming works :).
  6. TrakNar Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 4, 2011
    star 5
    I echo the same question, sort of. What types of traditional mediums are more widely-accepted? When I color traditionally, I use colored pencils. Otherwise, I work in solely black-and-white.

    On average, how many cards do you do and how long does it take to do a card?
  7. AzureAngel2 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 14, 2005
    star 6
    I also would like to know how long it takes you for a card. Also thanks for sharing the secrets of their birth with us.

    Trak, the majority of my cards are done with Copic markers, colored pencils, fine tip prismamcolor pens and white gauche for the highlights.

    :D

    I had so little time to use the gauche since last summer...
  8. HanSolo29 Manager Emeritus + Official Star Wars Artist

    Member Since:
    Apr 13, 2001
    star 6
    Thank you all! :)


    My first love will always be grayscale - whether that is done in graphite, marker or something else, it doesn't matter. There's just something about a well-done black and white image. I've been practicing a lot with color since my first time around doing sketch cards and the result of that can be seen in the samples above. I still would like to take my color work a bit further and maybe that can be accomplished through experimenting with different media, but at the moment, I think it works for sketch cards.

    Markers of various brands (Prismacolor, Copic, etc), ink and colored pencil seem to be the most popular mediums. A lot of artists also work in acrylic, watercolor and there's even a few that have made their mark in oil. It's all a matter of preference, really, whatever you're more comfortable working in.

    That depends on the company and the deadline. For the Star Wars sets, for example(and the majority of Topps sets), the minimum amount per artist is usually 100 with 6 returns. And again, that varies from set to set and company to company. As for how much time I spend per card, the colored ones can take anywhere from 1.5-2 hours to complete(which explains why there's not too many of them). The black and white and monotone ones I can whip out anywhere from 15 to 40 minutes, depending on how many details I want to include and how finished I want them to be.
  9. TrakNar Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 4, 2011
    star 5
    Hm, 100 cards... Now, occasionally, I've seen cards done as a larger image, with each card being an element of that image. Would artists be permitted to do that, or are there certain things that are to be expected? How much range in terms of characters are artists permitted to do?
  10. HanSolo29 Manager Emeritus + Official Star Wars Artist

    Member Since:
    Apr 13, 2001
    star 6
    Ahh...puzzle cards. Yes, you are allowed to do puzzle cards and quite a few artists do so in order to meet the deadline. I'd just like to heed a warning about them, though - they're not very popular among collectors unless it's actually possible to complete the puzzle. For example, doing a puzzle that contains 2-4 pieces is plausible and not too hard for collectors to track down. If you do anything more than that, you may be looking at a nightmare for the collectors. It also helps that if each individual piece in the puzzle contains a piece of art all on its own so it isn't required for someone to complete the entire thing just to get a recognizable image. It's a slippery slope and after my first set, I decided to stay away from them completely and go with just the singles.

    As for characters, that is usually covered in the contract when you're accepted onto a set. It usually contains a list of characters that you can do and also one that contains things that you can't touch. As for how many cards you do of a certain character, that's totally up to you. If you wanted to do your entire set of just Anakin, go for it!
  11. TrakNar Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 4, 2011
    star 5
    So, by that logic, I could do an entire Zuckuss set. :p

    Thanks for putting up with my questioning! The more I know about a sketch card gig, the more I want to do it. So, looks like it's back to padding that portfolio, and then sending Topps a pic a week until they hire me. :p
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