Name: Jeremy Jarvis
Job title and duties: Art Director: Magic the Gathering.
It's my job to find the most appropriate artist for each and every card concept, provide them with an Art Description that encourages something fantastic to happen when that illustrator's talents are applied to that particular concept, and manage the flow of sketches and final art. Oh yeah, and make sure that all of this lives within the scope of what Brand says our values are, within the tone of that particular set, and within the mandates of each particular card. Good lord, I'm a little stressed as I read back what I just wrote.
Age: born in 1976 (29 as of writing)
Education: BFA from Pratt Institute. Fine Art Major with a concentration in Drawing.
Began working at Wizards: 2005
Previous job: Lead Concept Artist for Magic the Gathering (2005-2006 so that's SNAP [Time Spiral] and PEANUT blocks).
Previously I worked full time as a Freelance Illustrator, and a dinosaur of a freelance illustrator at that. Behold... one of the last of the Watercolorists!
How you got your job here: Once the Lead Concept gig opened at Wizards, I emailed saying I was interested, sent in a resume and portfolio on CDR, and filled out all the appropriate on-line Hasbro applications. That was round one. Round two was a 24 hour concept trial, where the "finalists" were emailed at 10am with 4 different assignments and given until 10am the next morning to crank out as much good, smart, and well executed concept art as possible for all of those assignments. One all-nighter later I got the job.
Part Two: When the Art Director position opened up, I was already at Wizards, already imbedded in the processes, already knew and had working relationships with a majority of the artists, and had already been involved in commissioning art for Magic on occasions when things overlapped or overflowed. I was very excited at the idea of working more directly with our intimidatingly talented pool of artists, and the Powers-that-Be were excited at the idea of me being on the phone all day so I would no longer have the time to crash meetings. I got the job.
Magic accomplishments prior to working here: Card Art!
Expansions or projects you've worked on: As an Illustrator I've worked on Eighth Edition, Mirrodin, Darksteel, Fifth Dawn, Champions of Kamigawa, Saviors of Kamigawa, Ninth Edition, Ravnica: City of Guilds, Guildpact, Dissension, Time Spiral, and Planar Chaos. As Lead Concept Artist I worked on the SNAP (Time Spiral) block and the PEANUT block. As Art Director I'm currently involved in seeing SNAP (Time Spiral, CRACKLE (Planar Chaos), POP and Tenth Edition (all of these already in progress) through to fruition.
Favorite part of your job: That's easy: working with other artists to create the best fantasy art available anywhere.
Least favorite part of your job: Holy Crap! Have you ever worked with artists?! It's like herding cats! Ha!
Thing you've worked on that you're most proud of: My paintings are my kids. I'm so proud of each and every one of them when they're young, I beam with pride when I see them on stage, I brag when they win things. Then they get older and the novelty fades. The more they say the same thing over and over again the more tiresome it becomes. My eye starts to wander, and I envy how well-behaved other peoples' are. They have such interesting things to say! So I cut my losses and make a new one... and I'm sooo proud of it...
I'm gonna get in trouble if my therapist reads this.
Other games you currently enjoy playing: I'm terrible at video games.... But I play them. Mostly hack-n-slash stuff and levelers. I dig Diablo II and Myth. Big fan of the X-Men: Legends games. I rock at Pictionary, suck at Poker and cheat at Scrabble. I miss playing D&D, and enjoy losing to other members of R&D playing Magic.
Favorite Magic card(s): Come on, you know I can't answer that... the artists would take it personally :)