This week's "Sketches" looks at that saucy red sorcery from Scourge's Decree cycle, Decree of Annihilation. The concept for the cycle of Decrees was that these super-spells were cast by Karona, False God herself, and so their effects -- and art -- had to be huge, bold and awesome. Responsibility for the red Decree was put in the hands of Magic art veteran John Avon.
1. Art Description
These were the instructions given to the artist:
"Location: Skirk Ridge
Action: Show the goblin dwellings and their possessions, etc., burning and burning badly in the shadow of Karona. This is the fire that brings the 'END OF THE WORLD' and the end of all that is living to the goblins."
Here is a preliminary sketch of Decree of Annihilation submitted by John.
This quick sketch shows Karona herself floating in the center of the chaos wreaked by the spell, surrounded by suggestions of the goblin dwellings.
3. Final Art
Here is a large version of the final piece. In this final version you can see how Karona's presence is now just an ominous shadow cast on the rock face in the foreground. John has also added plenty of elements to represent the spell's all-consuming blaze and the correspondingly hopeless goblins.
Finally, here is the card as you can see it in booster packs.