Artist Raymond Swanland started illustrating Magic cards in Future Sight, then became one of the go-to guys for Jund starting with Shards of Alara. His process has already been showcased in this edition of Sketches, showing off his magnificent Predator Dragon.
The first step of the creation of a card's art is its art description. The art description tells the artist what the card will do, what its flavor is, and what the mood of the illustration should be. Here were the instructions given to Raymond for Predatory Advantage:
'Color: Red and green spell
Action: In Jund the alligator-like Viashino are a sentient race. In Naya, the humans ride alligator-like mounts. This card depicts an ironic scene: A Jund viashino is surrounding by Naya alligator-beasts . . . which is sort of analogous to a modern-day human being hunted down by cavemen.
Focus: the scene
Mood: Dinner with the ancestors. You're the entree.
The next step is for the artist to submit sketches of his or her vision of the art description.
Here's Raymond's initial sketch submitted for Predatory Advantage:
It's just a sketch, but the air of menace is unmistakable.
Raymond submitted this final art.
And here's the card in its final state, as you can find in booster packs of Alara Reborn!