Sketches: Scab-Clan Mauler

Posted in Arcana on January 31, 2006

By Wizards of the Coast

Welcome to another edition of Sketches! It's Gruul Week on, so we take this chance to look at a dynamic piece of art on an aggressive bloodthirst creature, Scab-Clan Mauler. But first, some background on the artist, Liam Sharp.

Skarrgan Pit-Skulk

Artist Portfolio

Artist Liam Sharp is new to Magic illustration, having painted three (all-Gruul) pieces in Guildpact -- the Mauler, Skarrgan Pit-Skulk and Gruul Scrapper. But Liam has a long history of awesome comic-book illustration, and if he shows up in Magic's future, we know he'll contribute some more great pieces.

Art Description

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 Liam for Scab-Clan Mauler:

Color: Red/green (R/G guild)
Location: A once-decent neighborhood, soon to be a smoldering wreck
Action: Show a charging "Morlock" rider team (one large guy blind and a smaller guy on top with no legs). Focus: the "Morlock" berserkers
Mood: What's yours is mine. As of now.
This card represents what the Gruul do best: raid and pillage areas of the city for food and resources. And this team is one of the frontline raiders. They should look frenzied and brutal.

The term "Morlock" here refers to the mutilated members of the Scab Clan -- those who've suffered injuries and even lost limbs to the machinations of other clans. These guys definitely have something to prove.

The next step is for the artist to submit sketches of his or her vision of the art description.


Here's Liam's initial sketch submitted for Scab-Clan Mauler:

Scab-Clan Mauler sketch by Liam Sharp

The art team definitely favored the head-on view of sketch "A" on the left, so Liam submitted this second sketch:

Scab-Clan Mauler sketch by Liam Sharp

WOW -- that's a piece full of ragin' action and on-rushing power. That's exactly what the art team wanted to see, so they had him submit the full-color final art.

Final Art

Liam submitted this final art.

Scab-Clan Mauler 'final' art by Liam Sharp
Scab-Clan Mauler "final" art by Liam Sharp

The art team felt that this full-color art actually lost some of the power of the sketch -- so incredibly, they made the decision to revert to the sketch for the final version of the card! The second sketch was cleaned up and used on the card as you know it today.

Scab-Clan Mauler 'final' art by Liam Sharp
Scab-Clan Mauler final (!) art by Liam Sharp

Finished Card

Here's the card in its final state, as you'll see in booster packs of Guildpact. Get ready to bash with a 2-mana 3/3 trampler (with a little help from Liam Sharp) at the release tournaments!

Scab-Clan Mauler

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