Paint to Power: Divining the Weather by James Griffin

Altering Commander: The Sissay Project by James Griffin


I know it’s clichéd but I’ve always wanted to do it.  The four seasons have been done on many cards before, after all there is four to a playset, so it makes sense.  I’ve been working on my own take on the theme this week though, and I was wanting to do them a little bit differently.  Normally they are put into a background that is repainted to make it look like the focus of the card such as the top in my case was in a different place.  That wasn’t what I was hoping to do this time though, I wanted to bring the seasons to the original artwork, rather than the other way around, hoping for a more iconic finish.  We’ll see.

Firstly I wanted the background to match the season theme, and keep the style of the original, so I chose different two tone colours to mirror the original art where I could, but in season specific colours.  For Summer, it was the colours of the sun in the sky, for autumn it was the yellow brown of falling leaves, for spring, the colour of apple blossom, and for winter, snow falling in an overcast sky:

I know all of this sounds pretentious, but I’m really enjoying painting to a theme like this.  Next it is time to bring the season to the centre of the background.  I have decided to make it like an ornate window looking out onto a ridiculously small landscape.  In each hole I paint a piece of the scene, which is a hill and a tree.  Here you can see the summer piece, with vibrant colours, green grass and foliage on the tree.  Each one of these took a good few hours, but I think the results were worth it.  Now each looks distinctly different in two stages.  You see the block colours first, and then see the window on closer inspection followed by the differences between the seasons when you lay them next to each other.  Still, not like some sort of super impressive alter or anything yet, just slightly different from the original.

Now I want to bring the seasons into the artwork some more.  I add on to each an element of the seasons on the dias thing that the top is on.  For summer, that was easy to choose, and I went with grass rising from the gaps in the plate.  Winter got creeping frost and ice, Autumn some fallen leaves, and spring some blossom flowers.

Finally, I decided to add a symbolic item to each of the cards bottom right hand corners.  The final results of these can be seen below.  I hope you like them, I know it’s a little different, but I am tending to be pretty happy with the final result.

So then, not a massive detailed article for sure, but I hope it has been interesting regardless.  Until next time,



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