Marc Radle recently interviewed Southlands Kickstarter project illustrator Subroto Bhaumik so that you could see how this artist started a career in the industry and more! Read on to learn more…
When did you decide to become an illustrator, and why did you make this choice?
I used to love drawing as a kid, and I’d spend hours drawing animals and superheroes. However, as I continued school and college, the pressure to focus on academics was quite a lot from my folks and peers, and I found myself later in jobs I never thoroughly enjoyed.
After having been in a corporate job for 10 years, I was in my mid-thirties and I was really bored with my job so I took up photography as a hobby. One thing led to another, and I found myself again enrolled in some painting classes. The more I did it and improved my skills, the more I became serious about art.
After about 5 years of serious art studies, I left all my other jobs and dived in full-time as an illustrator.
Coins. Gold, silver, bronze, and copper. Throughout history, they’ve been struck, cast, engraved, and cut. Their style and artwork are a reflection of the culture that created them. It’s no surprise that coins are being used in gaming. They can help build the flavor of a world and give insight into the religions and art of the culture.
When Wolfgang asked me if I could make custom, handmade coins for the Southlands Kickstarter project, I had to admit that I hadn’t done it before, but that I’d like to try to figure it out.
Dies, Striking, and Casting
The first method we discussed was striking. Striking is a great method for long runs, but it’s impractical for a short run. There’s too much time and effort involved in engraving the dies to make what will probably be a few hundred pieces at most. Casting is also better suited to long runs, and I’m not set up to do it.
On the opposite side of the crescent desert from Nuria-Natal lies the wondrous sky-city of Aerdvall. Roughly 2,100 years ago, refugees from far Sikkim raised their city to hover high above the foreboding Black Lotus Mesa. Today, seven bridge-connected districts orbit the Celestial Waterfall, which is a cascade flowing from the Well of Urd through a tear between the realms. Among these stately gleaming white domes and towers are the aeromancers. Masters of air magics, the aeromancers not only keep the city floating in the sky, but they also protect its borders from any and all interlopers who would dare to challenge the rule of Palash Yazad, the Athravan of Aerdvall.
The arts of aeromancy are taught in dakhmas or schools in Aerdvall. Each dakhma focuses on a different aspect of aeromancy. Scour teaches its students to use air magic to physically change the world. This includes lifting, pushing, and even blasting with controlled winds, clouds, air, and lightning. Windcrafters create air-formed constructs and objects. Zephyr students learn to use air magic for transportation and speed. Skybinders focus on summoning and controlling air elementals. Finally, the Void school teaches how to dispel and block air magics. There are rumors that master void aeromancers can even pull the air out of their enemy’s lungs. Only by passing the rigorous tests of each school can a student earn the title of aeromancer.
Leaning casually against the edge of the balcony opening, the lion-headed rakshasa peered at the heroes with yellow cat-eyes.
Gunnar stepped forward, hefting his thrice-blessed axe. “Foul creature! We shall free this land of your evil touch!”
“DO WE HAVE GUESTS, BHUKASTA?”
The booming voice crashed down upon them as a massive face appeared beyond the balcony. The titan, human in form but bald and gargantuan, grinned at them all.
“Not guest, great Gamka,” Bhukasta replied with a drawl. “Intruders.”
“WELL THEN,” Gamka thundered, his grin growing even wider. “THEY MUST DIE.”
Be they dark entities, Sith lords, or rival archeologists, villains remain at the heart of any great adventure. For the Southlands, we created enemies ranging from minions to dark heroes to ultimate opponents. In this preview, we thought it best to show you our favorite antagonists. Take a peek, then visit the Southlands Kickstarter to learn more about this project.
It’s a not-so-secret fact that I’m a total monsterholic. The Monster Manual was the first hardcover book I bought for AD&D, the Bestiaries from Paizo are totally my gaming addiction, and I am always excited to get new and original monsters in my hands, whether it is from a design contest, a book of mythology, or a brainstorming session with fellow gamers. If it’s got claws and fur, I’m for it.