Finding the right artists for your project can be like finding a needle in a haystack — seriously, has anyone ever looked for a needle in a haystack? — bad phrase aside, finding artists can be difficult. Something I found interesting when speaking with Jay Goike and Scott Rumptz from D-Verse Publishing is that a lot of the best artists can be found through relationships with other artists. If you think about it, this makes sense. If you are a specialist in your field, chances are you have someone that you look up to — maybe someone you have always wanted to work with but just haven’t had the opportunity. Well, if you find a project that you really enjoy with a company that does business that favors your specialty — odds are that you will recommend that person you look up to in hopes of being able to work with them on a project you believe in. What I’m finding out is there is a lot of ways to find artists, you just need the right approach.
*Art by Michael Rechlin
When looking for artists for a project, it’s ok to look for people outside of your genre. The trick is to send them the lore — hopefully you spent the extra time on it — and if they enjoy it, have them send you some sketches. That’s exactly what our two heroes Jay and Scott did when looking for artists for their game Nexus. They weren’t swayed when they saw the artists they were interested in specialized in a different genre. Take a listen to what they said about finding a guy called “Viking Myke” who shocked them with his first pieces.
*Art by Lorenz Hideyoshi Ruwwe
It sounds like letting artists do whatever they want can be very beneficial — but what happens when you need something specific and the artist just is not understanding what you want? Jay and Scott ran into this exact situation when working with an artist overseas who spoke only broken English which added an additional layer of complexity to the communication process.
The great comedian Steven Wright once said, “It’s a small world……but I wouldn’t want to paint it.” This adage rings true when you start working with people from a community — and the art community is no different. Listen to what happened to Jay and Scott with a couple of their artists they commissioned to work on Nexus.
*Sculpt by Roberto Chaudon
What I am discovering is there are many benefits to being flexible in the way that you do business and having a project that excites those around you. One of those benefits — which could easily be overlooked — is getting referrals from artists on who they think would be a good match for other areas of your project. Scott and Jay were fortunate enough to get this honor from one of their artists when they started asking around for a sculptor.
*Art byHelge C. Balzer
The referrals and recommendations didn’t stop at a sculptor. Jay and Scott needed to find someone to do an epic scene for the box cover that would incorporate all the different facets of their game Nexus all in one shot. Listen how the artist not only delivered but also suggested a detail that would be immediately incorporated into the game.
If you take anything away from this blog post — you should remember that doing business in a way that puts the artists first instead of yourself and taking the time to write immersive and unique lore — both will take you a long way with making the right connections at the right times.
Next time I am interviewing the artist Danny Cruz himself! His art is nothing short of amazing and I can’t wait to hear what he has to tell us about his experience as a professional artist.
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To learn more about the game of Nexus, go here: https://d-verse.com/nexus/