Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Projector broke ...

The bulb blew in my ancient projector. I'm not sure when it was made, but it's called a Vu-Lyte. So you know it was made when spelling things like that was in fashion. It weighs about a ton and I have to drag it back and forth to get the right magnification. And take a look at the bulb. Wow, this thing is old.

I project my small sketches onto the larger canvas, where I trace and draw the image at the larger size. This piece of equipment is essential for me.

I had two choices. Find a new bulb or buy a new projector. Surprisingly, a company in Kansas still sell these bulbs, so I got one for $30. I'm waiting for it now. When it blows, I'll spend the $200 for a new projector.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Letters of Note

I stumbled upon this amazing letter published on the blog, Letters of Note. Tons of old, odd, or beautiful notes are posted here, but this one got to me. View it here.

Wow. If that doesn't make you tear up, I'm not sure what will. This may make me sound like Andy Rooney, but isn't there something amazing about a handwritten letter? A few people have sent me cards to sign in the mail and most of them have come with handwritten thank-you notes. It's a nice touch. I usually will write a note back, but maybe my New Year's Resolution should be to find more excuses to write letters.

And here's another letter that will make you laugh or cry, depending on the mood you're in.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Philly Recap

Got back from Philadelphia last night. I spent most of the day on Sunday at the TCGplayer.com $5K Tournament. I finally had prints to sell and was signing more than just Plains and Convincing Mirage. Plenty of people were bringing their Grazing Gladehart or Sejiri Refuge by the table. I met artist Matt Stewart, and he shared some of his industry advice with me. Fortunately Matt was selling a lot of work, so I think I got some of his leftover traffic at times.

A bunch of people still don't know who the heck I am (understandably), which leads to some interesting questions. I brought three 18x24 original illustrations with me. On the corner of each canvas, I taped the card on which the illustration appears. One kid, maybe 12 years old, came by the table and looked at the paintings. He asked something like, "Do they send you the picture on the card so you know how to paint it?" He thought I was painting and selling large reproductions of card illustrations, not that my illustrations appeared on the card. I thought it was funny.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Weekend Events

Here's a new piece. It was kind of a quick piece on a canvas I rescued from the trash. It's been done for a couple weeks, but I've only recently gotten the chance to photograph it. Also photographed and FedEx'd three Magic card illustrations today, and now ...

It's off to Philly for the TCGplayer.com $5K Tournament. I'll be at the Pennsylvania Convention Center all day on Sunday. Please stop by if you're in the area.

Also, new event announcement! I'm going to Houston on January 30th for the Worldwake Regional PreRelease. It's a little out of the way for those on the East Coast, but I'm excited to meet a group of Magic Players in a different area of the country. It looks like I'm the only artist right now, so I'll try not to disappoint.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009


Another year, another e-mail rejection letter. I didn't get into the 52nd Society of Illustrators Annual. Frustrating.

4,600 entries and 418 accepted pieces, so it's not like I was expecting to get in. But every year, when I see the e-mail in my inbox from the Society, there's a brief moment when I hope for the best. Then I don't see the word "Congratulations," and I realize it's another rejection. It's like you have to be a big name to get in, but you can't become a big name unless you get in.

There's still the American Illustration Show and Spectrum to submit to. So I'll try again, but I could really do without all these entry fees ...

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Impressive Illustrator

Wesley Burt.

Usually I'm pretty confident in my own drawing ability ... but guys like this make me pretty envious. Don't really know anything about him, and I've never met him.

But he's impressive, so take a gander through his galleries and blog. His drawings have a great feel: realistic but not enslaved to reality. I sometimes fall into that trap. But Wesley walks the line between fantasy and reality with amazing skill.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Quick note

Just a quick note. There will be more interesting things coming up after I finish the incoming projects, but until then ...

The current Magic card illustrations are turning out really well (knock on wood), and its partly because I'm using a smaller 11x14 canvas instead of the 18x24. There's less space to cover in paint, which saves time. Also, since it's a smaller canvas it's easier to imagine the image on the small format of the finished card.

I've also found a really cool brand of canvas. Even better, it's cheaper than the stuff I normally get. Yes! brand canvas is super smooth; almost like a thick paper. I apply one coat of gesso, sand down the bumps on the surface and presto: a smooth canvas with a hint of tooth. It soaks up paint more than normal canvas, but I think you also get a little more control because of it.

I'm looking forward to finishing these illustrations, then packing up my things and heading down to Philly for their Magic tournament ...

Thursday, November 12, 2009

What's been happening

The last week has been pretty busy, which is terrific. I got the new style guide from Magic, which, for those not aware, is the method by which they keep all their artists on the same page. It explains the theme for the game this year, with a ton of visual cues for style and flavor. But it's top secret so you can't know anything else. My sketches just got back from being approved, so after I stop typing here, its back to work.

While I was waiting on sketches I started a new portfolio piece (above). Nothing genius, but probably much needed to balance out all the fantasy images that are becoming the major part of the portfolio. Also, check out all the cool swag from the 'Brighton Beach Memoirs' Broadway show (below). They actually embroidered the street signs in my painting onto a basball cap. There's also a t-shirt, a poster, a magnet and a coffee mug (which I'm drinking out of right now).

And as a postscript to the whole Broadway Show adventure, I finally made it into the City to see the theater myself. Pretty darn cool.

I promise, I have no more Brighton Beach Memoirs images to post. That's it.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Last day on Broadway

"My" show is closing its Broadway run. It's unfortunate, but I guess that's how the theatre biz operates. But before it closes, here are some shots of the outside of the Nederlander Theatre.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Just putting it out there ...

I want to be invited to join Drawger.

Yes, I realize it's invitation only. Yes, I realize that there are only about 100 working illustrators on the site at this point. Yes, I also realize that my invitation to join would cause many people to question, "Why is he on here?

But screw that. I work hard. I've had some good clients so far. And eventually, I'll be accepted into the SI Annual (eventually). So I'm just putting it out there so that in 2, 5 or 10 years I can look back and say that on October 29, 2009, a goal was set. No real plan, just a goal. But that's how I've been operating for four years, so why change now?

In early 2008, I told people at a party that I was going to have a Magic card illustration by the end of the year. In September 2008, I got my first Magic commission.

Earlier this year, I said I was going to have a book cover illustration by the end of 2009. No book cover yet, but a Broadway poster. And there's still two months left.

I got a new commission from Magic last night (sweet!) and when I get a breather I'll do another portfolio piece. I made a bunch of prints to sell at the Magic tournament in December. The postcards I sent out a few weeks ago didn't yield any results, so I really have to get into the city again and knock on some doors.

The work continues, because what else is there?

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Marathon Mini-Recap

3:18:22 ... not exactly the time I wanted to run. Something went wrong with either my pre-race preparation or my diet during the race. I developed a painful cramp in my side around 10 or 11 miles (which has never happened in training), so I was running in pain for a while. By 15 miles, I had the cramp under control, but my legs were shot. By 19.5 miles, I was walking. I ran/jogged until 25, when I could not run at all. I staggered the last mile and shuffled to the finish.

But I finished. The friends I was running with ended up running 2:53 and 2:55, so they had good races. Another one of my former teammates ran 2:33.

Another race and another learning experience. I'll probably take my fitness from marathon training and do a fast 5K in a couple weeks. But not now. Right now my legs feel like rocks.

Friday, October 23, 2009

October Update

I sent my most recent illustrations over to Wizards HQ yesterday. I'm pleased with what I turned out and I can't wait to see them in print ... 9 months from now. In the meantime, more of my cards will be released in late winter and mid-spring; probably 6 more cards cards (13 total) before the summer.

After I got back from FedEx, I finally sat down and updated my website. I added the newly-published card illustrations. Be sure to click through to the full-size images (1200px wide).

And tomorrow morning I leave for Washington D.C.. The Marine Corps Marathon is Sunday. After my great 20-miler, I hit a bit of a hiccup. I stressed my Achilles last Friday and took 5 days completely off. I ran for the first time on Wednesday and again yesterday. Today will probably be my final run: maybe 6 or so miles. Those five days off have made my body feel terrible. Running 26.2 on Sunday is going to be really interesting.

Feel free to follow the link to the marathon site. You can sign up for "Remote Runner Tracking" which will allow you to receive a text message or e-mail every time I pass certain intervals along the course.

I'm off.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

New Event

Attention! Attention! I'll be attending another Magic: The Gathering Event on December 13th: TCGplayer.com $5k Tournament Series - Philadelphia. Along with fellow guest artist Matt Stewart, I'll be signing cards, doing sketches, showing original art and SELLING PRINTS (!!). Yes, a couple of people requested prints and I'll finally have them available. I'll have at least two 13x19 prints of each card that's been released so far.

So if you're in the Philly area on December 13th, stop by the Pennsylvania Convention Center and say hello.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Impressive Illustrator

I admire Steven Belledin's work. He does a lot of work for Magic: The Gathering. And get this: he works with paint! No, really. Not the software. Actual paint! I'm glad there are still a couple of us out there.

I met him briefly at GenCon '08. I had just shown my portfolio to Wizards and was feeling a little down. I asked him how he got started and if he had an artist rep ... but I forget most of the conversation. All I remember is that he worked hard eventually made his life as an illustrator work.

Which is all I want to do.

Check out Steve's gallery.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Ready to go

Did my final long run of marathon training last night. 20.4 miles in 2:14:56 (6:37 per mile). I had intended to try 6:45 pace, and was right on for the first couple of miles. As I got closer to finishing, I pressed a little, making the last 10 miles a mild acceleration. It felt about as comfortable as 20 miles can possibly feel for me. I think I'm ready to go.

But the marathon is tricky. It's very counterintuitive for me. In races like the 5K (or my college specialty the 1500m), you're pressing the accelerator from the gun. Sure, there's pacing involved, but if you're truly racing, there's no point at which you feel comfortable. My personal experience in the marathon has been much different. For close to 2 hours of running I'm fighting the thought, "I can run faster than this." I want to open up my stride and go for it and I always have to avoid that.

Because as I've learned, even 6:05 pace will feel really easy on race day. Until 18 miles, of course, when suddenly you're walking like a zombie.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Illustration Friday: Flying

Please support Illustration Friday participant and a good friend of mine, John Tomac. He's raising money to support the fight against Leukemia. Visit his site here and lend a few dollars to the Society of Illustrators Team. Please donate before October 15th. If you want a more direct link to the fundraising page (hint, hint) click here.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

What might have been.

Since all these cards are now published, I think I'll give you a little more insight into the method by which the cards are created. Contrary to what many people think, the artists who work on Magic do not sit in a basement doing multiple paintings, hoping that Wizards of the Coast chooses one or two to publish. That would be a terrible business model for both artist and publisher.

I get a very specific description of the assignment, and I try to work that concept into a visual composition. I send out sketches to the art director, and either he likes one of my ideas or we go through a series of revisions until it is right. Here are some sketches from the most recent cards. Same concept, different compositions.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Common Cards

Since most of my cards have been of the "common" variety, today's article about common cards at the Magic the Gathering daily blog featured a lot of my artwork.

Sorry that this is such a lame post. All I'm doing is working and running, so there's not too much to report. Better, more interesting posts are coming.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Artists of Zendikar

Today, art director Jeremy Jarvis posted an article to MagictheGathering.com. It featured the new artists who worked on Zendikar.

Am I one of the only artists who hasn't worked in video games previously? The experience might have helped. Oh well. I keep learning. The current series of cards is going well so far. Gotta keep pushing the intensity of those colors ...

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Zendikar expansion set

The new Magic: The Gathering expansion set was released today. Five of the cards in the 249 card set feature my illustration. Below are images of the cards, the artwork, and a link to download the hi-res image. Enjoy!
Download hi-res image

Download hi-res image

Download hi-res image

Download hi-res image

Download hi-res image

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

The Kor

The buildup to this weekend's pre-release of Zendikar continues over at Magic the Gathering.com. Today they profiled the Kor, a race of pale-skinned , thin humanoid adventurers. And look at one of the pieces of art they used for the article!

There's a backlog of old images that are just waiting to be uploaded to my site. It's been many, many months of stagnation, but from here on out there should be regular site updates at ryanpancoast.com as more decks of Magic are released.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Society of Illustrators Annual #52

I submit to the Society of Illustrators Annual competition every year. And every year, I say, "It's my year."

But every year my rejection letter collection grows. To the left you can see my last four rejections from the past four years. I'm not complaining or whining. It's exceedingly difficult to make the cut: approximately 10% of the 5,000 entries are accepted (and the more "famous" you are, seemingly the easier it is to be accepted, meaning the little guys are often looked over. It's not a bad system, as it keeps the big guys employed and makes us unknowns want to become one of the big guys.)

This year, I've submitted Lion on the Mound (Uncommissioned category), Brighton Beach Memoirs (Advertising), Convincing Mirage (Institutional), and two other Magic cards that are going to be released on Saturday. It's a pretty good sample of my portfolio, and just might catch the jurors' eyes. But to a large extent, getting in relies on luck. Fingers crossed, I'll be adding a letter of acceptance to my door soon.

I also mailed out postcards today to the 50 or so art directors at the major publishing houses. I let them know that my illustration for Brighton Beach Memoirs is hanging on Broadway, and that I would love to work for them, too.

Are any of my illustrator friends submitting anything? John? Jeremy? Kelly? Lars? Cyril?

Saturday, September 19, 2009

UPDATE 9/20: My goal was reached last night! Thanks, and feel free to keep donating!
I'm very close to my fundraising goal to benefit the ALS Association. $50 more dollars and I will have reached $1000. Small donations are gladly appreciated.

Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), often referred to as "Lou Gehrig's Disease," is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects nerve cells in the brain and the spinal cord. In the fall of 2007, one of my good friends Scott was diagnosed with the disease. Since then, he has lead the fight to find a cure and benefit others afflicted with ALS. His indomitable spirit will be my inspiration as I train for race day, October 25, 2009.

I did my 22-miler this week. It didn't go smoothly, but I finished. Then next one will be better. Please visit my fundraising page:


Thursday, September 17, 2009

Zendikar is almost here.

My first card in the Zendikar block was just leaked on MagictheGathering.com. Note that by the silver icon below the image, you can tell it's an "uncommon" card: one step above "common," one step below "rare." But I'm moving up in the world! I have 4 or 5 more Zendikar cards coming out in a couple weeks, and I swear, not all of them are landscapes.

This card depicts a small encampment on the edge of Sejiri, an icy region in Zendikar. It's part of a 5-card uncommon dual land group in Zendikar. Dual land, meaning it is aligned with two colors; in this case Blue and White. If you don't play the game, however, you probably don't care.

I painted this image twice. After I finished the first 18x24 canvas, and I was sure I just ruined my chances of getting more work from Magic. I really didn't like it. It had too many colors and didn't look nearly "cold" enough. The image might have been acceptable (you never know), but I still had a week left so I decided not to take the risk. I primed a new canvas and gave it a second shot, which I liked much better.

I should have saved the first attempt at Sejiri Refuge, as it would have been an interesting example of what might have been. But I didn't. I put gesso over the image and painted another Magic commission right over it.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

New Haven Road Race and other activities

Marathon training continues. Labor Day weekend was a big fitness test and I think I'm doing well so far.

Saturday was the first annual RIT Cross Country Reunion in Rochester, NY. It was kicked off by a 5K half-loop of campus, scored as a alumni vs. current team competition. The current team just beat the alums 26-31 (lowest score wins in cross country). Our score was aided by Olympic Trials qualifier and RIT alum Kevin Collins, but I ran a surprisingly speedy 16:15 for 7th place overall, 3rd among alums and only losing to 3 current RIT runners. We all gathered for a BBQ after the race.

Monday, Labor Day, was the New Haven Road Race/ National 20K Championships. I don't usually schedule races so close together, but I couldn't miss either race, so I was just trying to do the best I could on both days. The New Haven Race is always super-competitive, with many of the nation's best runners vying for a national title. I came in 77th overall in 1:12:50 (5:52 per mile for 12.4 miles). It was 44 seconds faster than my time two years ago, and 6 places down in the rankings, which indicates that participation was up in 2009.

2007 Race:
Overall Time- 1:13:34 (5:56 per mile) 71st place
First 10K- 37:43 (6:04 per mile)
Last 10K - 35:51 (5:46 per mile)

2009 Race:
Overall Time - 1:12:50 (5:52) 77th place.
First 10K - 36:26 (5:52)
Last 1oK - 36:24 (5:52)

You can see this year was a much more evenly-paced effort (exactly even, actually). I was still pretty sore from the 5K on Saturday, so I thought a steady pace would be my best bet. If I slow the tempo by about a minute per mile, I should be able to continue for the full marathon distance (26.2 miles) by the end of October.

In other news, my sister and fellow marathon trainee ran a great 1:28:42 (7:09 pace). My dad, in his first race over 4 miles ran a 1:37:01 (7:49).

2009 results
2007 results

Friday, September 4, 2009

Illustration Friday: Strong

Illustration Friday: Strong. The strength of a lion. It's not a new image specifically for IF, so hardcore IF-ers will have to excuse me. It's rare that one of my pieces fits the theme, so I had to post it.

Be sure to click the image to view it at full size ...

Tuesday, September 1, 2009


It's September! And I don't have to go back to school. It's been 5 years since I've had to, but every year I'm thankful I'm not a student anymore (despite all the "real world" struggles).

Got a great commission this month from Magic for M11. M10, as you'll recall, was released back in July, so you get a sense of how far in advance Wizards of the Coast works. But thankfully my cards are coming out on a regular schedule now. The next six (count 'em, six) are Pre-Released on Sept. 27 and officially released the first week in October, as part of the Zendikar expansion set.

Also, as part of the Magic commission, I'm working on a special project. I'm not exactly sure how much information fans of the game know about it, so I'll just leave it up to your imagination.

As fun as working on cards can be, I really have to get cracking on expanding my client base this month. Yes, I just did a Broadway poster. But a major reason I got the job was dumb luck. The ad agency was looking for someone at the exact time I uploaded Lion on the Mound to the Directory of Illustration online gallery.
So, as John Tomac suggested, I'm going to make a mailer from the Broadway image and hit the publishing companies again. Once I make 2-3 more portfolio images of cute kids doing cute-kid things, I'll make another trip into the city to shake some hands. I just wish I knew what Art Directors needed to see from me (The running joke among illustrators is that if you have a portfolio with only paintings of 9-year-old kids, no Art Director will believe you can paint a 10-year-old kid).

Because I believe I have the talent and the desire. If an illustrator is going to make it, he/she has got to believe that. But sometimes I have the will to stick with it, and other days I think I could really use some cash.

My 2008 goal of getting a Magic Card was accomplished. My 2009 goal of a book cover is still hanging out there, with just a few months left. Time to get cracking.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Broadway Bound

My illustration is up at the Nederlander. Reeeallly cool. What they did with the separated street signs on the marquee looks nice too. I'm batting .000 when it comes to "getting work from other work," but surely some Art Director will see this and like it.


Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Reclaim, Renew, Reuse

My sister has a piece in the show Reclaim, Renew, Reuse, opening today at Ball State University. Obviously, she has more patience for detail than I do. She made the individual links of newspaper one at a time by rolling thin strips, and finished off the back with links of plastic drinking straw. I think it's pretty cool.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Bolt does it again.

If a guy does too many amazing things in a row, does it continue to be amazing? In this case, I think so. Another World Record in the 200m, running 19.19 to break his own 19.30 WR. He went all out in Beijing to get the 19.30, and a year later, becomes the first man to run under 19.30 and 19.20. Stunning.

Monday, August 17, 2009

GP Boston Interview

Three explanations: 1) Magic was not really my debut as a fantasy artist. MML gave me the first shot. www.metalmagicandlore.com 2) This interview was done right after the most hectic part of the day, so I'm surprised I was able to answer any questions at all. 3) The interviewer asked great questions, but he held the camera at about waist height, so I didn't know where to look. So it looks like I'm watching a housefly dart around. But they did a great job of editing so I sound fairly coherent. Thanks Professors!

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Usain Bolt is not human.

9.58. It took 30 years to get from 10.00 seconds to sub-9.90 seconds. It took 1 year to go from 9.70 to sub-9.60. It's the biggest drop in the 100m WR since electronic timing was introduced. Simply, without question, the greatest sprinter in human history. And P.S. Tyson Gay ran an amazing American Record 9.71.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Three Year Improvement

Well, here it is: The New York Times ad. Serino Coyne did a great job with the design, and the art came off pretty well on newsprint. (You can click the image to see the ad closer; my credit is down in the lower right corner running vertical, as most illustration credits are.)

In addition, theneilsimonplays.com has the illustration splashed all over it, which is pretty cool.

My dad has a print of the ad tacked up to the door of his office. By contrast, hanging on the door to my studio is my first published piece. In March 2006, I illustrated a monthly article, Mary's Farm, in Yankee Magazine. I still think its a pretty good concept and fairly well done.

It was done before I learned to use oils. Before I started painting on a large scale. Before I figured out what brand of paints work best. Before I figured out how to prepare a canvas, how to varnish a finished painting, and how to photograph work. Before I bought a camera, lights and a printer.

It's been a long journey in three short years. Yankee Magazine to the New York Times.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Marathon Training: First 20 miler

I'm too tired to write anything good, and I have to get to the studio. Since it was a zillion degrees and a zillion percent humidity last night, I decided to put off this year's first 20-miler until this morning. Good move, but didn't make it any less painful. At the end, I had veins popping out of new places on my legs (Did you know you have veins on your kneecap?). Here's the map of where I ran. Still raising money for ALSa, and fundraising is going very well!

Friday, August 7, 2009


Be sure to look through or pick up August 9th's issue of the New York Times! My illustration for Neil Simon's Brighton Beach Memoirs / Broadway Bound is going to be in the advertistment for the upcoming play.

EDIT: It's in the Arts Section.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

My new printer!

An Epson R1900. Another investment I could finally afford, and another thing I can't believe I did without for 4 years. Suddenly, I don't have to settle for cheap color copies from Kinko's. My portfolio doesn't have to have prints that are too dark, too light or the wrong color. I set it up, read the instructions, and the first print was beautiful. The color and contrast were perfect; exactly what I saw on my monitor.

This is really exciting. I'll be selling 13x19 prints in no time.

Even more

Chris from GP Boston sends along his new collection of rare cards. I'll complete his set at a future event.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

More sketches

GP Boston attendee Joe sent along these sketches he requested at the event: A re-do of Strategic Planning. I gave him four different concepts.

Boston Grand Prix Recap

I'm still reeling a little from the past couple days, and I'm pausing just a second to relax before jumping back into work. The Boston Magic Grand Prix ended up being a lot of fun. I continued to learn from other artists and talk to the fans about what was important to them regarding the artwork in their game.

I left Friday, July 31st to head up to Boston. I figured I would get there around the time Friday's events started at 2pm. As it turned out, the entire state of Connecticut and most of Massachusetts was a parking lot. I spent the entire afternoon in traffic and topped it all off by driving into Boston. It seems that John Winthrop's ideal of "a city on a hill" is now a city crammed full of confusing intersections, underground hairpin turns and ridiculously overpriced parking garages.

Eventually, once I found my way to the Hynes Convention center, I set up a little table in the room where the Grand Prix was being held. I quickly learned that Friday was largely a preliminary day before the big event, so I spent most of the evening sitting by myself; sketching, talking on the phone, sipping water and calming my nerves from the day's drive. After the attendees figured out a) who I was, b )why I was there and c) why I was sitting by myself in the corner of the room, a few people stopped by my table and bought some sketches or prints and talked to me for a while. It was a pretty quiet day, and ended with Rob Dougherty of Your Move Games putting me up in the pretty swanky Fairmont Copley Plaza down the street.

Saturday morning, I woke up and went for my scheduled 7-mile run. I used the time to try and find a cheaper parking garage (not a chance), and a good place to eat breakfast (no way). I got back to the Hynes around 9, and immediately knew this day would be different. The room was already packed. Lars Grant-West, one of the other guest artists, was already there and already had a group of fans around his table. I began setting up my table next to his. I had just flung my portfolio down on the table when someone looked through it and purchased two prints on the spot. I had been there literally two minutes. This was going to be a busy day.

The rest of the day was packed with card signings and sketching requests, all the while explaining that I was a "rookie" Magic artist who only has two cards in print at the moment. I had original art on display, which was a great move, as it definitely got people's attention. Even some of the cooks from the convention center cafeteria came over a watched over my shoulder as I sketched images for people.

Cyril van der Haegen showed up around mid-day. Once all three artists where there, we barely had any time to talk to each other, as there was a constant flow of players coming to the table. Lars suggested we all go out for dinner after the event, and we decided to leave at 8pm. Lars and Cyril have an almost endless pool of knowledge to draw from, and I picked their brains for tips and tricks. By the time I got to bed, I was totally spent.

Sunday turned out to be the day of return customers. After I set up, people who had seen or bought my sketches from the previous day came back for more. After a few hours, I had a list of commissions, the most involved being a recreation of some rare cards: Black Lotus, Mox Jet, etc. I did as much as I could before 3pm, when I decided to leave and save some energy for the drive back home.

Throughout the weekend, in between sketches (above), I had many people ask for prints of my work. So with the money I made, I bought a high-end Epson printer. It should arrive tomorrow, and I can start selling prints through the website when I find a cost-effective way to do so. It was a great weekend, and I hope to attend more like it in the future.

(Attention GP Boston attendees: If I sketched something for you over the weekend scan the sketch and send it to me at ryanpancoast [at] gmail.com. I'd like to post a collection of sketches because I think a couple came out pretty well.)