Who to Follow – Card Artists, Part 1
Like a lot of you, I am a Redditor. It’s been a complicated relationship; Reddit got me my first writing gig on QuietSpeculation, and Reddit made a lot of time when I could have been more productive disappear.
For the unfamiliar, Reddit is a large, text-based forum where users subscribe to sub-fora relevant to their interests. Other users will come across interesting articles, pictures, and links in their Internet meandering, and they’ll post those links in the appropriate sub-fora for the perusal of the readers. People can up-vote good, quality content, and they can down-vote poor content (and grammar mistakes), so democratically, the best (at least according to the hive mind) content ends up at the top of the page for a day or two so it’s most likely to be viewed.
Briefly, since I know there is a contingent of my readership that is interested in MTG finance, I was in on the ground floor of the creation of the subReddit r/mtgfinance. The community has grown to over seven hundred members in a few short months, and new members join daily. If you’re Redditing, sign up. If you’re not a Redditor, it’s free to join, and all it costs you is a hundred percent of your free time. This subReddit is a great place to learn about and discuss MTG finance.
Like many Internet communities, Reddit has evolved its own language, its own memes, and its own champions. I was inspired to write about card artists today because I find myself struck by how much the Reddit community loves Noah Bradley. Seriously, Reddit loves it some Noah. It may be as simple as the fact that Noah bothered to ingratiate himself with the community and show us his sketches, behind-the-scenes stuff, and upcoming art releases. Maybe it’s his Inigo Montoya facial hair. All I know is that the man has made himself the patron saint of the Reddit Magic community, and I think his mastery of social media played a role. Let’s dive right in and make the case for being his next big fan.
Where You Know Him From: The bottom-left corner of Mizzium Mortars
Current Title: Artist (not the unemployed kind)
That’s a pretty big list of social media. Maybe you’re getting a better idea of how good this man is at marketing himself. Obviously, he’s a talented painter—we wouldn’t be discussing his contributions to the game if he weren’t because he’d be the unemployed kind of artist.
The impetus for following Noah on the various social media is part this . . .
. . . and part this . . .
Learn to be a better artist this summer. Save $50 if you register before next week: noahbradley.com/artcamp/
— Noah Bradley (@noahbradley) May 7, 2013
That’s right: The man is running a summer camp for artists. For twelve weeks. That’s a 1 followed by a 2. If you’re up to the challenge of being pushed and you think this could help you as an artist, you might be right.
This might also be relevant to your interests.
— Noah Bradley (@noahbradley) April 30, 2013
I could keep going, but you should explore his offerings a bit on your own. He’s a worthwhile Twitter follower at minimum, and we could all learn a lesson about how to optimize our social media exposure to be more successful at what we do.
Where You Know Him From: Painting your cards so you don’t have to
Current Title: Artist, professional Grand Prix guest
Do you have any idea how hard it is to find a picture of RK Post in which he isn’t making a goofy face? Not nearly as hard as I’m probably making it out to be, but still. RK Post is quite the character.
MJ Scott knows as well as I do, having done this interview on this very site. A frequent attendee of Grands Prix, RK Post (I keep using his full name because it sounds weird to call him RK and incorrect to call him Mr. Post, and he threatened to eat my face if I call him Randy) is as approachable as he is hilarious.
If you’ve ever seen GatheringMagic finance writer Ryan Bushard walk, you’ll know his minor disability gives him a bit of a duck walk. Ryan collected Pokémon Psyduck cards for years as a way of poking fun at himself. Gatecrash came along and changed everything with the printing of the card Shambleshark. What do you call a value trader who shambles when he walks? Exactly. Just like that, we had the perfect card to collect, and we’ve amassed quite a collection of foil Shamblesharks. At Grand Prix: Pittsburgh, RK Post and I were just BSing between rounds (I have approximately fifty minutes free between rounds since I go to trade and sell), and we came up with the idea of putting Psyduck’s face on a foil Shambleshark. Since then, I’ve had every artist I see at an event alter the card in a similar way, putting their own unique spin on it. This is what RK Post came up with:
This was the first of many. Each artist puts his or her own unique spin on the project, but this one will always be the one that inspired the project.
I’ve had a lot of good personal interactions with RK Post, but if you’re not inclined to follow him around the country like some manner of card-art groupie, I’d suggest following him on Twitter. His tweets speak for themselves.
— rk post (@postrk) April 25, 2013
Where You Know Him From: Knights of the Old Republic apparently
Current Title: Illustrator
If you play Legacy B/U/G, this is the guy who illustrated the two best cards in your deck. You’re welcome.
Steve doesn’t just contribute art to Magic, but he’s a rock star in the Magic community nonetheless. A frequent guest at Grands Prix, Argyle moves more stuff off his table than any artist I’ve ever seen. Illustrating iconic cards such as Liliana of the Veil probably can’t hurt his merch sales, and he knows what looks good on a play mat.
If you’re following Steve on Twitter, you’ll know his Twitter is just lousy with pictures of alters he does at events. Also, you’re in a very elite group currently. With fewer than a thousand followers, Argyle is lagging behind some of the artists profiled in this article, and that feels noncorrect. Steve’s Twitter especially is chock-full of information about where he’ll be appearing as well as cool stuff like this . . .
— Steve Argyle (@Steve_Argyle) April 14, 2013
. . . or this . . .
This seems wildly appropriate. -Event paintmarker alter. tmblr.co/ZraMrwZUwlnl
— Steve Argyle (@Steve_Argyle) December 16, 2012
Steve is among the game’s best artists working now, his alters look great, and he should have way more Twitter followers. You know what to do, readers. Go forth, and bury him in a new fan avalanche the likes of which he’s likely seen before a few times. Still, though. This time, I made it happen. So that’s new.
Anyway, that’s all I have for you today, kiddos. Tune in next week, where I’ll decide on the fly how I can tie together a disparate group of seemingly unrelated individuals. Thanks for reading, and don’t forget to follow me. My retweets alone warrant it.