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Space Park: Lunar Woods

Attention Space Explorers: The next destination in the universe of Space Park has been unveiled... welcome to the Lunar Woods! These lush woods are filled with exotic flora and fauna, pools of moonlight, and bioluminescent lifeforms found only when the moons align...

Before we dive into this one, the Space Park kickstarter campaign has already met it's base funding goal! The fine folks at Keymaster Games just put up a ton of new pledge levels such as trading cards, shirts, POSTERS, and more... if you're interested in grabbing some of those goodies, head over to the Kickstarter page now: 

Space Park  ·  Lunar Woods  · Type Design by Mattox Shuler

Space Park · Lunar Woods · Type Design by Mattox Shuler

For those who may not know, Space Park is a board game designed by Henry Audubon and the fine folks at Keymaster Games which will be launching through kickstarter soon. Players ride rockets to extraordinary realms throughout the galaxy collecting exotic crystals and badges as they set out to become the next great space explorer!

This piece was so much fun to work on because it gave me the opportunity to draw lush and bizarre forests which reach into the stars. It was a fun challenge bending the perspective of the piece toward the moons and even more fun working with these colors.

If you're interested in finding out how this piece came to be, continue reading!

Thumbnail Sketches

The thumbnail sketches for this piece were done very early on in the development process of the game. I knew I wanted to really layer lush foliage on top of bizarre cliff forms and trees. I also had an idea for color so once I had my basic composition nailed down in these small sketches, I threw a few greens and blues down just to capture the feeling I was going for.

I thought this piece would also work well with a perspective which emphasized the size and verticality of the trees. I wanted everything to pull toward the moons so bending the perspective upward was a fun way of accomplishing that.

Space Park  ·  Lunar Woods  · Thumbnail Sketches

Space Park · Lunar Woods · Thumbnail Sketches

Rendering this piece was a lot of fun, but also quite challenging. No matter how detailed my sketches are, there are still a significant number of decisions and choices which have to be made when I'm rendering. Make enough right decisions and the piece comes together... but if you make too many wrong ones, things can fall apart quickly.

Space Park  ·  Lunar Woods  · Background

Space Park · Lunar Woods · Background

I started off with the background and really tried to nail down the feeling of the moons and distant cliffs. I really fell in love with using textures to create these etherial cloud forms which look simultaneously like clouds and parts of the moons. The birds are there to establish scale and depth - and because birds are awesome.

With the moons, cliffs, and birds in place, I moved onto the most daunting aspect of the piece: rendering the trees, foliage, and rock platforms. As I explored the shapes of the hills and trees, I added in lots of green mist to emphasize depth in the piece and create lots of fun areas of interest. For me, whenever I'm able to incorporate lots of layering with my landscape forms, it really helps create interesting interactions I didn't plan on in the sketch - but I deliberately look for those opportunities during the painting process.

The moon pools were also a fun way of continuing the vertical perspective, tracing the forms of the hills, and adding to the overall look and feel of the piece. Once I had them in and added my foreground foliage, the piece was ready to be shipped.


Space Park  ·  Lunar Woods  · Final Illustration

Space Park · Lunar Woods · Final Illustration

Be sure to check out the kickstarter campaign for a chance to own a great board game, cards, posters, and more. I appreciate your support if you choose to do so and thank you for reading my ramblings!

As always, I want to send a big thanks to the guys at Keymaster Games for the opportunity to work on this project and to my agent, Deborah Wolfe, whose tireless efforts make all of this possible.

Take care, explorers!

Brian MillerComment