Joe Slucher

Joe Slucher - Designer

Cincinnati, OH, USA

I am a digital painter best known for recent illustrations for the game Magic the Gathering. I love both action and quieter scenes.

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Overview

I am best known for my digital paintings of fantasy and surreal subjects. I love to paint the drama of covers,the action in gaming art and the beautifully melancholy in my personal work. The strength of my work lies in composition,textures and ability to capture light. My most recent work has all been for Magic the Gathering but my client list includes Wizards of the Coast, Hex Entertainment, Valve Software, Monte Cook Games and many others including a list of indie authors.

I have a process that I think helps make sure the cover is something the author has approved at every step and is never suddenly surprised by what the final product is and I never have unpleasant surprises either. If you have a very specific image in mind from the beginning then the process may go from sketch to color rough to final.

Preferred Process
1.Author sends a couple of scene descriptions
2. I create a variety of thumbnails to cover several different directions. Thumbnails are very simple and just convey the rough idea of a composition. I listen to your feedback.
3.Rough sketch stage for one or possibly two of the directions. The rough sketch makes clear the perspective and poses of the characters and there is some implied costuming and expressions but they may not be very clear.
4.Author feedback and revisions. The poses,camera angle and composition are locked in upon approval.
5.Final drawing. The final drawing is where we see the details in the costuming,expressions,proportions,etc. This is the point when the author should voice any concerns or objections about these new details. I'll listen to feedback and make edits. Once approved those details are locked in.
6.Color rough(this may occur earlier if it is vital to the image). I provide a rough color treatment of the illustration and listen to feedback from the author. This is determining what the lighting and colors of things will be. Once this is approved I won't change the lighting scenario.
7. Finished illustration. At this point nothing should be a surprise about the final image as we have talked about and walked through each aspect of the project. After turning in the final the only revisions should be small color or value tweaks such as reddening some lips, making an alien a bit more green,etc.

The above process can be shortened if you want to trust more in me and need your cover as soon as possible. For a rush job I expect a single clear description and I will provide rough sketches for approval and then go straight to final. After the final is turned in I will only make small tweaks.
Services
Languages
English
Fiction
Action & Adventure
Comics & Graphic Novels
Epic Fantasy
Gaming & LitRPG
Middle Grade Fantasy
Post-Apocalyptic
Young Adult Fantasy

Work experience

Illustrator

Self-employed
August, 2003 – Present (about 17 years)

I have illustrated a variety of projects over the past decade with a client list including Hasbro (Magic the Gathering), Cryptozoic (Hex TCG), Supergenius Studios, Rhino Games (Mythgard), Valve (Artifact) and many other companies. I have also created book covers for several authors including Liz Coley, Bradley North, Brian Wells, Meredith Watson, Nathan Mangion, Dario Nardi,Mark Fassett, Grant Andreasen, New Gods of Mankind, Monte Cook Games and several covers for comics such as Bryan Sanders' Four Freedom and Carpe Chaos' anthology.

Portfolio (10 selected works)

The Houses of the Curious (Parallel)

John Bowie

2019 Book Excellence Awards Finalist in Science FictionWhen memories of a stranger burst into Aurora’s mind her life is turned upside down. Desperate for answers and pursued by a ruthless mercenary, Aurora is thrust into a war fought across time between shadowy forces and a pantheon of digital beings. With the help of an exiled war hero, Aurora and her friends descend into a wondrous new world... read more

2019 Book Excellence Awards Finalist in Science FictionWhen memories of a stranger burst into Aurora’s mind her life is turned upside down. Desperate for answers and pursued by a ruthless mercenary, Aurora is thrust into a war fought across time between shadowy forces and a pantheon of digital beings. With the help of an exiled war hero, Aurora and her friends descend into a wondrous new world... read more

The League and the Lantern

Brian Wells

AFTER A DISASTROUS SIXTH GRADE, Jake Herndon is anxiously awaiting his Big Do-Over, starting with his new school's notorious seventh grade sleepover. Awkward team-building games and forced fun quickly become the least of his problems, however, when a dangerous organization invades and the night takes a shocking turn. Jake and two new classmates, Lucy and TJ, barely escape, only to find themsel... read more

AFTER A DISASTROUS SIXTH GRADE, Jake Herndon is anxiously awaiting his Big Do-Over, starting with his new school's notorious seventh grade sleepover. Awkward team-building games and forced fun quickly become the least of his problems, however, when a dangerous organization invades and the night takes a shocking turn. Jake and two new classmates, Lucy and TJ, barely escape, only to find themsel... read more

The League and the Legend: Jake and the League Book 2

Brian Wells

After a back-to-school night that became a frenzied fight for survival, seventh grade has finally settled down for Jake, Lucy, and TJ. Of course, there are still your basic Level Three humiliations: awkward hygiene challenges, toxic nicknames, and science fair debacles. But at least nobody is running for their life. That all changes when dangerous intruders descend on the historic Chicago hote... read more

After a back-to-school night that became a frenzied fight for survival, seventh grade has finally settled down for Jake, Lucy, and TJ. Of course, there are still your basic Level Three humiliations: awkward hygiene challenges, toxic nicknames, and science fair debacles. But at least nobody is running for their life. That all changes when dangerous intruders descend on the historic Chicago hote... read more

The Captain's Kid

Liz Coley

Whenever his parents went out on missions for the Space Survey Corps, Brandon Webb was left behind on Luna, left to dream of journeying between the stars, meeting aliens, defeating villains, saving the world. Now it's his turn for adventure, permitted at last by the captain, his father, to join a year-long trip to a failing colonial planet on an emergency resupply run. Or so he's told.Brandon'... read more

Whenever his parents went out on missions for the Space Survey Corps, Brandon Webb was left behind on Luna, left to dream of journeying between the stars, meeting aliens, defeating villains, saving the world. Now it's his turn for adventure, permitted at last by the captain, his father, to join a year-long trip to a failing colonial planet on an emergency resupply run. Or so he's told.Brandon'... read more

Fragments - A Wizard's Work Book Two

Mark Fassett

Denied AdmittanceSix months have passed since Robert proved he completed his apprenticeship by defeating Orliss Kilore, yet the shattered Wizard’s Guild will not admit him to their membership. They claim they are protecting him, but he believes they have some other motive.The New AcademyAngela has not seen Robert in months, not since the funeral for her old mentor, Monteous Roarke. Her studies... read more

Denied AdmittanceSix months have passed since Robert proved he completed his apprenticeship by defeating Orliss Kilore, yet the shattered Wizard’s Guild will not admit him to their membership. They claim they are protecting him, but he believes they have some other motive.The New AcademyAngela has not seen Robert in months, not since the funeral for her old mentor, Monteous Roarke. Her studies... read more

Shattered - A Wizard's Work Book One

Mark Fassett

Four Apprentices - Robert remembers little of his life before Master Wizard Monteous Roarke rescued him and made Robert an apprentice wizard. Angela holds secrets about her life she fears to tell anyone, especially Robert. Gerard wants Angela for himself, and tires of finishing second. Wallace just wants to learn… everything.A Work Gone Wrong - When an unknown assailant attacks Monteous as he ... read more

Four Apprentices - Robert remembers little of his life before Master Wizard Monteous Roarke rescued him and made Robert an apprentice wizard. Angela holds secrets about her life she fears to tell anyone, especially Robert. Gerard wants Angela for himself, and tires of finishing second. Wallace just wants to learn… everything.A Work Gone Wrong - When an unknown assailant attacks Monteous as he ... read more

Questioner's Shadow (Lords of Genova Book 1)

Mark Fassett

On the run from an Empire he once served, Lord Questioner Petyr Ocyna stumbles across the mutilated body of a young woman in the middle of the forest, not far from a strange barrier known as the Fringe. Despite the urgings of his companion Alec, Petyr chooses to risk a possible trip to the gallows in order to discover the killer. But the truth he uncovers in the small logging town of Dunsriver... read more

On the run from an Empire he once served, Lord Questioner Petyr Ocyna stumbles across the mutilated body of a young woman in the middle of the forest, not far from a strange barrier known as the Fringe. Despite the urgings of his companion Alec, Petyr chooses to risk a possible trip to the gallows in order to discover the killer. But the truth he uncovers in the small logging town of Dunsriver... read more

The Sacrifice of Mendleson Moony

Mark Fassett

Fisherman Mendleson Moony lost his family in a fire. Four years later, he still mourns and has given up the sea to farm his land.Henrietta Swooth, the Seer that has lived across the road from him for the last three years, has a secret. She knows the time and place of her death, and she must soon leave to meet it.A vision sends her to the summer festival, where she and Mendleson talk for the fi... read more

Fisherman Mendleson Moony lost his family in a fire. Four years later, he still mourns and has given up the sea to farm his land.Henrietta Swooth, the Seer that has lived across the road from him for the last three years, has a secret. She knows the time and place of her death, and she must soon leave to meet it.A vision sends her to the summer festival, where she and Mendleson talk for the fi... read more

Fantasia Divinity Magazine: Issue 1, August 2016

Madeline L. Stout, Cathleen Townsend, Evan Henry, CB Droege, Bartholomew Klick, John Grey

In this first issue of Fantasia Divinity Magazine, we feature five stories by very talented writers. First, in “Millions of Suns Left” by Evan Henry, you will embark on a dangerous intergalactic mission to find a mysterious object that can save Earth from invaders. Next we have “Man from Oyon” by CB Droege, a flash piece where a mirror that is supposed to allow you talk to the dead ends up hav... read more

In this first issue of Fantasia Divinity Magazine, we feature five stories by very talented writers. First, in “Millions of Suns Left” by Evan Henry, you will embark on a dangerous intergalactic mission to find a mysterious object that can save Earth from invaders. Next we have “Man from Oyon” by CB Droege, a flash piece where a mirror that is supposed to allow you talk to the dead ends up hav... read more

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