Do you like great poster design? I do! Sometimes I visit omgposters.com just to get a visual OD. Most of the art on that page could be characterised as; elaborate ink work with a limited color palette. A style you do not meet very often in board games. Saltlands the Mad Maxque board game, is just like that – filled with amazing inked and dark illustrations.
When I saw the illustrations for the game Critters Below I knew I had to speak with the artist behind them! Presenting the ink master Bazsó Lossonczy from Budapest, Hungary.
Tell us a little about your artistic background and how you got into making art for board games?
I got graphic designer degree in Budapest, I work as freelancer since 2013 mostly in music projects (these are 80% of my work) I’m also doing in many type of work -for example board game designs – and while I’m trying to spend more time on my own stuffs. I met with Antler games since 2015 I applied for an ad in which they was looking for graphic designer for their board game – Saltlands – and I’ve been working with them now on Critters Below.
Currently you are the sole illustrator and designer behind the absolutely fantastic looking semi co-op Critters Below. What games have you worked on?
Currently I work in Critters and I have some little task for Saltlands. But there are many things in preparation from Antler Games.
How do you prefer to be briefed on a new assignment?
This is mostly determined by the customer, but I try to get more from my point of view – of course the theme of the project is very decisive – in Saltlands and CB I had the opportunity work in build and invent the world and they liked my ideas.
So I am curious about where you start – with the illustrations or the design/layout.
Usually, we determine the basic mood of the game and most it can passed through on illustrations so it the starting point but I try to align the other design elements to form an complete organic unit.
Can you describe your creative process from idea to final piece, when making a piece of art?
First, I talk to the creators about the starting points and the primary tasks. I do visual and mood gathering work, and then I make quick sketches. Some of these will be selected and further elaborated … they will provide the guiding line while performing specific tasks, of course, we are continually refining the methods and the visual language along with the customer (but luckily I get a lot of freedom in defining the art).
After that, I turn the sketches to definitive illustrations and placing them in the context of that design … this is a huge and important step.
What is in your opinion great art for games?
The mood is perhaps the most important and gives something extra for the game and knows it bring attention to the gaming experience. But, of course, it matters that everything is technically ok.
The mood is perhaps the most important
What is most important to remember when making graphic design for games?
In the case of games, there is a special situation and this is the hardest thing – to serve the users/gamers and the graphic elements will be (which are not illustrative) clear, informative and organic with other parts. They should be an integral part of the concept of the game.
What was your biggest challenge on Critters Below and what are you most happy with?
Critter was made smoothly, maybe for special packaging adaptation (Tin Box) was the most difficult. The front cover is the games primary communication interface and in this case specific requirements had to be met. Mostly I am satisfied with the content of a coherent whole.
What are your preferred tools (software/hardware/traditional) – tell us about your workplace?
I usually sketch it in my sketchbooks. I really like the traditional tools but usually time does not allow them to be used.
I’m currently working on an iMac and a Wacom Cintiq monitor that greatly boost the illustration part.
Drawing on Photoshop, sometimes I use Sketchbook pro. I design elements in the illustrator and the finale work is assembled in inDesign.
Can you name up to 3 artists/designers you admire?
There are so many 🙂
H.R.Giger, Francis Bacon, Egon Schiele, Kondor Béla….
Is there one game you think is particularly beautiful (you did not make)?
What are your current and future projects?
Currently I’m working on the finalisation of the Critters Below, and simultaneously work on several music projects
What is your dream project?
I really want to make my own comic book … I’ve been planning this for years but unfortunately I did not have enough time to do it.
Finally – is there any place for inspiration, creative tutorials, personal shop links or other resources you want to advocate?
Thank you Bazsó for sharing your story with us.