Have you seen the New Salem art ? Meet Andrea Olgiati – the artist.

WE might remember New Salem (designed by Brian Henk & Clayton Skacke) the ‘hidden identity’ card game on Kickstarter but I had forgotten the mesmerising images on the cards. It was only because Overworld Games have it as a pledge reward on Booze Barons (which also looks great by the way) – that I could see we had to interview the Artist behind New Salem. Meet Andrea from Locarno, Switzerland.



Tell us how you got to work on New Salem. Are you the sole artist on all elements (illustrations, layout, icons etc.) or did you work with others?

I was contacted by the authors of the game who had seen my work on Winter Tales, and they wanted my style to represent New Salem. Yes i’m the sole artist of the game, I made each graphic elements of the game, from icons to the illustrations.


Did you get detailed instructions on what to draw or was it an more open brief from your client?

About the creative liberty, Brian and Clayton have been fantastic. Limitations were all linked to the game mechanics. I really had a lot of freedom in building the New Salem universe. And it was great!click_info



Is there any special software or hardware tools you use when working?
I make everything digitally with a Cintiq tablet/screen.


What size is the Cintiq?
I Work with a 22HD.


Could you shortly describe your workflow on the New Salem designs. From start to the final image.
I start with some preliminary sketches to define the flow of all the graphics I have to draw. When I’m sure the direction is right, I create all the final artworks in sequence.




How did you find inspiration for the characters and theme?
Hehe, I’m a dreamer so it is probably because I mainly live in my mind. Everything I need for inventing and producing all the graphics of a game, I can find there. From Movies, feelings, memories, friends… It is always a mix of different things.


What’s the most difficult about creating board game art?
I don’t find anything specific difficult. The only obstacles I meet, is usually related to the individual artistic pieces. Finishing the job, square the circle or create something coherent.


Is there any special techniques you use in the creation process you what to share?
No special technique – just many, many brush strokes, one above the other, until everything works.

No special technique – just many, many brush strokes, one above the other, until everything works.

How much was you involved in the kickstarter page?
I constantly followed the comments of the backers, and part of the artwork I created during the campaign, in order to provide continuous updates to the backers.


Is the other things – games, books etc. you are proud to have worked on?
Winter Tales(Fantasy Flight Games), it is the first boardgame I have worked on, and I love it.


What is your own favourite art from New Salem?
personally… the pawnbroker!


Who are your favorite artists out there?
Moebius. rest in peace.


Do you play board games yourself?
I like many different boardgames! I always like to try new games!


Finally – is there any place of inspiration, creative tutorials, shop links or other resources you want to advocate?
I could not say anything specific. Everything is useful if one knows how to use it. It seems a strange phrase, but I do not know how to say it better. There are no tricks about drawing. The only way to really learn it, is to give it all the time you have.


Thank you for taking time to talk with us all. Again we would love more readers to get hooked.


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