World of Vintage Postercraft

If you want broccoli on your pizza, I don’t care. If you’re looking for the person who made those vintage World of Warcraft posters PC Gamer published, you’ve come to the right place.

After spending an afternoon searching for instances of them being shared since PC Gamer’s online-reissuing (originally found in their August 2011 magazine), I was surprised to discover that a fair amount of people are actually interested in the posters, across a number of networks around the internet (Twitter, Tumblr, general blogs, etc.). And while I have no idea who Eric Hawkins is, stuff like this–and especially stuff like this–helps me believe that there’s some truth to what observations I’ve made. It also made me happy to gleam that they hit home with the sort of folks I was hoping: old-school WoW players.

I’ll be honest, I’m not exactly sure how I hope to achieve what I’d like to with this post: making a place for anyone who’s looking to learn more about the posters. Whatever that may be is more or less up to you, the reader–this is just one place to start, for me.  So, if you’re out there and curious, please feel welcome to ask anything and everything about them–I’ll edit/append this post accordingly.

In the meantime, I’ll answer the most frequently asked question I’ve gotten about the posters, that being, “Where can I buy them?” A selection of print options are now available, right here.

Lastly, while PC Gamer was generous enough to include an interview with me on top of the posters in their outlet (many thanks to Josh Augustine for that), there were a few more questions that didn’t run with the final article. So, here’s the rest of what they asked, and what I had to say:

How long have you been playing WoW?
All the way back to when it was just Vanilla, but I haven’t been back to Azeroth in quite some time actually. It’s always been on and off as close friends leave or return to the game. To be honest, it sort of became one of our primary means of keeping in touch when we were geographically split up during college.

Being new to WoW when it was still new to the larger gaming community made it very easy for the old world to leave a strong impression on my perception of it. Not having to rush to catch up with an expansion meant you got to spend a lot of time in plain-old Azeroth, and that experience played a significant role in this project.

Do you do graphics/artwork for a living?
I’ve been designing mobile applications on both tablets and smart phones every day for over a year now. So, while I do art and design for a living, it’s much more about interactive design as opposed to being purely illustrative like the posters are.

My major is actually in game design, and my previous job was the result of an internship where several of us developed a mobile game for one summer. Before that, I was creating levels and prototyping game modes for TF2 and L4D in Valve’s Source SDK to educate myself and alongside my peers.

Even though designing games and making art for them is much different from the demands of most mobile apps, a surprising amount of best-practices are shared between them. The same goes for what I do now: lessons in contemporary graphic design provided me with useful tools, both stylistic and technical, that brought me to what you see now in the posters.

What inspired you to make this series of posters?
I was out of town visiting a friend of mine, with whom I played WoW since day one, right before Cataclysm hit–which no doubt lead to a long discussion about it. At some point in the conversation, I wondered what all this vintage content would look like if it had a deliberate vintage/retro aesthetic to it.

When I returned home I started playing with two-tone illustrations of tableau’s from the old world just to see what it might look like, and got pretty carried away after a couple hours. Integrating the quotes was a result of improvisation, but they really helped compose each subsequent scene. From there, I sort of saw them becoming advertisements to taunt and lure players into revisiting these now-abandoned “hot-spots” one more time.

The article that ran in PC Gamer’s August 2011 issue. Hit the image for the full page.

If you’d like to see what art & design work I’ve been up to most recently, my Dribbble page is probably the best place to go for that for the time being (it’s more iterations than final drafts, but it’s the most immediate way for me to share new work while renovating my website).

If you’d like to download the posters themselves (at print-ready scale, too) you can find them back at PC Gamer’s original write-up. Just hit the images embedded in the page to bring up the full-resolution file/s. Right-click and save to your heart’s content (you know the drill).

Hope to hear from you, whoever, wherever you are.

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