Wednesday, December 19, 2018

Holiday Blitz 2018

The holidays hit my schedule like a bunker buster bomb every year.  At this point I've learned to expect it and this year was no different.  Now that I'm on the tail end of the "blitz" I can look back and oogle at how productive the blitz was.  I averaged about 86 hours/week over the last 4 weeks to ship about 40 orders in that same period.  That's not counting a handful that'll be going out this week.  Some of those orders have already made it up on the blog but most of them were routine production line items so they never quite made it here.  So a quick summary:

Tokens.  Soooooooooooooo many tokens!


Fair few dice cups too:




Bunches of spellbooks


A little pouch

Shoulder straps and a pad (separate orders that just happened to come in at the same time)






And, like I do every year, every order between 25Nov and 01Jan went out with a complimentary ornament.  This year it was a pearl-y snowflake that's worked so well I may just keep making them next year.


Monday, December 17, 2018

Journal, WuTang

I'd come up with the binding for these before developing the more complex binding I use on the spellbooks.  That one's based off how old medieval books were bound and this stitching of the spine's a bit more... direct. I asked my wife though and she was of the mind that this binding was dandy for journals that were more likely to be used for notes than reference material.  Since she's a librarian I took that for a professional opinion and ran with it. =p





Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Dice Cup, Winged D20

The client wanted to get a dice cup as a gift for their D&D fan but wasn't sure which one they'd like best.  I went way back to my original design for the dice cups because it'll be shiny for any roller of D20s!






Tuesday, December 11, 2018

Map, Halbor

Another fantasy map but this one was part of a Reddit Secret Santa program and I think that's such a cool idea.  The client even wrote the recipient a little letter to be included with the map.





Sunday, December 9, 2018

Map, Canberra

This Australian city has an interesting street layout.  There's lots of loops and sectors and the whole thing left me thinking of City Skylines (a city planning simulator).  It's a lot of detail to pack in a medium map but I think we picked the perfect scale to get it just right!





Map, Aberron

Another fun homebrew map!  As these are becoming more and more common I figured I'd lay out some of the process.  The client usually provides a copy of their map, usually from one of the free cartography websites or photos of a handdrawn map.  From that I build a draft (sort of like a blueprint for the leather map).  Occasionally I'm able to hand draw my own version of the map as part of the drafting process but that takes several hours so I'm not able to do it all the time.

The client and I go back and forth over the draft a few times to fix any errors, fine-tune image placement, mark special locations, etc.  The draft itself isn't all that much to look at since it's just meant to inform how the map will be carved.
Once the draft is approve it gets transferred onto the leather and, after it's been cased, I get to carving.  That's a lengthy process I've gone into in older posts so I won't do the step-by-step here.
Once it's carved I do the staining (more arcane craftsmenship) and when that's all cured it gets stitched down to some 1/4" MDF to keep it flat and sturdy.  The whole process could probably be done in 3-4 days at the absolute fastest but since I'm usually juggling multiple orders most maps ship within 1-2 weeks of purchase.


Thursday, November 29, 2018

Map, Illum

I was lucky enough to get a lot of D&D map commissions this season and this was just one of the first.  I was able to use some tinting to call out some of the terrain and I was so happy with how that came out that I didn't much mind that my maker's mark wound up upside-down.  Because that's the kind of stupid derp I couldn't fix in the middle of a holiday blitz.