Let's meet the designer and illustrator responsible for the look and feel of Grand Prix Orlando - Ray Dill and Andrea Radeck!
Introduce yourselves! Who are you?
I'm Andrea Radeck. I paint Creature Collection items like the Khans of Tarkir parody Prerelease playmat and I did the GP Orlando Playmat illustration.
Ray Dill, Assistant Marketing Manager - Graphic Design for StarCityGames.com. I've been working here two years. My team and I are responsible for the look and feel of StarCityGames.com and all our GPs. I came up with the concept of a Magic-themed parody park, as well as using the park map as the playmat. I designed the park layout, with Andrea Radeck illustrating. I also designed all the pins and the logo and identity package for GP Orlando.
What is Dominaria Resort?
(Andrea) Clearly the most magical plane in the Multiverse.
(Ray) The most magical plane in the Multiverse!
Where did the theme park theme come from?
(Ray) We were looking for something that was uniquely Orlando. When you think of Orlando, you think of theme parks. So why not a Magic-themed park?
(Andrea) We were looking for a new take on how to use the theme park theme, and voila, maps!
What's the key to making a good theme park map?
(Ray) Interesting attractions, which were illustrated perfectly by Andrea. Also puns. Lots of puns. I really can't say enough about Andrea. Her illustration took my theme park map concept to a whole other level.
(Andrea) Having it be easily identifiable. Simpler designs to sum up a sometimes complex theme/pun. Being bright and colorful and visually interesting to look at helps too. If it can look like a sophisticated twelve year old drew it, then even better!
What's your favorite attraction? Dining? Shopping?
(Andrea) Didgeridoo, because it's got the tale of the minotaur on the didgeridoo itself, starting from the bottom where the minotaur's summoned, then he goes to fight your enemies. Then he takes a nap. We've also got a replica of said didgeridoo made out of a cardboard tube here at work that's played terribly on occasion. For dining, it's probably the Thallid Bar. I love a good pun. Shopping? Besides Didgeridoo, Oblivion Bling, probably.
(Ray) My favorite pin attraction is the Chaos Orbiter. I've loved Chaos Orb since I started playing, and I like how it anchors the piece. Dining is a tie between Feast of the Unicorn for its amazing illustration and Horizon Canapes for its awesome punny name. Shopping is Mall of the Conclave, cause ya know, puns.
How did you go about naming the sections, the attractions, and so on?
(Andrea) Ray's the man for that part of this job. I just laughed at the puns afterwards.
(Ray) We had a few brainstorm sessions within the Marketing Department. Definitely a team effort. I knew I wanted five sections based on the five colors centered around Chaos Orb (our Epcot Spaceship Earth). It had to have some rollercoasters, a free fall ride of some sort, food and gift shops. I wanted to parody iconic attractions, like the Flying Dumbo ride at Disney. Magic doesn't have flying elephants, but it does have flying hippos!
Why the pins?
(Andrea) Everyone loves pins! It's a fun and interesting way to have people fully enjoy the Grand Prix.
(Ray) Disney parks have this entire culture of pin collecting and trading. They act as neat little souvenirs. Magic players already have a history of sticking Top 8 pins to their playmats, so we designed the GP Orlando playmats with this in mind, giving each pin a proper place on the mat.
What went into making the pins that people wouldn't expect?
(Andrea) Explosions, mostly. Ray's the pin-master.
(Ray) It's a fine line between the real world and the Magic world. We needed to cross the streams for parody's sake, but going too real felt weird. My original design for the Squirrel Wrangler Stunt Spectacular pin had the squirrel riding a motorcycle. In the end it just felt too real, not Magic-y enough. So I put the little guy on a bomb, which put it squarely within the Magic Universe (see Goblin Kaboomist) but maintained the stunt show feeling I was going for.
Tomorrow, we'll announce a special guest who'll be joining us at Grand Prix Orlando. Stay tuned!