MTG duo Starsieve talks about their favorite pieces of Magic artwork

Artists Brigitte Roka and Clifton Stommel, the duo that make up Starsieve, rather enjoy creating artwork for Magic: The Gathering cards.

In fact, when Roka received her first commission from Wizards of the Coast, Stommel (whom had been playing Magic for nearly 30 years) almost couldn't believe it.  And that's because of the card WotC assigned to her.  And, so far, it's still the favorite card for Roka that she's done for the game.

"The most meaningful card that I've done for Magic is, for sure, the first card I ever did, which is Lightning Bolt, and I did not realize the significance of that being my first card when I first did it because I did not know how to play the game when I started making art for Magic," she says.

"When I discovered that Brigette's first card was a Lightning Bolt and she hadn't played, I was like're sitting down [and] you're learning Magic," Stommel tells.

It's a card Roka that Roka, who now knows how to play the game, recognizes as special and a classic.


Of course, Lightning Bolt isn't the only card illustrated for the game by Roka.

Since her debut in the game in 2020, she has created illustrations for seven cards with more on the way -- including those in collaboration with Stommel.

Of those, two others stand out as favorites for the duo.

"I also am really fond of Mystical Dispute," says Roka.  "That's the first Magic card I did that was fully traditional because...I would start it digitally and finish traditionally and Mystical Dispute was the first one that I decided, you know what, I'm just gonna go for it -- I'm gonna do it."

Though, she finds humor in it being one of her favorite card arts for a simple reason: she doesn't enjoy playing blue.

"And what better card to run if you're not fond of running blue, anyway," jests Stommel.  "It's a blue card that's anti-blue."

As for their next favorite, it's not out yet.  But they can't wait until they're able to share it with Magic: The Gathering players once it does release.

Not only that, it will be one of the first cards printed in full collaboration with Stommel.

"The next one...[it's] a super impactful card when it comes out next year," Stommel teases.

In fact, this yet-to-be-revealed card art is the first one that Roka and Stommel worked on together.

"It's the first card we did together and it's such a good one," exclaims Roka.

Stommel continues, saying "it's so good -- it's so playable.  We are for sure running it...I can't wait for this card to come out so we can talk about it all the time."

Creating card art in tandem with Stommel, whom is an award-winning cinematographer, is something that Magic players should expect going forward.  For Roka as it's a collaboration worth cherishing.

"Ever since we started our studio, Starsieve, I just don't want to work on anything by myself anymore," she says.

Barry White

Barry White is a longtime Magic: The Gathering player, having started in 1994 shortly before the release of 'Fallen Empires.' After graduating from the University of Nevada, Reno, he went on to a 15-year journalism career as a writer, reporter, and videographer for three different ABC affiliate newsrooms.