Book I of the Tales of Orlen Series, Long Live The Emperor, was released after 2 years of story/character development, script writing for each scene and tons of time spent on illustrations. As I (Jaron) began working on Book II – The Mercenary & The Crystal Eye – I realized it was going to be at least twice as long as Long Live The Emperor so I was going to need help if I hoped to release it within 2 years of publishing Long Live The Emperor.
Backgrounds have always been the most time consuming part of illustration so if I was going to bring someone else onto the team it would be a background artist. So I went looking on Fiverr to see if there was anyone freelancing that had ability and style that I felt I could work with. I knew it would have to be someone who could commit to a long term project and would be able to copy my style. I was very excited when I found a great artist named Alice Tista.
Alice is a wonderful/talented artist from Indonesia and is a joy to work with. Being able to hire her as an assistant background artist after being in ‘official’ business for just 2 years is a great early milestone in our goal to build our studio team. Now I’m getting twice as much work done on a weekly basis since I can illustrate the characters and she can do the backgrounds according to my directions. I still find myself working on some backgrounds myself but she does the bulk of the work for which I am very grateful.