Inspired by the ‘A Song of Ice and Fire’ books by G. R. R. Martin and the subsequent homage poster by Darrin Crescenzi, I was keen to create a visual catalogue of the Valyrian steel swords of Westeros.
Forged from a magical metal in the days of old Valyria, Valyrian steel swords are of the highest quality and extremely rare, which makes them some of the most sought after prizes in A Song of Ice and Fire. I wanted to illustrate the main* swords, referencing their last known wielders and each wielder’s house. Similar to Crescenzi’s poster, I intended the illustrations to feel modern and clean, juxtaposing the book’s grittiness.
Contrary to the description given in the books, I chose to make the blades almost luminous and glowing but retained the subtle waves in the steel and the red tinge within Oathkeeper and Widow’s Wail. The screen layer adds a varnish to the blades to give them a gloss shine.
I used a varsity-esque font for the sword names because I like the idea of them feeling like a sports team you might support. Everyone has a favourite character or house from the series, so that was something I wanted to bring through using a visual language that people would be familiar with but not necessarily expect. This is echoed in the use of only 2 ‘house colours’ to create each sword handle and name scroll.
*whilst other swords are mentioned, I have attempted to visualise the ones named and given importance by the book. Read Less