Ysera is the Aspect of Green Dragons, and is the gatekeeper of the Emerald Dream.
Ysera is green, and her skin glitters with countless emeralds for scales. Her physical form is ghostly, ethereal, like watching a living dream or vision. The Emerald Dream is a place where all living beings dream when sleeping. It is a place of where sentient beings have dreams of hope, and faith for a better tomorrow. From the Emerald Dream, Ysera can observe all lesser races. Her eyes are always closed, although you can see her pupils move constantly below her eyelids as if watching many dreams at once.
Lore from Hearthstone Wiki
I started playing Hearthstone again after the latest expansion "The Grand Tournament" was released. This is actually one of the key reason for my disappearance that I did not mention yesterday. Since I'm a free-to-play miser, there are some cards that I wished I had. One of them is Ysera; the card design is just so cool! I decided to do a fanart of her to restart my personal art routine.
I started with a quick gestural sketch of how I wanted the image to be composted. For this particular painting, I tried to follow the golden ratio.
After I get a composition I'm fairly satisfied with, I sketch in more details of the characters. This is also the time when I started to gather more references (i.e play some Hearthstone).
After a massive losing streak in Hearthstone, I decided to go back to work on the painting. I start by filling in the general color scheme. Being a painting of the emerald dragon, the colors chosen here are pretty straight forward.
After the preliminary work, it is a case of grinding out the rest of the details. Much like grinding the ladder in Hearthstone, the process can be fun and painful at the same time. I, for one, like the monotony of painting details. The two major compositional changes here are that I opened the dragon form's mouth a little more to make it more fearsome, and I shifted the whole painting to the right because the tangent of her fingers to the left edge of the page was bugging me.
At this point in time, I thought I was done with the painting. The only problem I could see was the weird shape the cloak is making. The idea here was that the cloak shouldn't be behind her hand as I wanted to preserve the silhouette. I posted the above image in the Level Up! group and got some comments. One issue that I missed was how the right hand wasn't working. I imagined a more fore-shortened arm, but members of the group did not share my views. I tried iterating the painting based on their comments.
And here's the final form of the painting! I think that making the arm longer and less fore-shortened was a good call. I also like that the hand is no longer a clear silhouette now that it is placed in front of the cloak. This draws more attention to her face and the dragon form behind, which is the focal point of the painting.
Next I added more details on her face. Normally, I will work my paintings from the background to the foreground. But since this is a character-centric piece, I know that it is important to nail down her face as soon as possible. Getting the face right gives me confidence to carry on the rest of the painting.