March of the Returned as I resumed hosting Monday Pauper Deck Challenge. Although attendance was still a bit lower than I would like, overall I felt like the event was a big success. It honestly felt quite satisfying to back in my role as host, and I am so grateful to each of you who took the time to thank me for coming back.
While some of my hosting duties are quite familiar, this season I am challenging myself to continue to grow in my skills in terms of consistency, presentation, and the little flourishes. For example, for the first time ever, I created a trophy image for milegyenanevem, the winner of Monday's event, who piloted a very powerful Mono-Black deck. I probably spent about three hours altogether searching online for the right tool, playing with the various elements I could cobble together, and learning the ins and outs of the software. While I certainly have room to grow in my skills as a trophy designer, I felt like my initial design wasn't too shabby:
I ended up using a great free program called Paint.NET, which has many of the features of advance image editors like Photoshop while being much easier to use for a newcomer. While this program doesn't natively support the PSD Photoshop file-type, a quick add-on overcame that limitation with ease. From there, it was a simple task to download the old trophy elements still available over through the Artwork forums on PDCMagic.com. I also uncovered this post by user Polyjak that proved to be quite helpful.
Despite the several hours I had to devote to my first attempt, overall the process seems pretty easy, and in the future I should be able to create these within a much more reasonable time frame each week.
If you missed your chance to participate this week, let me remind you that Monday Pauper Deck Challenge takes place every Monday at 2pm EST. All you need is a Standard Pauper deck, an account on Magic Online, and several hours to devote to playing one of the best formats Magic has to offer. Hope to see you next Monday!