Katia Howatson and the 2021 Board Game Mosaic Calendar
Katia Howatson is an artist and board game enthusiast. When she is not playing games, she is making board game component mosaics. These beautiful works of art will be reproduced in a high quality calendar comprised of 13 works of art inspired by publishers such as Stonemaier, Gamelyn, Board & Dice and many more! This calendar will be released on Kickstarter soon.
JF: I saw your work online and immediately fell in love with it. Where did you get the idea to make your mosaics from board game pieces?
KH: It all started with the #NameTheGame posts I have been doing on the Board Game Revolution Community Facebook group, which I help admin. To change things up from my regular format, I started doing them in the shapes of mandalas. I thought, why not, it’s nicer to look at then 9 components with numbers beside them that people have to identify. I did several of those mandalas and they seemed to be well received. When the Covid pandemic started, it hit me hard work wise, as well as mentally. I then decided to do a few mosaics (one flower and one palm tree on a beach), just for the fun of it. I figured they would brighten up the feed and get our minds off of what was going on in the world, even if just for a few seconds. Then I did the BGR logo and the BoardgameShot logo which again, people really seemed to enjoy. Gamelyn Games then approached me to do their logo, and it really took off after that.
JF: Do you usually have something in mind before you start, or do you let the pieces guide you so to speak?
KH: It depends. Some images I have made I had something very specific in mind already, whereas some of the creations I have made for the upcoming calendar I have had to “brainstorm” and sometimes sketch something quick so I had a foundation. When I do the mandalas, I definitely go with the flow.
JF: Can you explain to us the process for designing a piece?
KH: Generally, I have a design in mind, a general layout I plan on trying. Then I start pulling out boxes that I know contain pieces of the colors I need, and I put all those baggies and containers of components on my table. I usually try to visualize the layout and the size in my head, then I start assembling. There is normally a lot of assembling, moving pieces, removing pieces, going back in boxes for more colors, etc. I take a few pictures throughout to make sure my proportions are right, and my shadows are showing properly.
JF: I’ve seen that you’ve done several designs for big board game studios, is this something that people can reach out to you and request a commission?
KH: I have been approached by several companies to do commissions, but I need to wait until the calendar Kickstarter campaign is done. I simply don’t have time right now, which means that all the logos and images I have been posting lately are all part of the calendar project. After the campaign is over, I do plan on accepting commissions.
JF: After the Kickstarter, I'll have to get in line for a commission haha. Your upcoming Kickstarter project is going to be a 2021 Board Game Mosaic Calendar, what made you decide on a calendar to showcase your art?
KH: I followed the suggestion I had received from several gamers in the community, but ultimately the reason why I chose a calendar was because of the possibility to make it a partnership with publishers. Each month featuring a different publisher’s game, as well as their logo seemed like a really fun idea. So I started making a list of publishers I wanted to approach and started emailing away.
JF: What was the most enjoyable moment you had in making the 2021 Board Game Mosaic Calendar?
KH: I would have to say the Santorini image for Roxley was probably one of my favorites to make. It was pure color therapy, haha. Although, I have several art pieces I’m holding back that have been equally fun and satisfying to make, but I’m waiting for the Kickstarter campaign to reveal the remaining calendar images. I can’t wait to show the rest of them!!!
JF: Santorini definitely has a zen quality, I really enjoyed my time with that game. Anything else about the calendar you would like to share with us?
KH: Yes! The campaign is mainly for the calendar but there will be some very cool add-ons that you won’t want to miss. One of them I believe will go over very well with fans of Wingspan. :)
JF: What advice would you give to aspiring artists looking for new ways to share their love of the hobby through art?
KH: I don’t know since art is so personal. People can express themselves however they want. I went with my heart on this art form, and it just took off from there I think because it’s unique. I wanted to make beautiful art pieces that people could look at and also try to identify the game components that were used.
JF: I can’t wait for the release of your mosaic calendar, but until then, how can we learn more about Board Game Art Creations and the 2021 Board Game Mosaic Calendar?
KH: You can sign up to get notified on launch with this link:
Make sure to also follow me on Instagram and Facebook under the name Board Game Art Creations:
JF: Awesome, thank you so much Katia!