Warning: Here there be spoilers for Season 5 of Game of Thrones. Turn back now if you’re not caught up.
Allow me to be Captain Obvious for a moment: Westeros and the lands across the narrow sea and beyond The Wall are gorgeous places. Real life locations and VFX come together in Game of Thrones to create the sort of landscapes you are dying (sometimes literally) to explore. There are times when I think traveling on the Kingsroad to see it all would be worth the risk.
But, I could also choose the easier path and stare at/drool over Season 5 art by Karakter. The German design studio has worked on Game of Thrones since Season 1. Flipping through their portfolio is like taking a lovely, if brutal, walk down memory lane. Season 5 is especially impressive because of Hardhome and Daznak’s Pit–you know, ice zombies and dragons.
See Exhibit A:
For Season 5, Karakter said they worked on shots more complex than anything they’ve produced so far. They designed locales like Winterfell and Daznak’s Pit as “360 degree environments, which could then be explored by the director in search for his perfect camera angle, but were also the basis for subsequent [pre-visualization] work and matte paintings.”
You can really see the depth in the images. Each piece of art tells a story without the context of seeing the finished scenes. I’m impressed by how they incorporate so much motion and movement. For the scene in episode ten where Daenerys was surrounded by a Dothraki horde, Karakter explained, “In order to portray The Dothraki Horde moving as a massive organic army, we took cues from ant swarms and bird flocks.”
Visit the gallery below for more illustrations from Season 5, including plenty of moments from “Hardhome.”
Which one of these pieces would you like to hang on your wall the most? Let me know in the comments.