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Meet the artist who’s trying to tell the story of Elite: Dangerous pilots through his art

Kevin Massey Elite art

Kevin Massey is a Bachelor’s Degree Game Art graduate who works as a freelance concept artist. Outside of his corporate commissions, though, Massey likes to get involved with more personal art from a game he has a strong connection with – Elite: Dangerous. 

Do you love Elite: Dangerous enough to get a portrait done? Perhaps you’ll love all the games in PCGamesN’s list of the best space games on PC.

Around 12 times a month, people approach Massey for one of his portraits. Both he and his customers see his art as a way to bring to life an aspect of Elite: Dangerous that’s currently missing – the human element.

While Frontier Developments go about getting player avatar creation ready for this Horizons season of updates, Massey is already bringing player’s avatars to life with the stroke of a digital brush. Massey has considered plying his trade for other games, particularly if he finds that people want him to, but he’s drawn to Elite because it’s essentially a blank canvas for him to apply his imagination to.

Another Elite: Dangerous piece

As Massey put it to me when we spoke via email: “I am contributing to an aspect that is currently missing. Unlike other popular games that might have a similar market for me – Elder Scrolls, Borderlands, Fallout, Destiny – Elite has a community that is hungry for the human element that is suggested but not present in the current version of the game.

“I have invested a lot of time and lore study in Elite so that I can create these paintings and stay as true to the developer’s vision as possible. Each painting generally has a three day development. The first day is research and setup, the second is painting, and the third is posting. I usually end up sitting on many unfinished paintings, though, as I like to work on several at a time.”

Why not check out Massey’s site that hosts his entire impressive Elite portfolio. You can commission him to do one for you through the same site if you like.

Elite: Dangerous landscape

Massey offers two options. You can have a tall portrait of your CMDR designed in a similar style to the PowerPlay portraits in Elite, for $200 USD.

Or you can opt for a colourful landscape character portrait. The characters are less detailed here, but they better capture your interests and professions, showing off your favorite ship, star, or planet surface. The price for this one is $100 USD and includes four images of various compositions.

“I hope to continue doing these commissions for a long time,” says Massey. “They are entertaining and beneficial to my skills. The Elite community has been amazing and very supportive of me. I have to thank the players for the success I have had because they share my art and expand my circles. I hope you all fly safe and if you see me in the void – CMDR Kevin Massey. Say hello and don’t shoot!”