Incredible Game of Thrones concept art revealed

Game of Thrones concept art

Tobias and team paint The King-Beyond-the-Wall’s makeshift stronghold for season three of the TV series

Tobias Mannewitz took to crossing the street in his lunch break - whenever he had time for one - and entering a veritable village of craftsmen forging swords, testing catapults, painting murals and preparing four huge sets for filming.

"Essentially, all of Northern Ireland is the set for Game of Thrones," reveals the visual effects concept artist in the latest issue of digital art magazine Imagine FX. "But at the heart of it is the former wharf building Paint Hall," located on Belfast's reclaimed Queen's Island.

"Being able to walk into these sets gives you such a great feeling of being involved in the process, and our work on the CG pieces greatly benefited from that."

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While the series locations include Malta and Iceland, it was his Belfast-inspired second season work that won Tobias an Emmy for special visual effects in 2012. Yet he nearly didn't work on it at all.

Restless after years of generating concept art for games, Tobias was looking for a new challenge. In 2011 his Berlin-based studio Karakter was told about a potential job for a new fantasy TV series, and it was, understandably, intrigued. In fact, hiring artists for the new HBO series A Game of Thrones wasn’t going great.

"The team had a very difficult time recruiting VFX concept artists for the show, because no one knew whether it was any good, or whether it'd be worth spending a full summer in rainy Belfast," admits Tobias. Then, inspired by a poster of a troubled Eddard Stark sat on the Iron Throne, Karakter threw its hat into the ring, and got the job...

To read the full story, order the latest issue of ImagineFX - on sale now!

The new IFX includes stunning artwork from various artists

The new IFX includes stunning artwork from various artists

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Beren Neale
Deals Editor

Beren has worked on creative tech magazines and websites at Future Publishing for 13 years. He started this journey as Staff Writer on the digital art magazine ImagineFX, and in 2012 found himself bridging the magazine/website divide as Commissioning Editor on the newly launched Creative Bloq. Since then he took the editor role on ImagineFX, was Launch Editor of the fine art magazine Paint & Draw, moved to Canon Pro Europe website as Deputy Editor, and then edited the graphic design magazine Computer Arts. In 2020 he moved back to Creative Bloq, the biggest global art and design website, and as Deals Editor has applied his expertise in creative tech to help digital creatives get the best deals on the kit that they need and love. Outside of work, Beren likes nothing better than to climb himself a bit of rock.