Scent of a Gamer

From the computer to the tabletop, this is all about games. Updated each week-end.

Figments of brilliance: my Nils Hamm card art collection

Every Magic player has their favourite artist. For me, that artist is Nils Hamm. I now have a copy of every card illustrated by Nils Hamm, English language first printing. The cards currently occupy 14 folders, here they are:


The cards are kept in more or less the order of printing. The less part is that I am not entirely sure when some of the older promos came out versus when the card sets of the same year were released. NIls Hamm’s first cards appeared in the Future Sight set, a fitting debut as we would see more of his work in the years since!


The Lorwyn and Shadowmoor sets were great showcases for NIls Hamm’s art. My favourite on this page is that Briarhorn.


A couple of land cards make it on this page. It is no coincidence that all the cards he illustrated in the Shards of Alara set were from the shard of Grixis.


The Stinkweed Imp card from a duel deck is my favourite version of that card. Also on this page is a promotional Planeswalker card, associated with the Playstation version of the Duels of the Planeswalkers game.


I am a fan of full art cards only for creature tokens. Who now remembers what Celestial Purge does? Thanks for the full art though! Also on this page is Grave Titan, part of an iconic creature cycle.


New Phyrexia was a great set for Nils Hamm’s art, so we see several cards here across three colours. Also the card Skullbriar from the first Commander set.


That Bitterblossom in the middle of the page is the most valuable card in the set from a secondary market perspective. It was also the card I paid most to acquire, even though I picked it up before Bitterblossom was unbanned in Modern. The other card of interest on this page is that promo Grave Titan. It is credited to Nils Hamm, but was actually illustrated by Lucas Graciano.

Also Delver of Secrets and Insectile Aberration are from the same double-faced card. I decided to pick up two copies of this and any other double-faced card done by NIls Hamm. Both sides deserve to be seen.


Moan of the Unhallowed is my favourite on this page. Deranged Hermit is just horrifying. The hermit has set his dogs on a man, and is casually going through that man’s belongings while the dogs get to work on him.


The plains on this page is one of my favourite basic land arts now. Also on this page are Thragtusk and Baleful Strix, both highly sought after in their day.


The rat token on this page is great. Also the Mortify art is from the Sorin vs Tibalt duel deck, which I bought so I could get that card. Totally worth it.


You notice how it’s a rare page with no promo card there? Nils Hamm has illustrated a lot of promos, including this game day Trostani’s Summoner card.


Another creature token on this page, this time a Harpy. That promo BIle Blight was tricky to acquire, since at the time i wasn’t playing in FNM events. I tried eBay, but naturally the card I paid for didn’t turn up. First time using that site in seven years reminded me why I stopped using that site. And yes, I bought a pre-release box just to get that Doomwake Giant.


Hey look, a page without promos! This brings us almost up to date, with a trio of black cards from Dragons of Tarkir at the bottom of the page. Your eye was probably drawn to that Elemental token art, which appeared in the green Commander 2014 box.

Hamm15_014The final page is just getting started with one card and a creature token. Also here are two oversized cards NIls Hamm illustrated. The Grixis card comes from Planeschase, while the other is from Archenemy. I missed the boat on getting oversized card sleeves so these two live in a bag right now.

That is it for now. The collection is complete. Perhaps some of the artist’s original work would complement this?


2 comments on “Figments of brilliance: my Nils Hamm card art collection

  1. Ann Wycoff
    May 8, 2015

    Beautiful artwork!

  2. Pingback: 500 articles | Scent of a Gamer

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This entry was posted on May 3, 2015 by in Art, cool stuff, Magic the Gathering and tagged , , , , , , .
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