Interview with fantasy map artist Francesca Baerald

The Butterfly Effect, © Francesca Baerald 2015

The Butterfly Effect, © Francesca Baerald 2015

Today I’m interviewing Francesca Baerald, the talented artist who created the new fantasy map for my novel Knight of Aslath. She is an absolute star and her work is amazing.

So, Francesca, tell us a bit about yourself?

I’m an Italian traditional artist and I consider myself very lucky to be born in such an inspirational country, surrounded by many beautiful historical buildings and wonderful nature. I always loved to draw but I seriously began studying art and illustration only when I was 25. Before that I spent a lot of time studying music (piano, guitar, violin) and playing in a few heavy metal bands. I’m still cultivating my love for music but only in my rare, spare time.

How did you get started creating fantasy art?

My passion for fantasy illustration started while playing videogames and RPGs. I just couldn’t resist trying to put on paper the characters and monsters that populated my mind and my gaming experiences.

You created a beautiful fantasy map for Knight of Aslath, what other kinds of work do you do?

At the moment I’m working on many different kinds of projects: book covers, game and video game art, maps, music album covers, miniatures character design and even labels for bottles! This is one of the reasons why I love being an artist…you’ll never know which will be your next job.

Where has your work featured?

I’ve been featured on various webzines but most of all I’m really proud to have been included in Infected by Art vol.2 and vol.3 artbooks, among many brilliant and famous artists.

Francesca Baerald at work

Francesca Baerald at work

Of all the pieces that you have created, what is your favourite?

I get really close and involved in each and every piece of art I create. I love to study the background and details that clients share with me. The more passion they share, the more I get to know their world. However it is only with those few non-commissioned pieces that I have a true and personal connection, such as ‘Saint George’s Remorse’ and ‘Butterfly Effect’.

What other artists inspire you?

There are so many and I never get tired of searching for new artists to admire and get inspired by. If I have to tell you some names I could say Brom, Jeffrey Jones, Howe, Bonner, Frazetta…

Do you read fantasy? Who are your favourite authors?

I read fantasy but mostly in comic format like Conan’s new series and many other graphic novels from various European artists (Olivier Ledroit, Simon Bisley, Aleksi Briclot, and so many others!)

Thanks Francesca. It’s been a pleasure talking to you and we wish you all the best with your next projects. We will definitely cross paths again when I need my next fantasy map for the Dreaming God Chronicle.  A dopo! (Italian for see you later) 🙂

If you wish to check out more of Francesca’s work, you can find her at:

Or email her at: francesca.baerald [at]

About Scott Foley

Scott Foley is a British fantasy writer based in Manchester. He is author of Knight of Aslath and the Dreaming God Chronicle. Brought up on a steady diet of Tolkien, roleplaying games and a never-ending fascination with the question ‘what if?’, writing fantasy novels seemed the only sensible and worthwhile thing to do with his life. Knight of Aslath is his first novel, and he is currently working on the sequel Warlords of the Dreaming God. Both novels form the beginning of the Dreaming God Chronicle and are set in the fantasy world of Teth-Kiran. Knight of Aslath is available on Amazon, and you can find out more about Scott's work at: