An artbook of video game fan art is being put together to help raise money for a Blizzard game artist who is suffering from a rare form of cancer. Kevin Kanai Griffith, who currently works as an artist on Diablo III at Blizzard Entertainment, has been fighting an unusual form of cancer known as Alveolar Soft Part Sarcoma (ASPS) for more than 12 months. There's no cure or clear treatment for this type of cancer, which means that treatment options are fairly expensive because they are likely experimental.
Non-profit game-related charity organization Gamers for Good decided to create a campaign to create an artbook of his favorite video games as a way to raise money for his ongoing treatment. The artbook is made up of art from both professional artists and game fans. To-date over 200 artists from the games industry have created art for the book, based on such popular games as Chrono Trigger, Final Fantasy IV, Super Metroid, World of Warcraft, and Minecraft.
Speaking to Develop about the project, Gamers for Good founder Liz Cooper said that her husband worked with Griffith for five years at Blizzard and that they are both good friends with him. In fact, Cooper goes on to say that this particular project was the inspiration for starting the organization in the first place.
"Peet Cooper, my husband, worked with Kevin for five years at Blizzard," she told Develop. "As friends of Kevin, we have personally watched his battle. We have watched a guy who was quick to give back to the game community, game artists and those all around him slide from that position to one where he needed. Being a giver it is hard to become someone who needs. Kevin spent so many hours promoting the art community at Blizzard.”
"Gamers for Good came to fruition to make this project possible, we had been kicking the idea around for a bit, but this gave it purpose," she added. "The artbook was chosen as our outlet because of how much of a huge gamer Kevin is and how connected to the game art community he is. For so many that know and love Kevin, this was a natural way to both present something anyone would be willing to pay for and something that Kevin would enjoy having made in his honor."
The campaign for the art book is live now and is accepting art submissions until November 10th, 2013. You can learn more about it at www.gamersforgood.com/KKG-Artbook.