How They Brew It - A Pigment Of Your Imagination

Michael Celani • October 11, 2021

Momir Vig, Simic Visionary by Victor Adame

Calling all artistic connoisseurs, schoolchildren on field trips, and people pretending to be cultured: the National Gallery is hosting a once-in-a-lifetime exhibit extravaganza! All your favorite artists – Goya, Van Gogh, Picasso, and even Rembrandt – will be there, and so will their paintings. We even hauled in the entire Sistine Chapel ceiling, and we're putting it back together as we speak! Act now, because this event will only be available for a short time span of three straight years. The National Gallery: when's the last time you went to a museum, anyway?

Tour De Force

Hello everyone! My name is Michael Celani, and I'll be your tour guide this evening. Unfortunately, our main exhibition is undergoing some renovations at the moment. A gang of thieves recently passed our multi-tiered lock system, avoided dozens of our laser traps, and then crashed into our storeroom with a bulldozer before making off with all the classics, so the only pieces we have on the floor today are from card games and furry conventions. Without further ado, let's begin!

Obviously, there is no better color pair than green and blue to represent performance, creativity, and self-expression. Momir Vig, Simic Visionary is a unique artiste that once only painted in those two tones. If he's around and you cast a green creature spell, you get a free Worldly Tutor for your trouble. If you then cast a blue creature spell, you get to put that creature into your hand. But his artistic growth was unparalleled, and soon he began turning any permanent any color he wanted!

I See A Red Card And I Want It Painted Black

Momir's Blue Period produced perhaps his most famous works, and indeed, if you view a regular Momir Vig, Simic Visionary deck, you'll see a bunch of multicolored creatures that trigger both of his abilities. But this period came to a close with one of his most acclaimed works:

Any creature that is both green and blue may tutor Painter's Servant directly to your hand. Use this power to threaten opponents to stay in line, lest they suffer an unfortunate art attack. What the Servant can unleash depends all upon the choice of color, so always select the proper pigment for the occasion!

Verdant Succession

When you're behind and need to catch up, there's no shame being green with envy. Naming green grants access to a variety of control spells that remove individual threats or even reset the whole game. You'll also unlock a few draw and tutor effects that help in a pinch.

  • Not only is Shrieking Drake the way I'd describe my ex's singing, it's also an extremely potent value piece. Since it's green as well as blue, it will trigger both of Momir's abilities and then bounce itself to your hand to do it all over again, for just one mana!
  • Drove of Elves gets stronger with each green permanent you control, and its hexproof ability renders it difficult to kill. It's an amazing way to keep safe as you get back in the game.
  • Target the opponent with the widest grip of cards to see the best returns from Withering Gaze.
  • If you prefer a steadier stream of value, try Insight instead; it'll trigger on any spell.
  • Aether Gust sends any threat straight to the bottom of its owner's library. You can even blow away spells on the stack!
  • Note that Essence Leak doesn't need to target a red or green permanent when you play it. You can enchant something early only to cast Painter's Servant later.
  • Tidal Control will effectively freeze the game for as long as you care to pay its cumulative upkeep. If you're mean, you can also shut down any mono-red players early, but I'm not responsible for the very dead corpse you'll become once it's gone.
  • As a last resort, you can cast Hibernation, Wash Out, or All Is Dust to send the board back to square one. You'll be able to float mana beforehand to get a bit of a head start over your enemies.

Black Sabbath

If you find yourself in the lead, paint everything black and push your advantage. It'll be easy to restock your hand, whether that be from your deck or the graveyard, and you'll effectively protect what you have on the field already.

  • Unable to lord over the table with Regal Force alone? Pygmy Kavu can overthrow that czar by drawing as many cards as your enemies have creatures. Since you have three opponents and only one you, you'll get thrice the value!
  • Practice self-defense and leave your rivals black and blue when you cast Veil of Summer or Display of Dominance.
  • You Reap what you sow, and what you sow is your entire graveyard. As if that wasn't enough, it's instant speed, in case you wanted to exile it upon Isochron Scepter.
  • On the opposite side of the coin from Insight is Compost. It's even better in certain scenarios, because it also counts cards that are milled or discarded.
  • Finally, Lifeforce is a less extreme Tidal Control that you have a lot more power over. Cultivate a reputation for using it defensively only; that'll keep your opponents from using valuable removal on your permanents.

The Blues Brothers

You'll rarely want a case of the blues, but if you've assembled just the right hand, it's an incredibly devastating way to close out the game.

  • Faerie Swarm is a little easier to interact with than Drove of Elves, but it makes for a much better attacker thanks to its built-in evasion.
  • Llawan, Cephalid Empress wouldn't be the first queen I've knelt down to, but she would be the first that completely shuts down enemy creatures.
  • Put Seedtime underneath Isochron Scepter and watch everyone squirm. Only Krosan Grip would be an effective way to stop that combo without granting you at least one extra turn as a consolation prize.

Unsettling Tones

A blank canvas is a symbol of boundless creativity, and each game is a new painting. The colors you choose determine how you fill that empty space. Sometimes, you may decide to win with a few solid thwacks of a Drove of Elves; other times, you'll declare that every time is Seedtime. However, no matter what you've chosen, as long as Painter's Servant is on the field, you've got a chance to win.

Psychic Allergy, when paired with Painter's Servant, causes every single nontoken permanent a player controls to smack them in the face for one at the start of their turn. It'll repeatedly burn your opponents for ten or more and can very easily close out games when life totals are low.

And if you liked Faerie Swarm, wait until you read Chameleon Spirit. It's got power and toughness equal to the number of permanents your opponents control, which should be more than enough to kill anyone. If you need to get it through your opponent's thick skull, Kaseto, Orochi Archmage can help by making it unblockable!

Night at the Museum

That concludes our tour. Thank you for patronizing the National Gallery! I hope we've nourished your artistic spirit and inspired you to learn more about paint and paintings. To my left is a donation bin, marked with the suggested minimum of either fifteen dollars or one kidney. Your support is very important to my continued ability to survive, and I really could use either of those. Have a wonderful day!

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Newly appointed member of the FDIC and insured up to $150,000 per account, Michael Celani is the member of your playgroup that makes you go "oh no, it's that guy again." He's made a Twitter account @GamesfreakSA as well as other mistakes, and his decks have been featured on places like MTGMuddstah. You can join his Discord at and vote on which decks you want to see next. In addition to writing, he has a job, other hobbies, and friends.