Thursday, July 24, 2014

Wednesday, May 7, 2014


In order to have the best artwork in one single post!  This will be updated as more awesome artwork is created!

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Perspective (Part One)

You heard me:  Perspective.
Lets tackle it.

For some Artists, perspective is that thing that hides under the bed and goes bump in the night.  And it's everywhere.  And so they hide behind "well, my style....." excuses so they don't have to learn it. For others, it's a dear friend we can't live without.

It's one of the things every artist needs to be familiar with.  So lets learn it.  I'm going to take one of my images and break down how I created the perspective in it.

Here's the image I'm going to be using because it has a good amount of lighting, archtitecture, and characters in the environment.  For those of you who are new, this image was apart of my Introduction (first) post here.

And here's the rough of the image I was working with.

So first, we need to set up our perspective grip.
First, we need to find the horizon line.  The horizon line will always be at eye-level with the camera/viewer.  For almost every medium from television series, comics, and film, your horizon line is not actually at eye-level with a character.  Typically, cameras are at hip level to most of your characters.

Step 1 - Draw straight down from the center of the picture to find the Station Point.  This is where our audience is.

Step 2 - Find our Vanishing Points and the Cone of Vision

Now we need to find the vanishing points.  Where alot of people mess up is that vanishing points need to be at 90* angles from their counterpart.  The corner of that 90* angle is the Station Point.  Where on the Horizon line they fall is less important then making sure they have a 90* angle between them.  One point Perspective, is the exact same as two point perspective, except one vanishing point is parallel to the Horizon line.

We also need to find our Cone of Vision.  Anything outside the cone of vision is going to look awkward.  Unlike Vanishing Point, The cone of vision sits in the same place every time.  30* to the Left, and 30* to the Right of the Station Point.

So lets apply this to our image.  We have the ground plane below the horizon line, and the sky above it.

Lets add some forms to it.

Forms and shapes are easy to add.
All parallel edges will go to the same vanishing point.  All purpendicular edges will go to the other vanishing point.  Where they converge is where you get your 90* corners.  So lets draw some Walls for this scene.

What if you have an object that doesn't match up to the vanishing points you have drawn?  Well, then you need to find a new set of vanishing points.  These will follow the same rules as the first set.  I labeled them A and B in the image above.

Now, we have alot of architecutre along the walls as well.  We'll want to divide up the wall so we know where to put these.

There are two ways to divide a rectangular shape up.  The first one is drawing lines to each corner.  This will give you the exact middle of the shape and you can divide it into half.  If you divide one of the halves, you get quarters.  If you draw a line from where those cross (the 1/2 divider crosses and the 1/4 divider crosses) then you have 1/3rds.

The other way is to draw a line parallel to the horizon line and to evenly mark a sections off.  Next, Draw a line from the last mark to the edge of the object all the way to the horizon line.  This is the Measuring Point.  Connect the divided sections to the measuring point.  Where it crosses the shape is where each section lines up.

If the shape is on the horizon line, you can use a measuring point directly over the vanishing point

For example....

It's really starting to take shape.
Parts 2 and 3 will cover lighting and placing characters in a scene!

Friday, January 17, 2014

Roughs (Sacrosanct)

     Every now and then you have a project that falls through and won't come to completion.  It happens.  Most of the time, the client decides they want to go for something different (different style, different story, or want to avoid/focus on a subject due to current events).  Often, the client will keep NDAs in place in case they decide to go back to wanting it at a later date.

     One project of mine that was recently scraped was a short story called Sacrosanct.  It's a love story, focusing on our heroine River asking the Goddess of Death and Fate to sunder her soul, in the hopes that part of it can keep the deceased soul of her lover (Jon) company in the afterlife.  The story never got beyond the tight roughs before it was scrapped, but I'm able to share one of those pages with you all.

Pencil and Paper, 6"x9", Tight Roughs for Sacrosanct
We start with the heroine crying and begging for the goddess to hear her at an alter, deep in the swamps (I've found backgrounds are best saved for later, the more you pencil a page with tight details, the more you have to worry about smearing the lead).  The Goddess appears to her, and they begin their dramatic back and forth.

As always, there is more symbolism then a casual reader would ever pick up on - atleast consciously.  The camera is always eye level with out heroine, and always looking up at the Dark Goddess.  The alter of death is always in the background, often being used as a crutch in some way shape or form.  River's sword, a symbolic instrument of death as swords have few other purposes, will cross over her multiple times as she slips further towards, in many way, a living death with her actions.  While the [Goddess] is trying to talk River out of her decision, the goddess is blocking the stage left exit (often used for permanent leave from the story).  In later pages, the this deity is towering over River in a much more terrifying manner and is pushing her towards the stage leff exit when the request is performed.

Monday, April 29, 2013

Starfighter concept art

Sith Interceptor - Stage 1 (Concept Design)

Quick concept sketch for a Sith Starfighter during the mid New Sith Wars era (1500BBY).  A friend of mine, James, is going to model this in 3D for us.  When he finishes, I'll put up the Top/Side/Front views, pictures of the final 3D and textured model, and go over what happens in the process of sketch to game asset.  This piece is a proof of concept - you have the idea, you have some quick sketches to show the art lead, but at some point you have see what the finished product should look like before devoting the time and resources to fully realizing the idea.  It's especially true if this is not the only vessel you're designing (and would thus need to work in concert with the other designs of the same faction.)

Friday, February 22, 2013

Stylizing the art


One thing a concept artist needs to do is show they can work in multiple styles of art.  From the extremely gritty and realistic to the dismembered cartoons.  This style is based around what you would likely see for a web or modern phone game: A mix of flat shading with a hint of rounded forms.
It was a little difficult to get at first to research, deconstruct, and analyze; but once I did the legwork, it went quickly.  I can see why it's popular in the modern game industry.  More styles to come!

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Another Art Dump!

That's right, it's time for another art dump!

Some Highlighted Quick Sketches

Quick sketches are the realm of how quick and accurately you can draw something.  Normally, this is environments when you only have brief descriptions of the look and feel the art director wants - but not always.  Sometimes it's done for characters.  This is the case when you have alot of gear options for the character that could potentially change the silhouette.  If a hero character is going to be spending more time wearing a cross between level 1 and level 2 armors then all one or the other, your art director may want to make sure it fits.  You'll end up doing a series of sketches of the character progressing piece by piece.

And lets not forget those environment sketches I mentioned above.  This one was actually a competitive challenge.  A group of us were given a quick description of the environment or snapshot.  After doing this piece, I realized I had missed a crucial opportunity to tell the story of who the man was.  Ever since, I've been making sure small details that add those kind of stories find their way in.  Things like pictures of family on the wall or making sure it looks more like a window then a picture frame.

This next one is a pitch sketch.  When someone wants a game or comic to be made, they'll have to pitch it to the publisher.  To do that, they'll often bring in artist to draw (usually under very strict deadlines) what they want their game or comic to look like.  One of the most common items shown, and for good reasons, are the characters that will be involved.  For this project, this is one of the companions to the hero and the main love interest.  A kind of scrappy warrior female.

Personally, I would have loved to have added scrap marks, cuts, more dirt on the clothing, skin, and hair - things that show that she really is more then a pretty face given a combat role and that she actually can take care of herself.  But that wasn't my call.  As artist, all you get sometimes is "hey, what do you think if we tried this look for the character?"  If the clients like that idea, great.  If not, too bad.  At the end of the day, you are drawing exactly what the client wants.  Don't fight the client over what they want - just suggest ideas and see if they let you run with them.

Penciled Sequential Work

 I've shown a few penciled work on here, but I believe this is the first sequential page.  Part of a larger spy story, this tale is a quick comic pitch to gauge audience reactions and showcase storytelling abilities of the artist (me).  I'll put up the following pages as we go through the year.  10x15 done in Pencil.

In this page, the main thing the viewer needs to read is this character is in trouble and it's going to get violent.  If nothing else, that's what they need to take away.

That's far from all there is to the scene however.  In the first panel, we see that she has been wounded already.  She's clutching her side with a pained expression.  The colorist can also add a nice red spot but you can't always assume that something you draw will be printed in color - if it's there, great, but you can't rely solely on just that.  In the second and third panels, we see her checking her weapon.  It's not crucial to the story, but we can reasonably infer she's low on ammo (There are only two rounds left in the clip, but it's small and might be missed by a reader) and that she has a full two panels of more preparation then her opponents.  What's important about the panels is that it serves as build up. It sets the stage that she is prepared and that she'll be seeing this through.  And in the last panel, the biggest one and also the one that will be bleeding off the page, we have the pay off.  We see the opponents.  We see her cocking the gun.  We see the playing field.  It makes us want to find out what happens next and turn the page!


Illustrations are the bread and butter of anyone doing work-for-hire.  The pool of people who will pay for their own comic, game art, pre-production work, and more are usually companies that will develop said project when the concept artist is finished.  This leaves a large part of the market as illustrations.  People love their own stories.  A newly wed couple might want a portrait of them painted for a new home for example.  Or a roleplayer wants an Elven archer drawn for their table-top game.  Or a gamer wants a space soldier/marine to use for their guild website.  That's what these are.