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.