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Friday, August 15, 2008

Concept Artist in Video Game, Artist Job descriptions in general, tips on how to

What is concept artist.  Concept Artist in Video Game, Artist Job descriptions in general, tips on how and what to focus on if you want to get your foot into the Door as artist in Entertainment and Video game industry.

Concept art is a form of illustration where the main goal is to convey a visual representation of a design, idea, and/or mood for use in movies, video games, or comic books before it is put into the final product. This is a relatively new designation popularized by artists working in the automobile and video games industries. This term has been in use since the 1930's by the traditional animation industry who was describing drawn or painted images which illustrate the look, feel, design, colors, etc...of the animated movie to be made.[citation needed] Concept art is also referred to as "visual development" in traditional animation. The term was later adopted by the games industry. These illustrations became necessary for developed visual properties.

Concept artist is an individual who generates visual reference for an object (like weapons, armor and vehicles) or being (like a character or creature) that does not yet exist. This includes, but is not limited to film production, and more recently video game production. A concept artist may be required for nothing more than preliminary artwork, or may be required to be part of the creative team till the project reaches fruition. Concept artists are an enigma in the art world.[citation needed] While it is necessary to have the flair and natural talent of a fine artist, a concept artist must also be able to work to strict deadlines in the capacity of a graphic designer. Interpretation of ideas and how they are realised is where the concept artist's individual creativity is most evident, as subject matter is often beyond their control.

Basically nowadays, Concept artist can focus in three major areas.
**Also depending on how big the company is, they might just have one guy or a few to cover all area.

Environmental Concept Artist: You have to be able to visualizing the richly detailed, beautifully imaginative environments of any given genre. You have to be able to work quickly from sketch to finished concept. You will be brainstorming with level designers and architects with the Art Director and Lead Artist, to help form a believable and awe-inspiring world.
You have to want to work on a project that is going to dipping into the depths of your imagination. You will be painting, sketching and solving visual challenges for a living on a project that will stretch your visual muscles all day.

Other requirements include:
- Second to none concept skills.
- Create accurate, visually interesting, functional, stylistically accurate asset sheets for all levels.
- Create colour moods that capture the feel of the locations.
- Paint master concepts that not only show a general feel of a location, but also describe enough detail to inform an asset list. To be able to paint these master concepts quickly.
- Able to work with level teams to help illustrate any areas that require development.
- Work closely with the Art Director and Lead Artist to maintain aesthetic continuity across the levels.
- Masterly color awareness.
- Excellent spatial awareness.
- Wild imagination capable of visualizing the fantastic to the everyday, giving equal importance, flair and aesthetics to either.
- Fluent with either Photoshop or Painter.
- Passion for the craft, able to revisit work without being too precious.
- Solid understanding of all the different surface treatments one would expect to see in a detailed world and the ability to depict them accurately.
- Passion for conceptual tasks.
*Sometimes You will also be required to do props and object in details (Houses, Ships, Guns, Weapons)

Character Concept Artist: You simply draw and paint all kind of different characters (mostly human form or humanoid) all day. You'll be responsible for creating concept images from multiple viewpoints that are accurate and clear to understand, assembling reference images and instructional documentation which supports the concept designs, working with the Outsource Manager and Lead Artist in creating designs that are consistent with the art vision and assisting in the successful launch of the title.

Other requirements include:
- Strong traditional art skills and good knowledge of human anatomy.
- Excellent technical drawing and vector art work skills
- Flexible with art style and can work in multiple genres.
- Ability to take direction well
- Motivated and driven to face challenges.
- Ability to hit tight schedules as required
- Ability to create detailed and believable visuals based on real world settings.
- Produce art ranging from rough thumbnails to print quality images.
- Strong focus on character concepts.
- Ability to communicate effectively with member of all teams (design, programming, and art).

Creature Concept Artist: You simply draw and paint all kind of different animals and creature (mostly non-human like) all day. You'll be responsible for creating concept images from multiple viewpoints that are accurate and clear to understand, assembling reference images and instructional documentation which supports the concept designs, working with the Outsource Manager and Lead Artist in creating designs that are consistent with the art vision and assisting in the successful launch of the title.

Other requirements include:
- Strong traditional art skills and knowledge of different type of animal anatomy.
- Excellent technical drawing and vector art work skills
- Flexible with art style and can work in multiple genres.
- Ability to take direction well
- Motivated and driven to face challenges.
- Ability to hit tight schedules as required
- Ability to create detailed and believable visuals based on real world settings.
- Produce art ranging from rough thumbnails to print quality images.
- Strong focus on creature concepts.
- Ability to communicate effectively with member of all teams (design, programming, and art).

Art Director - He will give a visual direction of the overall look and is a person who can do all this and on top of everything. Plus sense of humor.

There are more description of professional artists in Video Game world to come. These are just pre-production artist for movies and video games in general.

Watch videos: Tips on how to be a concept artist.



Hope that helps for those of you who wants to know. :)
visit Doug at: DougBlot Blog (Creatures Concept Artist)

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10 comments:

Anonymous said...

Now see, that was extremely usefull.
Thank you for that.

Anonymous said...

Was bob btw :)

Chris said...

Thanks for the clarification! Awesome video too lol.

XIA said...

Thanks Bob and Chris. Glad they are helpful.

Masterphil31 said...

Thanks you, that'll be useful to know :)

XIA said...

You are welcome! And thanks to Doug :) Indeed, for people outside, Game industry is like a big myth...or at least used to be.

Kev-n said...

Hey, can you link to Doug's blog? i can't understand it in the video.

Ty

An-Tim Nguyen said...

Hi Xia,

I'm going to try asking you this through the comment section because I respect the fact that you'd rather keep your email for professional inquiries: about almost a year ago I had interviewed Doug for a school assignment (we both went to the Art Institute, but at two different ones) because I was really interested in the notion of creature design, but this time I'd actually like to interview you because of your experience as both a concept and 3D artist.

I specially chose staff from ArenaNet because I'm a really big fan of your concept art: I used to play Guildwars a lot until I started dedicating all of my time to studying Game Art and Design at school, and it is that very same artwork which still inspires me to keep on trying up to this day.

These five questions however are not about whatever project you're currently involved in due to the fact that I also respect non-disclosure agreements: I am not working for any press release nor do I intend to publish the interview anywhere. This is strictly a school assignment and a personal networking opportunity.

My original intentions were to ask you about the description and requirements of being a concept artist in general, but since you've already answered those questions really well in this blog article, I'd like to take it a step further by asking you instead about how you feel about being a concept artist working at ArenaNet: I am certain that there are some strong similarities between your descriptions and what you actually do for a living, but I'd love to focus on how different it may be for your case and how you feel about it.

If this interview interests you, please feel free to contact me on my school email address at an305@stu.aii.edu or my personal one at thornedvenom@gmail.com . Otherwise, I won't take any offense if you can't because you surely have more important things to worry about in life.

Thank you so much for your time,


An-Tim Nguyen, Game Art and Design student at the Art Institute of California - Orange County.

XIA said...

An-Tim> That's really long and considered message. Thank you. For me, personally...I have been involve with GW since early days of development (so does Doug) and I think we all gel together well. My two cents is it'll make your profession and daily mission more awesome than it is already is if you can find a GREAT team and company to work for. Nothing much! :)
Peace!

An-Tim Nguyen said...

Thanks for the reply Xia. Even though I'm assuming that this was a bad time to ask for an interview, the advice you had just given me is something that I consider much more valuable.

It's because of you guys that I still dream about becoming a great concept artist one day (preferably environmental), even though the industry currently has a much higher demand for 3D artists. I really learn a lot from your tutorials, things that my school had neglected to teach me, and for that I'm grateful. Thank you!

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