My girlfriend has asked me to paint a sloth for her as a christmas present. This is a challenge for me given the limited time I have aswell as the huge workload with uni.
I have decided to work with pencil drawings ive produced three of them a portrait of the entire animal and two head shots, the two headshots ive painted digitally but im not sure if she'l appreciate these prints alongside an original drawing.
Im going to focus more on the actual sketch book work for this, moved off the nomad concept for the moment but thats the beauty of it, its an idea ive been working on for roughly three years now, each time i revisit the idea i feel i improve it a little more.
id like to think that the idea for the 'dunner' alien race i created will get a retouch at some point next year, for the moment im focusing on this idea that i thought about a couple of years ago. redesigning orcs, trolls and goblins as i desire. i never got round to putting pen to paper with this idea before so its pretty much a virgin concept.
this is supposed to be three fishing huts along the bank of a peaceful river, my girlfriend says it looks like three cockroaches sticking their arses out of the ground. Is my new abstract approach to envrioments too abstract?
Just watched the film Monsters, ok film, wasnt what i was expecting which was a gud thing. low budget film though so only a few scenes with decent views of the alien creatures. still it helped to build up the atmosphere and the whole idea was really original and well thought out. really realistic.
Sort of stopped drawing again, been painting little bits here and there since my last post. got a few concept art type books coming from amazon so lookin forwards to that. A friend suggested that i needed to be a bit more dynamic with my poses when it came to creature designs so i took that into consideration.
Im using some one elses laptop at the moment and i cant figure out how to disable the sticky key preferences and other stuff that makes it seem impossible to move the above image into the right part of this blog...
ive decided to revisit my nomadic peoples design for a second time in an effort to ease back into concept design, spent the summer doing what i think is fine art / illustration.
I have to admit ive almost completely neglected my art at the moment, all i can find time for is observational sketching whilst hiking.
This was going to be a sort of group image displaying differnt classes of military personel, but i cant find the time to finish it and the blog hasnt been posted on for a while so im going to call it WIP.
This is just a little thumb nail type thing for atmosphere more than anything, in my head I figure these aliens to come from a rather bleak and superfically barren landscape to those not familiar with it. lots of rain, wind and cold and grey. Alot like england.
Went and got a new Bamboo the other day, 5 x 3 inch active area. Having a little trouble with getting the pen pressure setting to work in photoshop at the moment so not really been able to properly break in the new tablet yet.
Also got a new computer aswell which i need to get round to setting up but ive been a bit busy lately. Its a HP g5370.
at uni we use intuso4 graphics tablets, there a bit exspensive though so im going to have to save up. for the moment im going to buy a cheap bamboo as ive got no tablet to work with which is very frustrating.
at the moment im trying to mess about with textures so i had a go at doing a soldier design for my alien race.
My laptop has gone AWOL and will not turn on so ive lost quite alot of work, saving up for a new computer so in future im going to back up the work i do. I watched Thor last night, I'm not a big fan of Marvel films but it was fun to watch, the sort of film your not supposed to take too seriously. The visuals were brilliant, really nice landscapes and architecture aswell as costume design.
Havent posted on the blog for a while, my computer keeps crashing on me at random, several times ive tried to paint on scrotoshop and its died without any warning. Projects for uni are still going well, struggling alot with maya but apart from that its all quite easy. I was working in the studio the other day and got talking to another student who showed me a technique where you work in black, white and grey, then duplicate the image and tint the colour balance on the lower layer. When youve done this you then erase parts of the top layer to reveal the coloured layer underneath. I think it helps quite alot when conveying shadow and depth. Ive been looking at a book called Concept Design 2, its a collection of works by a talented team of artists in the USA. init they show case many works that are often accompanied by small thumbnails or WIP shots, these breif insights into the techniques and processes they employ to create their works has got me thinking that perhaps every artists ability to design is also limited by techniques that he can employ in making the design come to life? This is soemthing I will give some thought into when I have the inspiaration to jump into the unknown again. Carrying on with my quest on design im trying to flesh out a generic type alien race that could easily be integrated into a sci fi type FPS. For the moment im just focusing on thumbnails for the outline and concentrating on anatomy.
Another character design. Going for a generic type of antagonist or protagonist. Not a great deal to say about it as i dont feel that I have put anything original into it, which I guess is what im trying to do, go back to designs that can be easily understood.
Has anyone seen the film the warriors? if so, have you listended to the soundtrack? Theres a song on the track, final one I think called Last of an ancient breed by Desmond Child. Great song. The whole album is really catchy in that 80's sort of way.
Carrying on with Character concepts I decided to delve into the great galaxy of far far away after seeing the advert for the new game Starwars: The Old Republic. Shame its one of those MMOPG things as I would have quite liked to buy the game if it was an xbox title. The advert for it is incredible, the only thing that really confused me was that the republicans were wearing clone trooper armor which technically isnt supposed to exist back then? (correct me if im wrong)
Anyway, I went with a sort of 'General Kota look' from the game Force Unleashed 2. Wearing old clone trooper armor salvaged from enemy kills. Not neccesarily going with a jedi as it feels too easy to simply create a new jedi, so Im gonna say he's a bounty hunter.
Lately I've not been doing that much doodling in my spare time, I've pretty much just been working on this enviroment project for uni. so far so well but I've never done an enviroment before so it really is a difficult process in that I dont have a clear path set out for me. but at the same time i enjoy that, with the host of unexpected faliures i also hit a bit of unexpected success.
Its also opended my eyes to envrioment design aswell, as with most things that I cant easily comprehend I stray away from them, hiding in the dark drawing what im comfortable drawing. but I feel like with a lot of practice I could do this for fun.
My only problem with this breif is time keeping, though I try to do at least an hour of work a day (sometimes more than that) for uni (excluding actual study time) ive found that im still in some sort of initial stage after nearly 3 months. but maybe this is just because im feeling for the thread with this new area of design.
Lately Ive been looking at my self with a critics eye which is soemthing i normally do when im working, butat the moment im looking not at individual peices but my work on the whole over say the last two years. i find itdifficult to judge my self because artistically so much has happend to me and my process in the last few years, tostart i made the jump from traditional to semi digital. i also started university which impacted upon my professionalpractice and also my ability to recognise more subliminal flaws within my work.
On the specifics of my concept art, ive found my self falling into the 'specialisation rut' too much of one thing (creatures) is no good for an aspiring artist in the field of concept design, it will narrow my options and ultimately render me useless like a plucked chicken with a tooth pick sword on the front line of a war. i also feel and know that im falling way too short of my desired style with is photorealism, like wayne barlowe or todd marshall.i know these guys didnt wake up one day creating god like art work, they spent years practicing traditionally both intechnique and subject matter. but i cant seem to dicipline my self to do this. perhaps i should e realistic, im notgoing to be able to stop my addiction for designing creatures but i can set my self small targets. once a week i cando a few sketches from photo reference or life, and i can also try doing concepts for things i dont normally approach.
I've been looking at Marko (he he same name almost) Djurdjevic lately. Anyone whos been on conceptart.org or likes theircomics will know this guy. hes an insanely good artist, talented in a wide variety of things but for me its his basic drawingskills that keeps me so intrigued. in a world where everything is becoming more advanced and techy by the second,this trend setter is still bashing out works of art with a mechanical pencil like hes not even breaking a sweat.i ask my self can i ever reach this standard? or is every one born with a certain amount of talent which ultimately defines their ability if not their capability? if this is the case then i cant see how ill ever reach industry standard,competition is high in any industry, but i feel with so many players on the field that the visual industry is thetoughest competition to win.
I recently recieved feedback for my work on the last semester and though overall it was very good feedback, i feel like imnot reaching my own personal standard in my head. it didnt help that my feedback was numbered grades without written commentsas i feel i can only improve with criticism, so i might contact my tutor and see why i didnt get a higher mark.
I'm pretty sure that concept art is more than just drawing what ever you see in your head. im positive theres an unwrittendoctrine to it, a theory that must be applied to distinguish a concept above others. when i look through my concept art booksi see patterns emerge that i wouldnt have considered by my self. i wonder, must i learn to be all this by the time im outlooking for a job in the industry or do these artists learn these valuable lessons as they progress from one job to another,like experience?
I was contacted a while ago on deviant art by some guy, cant remember his name, about working on a non profit game project.they had their heads screwed the right way round and seemed to be pretty co-herent, but i found that i didnt have the time and even now between university, socialising and working upon my own visual projects i dont know if i could dedicate my selfto that project. but im wondering, do i have to do these projects to gain that experience and understand how the mechanics work?or should i put my faith in my education and hope that it steers me well and leads me out the other side confident, capableand facing the right way? to be honest, i have my doubts about the course im on, as everyone does, but what makes me worryis that its a lack of confidence the teaching programme its self. not sure, would love it if some one from the top came to my humble little blog and gave me a little answer at least, but the reality is im going to have to find the answers my self i think.
Still carrying on with uni work, and thats about it for the moment, might be going to france in april to have a look round the galleries for the week end.
Divum Carnero is a large arial herbivore from the planet Dwarf Blue, neighbouring Belkin. Dwarf Blue's low gravity has allowed life forms to develope bizzare means of locomotion, with many creatures taking to the skies permenantly.
One of my best freind's has now started his own blog after I've been hounding him to do so for about a year. Anyway hes got it running and its brilliant to see some of his work, most of which Ive only glimpsed in crappy mobile phone shots.
For anyone whos interested in the 'fine art' side of life or just appreciates good expressionism I recommend taking a look at his blog, beautiful yet sublimely disturbing paintings.
I did a colouring of a sketch from his book, the pose and the look on the figures face just drew me in.
I did absailing at university in the week, they'd set up shop for the day and it was £1.50 to go down the side of a 5 storey building on the campus, at that price I couldnt really say no. It was scary waiting around at the top (didnt help that I could see for miles around) but as I lent backwards I found it was a very differnt experiance than what I was expecting, it was good fun. Deffinitely reccomend it if you get the chance.
This critter is an arboreal floravore, whereas species such as Deloricatus and Hippasuchus are strictly terrestrial animals, Brontus Brontus tends to lead a more vertical existence as it feeds from the parasitic flowers that grow upon larger flora, these parasitic flowers tend to be much more nutritous than the normal terrestrial flora, which is an added benefit considering the much more active life style of B. Brontus.
B. Brontus is also a notable fauna for its symbiotic relationship with its flora diet, B. Brontus is equipped with a pair of trendils that are specially adapted to carry the pollen of parasitic flowers from host to host. Although all floravores do to some extent carry out this pollination indirectly, B. Brontus is the only known species with a anatomical conscience towards the preservation and reproduction of its diet.
In return for this specialised job, B. Brontus recieves certain toxins from its symbiotic partners which are utilised as a glandular secretion which is produced when B. Brontus is distressed, this form of toxic defence is quite common amongst many amphibians on earth, how ever on Belkin the use of Toxins as a defence mechanism is quite rare.
Moved house a few weeks ago and had no internet, that modern gateway to the world of the secluded and technologically dependant western people. Anyway Ive got it back now. Our latest project at uni is to re-design our campus as a campaign or multiplayer map for a game, Ive decided to go with a modernised building similar to the style of Mass Effect but I also want to incorporate areas of the map that have been taken over by shanty sort of slums. I like maps with contrasting scenery, the possibilities of ambush and changing enviroment tend to keep me on my guard as opposed to a map like 'Valhalla' in the halo 3 multiplayer.
Anyway heres another beast from the lush and tropical world of belkin. Like Hipasuchus, Loricatus Nutritor feeds on an exclusive flora based diet, more specifically nectar which has a higher energy content.
Used a Wacom Cintiq tablet for the first time today and I have to say Im really impressed, took bout half hour getting used to it (kept trying to use a non existent tablet on the desk) but its a great peice of hardware, unfortunately they dont come cheap so its going to be a case of using the tablets at uni for the moment.
This design is for the Tyranous Undatus that i referenced in the post called Belkins Scorfus. Its a well built liquivore predator thats built for long distance pursuits, not the fastest animal but it can keep up the chase for a good ten minuites.
I feel like things are alot easier to paint in scrotoshop when I'm at uni, is it possible that one graphic tablet can be better than another? Has any one noticed a differnce of quality between differnt models?
Anyway these are the 'speed' paintings i tried to do, although the first one took about 45 mins, the rest took about 20 mins which is good timeing for me.
Their all based on life on the river bed or even staionary water beds, some burrow whereas others are adept at filtering detritus from the substrate for nourishment. (The middle one is an almost complete rip-off of the Surinam toad Pipa Pipa)
Did a bit of scanning from my sketch book today, aiming to do some quick speed paintings instead of the usual thing I do where it takes hours.
Generic creature that feeds like a liquivore, impales prey and then drains the carcass of fluids for nourishment. I imagine this creature would take a place in the food chain at a similar level to a large predatory cat.
These 'pods' of Zooflora as they have been temporarily named, seem to move (or travel depending on their flora/fauna classification) in erratic yet syncronised group movement with no particular leading organism. The pod does however seek out light, which seems to energise the organisms as after sustained exsposure to UV the colouration of the organisms change dramatically, depending on the species these colours range from dull russets and browns such as the example below, to more spectacular shades of electric blue or green for reasons which as of yet are unknown.
Their place within the food chain can definitely be compared to that of vegetation in that they are bottom place holders forming the staple diet of a wide variety of other organisms that also feed on flora, and do not prey on any other organism them selves. Although they have been observed obtaining nutrition from carcasses in the very later stages of decomposition, this how ever is not an uncommon habit amongst many Terran plants and so can not be regarded as a hostile or predatory instinct.