Sunday, August 25, 2013

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Complete video series - //OrangeJouster

Here is the full series guys, these are meant to be watched alongside the written tutorial, hope some of you find this useful, or at the very least, entertaining! :D



Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Female Game Character Concept: Chapter 2 - Painting Techniques for Photoshop



This final chapter will cover everything we need to deliver to the 3D artist, starting from the black and white draft we did in the previous chapter. I will go over tips on how to create the back view, composition within the character and what to keep in mind while adding colors.

By the end of the chapter, we will have a polished concept ready to pass down the pipeline. Just like the previous chapter, this is geared towards more advanced artists with a good knowledge of color theory, composition and volumes in a 3D space. 

¾ Back View

The first thing we want to try and get out of the way is the back view of our character.

The best solution I’ve found is to start from the front view and very roughly invert everything by painting over it. Let’s only aim for a rough silhouette at this point.

Once that’s done, using reference lines, match the front and back details as much as possible. No need to go 100% polish at his phase since some details might still change once we add color.

Spend the extra time to make it accurate if you don’t want the 3D artist to be raging once it’s time to model it!

Final composition using colors

The idea in this first step is to get a rough of our final concept. Color has such a big impact on composition that I find the sooner it is decided on, the better.

The focal point for a main character is generally the upper body or the head, so we will try to use colors to help us direct the eyes of the viewer at it. More saturated or brighter colors usually do the trick. Orange, white, bright & desaturated greens (opposite colors to orange) will be our colors of choice.

Our color palette for this character will be on the brighter side, since we don’t want her to look like a villain.

Shading

This step is reserved strictly for the shading pass where we will be adding more light information to our volumes. Imagine a very simple 3 points light setup and add the desired details to the character.

Take the chance to tweak bits here and there to make sure all the shapes work well together now that everything is more defined.

Tweaks on the shoulders, knee pads and arms were needed to match the simple triangle shapes and straight lines used throughout the armor.

Finalizing the armor design

Having fixed a couple things in the previous step, now is the time to propagate the changes to the back view and finalize it since we know everything is now final.

Just like we did for the front view, we are going to add shading to the back view as well and if needs be, colors too. In this case, since everything in the back can be deducted from the front colors, there is no need to go too far with it.

Use accent colors to help your eyes travel across the concept. Repetition works for color too!

Material pass

In this final step, the armor design and the colors being done, the last stretch of this game character concept tutorial is meant to help the 3D artist understand our vision for the different materials used for the armor.

Using shaded balls with the desired material is the easiest way to communicate it. No need to make one for every single material but at least for each of your main and secondary colors. It’s always better to try and replicate the effect on your concept as well.

And this concludes the tutorial! Hopefully you’ve picked up a few things along the way that will help in making you a more efficient concept artist!

Don’t hesitate to add extra information for hidden parts or to illustrate how a certain piece works. The more, the better!

TIP: Keep your designs simple.

Having a simple idea behind your concepts will help drive everything else from colors to shapes and details. Formulate a simple sentence describing your character and force yourself to use it as your “bible” for every design decision you make.


Here is the link to the tutorial on Layerpaint.com!!

layerpaint - MB tutorial

Female Game Character Concept: Chapter 1 - Create a Solid Design


In this first chapter we will be exploring different concepts and will create a polished draft of the best one.

This tutorial will be covering every step in the creation of a concept for a female game character. It is geared towards industry professional or skilled amateurs as it will assume you have pretty good knowledge of anatomy, volumes in a 3D space, perspective and colors.

There won’t be orthographic drawings for the final concept sheet since I find it tends to soak out all the soul of a concept once translated to 3D. Instead, we will create a front & back ¾ view and bet on the interpretational skills of the 3D artist.

Shape exploration

The first step for almost any concept, especially in a professional environment where you might have to change and adapt based on the art direction, is to always start very rough.

This is where we brainstorm and try to come up with as many cool silhouettes as possible, while keeping only a very loose idea of what the final concept could be. In this case we know the character will be female and I am leaning towards a sci-fi vibe for her. There is no particular direction other than that so this is an awesome scenario for any artist!

Since I want the character to be “stand-alone”, having her be a main character with a distinct function will help us in our exploration.

Coming up with the main idea

In this second step, looking at all those sketches makes it a lot easier to decide on the general idea for our character. This particular silhouette is interesting as it reminds me of a jousting knight without a horse.

At this point I always try to come up with a background for my characters to solidify the idea and have it help drive the actual concept later on. For the purpose of this tutorial, we are going to go with this:

“A jouster from the future who uses special sprinting armors to help propel herself at her adversaries”


Very loosely blocking in the main shapes and refining the silhouette.

Functionality

Now that we know what we are going to do, it makes it much easier to design the armor. The thought process goes like this:

Considering she has a jousting spear as a main weapon, she will need an armor that is both aerodynamic for speed but that can also deflect frontal hits. Also, since she has no horse, her legs will need to replace that function and act as the force to propel her towards her opponent. We can probably imagine them being strong and long.

Looking at old medieval armors, there is a constant design functionality amongst all of them which is to constantly try to cover any exposed frontal body parts. We can play with this idea and remove some key parts to show off the cockiness and skill level of our character.


She is so kick-ass that she doesn’t need a full helm or even a shield!

Shape language

This final step before thinking about colors is all about finding a strong shape language for our jouster. I always try to think of a simple geometric shape that will be repeated throughout the character and will help unify all the different elements. In this case, the triangle seems fitting for an armor suit designed to deflect hits!

The biggest challenge in creating characters is to always try and make it believable enough and having shape repetition is the easiest way I’ve found to come up with a homogenised design that reads well.

Once the shape is repeated a few times, we have to make sure the other lines are adjusted to it and this is when it really comes together.

Think of the repeated triangles as seeds, where everything in the surroundings will need to grow around it and adjust, if needs be.

TIP: Flip your canvas!     

Flipping your canvas will bring to light errors that you otherwise have a good change at missing. Try to rotate horizontally as often as possible. You will always be surprised to see the blatant mistakes you couldn’t see until you flipped!





Thursday, August 08, 2013

Color Theory is back with Episode 03!


This episode is about environment and how you go about applying a ... ah whatever it's written in the thumbnail.

Enjoy :D

Monday, August 05, 2013

Painting a sexy Motorbike Girl PART 1

OhhHh finally a more polished piece, well you only get to see the first part at least :D Next part coming later this week, most likely on Thursday, so keep an eye open for it...

Saturday, August 03, 2013

Racer Chick WIPs!

Here are WIPs for a new piece I'm working on this weekend! Keep checking for more updates as I progress on this :)






Thursday, August 01, 2013

Color Theory EP02 - Coloring a Character

HeyyyYyyy color theory episode 2 is out! That was fast huh?

I'll try to post twice a week from now on, since these are slightly shorter videos. Hope this is useful ya? Let me know bros!

-marc