Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Anatomy = pain

I've never been good with anatomy. So when I decided today that I'd start my own world design, I'm not sure what possessed me to begin with human characters. The pic below is the result of a lot of google research (*cough*) and a lot of time rendering. I'm fairly happy with the outcome - I think I've learned a lot from this study. Things like knees and collarbones and fingers are really tricky to do properly.

I'm basing a lot of this world design on PoP - a male and female pair for lead characters, fantastical environments, weird creatures.

And nope, the female won't be running around naked, so I'll be using this pic as a template to explore clothing options tomorrow.

Monday, December 29, 2008

Random enviro

I decided I'd do a bit of painting really late tonight and this is the result. I started off with the base idea of a 'Mountain castle in the snow' - the Environment of the Week challenge at - and the idea just grew from there. Not particularly happy with the idea or direction it went as it reminds me a lot of my previous post (in style and composition anyway), but I'm sorta happy with the way the colours turned out and I think the quality of the render is getting slightly better. Meh.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Less excuses, more paint

I must've run out of excuses not to draw tonight, cause I chose to sit down and spend some time in photoshop. Its true what they say about a lot of creative things - that it all comes together in the last 5 minutes. I started painting with no other real clear thoughts in my head besides the fact I wanted to do an environment, and it was a muddy mess up until near the end.

I think its pretty evident I'm definitely still thinking of the art style of Prince of Persia, but thats not such a bad thing. With such high calibre art, aiming to achieve something like that can only help me learn. Being able to work on such an awesome title one day, like PoP's lucky concept artists get to do, is also plenty of incentive for me to jump right in.

Its taken ages, but I think I'm starting to get the hang of some things - A few custom brushes first of all, but more importantly: Contrast. Contrast between colour, large and small brushstrokes and soft and solid edges/brushes.

The following pic took about 45 mins, I'm really happy with it - will continue this tomorrow.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Speedpaint 12th Dec 08

We had a really vague topic for the 30 minute speedy at work today - 'machines'. We've been pretty character focused with the speedpaints since we started doing them, and so decided to switch it up a bit. Today's was more about an industrial design than a character.

Anyway, I actually really like the idea behind this one. All my previous entries have been a little gun-ho and completely lacking in story, so this is a nice change of pace. I'll have to develop this one a little more sometime down the track.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Speedpaint - 5th December 2008

I've pretty much fallen in love with the new Prince of Persia game, which looks absolutely incredible and plays just as well. For last friday's speedpaint we didn't choose a topic, we just spent 40 minutes painting for the heck of it. I wanted to try out some brushes, as well as experiment with a different painting style. Add that to the fact that I've thought about nothing but Prince of Persia since it came out last thursday, and this is what I came up with.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Speedpaint from 28th Nov 08

This week's 30 minute speedpaint topic: Monkey Magic.


A few things bug me about my speedies - I need to become more clear with my lines/detail (something I'm hoping my daily figure drawing will help), I probably have to start focusing my pics a bit more instead of trying to get so much info in (maybe just focus on a characters' upper half or something), and I need to stop making all of these so monochromatic... it gets boring really quickly for both you and me to look at!

Meh again.

CGtalk Steampunk challenge

I'm still running off all of the motivation gained at the NZ workshop a few weeks back, which is great, so I've decided to enter the Steampunk CGtalk challenge. More info on it can be found here:

Here is my initial silhouette exploration. I chose a few from these to develop further into the thumbnail sketches on the grey page.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Life drawing 19 Nov 08

My very first self-imposed life drawing class since returning from NZ, done yesterday.

I'm also here to announce that I've got a new sketchbook on, too. I will probably just post any life drawing I do on the sketchbook instead of here on the blog... I think it makes more sense that way. The link is on the right of the page.

Sketches / Life Drawing NZ cont'd

Here are some of the later sketches done at the NZ workshop.
Massive Black have announced their next workshop will be in Shanghai, probably next year. I'm already 99% set on going...

Sketches / Life drawing from Massive Black conference in New Zealand

The New Zealand workshop was absolutely brilliant, I really could not have asked for a better experience. I learned a heckuva lot, the instructors were fantastic to watch and very helpful with all of our questions. They were all very approachable and open in the way they shared their working processes.

I've come back to Melbourne really really inspired. In particular, I think I gained a rejuvinated interest in character design, and this has a lot to do with Wes Burt and his sketchbooks. I can't even describe how good these things were... I could have stared at them for hours on end. His knowledge of anatomy was unbelievable (everything in his 3 sketchbooks were drawn from memory, no ref) and his designs and poses/weighting of figures were amazing - functional, innovative, so cleanly executed - and these were his sketchbooks!

Here's some of the sketches I did while in NZ. Since returning, I've decided to dedicate some time each day to do some sketching, in the hope of one day being able to come up with anything even half as cool as Wes Burt's work.

These sketches are from the first day or two I was in NZ. The very first pic are some sketches done on the plane ride embarrassingly shit! Its been a long time since I've done any manual sketching. I'll post again showing the later sketches.

Old sketches (2007)

Here are some fairly old sketches from last year. I went to an exhibition displaying a lot of bodies that had undergone the plastination process - basically, the bodies' water and fat stores had been replaced with a preservative plastic, keeping them intact. I could see why it was/is such a controversial topic, but it was also really interesting. I thought it would be a good opportunity to get some anatomy studies done...

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Speedy - 7 Nov 08

Here's another 30 minute speedpaint from work last friday. I'll really have to get round to developing some of these further and take them to finalized pieces. The topic this round was Diablo - a fantasy game from Blizzard.

In other news, tomorrow morning (getting up bright and early at 5:30am... oh yeah!) I'm going to New Zealand with all of the Concept Artists from Krome to attend the Massive Black workshop. Massive Black are one of the top Concept Art studios in the world, based in the US and Shanghai.

An idea of what's to come at the workshop:

Massive Black's website:

Can't wait! This is going to rock!

Monday, November 3, 2008


Speedpaints were always something I found extremely difficult to do - I found them to be more stressful than fun and after doing a few (with really mediocre results) I was starting to give up on the whole idea. I think most of my problem came from the fact that I never really understood how to get ideas down quickly.

Last friday we did some speedpaints at work and it was honestly the first time I enjoyed it. I can't mention this at all without acknowledging the tricks & shortcuts that my lead at work taught me - he walked me through the process step by step which was awesome.

The topic was Gears of War (a topic chosen after we'd watched countless videos of the soon-to-be-released GOW2).

The first pic (blue pic) was the one done at work in 30 minutes. I wanted to retain the process so I did another 30 min speedy (red pic) in my own time earlier tonight. Gotta say I'm pretty stoked with the results and that 30 minute speed paint last friday has opened up some new doors to my every-day working technique. Exciting stuff.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Another CHOW, another update

This week's CHOW entry on
I'm trying to get more active with these things...

Check out the link below!

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

CHOW # 120 Dark Knight Villain

Wow, its been a while - a new post is well overdue.

This was for another weekly challenge. We had to do a Chris Nolan twist on a Batman villain not yet explored in either Batman Begins or The Dark Knight. I picked Deadshot, mainly because he seemed to be (from his description on Wikipedia) the most plausible 'realistic' villain who could fit into the realistic new Batman films.

I think I went a little too realistic (ie. boring) with this guy, but at least it got me drawing with a purpose in my own time again.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

EOW 85 - Cloud castle final

I was just going to give up on this one, but the self-imposed guilt forced me to keep going, which I'm glad I did. Was a bit of a struggle, but here's the final anyway. I'm 50/50 on it at the moment - mostly cause of the colours. The clouds turned out ok, although there's no definition to them at all.

You'll probably notice the colour palette is almost exactly the same as the crusader piece I did last week.... originally it had obvious shades of blue and yellow, but this wasn't really working that well. Colour is definitely my main problem at the moment (among others).

There's still plenty to learn!

Thursday, April 17, 2008

EOW 85 - Cloud Castle. Thumbs...

A few of us at work have decided to enter the Environment of the week challenge - 'Cloud Castle' - at This will be my very first post... Some of the above thumbs have potential, but I definitely need to push and explore them some more.

Its due this sunday, so this'll be really tight.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Crusader work pic

So me and the other concept guys at work have this little 'mini-challenge' happening. We've all got until this Monday, 14th April 2008, to come up with a folio piece based on the subject: "Knight on his way back from one of the crusades". The setting has been left open so we're not restricted to medieval stuff, so thats where these thumbs come in.

What better time to try out some new techniques!

Things I want to avoid: Comic stuff. Stereotypical stuff.

Things I'm aiming for: A shot that looks 'natural' - like its been taken from a news report. Something that conveys scale & depth & mood. Realistic rendering. A sci-fi/fantasy twist. Focus on lighting and composition. And the big one: implied detail - I want to stay rough here and not spend hours on unnecessary detail.

Monday, March 31, 2008

Last post for today (I promise)

First pic - copied from photo reference. This is getting back to the whole 'subtle dynamics' thing I talked about in my very first post... its a pretty normal'ish pose, but its the subtle things I'm really trying to get better at. This was also a play around with rendering techniques. I'm trying to get looser here - years and years of trying to draw & colour like a comic artist has taken its toll and I'm way to careful/restrictive with lines and edges.

Second pic - A pic I started late last year which I probably didn't want to finish cause it was more of the same old same old for me. Tight line work, very comicy pose/perspective and cel shading. Bleh! Don't get me wrong - there are some guys who do this fantastically (Cheeks for instance, who also has a blog on here somewhere - do yourself a favour and check out his awesome stuff!), but I've got a real personal urge to try and expand my skill set a bit.

Sunday, March 30, 2008

More golden oldies

Some more old work...

427 Cobra - one of my fave old pieces. It took a lot longer than it probably should've to finish, but it was my first and last attempt at technical illustration. Good fun, but not really my thing... looking at it now, I wish I was a little more careful with certain things - the tyres, for one.

Enviro stuff - some work I did for a small Perth games company a while back. This is typical of the sort of thing I grew up doing and also the sort of thing I'm trying to get far away from now. Really saturated colours - they hurt my eyes now! Its a good reminder of where I've come from art-wise actually...

Flyers - Flyers I did for friends back in Perth. Its funny how quickly you learn when art/design is your thing. I wonder what I was thinking when I did some of this stuff, but again, its good when you can look at old work and see any progression you've made.

Speaking of old skool stuff....

Now time to post some older work...
This is stuff I've done for my work's art blog. I'm only really content with the 2nd, 3rd and 4th pics - but the others all have small elements that came out ok.

Art blog subjects:
1 - Free mongoose for everyone
2 - Winter swimsuit issue
3 - William Shakespeare with zombies
4 - Starbarian 3
5 - Vermillion

Life drawing class sketches

Not such a good start to the blog but, at last, I've got some new sketches to show. Having this blog IS kinda working though... its like having a surrogate child! I feel bad everyday I don't pay it some attention.


Monday, March 17, 2008


Alrighty, so here we go: Welcome to my blog!

My first blog and my very first post....exciting stuff eh?
Here are some thumbs I did earlier tonight - not much, but hey, remember... *baby steps*
This is work I'm doing just for the heck of it; it started off as an entry for a competition but we'll see if I get the work completed first. Otherwise its all just me mucking around / personal development.

Some side notes on the work: I've always been into super-exaggerated, dynamic comic work, but I'm slowly trying to go in different directions and try new things. For the last year or two, I've really been impressed by artists who employ 'subtle dynamics' - not in your face comic stuff, but cool 'everyday' sort of dynamic poses. Its actually very difficult to do well, I think.

Anyway, thanks for checking out the blog. I'll do my best to update regularly!