Vertex Week Day 4: Gaming Art Live Blog
Thank you German! That was awesome, I wonder if we will have the egg game soon?
That’s it for Vertex Week 2022 focused on the art of today’s game. Tomorrow is our last day, and we’ll have tutorials from Aaron Blaise and Jackie Droujko, and we’ll be behind Luca’s cameras with Pixar’s Dylan Sisson.
Germán says he designs characters he enjoys working on and with like-minded people to think about. He is not interested in creating realistic or lifelike designs. The lesson here is to create the art you love and you will find your own way in the industry.
Just a few small details to add now, shadows here and there. Even if some details or illustrations do not appear in the game, it is worth creating because they can form a mood board or be used to improve the functionality of the game.
Consider animation when designing your characters, says Germán. Think about how it will move and not just how “cool” it is, he says.
The same simple colors are used on all characters to connect them as a whole.
Colors are important in setting the context of a character, and you need to consider lighting.
This can change from level to level in the video game.
It changes the color of the link art here to speed up the coloring process later. It masks areas of the line art to fill sections with clean, flat colors.
Part 3, adding flat colors to the line art. You can automate part of this step in Photoshop. He uses mask > select > invert to fill his line art with color. This can be saved and reused as a shortcut.
Germán has stories behind those weird little squiggles…it’s a fried egg spilled and his body dripping from the yoke.
Oh, uh, that double yoke guy over there is… weird.
We’re in part 2 and Germán is cleaning up the lines, we think he’s joking when he says it’s “super fun”.
A bit off-putting, this one is a broken egg with a chick’s face.
We can’t decide which is our favorite character, maybe the guy in the top right with his pretty face poking through the shell.
Check out our guide to the best drawing tablets for digitally doodling like Germán.
He cut his eggman in half and yoke his head. He also broke the shell so we can see the character’s face inside. He “thinks about the element and how I can model it”
Explore and “try as many options as possible”.
Who is this strange eggman?
He searches for new shapes and forms to try to find a strange character. He takes shape and explores… he makes a cute egg character!
He creates a page full of character doodles and noodles, exploring ways to make shapes work. There is no specific reasoning and proportions or clean lines are not considered.
We get tips for designing “crazy characters”.
He likes to work from a short biography of the character. He also likes to work without constraints, they are generally non-script, non-player background characters.
He draws weird stuff, and we love it.
Here we follow Germán Reina Carmona’s process for creating stylized character designs for video games.
We’ll come back later with artist Olli Olli World Germán Reina Carmona’s workshop on character design for video games.
This image was created by cutting an image into a kit of parts. Thomas recommends using multiple images and using old or unfinished sketches. (Episode 2 is on his YouTube channel.)
Don’t forget you can watch more videos of Thomas on his Youtube channel.
“80% finishes are better than 110%,” says Thomas. Do not overload an image and practice against perfectionism.
The Liquify tool is used to pull and push sections of its scene.
He adds a chicken! (But a duck will do.)
It crops the image to reduce the file size, but it can also use “Content Aware Scale” in Photoshop to extract the image and create a new size.
It works on some color value options, using layers.
Some of Thomas’ accessories are over ten years old, but he likes the consistency they offer.
He is working on values and readability now. He wants to create paths that lead the eye in and around the scene.
A character is added for context and helps Thomas refine the environment, create areas of high contrast and other areas of detail. He says he hates designing characters and does it once a year en masse – he’s an environmental artist through and through.
Thomas mirrors the canvas to check the composition and design of its shape. It has a mirror function set to a hotkey. He seeks a rhythm in the scene.
He uses the levels to merge and combine the pieces of his kit.
Thomas’ concept is building well, it’s quite fascinating to watch it happen.
It keeps everything as flexible as possible. It may not work, but he is experimenting.
“Play,” Thomas says, comparing his process to Lego. “Be inspired by what is possible rather than imposing expectations.”
“If a tool is difficult to use, you won’t use it,” says Thomas. So simplify your life by setting up shortcuts.
Keep an eye out for objects that can simply be used as textures rather than the objects themselves, says Thomas. He looks for objects capable of breaking angles, color palettes.
It now has a bit page, like a model kit. And he starts grabbing a few things and adding them to a new document and using Transform to move them around to create perspective.
Using this process, Thomas can grab anything that catches his eye. He uses the new canvas/document as a sketchbook. Everything is fine. Just keep cutting and collecting.
Thomas begins by cutting out his existing image using the Polygonal Lasso tool. He cuts the sections that interest him into small, angular blocks. These are placed on a square canvas.
Thomas’ 30-minute tutorial is designed to get you up and running quickly. If you want to see episode 2, visit Thomas’ YouTube channel. Or order a copy of ImagineFX number 208 from direct magazines to learn more about this workshop and get the PDF.
And we go…
If you would like to learn more about this tutorial, order a copy of ImagineFX Issue 208 from our store, direct magazines. This game art special includes a print version of what Thomas shows here as well as interviews with the team behind Final Fantasy XIV.
This 30-minute tutorial is designed to get you up and running quickly. If you want to see episode 2, visit Thomas’ YouTube channel.
If you’re looking for more gaming art inspiration, why not check out our guide to the best laptops for gaming or tips on how to kick-start your gaming art career.
That was great from Jehanne. The game looks fantastic, its art direction is quite unique. Remember, you can watch this video again anytime.
We have another live blog scheduled for later today in which we’ll be looking at concept artist Thomas Scholes’ modular design process, keep an eye out for that one.
The movement of the character is interesting, there is a mechanical stiffness to the movement. The character can move in 360 directions, so it must take some time to get it right!
We get a Baroque Elden Ring vibe at SteelRising.
Some great concept art is featured here, and now we know a little more about how they were created. The team is based in Paris and can therefore gather references, paint in the street and draw inspiration from their environment.
The character designs of this game are so stylish. This composition looks familiar and famous. Can you guess what it is?
The team took an actual melody that an 18th century automaton would play and added it to the game.
Using characters and locations everyone on the team was new to and familiar with helped the team. Jehanne says using cultural references that a team is familiar with can lead to greater creativity and you can avoid cultural issues.
Automatons existed! The team used real, working 18th century mechanics as the basis for some character designs.
They can “breathe”. Sinister.
The use of historical references facilitated the work of the team but posed its own problems. But by using old maps of Paris and looking at the buildings around them, the team was able to “immerse themselves in historic Paris”.
The use of historical references contributed to the speed of development. Using references helped communicate the team’s vision.
The team was able to find references on the way to work!
The history of France is rich with wonderful characters so it seems obvious to base a game on this period. Art and architecture, the Baroque art movement, all feel perfectly suited to a historical fantasy game.
Jehanne says it’s actually quite difficult to do, especially trying to combine real history and interesting characters with fantasy to “create something” as a logical step for the team.
This game looks great, we love its references to the French revolution and the era. The detail on these ‘robots’ or automatons is really nice. These mechanical designs are based on actual ideas from the 18th century.
Hello, welcome to Day 4 of Vertex Week. We started the day with our first live blog of the day, featuring Spider co-founder Jehanne Rousseau. Now we watch Thomas Scholes as he shares his modular concept art workflow. Follow us as we watch.