View Full Version : Getting started with environmental concepting

07 July 2010, 08:08 PM
Hey guys,

I'm primarily a 3D artist, working on a portfolio on environment pieces with a goal towards working in the game industry.

I'm at a point now where I want to be less reliant on other's concept work to provide the basis for my 3D work, and I was hoping for some pointers on where to begin in terms of concepting my own environments.

These images from Singularity are the kind of thing I had in mind, in terms of style and quality - all examples of Jeff Moy's fine work.

So, broadly speaking, what should I (as a complete beginner) be reading and studying first? I understand that perspective is a primary concern, but what else should I be looking at / practicing? Any good book suggestions? Techniques? Tutorials? I'm an intermediate Photoshop user, but this is primarily doing photo manipulation, and I have some experience using Painter.

Thanks in advance for any input.

07 July 2010, 05:34 PM
There are some good videos from Gnomon on concept sketching.

I especially enjoyed the Speedpainting to Concept Art lecture. The artist shows his technique of using custom Photoshop brushes to quickly lay down random shapes, then begin to go back and develop them into rich environments. This sort of stream-of-conscience way of working is great for developing ideas and was an eye opener for me.

Feng Zhu also has some great lectures on quick thumbnail sketching. Thumbnails are crucial to quickly work out ideas and see what works and what doesn't.

07 July 2010, 11:42 AM
The essential physical techniques of drawing and painting is actually relatively easy--one can acquire them in a very short amount of time. It's the knowledge of the foundation and sharpening of the design sense and imagination that's the hard part.

Perspective is very important for environment concepts, so definitely study the hell out it. Andrew Loomis's "Successful Drawing" is a great classic, and you can find it free online if you searched. There are other books out there in circulation--just search amazon.

It's important to collect reference books on architecture, interior design, and public/private spaces in general. These will be invaluable to you. Cover different time periods and styles--from gothic churches, art nouveau, to modern lofts, offices, and so on.

There are some very helpful stuff in the sticky threads in this forum--definitely check them out.

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07 July 2010, 11:42 AM
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