The Concept Art Idea Book!
Concept art is a wonderful way to flesh out larger ideas by creating simpler designs. If you have a compelling story to tell but haven’t worked out all of the story telling elements such as the locations, the characters, or the props, using concept art helps you to visualize all of the elements together so you can see how they work together. Last month I published my first book, The Concept Art Idea Book. to share my lessons learned and creative processes to help other artists.
Are you struggling with an idea? Are you looking at a computer screen or a blank piece of paper wondering what to do next? All artists struggle from time to time when translating their ideas from a concept in their mind to a completed piece of artwork. The Concept Art Idea Book is a collection of my own original designs over the past year and an explanation of my creative processes. I discuss how some of my pieces were imagined and the methods used to bring them to life. The goal of this book is to turn frustrations into inspiration.
The Concept Art Idea Book is out in e-book format and located on Amazon.com. This book is for all artists at any level to benefit from. Experienced and amateur artists will benefit from this book. The book can be purchased absolutely FREE if you are an Amazon Prime member.
Below are some samples from my book. All artwork was created using Clip Studio Paint (formerly manga studio 5). This is the most cost effective and flexible design program out on the market.
Ghost Orbs Concept Art
Ever walk into a forest and see ghostly orbs fly around you? This is what it might look like if you do. I imagine a lot of activity all at once as if an energy burst is suddenly being released until finally pulsating out of existence. This piece was designed in black and white to create a spooky mood accentuating the darkness and shadow of the night. The orbs are a bright contrasting white so they are able to communicate their presence, movement, and let everyone know they are there.
This piece was designed using Clip Studio Paint and consists of four layers. The initial pencil layer was later converted to detail layer toward the end of completing the piece. The other layers are an ink layer, background layer, and shadows layer.
To create a more 3 dimensional appearance, elements of shadows and highlights were placed throughout all of the layers with a proper amount of blending where needed to fuse the elements together.
The trees were created with a thick inking brush with fine detailing afterward. A tree texture tool was used to give more of a bark look to the skin of the tree. This also allows for more interesting shadows as they were placed with an air brush tool. The bushes in the foreground were created with an ink wash set to a grey tone much like taking a sponge to a piece of paper with ink. Just enough texture to provide the look of bushes without much more but it helps to frame the piece together.
In the background I placed a slow moving mist moving throughout the trees again to provide some more depth and make it seem as though the orbs were traveling through the woods. The far background has a number of different tree and grass designs making it seem dark and very difficult to find your way through.
The Castle on the Edge of Tomorrow Concept Art
This was my first real attempt at a digital landscape. I really enjoyed putting this one together. Imagine yourself looking through a portal at a castle that divides the point where one world ends and another begins. Is it keeping something in or is it keeping something from getting out? Only your imagination knows the answer to that. This piece was inspired by looking at pictures of old castles.
Forest Ghost Wandering in the Dense Woods
The Forest Ghost moves through the fog filled forest as the night begins to give way to the sun. He looks for something he lost along the way but so much time has past he no longer knows for what he seeks. As such, he continues to wander the forest as a shade forgotten by time.
Barbwire Beach – This lonely beach sits on the edge of a foggy island blocked by rusted barbwire. Is it there to keep people out or to keep something in? The wind blows across cat tails grouped together while the mysterious rocky piles of unknown origin stare off with no expression.
Eruption of the Old Kingdom
Hello everyone! It sure has been a long time since I did any writing on my blog. Be that as it may, I have for you a piece from the medieval realm of the Old Kingdom. A forgotten battlefield worn by war and by time. The ground itself is releasing its fury into the sky and bellowing the fires of conquest back into the sky above.
About the Piece
How in the world did I come up with an exploding battleground you ask? Well I have been wanting to do a study on battlegrounds that have been forgotten in time along with some environmental concepts of the same. Worlds that have been torn asunder and left behind to be claimed by time. I recently watched Thor Ragnarok and was inspired by all of the mayhem to make a place of my own that was meant to be doomed.
This is the part of my blog posts where I like to discuss some of the techniques used in the design. This was created using Clip Studio Paint and I used a 600 x 600 dpi canvas. I normally change the color of the background to grey before I start but this time I left it white. By the way, I set my brushes to 300 dpi from the start. This way I don’t have any strange nuances created by a 72 dpi drawing. The pen strokes just don’t look the way they are supposed to.
The Line Drawing
The line drawing was kept simple and flowing to allow enough space for all of the elements that I wanted to include without overcrowding the scene. See how I vary my line widths? The lines closer to the camera are thicker that the ones farther away. Depth is achieved this way by trying not to make all of your lines the same. On another note, I used many of these lines as containers for my flat colors. It is much easier to select and fill than to just paint all over everything.
See how the mountain lines are gone? I put them there at first to shape them and add the fills in. Once I got beyond that point, I erased them from the inking layer. This makes the mountains look more a part of the natural scene without looking drawn in. I removed the reds in this layer so you can see the mountains easier. I used everything from pencils to water color brushes to add color and highlights. The cloud shapes were sketched in early on and I used texture brushes to flesh them out. I used air brush tools continuously to highlight and shade and blend and repeated the process continuously.
If you look closely at the hand, there is a lot of stuff going on. I varied my colors a lot here to make the look of a decomposed hand seem more realistic. The trees in the distance make for a nice effect. Additionally, if you look close, I added metal defects on the bracelet.
That is all for tonight. If I left some things out that you may want to know more of, please ask. I am always happy to help everyone out. Also check out my book. You can find it here. Amazon Prime holders can get it for free. It is available in hard copy and E-book format. The book has a lot of these types of tutorials designed to help you come up with design ideas.
If you enjoyed this tutorial, maybe you’ll like the one I did during the fall. I also did an interesting autumn piece earlier this year as well. Also check out Pilgrim in the Woods. You will find some really cool tips and tricks that I used to create it. I always on the prowl to collect suggestions and comments from everyone. Let me know what you think.