So, I need to break into concept art for pay. I still lack the kind of quality portfolio artwork that would STILL only put me on par with a bunch of other unemployed concept artists. If that sounds heavy with scarcasm, I apologize, but I feel confident in my estimation that the pool of exceedingly skilled artist far out-supplies the demand for said skill. That all regards another article, let’s get to some concept art notes.
To keep it simple, a few short guidelines
- Start off with broad strokes or wide spray can
- On digital, shrink the scene a few times to widen the field of view
- Find other tricks to economize time, a.k.a. paint faster
Okay, maintain a list of concepts. I’ll just jot a few down, here…let’s see:
- Visor scope – Redlight: A concept from a couple weeks back, I imagined someone staring into a periscope of sorts, similar to the vision test machine at the local department of motor vehicles. The concept highlights the burning eyed exhaustion of endless hours spent at the computer illuminated by the emanating glow of the visor scope.
- Landscape – Still refining this concept, but definitely love to paint landscapes. How about a sky pack? Backgrounds for sky.
Tricks to Save Time Composing Paintings
80-20 Rule, extend this idea of economy vs. quality to minimize detail oriented work. Much work can get accomplished with a single brush stroke. Consider it a skill, like any other. Why waste 20 hours defining each follicle of hair on a character sketch only to result in an unbalaced composition? Work from chunky to medium brush size, and then pin-point a few areas of interest with masterful execution of technique. Aim for quantity in the first 15 minutes block in numerous landscapes and give yourself options. The enemy of fixation can mire one in a macroscopic world of unattainable perfectionist needling. Stay chunky.
Start with a Rorschach InkBlot – I don’t always know ahead of time, what subject I wish to tackle in an artwork, so I often begin with a Rorschach-esque approach where random mark making transforms into recognizable subject for further work.
Find and excuse to use concept art for something work related. Get closer to getting paid. One should stay aware of the need for funding future endeavors. The sooner that your composition time gets fair compensation the more economical. Still a few stepping stones can at least offer partial compensation for skill-time. Don’t turn your back on the barter economy. Do you need marketing collateral for your latest neighborhood automotive detail endeavor? I know I do! That can help offset the pay to play nature of most creative skills.