Wednesday, 9 March 2011

ATTENTION! pls read...

Lately Ive been looking at my self with a critics eye which is soemthing i normally do when im working, butat the moment im looking not at individual peices but my work on the whole over say the last two years. i find itdifficult to judge my self because artistically so much has happend to me and my process in the last few years, tostart i made the jump from traditional to semi digital. i also started university which impacted upon my professionalpractice and also my ability to recognise more subliminal flaws within my work.

On the specifics of my concept art, ive found my self falling into the 'specialisation rut' too much of one thing (creatures) is no good for an aspiring artist in the field of concept design, it will narrow my options and ultimately render me useless like a plucked chicken with a tooth pick sword on the front line of a war. i also feel and know that im falling way too short of my desired style with is photorealism, like wayne barlowe or todd marshall.i know these guys didnt wake up one day creating god like art work, they spent years practicing traditionally both intechnique and subject matter. but i cant seem to dicipline my self to do this. perhaps i should e realistic, im notgoing to be able to stop my addiction for designing creatures but i can set my self small targets. once a week i cando a few sketches from photo reference or life, and i can also try doing concepts for things i dont normally approach.

I've been looking at Marko (he he same name almost) Djurdjevic lately. Anyone whos been on or likes theircomics will know this guy. hes an insanely good artist, talented in a wide variety of things but for me its his basic drawingskills that keeps me so intrigued. in a world where everything is becoming more advanced and techy by the second,this trend setter is still bashing out works of art with a mechanical pencil like hes not even breaking a sweat.i ask my self can i ever reach this standard? or is every one born with a certain amount of talent which ultimately defines their ability if not their capability? if this is the case then i cant see how ill ever reach industry standard,competition is high in any industry, but i feel with so many players on the field that the visual industry is thetoughest competition to win.

I recently recieved feedback for my work on the last semester and though overall it was very good feedback, i feel like imnot reaching my own personal standard in my head. it didnt help that my feedback was numbered grades without written commentsas i feel i can only improve with criticism, so i might contact my tutor and see why i didnt get a higher mark.

I'm pretty sure that concept art is more than just drawing what ever you see in your head. im positive theres an unwrittendoctrine to it, a theory that must be applied to distinguish a concept above others. when i look through my concept art booksi see patterns emerge that i wouldnt have considered by my self. i wonder, must i learn to be all this by the time im outlooking for a job in the industry or do these artists learn these valuable lessons as they progress from one job to another,like experience?

I was contacted a while ago on deviant art by some guy, cant remember his name, about working on a non profit game project.they had their heads screwed the right way round and seemed to be pretty co-herent, but i found that i didnt have the time and even now between university, socialising and working upon my own visual projects i dont know if i could dedicate my selfto that project. but im wondering, do i have to do these projects to gain that experience and understand how the mechanics work?or should i put my faith in my education and hope that it steers me well and leads me out the other side confident, capableand facing the right way? to be honest, i have my doubts about the course im on, as everyone does, but what makes me worryis that its a lack of confidence the teaching programme its self. not sure, would love it if some one from the top came to my humble little blog and gave me a little answer at least, but the reality is im going to have to find the answers my self i think.


  1. I'm not near the top of concept art but I hope to offer a couple of suggestions.

    As a fellow Wayne Barlowe fan, especially of his hell series, there's something to think about regarding to technique. Sometimes, you hit upon the right combination of colour and texture and bristle, and it's repeatable. Barlowe uses a small collection of repeated textures throughout the oppressive hell paintings, and hangs those textures on his excellent pencil drawings.

    It works because it's unified, everything has a similar feel. It frees him up from considering every texture and instead exploring the denizens of his fictional realm.

    It's not to say what he did is simple: he found some techniques that fit his subject matter beautifully. But he also isn't re-inventing the wheel every time he sits down to do one. Gradually, his attention I assume turned back to space creatures.

    I had been drawing seriously for years and I never felt like I hit anything close to a professional note until near the end of 1st year university. And I couldn't hit it a decent percentage of the time.

    Keep doing what you do Marco! Some of us are fans.

  2. Thank you Glen, I never thought about that but your very right, with an established set of techniques he is given freedom to develope the visual look of his subjects.

    barlowes works on hell are brilliant i agree, i have read gods deamon twice now and its a perfect companion to his paintings.

    perhaps thats soemthing i need to look at, and now that youve said it it seems to fit the bill, ive spent a while now concentrating on the concept but not the technique its self.

    thanks for the advice glen, very much appreciated.

  3. Hi Marco, it seems like your going through what many of us on Illustration at Stockport have gone through, I think a lot of is self doubt, that might not be eradicated until you get out there and do some payed work. I think the point is, enhancing your skills will come naturally as long as you keep working, but its important that you always do things "your way". Then people will see your work and hopefully recognise that it is yours. Yes there is plenty of competition but that doesn't mean that you can't succeed. Keep your chin up mate.


  4. Thanks dan. im just gonna keep on going, been looking at the concept work for the original halo games these past few days, soem pretty inspiring work and words.

    hope things are going well for you at uni mate.


  5. I've been thinking about this some more, and I think time will be on your side in another way.

    I change the artwork on my studio wall every so often, and I usually put up older stuff. And I can't fully recall exactly how I did it. And sometimes, I daresay, I'm impressed with past-me. He did some very cool work.

    It's inspiring and confidence-building.