3D Asset Workflow: Concepting

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The Concept Process

  1. Discuss at least with the AD and possibly also with the designers and the the writer about what is wanted.
  2. Think about the story of the asset/character, is it old or young/new, what is the nature of the asset, the environment it will be used in etc. What's the history of the asset. How does all this affect to the look of the asset?
    • For example in the Trine style everything should be more or less worn/mossy/crooked to create the organic feeling. Generally nothing should be perfectly straight and symmetrical.
  3. Search for reference images online (Pinterest is a good option)
  4. Analyze the reference images, combine ideas, and come up with a general idea for the asset.
    • Pick images that have any nice usable ideas that you like. They don’t have to be perfect and often aren't. That's where the concept art steps in!
    • Use the best ideas from your reference images and your imagination, never copy stuff 1:1, but shape it to work with your unique asset
    • Concentrate on the big forms, silhouette, proportions and the overall design
    • Keep the detail level and distribution in balance, have small, medium and large detail and make sure it's not repetitive.
    • Fundamentals of Composition very clearly and shortly explained (Check the links under 3. Composition). See NeilBlevins.com : Theory And Techniques.]
  1. Create a 2D or 3D concept (quick rough sculpt) of your asset.
    • Good concept will make sculpting and texturing easier, and also let the AD and the team know what you are up to.
    • 3D asset concept art is not marketing art, so don't use time to make a pretty finished image.
    • It’s just a plan and a guide for the sculpting process, and to share the idea with the AD before using a lot of time to make the final asset.
    • The details can be specified during the sculpting process, use reference images for this part of the process as well.

Example of the concept process

How to use reference images in concepting.jpg
Trine Flourish Curve Style Guide
PHOTO:Multiple Sources

The final game asset set:

Fountain pegasus1.jpg Fountain goat1.jpg

Frozenbyte concept art examples

  • Concepts can be anything really depending on the situation
  • Usually a very crude concept is enough to communicate the idea
  • In many cases the further the design is taken during the concept phase, the easier it'll be in the sculpting phase
  • But on the other hand it can be easier to fully figure out the object in 3D based on just a very vague concept
  • It depends on the artist and the asset
  • Often with characters it's good to take the concept quite far and design some details and colors as well
  • These are all concepts made by the 3D artists who also created the final game model so it's up to each artist how far they feel like they want to design in the concept phase


Sources

[PHOTO: How to use reference images in concepting.jpg] - Source list :