Concept art first attempt!

Concept art first attempt! - student project

Hey guys, so I started this attempt while watching the class, and as you can see it hasn't fallen far from the tree! There's the rural setting, the bull horns and the reddish colour scheme.

I went for an agrarian society of humanoid creatures, who appear to be farming paddies of some crop, and presumably process the crop in those mills we see scattered over the landscape. The bull creature has porcupine-like spines on its back, suggesting it has evolved with a passive defence, although clearly it can't roll into a ball! I'll have to give that some more thought.

Anyway, here's my original notebook sketch:
Concept art first attempt! - image 1 - student project
After that I took a photo on my phone and brought it into Photoshop where I drew over it and moved the foreground figures a bit. It was fun to think about light and wind direction, and as you can see, I originally had the wind and light coming from the left. I later changed this.

Here's the outlined version:
Concept art first attempt! - image 2 - student projectShading the image in monotone first was a revelation! I'd been having trouble lately trying to draw a comic, especially light sourcing, and highlighting important objects in the frame.

I'd decided to go back and shade everything in black and white first, which I thought was really smart, so it was very affirming to see Ira do this in the lesson as well! It made me feel that I was on the right track with that approach.

I haven't yet changed the light sourcing here, but it's at this point that I realise it looks like they're walking into a nuclear blast!

Concept art first attempt! - image 3 - student project

And so I began colouring it. I broke the landscape into broad bands and got the basics down, then played with detail and highlighting.

I coloured the grass poking out of the paddies as highlights rather than outlines, and changed the light to be generally from above. I'd tried it coming from a sunset on the right of the image but the shadow looked very odd and unnatural. So after 2-3 goes I settled on a simple overhead sun!

I added the second farmer in the middle-ground, so that we have a triangle of subjects to move our eye around.

I considered other details like smoke from the farmer's pipe and from the mill's chimney, but decided it would clutter the image.

The last thing I did, after the sky, was create a vector cutting through the image using the leaves. I drew larger leaves in the bottom left and added small, distance leaves in the top right, giving the viewer the sense that the gust of wind is carrying the leaves from behind the left of the viewer, out into the distance on the right.

Concept art first attempt! - image 4 - student project

Daniel Murtha
Look I’m trying okay?