Fug vows to stop using the Doodle Thread so much [Concept Art/Portfolio] [NSF56k]

FugitiveFugitive Registered User regular
edited October 2013 in Artist's Corner
Hey, guys.

So, a couple weeks ago, I got let go from my company as the primary concept artist. Since then I've been trying to put together a portfolio for other big-boy jobs in the field, but since I've been basically making it up as I go along I've decided to post some work from my time there and get some feedback.

Feedback on what I can do to improve the quality of my designs, their descriptiveness, and any tips on improving rate of output would be appreciated. Perhaps most importantly, though, I'd to know if any of these could be used as portfolio material, and what would be the best way to present them.

Some preface: The images presented for each design represent the bulk of the work performed from start to finish. There is some work in between, but in a general sense these images represent the arc of development from the very start to the very end. Since this is such a major dump, I'm going to sort these into spoiler tags.

All material copyright (c) 2013 One Planet Education Network®. All Rights Reserved unless otherwise stated.

1: Sea Demi-goddess Main Character
Initial silhouette sketches to establish basic shape.

Honing the elements chosen and exploring basic design options

Focusing in on specific clothing elements and experimenting

Face/hair design. The project director felt pretty good about where the face was at in the previous stages of development and decided he didn't want to stray too far from that basic shape.



More pants

Testing patterns for trim on pants

Quick sketches to test out the near-complete design with all the chosen elements together.

Final design (after a brief phase of picking colors)

2: Super Spy Class for Player Avatar
Initial silhouettes (body type already previously chosen)

Second pass silhouettes after feedback

Designing the back elements

More backs, based on feedback

Zero-point Gravity Gauntlet designs

Gauntlets in action

Final gauntlet design

Boot details

Color options

Final pass for helmet design

Rough 4 point turnaround

Final design

3: Synthetic Animal Companion for Player Avatar
Initials thumbs and silhouettes

Silhouettes, second pass

Quick color passes/synthesis of all chosen design elements up to that point



Final design and notes

4: Miscellaneous examples of different design work
Color/patterning passes (copyright (c) 2013 Eric Dagley)

Facial designs for main character

Further tweaking after feedback

Facial designs for alien race

That's it for now. Let me know what you think.

Fugitive on


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    IrukaIruka Registered User, Moderator Mod Emeritus
    Everything here looks really slick, fug. Love the colors, shapes and flow of your work.

    the weakest spot, in my opinion is here:

    You have such confident forms everywhere else, but the eyes on these guys seem to be flat, messy, and unsure of how to extend themselves out of a manga style. You may want to do some flexing in that area, just to see where you could push it.

    I would also say that you seem to err on the side of skinny, when it comes to making animals and robots, it'd be interesting to see what you did with some really heavy, boxy forms. Tank characters, tank animals, tank robot, that kind of thing. Show a little flexibility in your visual vocabulary.

    For the most part though, I think your work is pretty great.

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    GodfatherGodfather Registered User regular
    Wow, this design process was super-informative! It's interesting how easy and seamless i'm able to connect one step to the next process

    Was the contract up at the company you worked for?

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    FugitiveFugitive Registered User regular
    edited February 2013
    Accurate, Iruka, thanks. Faces continue to be really difficult for me, so I'm glad I'm not just being paranoid.

    @Godfather There were a few reasons, though I don't really want to get into specifics just now.

    Fugitive on
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    ninjaininjai Registered User regular
    Fug can I be you for a day. Your mechanical designs are always sick. I was wondering why you hadn't been posting your art for such a long time. I don't really have any feedback, but i hope you find the job you're looking for!

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    NightDragonNightDragon 6th Grade Username Registered User regular
    Really nice work, fug.

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    FugitiveFugitive Registered User regular
    edited February 2013
    Thanks, ninjai and ND.

    I'm wondering if anybody had any thoughts or tips about the Superspy 4-point turnaround. Turnarounds are my weakest point. They take me forever to do, and I never feel like I know if I'm wasting a lot of time on exacting detail.

    Is there a standard for how detailed and literal they need to be when it isn't specified? I know when doing turnarounds for toy designs, immaculate proportional and texture consistency is vital, but does the same hold true when doing turnarounds for a 3D modeler? Is the 4 point turnaround I posted appropriate, even for something that needed to be done in a crunch?

    Fugitive on
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    IrukaIruka Registered User, Moderator Mod Emeritus
    out of curiosity, how long would you estimate it actually took you? An hour? a Day?

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    FugitiveFugitive Registered User regular
    Probably about 10-12 hours.

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    SeraphSwordSeraphSword Sketch Fetishist Austin, TXRegistered User regular
    If I had any criticism on the turnaround, it would be with the first, 3/4 view pose. It seems a little flat, partly I think due to the tangent formed by the arm equipment and the character's hip. That's all I got, and I hardly know what I'm talking about. Really slick portfolio though, good luck on the job hunt.

    Mastery is the result of ceaseless error, combined with ruthless self-appraisal.
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    TamTam Registered User regular
    Dang, nice work fug
    Wish I had something constructive to tell you

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    ninjaininjai Registered User regular
    edited February 2013
    If I had any criticism on the turnaround, it would be with the first, 3/4 view pose.

    Perhaps you could reference this for the 3/4 pose. I'm not sure if the model is supposed to be in the same pose in the 3/4 as the full 360, but the feet of the front back and side poses are all pointed nearly straight forward, whereas the 3/4 feet are pointed at nearly a 90 degree angle. If you actually stand like that, you feel a lot of pressure in your hips and is incredibly uncomfortable, so perhaps that is giving the pose a rather stiff appearance. And I have to agree about the arm. Because the rear arm and shoulder is so forward the front arm feels a little unnatural and forced.

    And this may be a nitpick, in all the design drawings the arm attachment is on the left arm, but in the action shot it has switched arms. Idk

    This is just my amateur observation, but that's all I got. Hope it helps :/

    ninjai on
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    FugitiveFugitive Registered User regular
    I guess the question now is should I go back and redo the 3/4 pose to include it in my portfolio.

    Thanks for the input, guys.

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    FugitiveFugitive Registered User regular
    edited September 2013
    So, I'm assembling a portfolio to send off to a prospective employer very soon, and I'm trying to put together a portfolio-worthy example of a non-humanoid mechanical design (since there's a huge gap there). I'll be going from conception to finish.

    I've spent the past few days experimenting with different ways to do silhouettes, trying to create a method that's quick, aesthetically pleasing, and descriptive of the overall shape while providing a few other touchpoints to indicate some of the shapes within the silhouette. While my old silhouetting processes were pretty good at giving me a good foundation to work from, and were typically pretty easy for a director to make decisions from provided we could communicate easily, I want to push them further. Ultimately, I'm trying to reach something approaching the clean and communicative work of artists like Kat Nicole.

    Here's my latest batch. The design is for a walking tank serving as a light/medium armored infantry fighting vehicle, with an aesthetic roughly rooted in mid-to-current military aesthetic. I decided to constrict the design to these parameters to approximate an actual assignment instead of going hogwild on drawing whatever cool robot designs came to mind.


    ND already provided me with a lot of great input last night. If anybody has any suggestions or ideas on what I should be doing to improve my process/make these more interesting/communicate ideas better, let me know.

    [Edit] Also, for some reason my Firefox seems to be upscaling my inline images slightly, so it looks blurrier than it should.

    Fugitive on
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    sampangolinsampangolin Registered User regular
    I love designs like this, these look great Fugitive. I have no real expertise in this, but had a couple of thoughts you might find helpful.

    You say they are for infantry fighting vehicles, from that I think of something not a whole lot bigger than a tank? But on some they give of the impression of being building sized. I think maybe it's the windows. If you look at number 6 or 10 for example, that line on the top left looks like the bridge. If it's meant to look that big then ignore me and well done because it does :)

    The other thing was on a couple, 16 in particular, it looks like you were getting a bit rushed and wanted to finish, so didn't polish it as much as the others. If you are sending it to an employer I'd try to be really critical with yourself and make sure they're all up to par.

    Great designs though. Keep going!

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    FugitiveFugitive Registered User regular
    edited September 2013
    Those windows are meant to be like the mail-slot viewports on something like a Styker APC. I wonder if putting in a couple people for scale on a few of these would alleviate some of that, or if its a fundamental design issue.

    And thanks for the input on 16. For 15 and 16 I briefly switched up my process for something a bit quicker (under a minute) to see if it would produce something usable. Good to know it doesn't really work.

    Fugitive on
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    TamTam Registered User regular
    see I told you you'd finish it

    I want to say you should vary the armament/add some, but I don't know what to change it to, so...

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    FugitiveFugitive Registered User regular
    Probably not a terrible idea. Most of them have the form-factor of a typical 50cal gun with some anti-tank/anti-air stuff thrown in, but there's more I could do with those.

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    FugitiveFugitive Registered User regular
    Corrections to the silhouette page based on feedback

    And some next-phase development, fleshing out materials and specific shapes, as well as some very rough colors.


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    buffylovebuffylove Registered User regular
    Very cool mech. great balance of simplicity and detail.

    New story -- DUMP SITE
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    FugitiveFugitive Registered User regular
    edited October 2013
    A well-updated thread, being necessary to the vibrancy of the forum community, I promise I'll update this more frequently to keep the door open for feedback.

    Here's a robot I'm drawing.

    (also, thank you, buffylove)

    Fugitive on
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    IrukaIruka Registered User, Moderator Mod Emeritus

    Your robots have just gotten cooler and cooler, man. It'll be nice to see your stuff accumulated in the thread, it really helps with the giving of crits. Just looking at the robots in the OP, you can see cleaner and more variety of forms in your work now and a little more confidence and polish to your rendering.

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    mullymully Registered User regular
    Man, Fug. You are hella talented. Love, LOVE, the character illustration you did of the spy guy falling with the green light and all. I also find your deep sea demi god adorable as heck.

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    FugitiveFugitive Registered User regular
    You guys are entirely too kind.


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    TamTam Registered User regular
    from great car designer Chuck Taylor

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    CyberMonkeytron3000CyberMonkeytron3000 Registered User regular
    Fug- I love your western/asian fusion design aesthetics and especially the way you render hard materials.

    I love you....

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    FugitiveFugitive Registered User regular
    Oh gosh senpai noticed me.

    Trying to get better at character design, and drawing humans in general.


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    ProspicienceProspicience The Raven King DenvemoloradoRegistered User regular
    edited December 2013
    Man fug, you got this sweet late 80's, early 90's style oldschool american/anime cartoonist awesomefunkadelic thing goin' on lately (or always, maybe just getting better now).

    You should take a look at Old City Blues if you haven't already. Think you'd dig the style.

    Prospicience on
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    m3nacem3nace Registered User regular
    edited December 2013
    It's amazing how fucking complete you guys' styles are. They're all pretty unique and still so... I don't know what to say other than "complete," or "coherent." It's just such a unique thing, something that is damn rare to find.
    It's taking all those influences and making something entirely new. I'm telling you, almost none of the people I study with don't even come close to such a level of uniqueness in their styles, most of them are just regurgitated anime, Simon Biesly or Dan Clowes, they are shadows of their idols, but you guys in the AC, damn... you're casting shadows.

    m3nace on
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    FugitiveFugitive Registered User regular
    Thanks, guys!

    I hadn't heard of Old City Blues, as a matter of fact! It's apparently all online for free so I guess this is what I'm doing with my life for the short term.

    I basically agree, m3nace. I tend to think the types of people who work really hard to establish themselves in a community are more likely to try and really define a personality for their work. As opposed to, I guess, the types of people who are mostly just using the internet as a one-way communication/promotion channel.

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