01/11/2016 - Environmental Design Process
Hi, Joshua here! Welcome back for a new blog!
We’ve given you a look at the concept art for several characters and environments in NAIRI, but, how do we go about actually designing all of it?
Well, first off, I do some research and writing. Usually, for the areas that You draws we have a couple of documents describing the place or character in a very detailed manner.
When it comes to environments, we also know the general lay-out of the city, as this is defined by the city’s 3D model – which we discussed in a previous blog update.
All of this gives the artist (You) a better idea of what she has to draw, after which she goes on to deliver a first pass sketch.
After this, I provide some feedback for You to work with. We do this back and forth a lot – she gives feedback on my design and music concepts, as well! It helps to prevent a certain “blindness” that usually comes from working on a single piece of work for so many long hours. On top of this, our suggestions also help to inspire one another for new ideas!
The sketch, that first pass, is all about composition. Does the composition – angle, perspective, distribution – contribute to what we want to convey? If the sketch is approved, the second pass covers the basic colors for the “feel” of the image. We then talk about how light affects the piece, and whether we should change the light sources to perfect the mood we’re aiming for.
After the second pass, comes the third: shading and detail! For in-game backgrounds, this process takes a long time. Since you’ll be staring at the art in full HD for more than a few minutes, You needs to put some serious effort into making sure the art looks detailed enough at a high resolution!
For conceptual art, the artist aims for a “lower resolution” and more sketchy outlines, to give it a more vivid look. The art will look sharp in smaller sizes, but more abstract as you zoom in. This helps during the process as we work on the look and feel for each area or character! Once we are happy with the composition as a whole, then concept art is used as reference for the final in-game areas and characters.
We hope you enjoyed reading through all this!
See you soon!