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HotWheelz
02-02-2008, 08:31 AM
Hi, I was wondering how much pencil-to-paper drawing is required as a game artist. The thing is, I'm handicapped and can't physically draw, I can only use a mouse.

Chess Mate
02-02-2008, 11:26 AM
Depending on the type of game you'd be working on and the type of games artist you want to be would depend on how much pencil-to-paper artwork would be needed. In big studios there are usually lots of different types of artist, and some 3D guys never do sketching as the studio hire professional illustrators to prepare concept work. For smaller studios you're more likely to do a bit of everything and may require some sketching. In the days before Wacom tablets I used to do a lot of 2D sketching with a mouse however - and got quite good too. It's not ideal but as long as you can translate an idea across to a designer/coder/producer or whoever then you'll do fine. All the best.

Jimmy Thicker
02-02-2008, 12:08 PM
I would say that in my many years in the games industry I have never seen an artist pick up a pencil. Some have pencils on their desks so I might be looking at the wrong times. But I can't recall seeing much sketched concept stuff either (although we have outsourced for manually drawn concept work).

One guy recently told me he tried to do some watercolour work at the weekend but got very angry at the lack of 'undo'.

So what I'm saying is I doubt it's a problem at all.

Bobz
02-02-2008, 03:07 PM
We're a proper artist bloke to do most sketching, but we've lee way to do what will fit with a spec we're given, junior artists have to sketch a rough idea, mostly to show some of the details they plan on doing, and these are really rough, but some people also use sketcher and knock a scribble out on the puter which works just as well.

Being able to draw is always handy, but it's not a necessity as long as you can communicate your ideas coherently....

HotWheelz
02-02-2008, 09:27 PM
Thanks all.

sillylittlefreak
03-02-2008, 03:40 AM
Hi, I was wondering how much pencil-to-paper drawing is required as a game artist. The thing is, I'm handicapped and can't physically draw, I can only use a mouse.
Shouldn't you be busy getting your sister to pour scotch down your feeding tube?

Nice to see you here. There's a lot of good info scattered about.

Mods: this kid is eager to learn and pretty damn sharp. I'm trying to get him and internship at my studio. PM me for details.

YourMumsLesbianLover
03-02-2008, 11:45 AM
Drawing with a pencil or tablet isn't really neccessary in many positions, though I think you'd have a lot of trouble if you wanted to be a concept artist. Of course, if you can draw well with a mouse I doubt it matters at all.

I have been in the games industry nearly 5 years now, and only recently have I done any drawing other than really rough little sketches to visualise what I am going to make in 3d or for a texture. For the last few months I've just been doing 2d stuff, so I've had to do a lot of neat drawing with a tablet, and a lot of sketches on paper. However, the lead artist at my company mostly works in 3d and when using photoshop draws with the mouse and tends to use a lot of filters to get stuff made, which nobody ever complains about.

I'm sure you'll be fine :)

Mouseshadow
03-02-2008, 01:02 PM
I wouldn't have thought it'd be a barrier to 90% of the art related positions.

plaf
03-02-2008, 01:41 PM
it *might* become relevant if you were to do texturing, concept art or such (or anything that would require you to use a wacom tablet), but most artists I've worked with have used mice.

Can I ask what the nature of your disability is?

Xajin
03-02-2008, 05:25 PM
it *might* become relevant if you were to do texturing, concept art or such (or anything that would require you to use a wacom tablet), but most artists I've worked with only ever use google or a texture archive for their textures.


Fixed that up for ya...

FunkyMonkey
05-02-2008, 05:59 PM
sheeeeiiiiiit - he's onto us!

plaf
05-02-2008, 07:20 PM
whatever gets the job done, deeeewd. There's nothing I'd rather do than paint my own textures all day long, but it just takes to effing long, and unless it's required by the style of the game, what's the point.

sponge
08-02-2008, 12:02 AM
I always prefer an artist who can draw, or at least have *some* actual artistic ability. A good eye, good taste and good ideas are most important to me.

I've been at plenty of companies over the years where artists just don't have a good eye and tend to dazzle with a load of garish flashy detail, but the actual foundations are all wrong. There's a shocking number of maya and photo texture manipulator artists in the games industry who are quite frankly shite, but, bums in seats, eh?

:|

I'd tell you to learn about painting, concentrating on dividing space up into nice compositions and lots and lots of colour theory. Concentrate on these whilst building your own style and ideas.

:)

Mouseshadow
08-02-2008, 08:46 AM
I've been at plenty of companies over the years where artists just don't have a good eye and tend to dazzle with a load of garish flashy detail, but the actual foundations are all wrong. There's a shocking number of maya and photo texture manipulator artists in the games industry who are quite frankly shite, but, bums in seats, eh?

True, but that's also why I said it generally isn't a barrier. It won't stop you getting work.

sponge
08-02-2008, 05:04 PM
True, but that's also why I said it generally isn't a barrier. It won't stop you getting work.


Yeah, if we're honest, to get in the games industry as an artist, you just need to have learnt how to use Photoshop and Maya + have access to a bunch of dirty concrete and metal plate photos.

Marcel
19-02-2008, 08:44 PM
+ have access to a bunch of dirty concrete and metal plate photos.

That's where I come in :eek:

Nokill
21-02-2008, 04:17 PM
I always prefer an artist who can draw, or at least have *some* actual artistic ability. A good eye, good taste and good ideas are most important to me.


Yea be creative and draw crazy things that can fit the game idea.
I had lots of times that I looked at concepts and tough to myself what the hell! why is that in there it looks great and got someone to work that out while in the start it was not really a idea to put that in.
Those people add a lot in ideas.

Also basically use anything you need to get best results like programs or tools.
I don't think people should be limited in there work but I guess some company's don't think alike.

Eric Chadwick
30-04-2008, 03:57 PM
Can you draw with your mouse? If you have samples of art you've drawn, sketches, concepts, even life drawings, that's helpful to judge your artistic eye, and your ability to render it.

Drawing is an important skill for an artist, though not essential to get a job, as people have posted. I've hired a few artists who weren't solid draughtsmen, just chicken-scratchers. But they had awesome modeling or animation skills. However I won't hire someone for a texturing or concepting position unless they can draw well.

Drawing is good for every art position though, it does tend to speed things up communication-wise, way faster than modeling something out. Plus it refines your ability to see, an essential art skill.

In the end your lead won't care how the art gets into the game, as long as you can fit into the studio's pipeline without much hassle, and produce your work at a decent rate.

Simplepop
20-02-2010, 05:15 AM
Drawing can be a great way to generate ideas very quickly.

Opening software packages and trying to create artwork streight off...will probabaly always take 10 hours longer, Mostly because youve got all the tools to make it look awesome for your client.

But its good to have lots of pictures to refrence, you can also very quickly change ideas. The rubber is your phsycial Ctrl+Z

c780162
02-03-2010, 10:25 PM
reading some of these replies it sounds strange that you can be an artist in the industry without drawing skills really but i guess it's possible as long as you have vision and can produce the stuff the client wants.

i can't imagine myself trying to do arty stuff without my wacom though... but i must say i've neglected pencil and paper for a long while now.

Puppy
03-03-2010, 02:43 PM
You can do anything if you believe in yourself!!!

(sorry, that's all I got)

sponge
17-03-2010, 08:32 PM
reading some of these replies it sounds strange that you can be an artist in the industry without drawing skills really but i guess it's possible as long as you have vision and can produce the stuff the client wants.

I can't imagine myself trying to do arty stuff without my wacom though... but i must say i've neglected pencil and paper for a long while now.

It's a good baseline skill that speaks a lot about the applicant. Most people of an artistic bent will have drawn and been creative from an early age. A lot of other people have picked up software later on in life and taught themselves the craft of 'making stuff'. They were inspired by video games and wanted to make video games, often don't have a creative bone in their body but will do really competent versions of what they've already seen a million times before.

'Making stuff' is fine. There are companies that want stuff made. They want park benches with a photograph of a park bench UV mapped on it. If that turns you on, go for it.

But, if you're a 'stuff maker' rather than an artist, you'll probably still be a 'stuff maker' cranking out barrels and trees with your arse pressing against the glass ceiling in ten years time. Then, the guy who had the baseline drawing, painting and artistic sensibilities is now the art director running the show.

Not to say that not drawing always equates to not being creative. It's all just different tools. But, I find that truly creative people can't help but make cool stuff out of anything they can get their hands on. They always return to the pencil, the simplest tool in which they expressed themselves as a kid. They spend a lot of time away from the mouse and wacom.

juelpatwary
23-03-2010, 07:52 PM
I quite enjoy classical pencil and paper drawings, although i have a Graphics Tablet - I don't use it much, i just prefer, idk, just pencil and paper. It's much more easier i think :D...

Sabotander
23-03-2010, 08:06 PM
I quite enjoy classical pencil and paper drawings, although i have a Graphics Tablet - I don't use it much, i just prefer, idk, just pencil and paper. It's much more easier i think :D...

Yeah, but then you reach for CTRL-Z...

juelpatwary
23-03-2010, 08:08 PM
Yeah, but then you reach for CTRL-Z...
That made me lol, and yeah sometimes it is annoying when you do something wrong, especially like a whole body pose haha, i guess it's just personnal preference.

revenge of c64
24-03-2010, 01:06 PM
I think screwups are part of the charm in the original drawings, plus lack of undo will force you to draw better. You can still fix them up in photoshop if you want to.

I am trying to keep up my skills by doodling on a pad while having a break. Maybe I'll post my doodlings to blog later, just to torment you with my rubbish.. ;)