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Thread: 8.24.12 - Zebz Sketchbook
February 18th, 2009 #1
8.24.12 - Zebz Sketchbook
Some of you might know me and some of you might not. I've been around CA for a while but haven't been very active in recent years due to most of my artistic mind being poured into NDA projects for work. As time went on I sort of lost a lot of momentum and started doing less and less personal work and art slowly got less fun. But something happened late last year that sort of started a spark (not sure what exactly lol) and I've been slowly building up speed again. And since I've found that joy for creating images renewed I've made a resolution that this year I'd finally start posting again on a sketchbook thread in hopes of getting more feedback and crits that would help drive me to evolve my skills further. So I guess I'm just crawling back to the learnin' tree. Heh. So I really appreciate anyone who gives my doodles and pencil hacks a look. And appreciate even more anyone who offers some sound advice and criticism. And I'd just like to say thanks in advance for that.
I started a new sketchbook thread (old one) because most of the links seem to not be working on most of the pages to the old images. And I'd just like to sort of let all that stuff go and give myself a clean slate to move forward. As you can see from the post below I'm sort of all over the place. Heh. I'm not sure how to comment on each individual image so I'll try and give an overview of what's below here. Most of it is just random, unfinished doodles from my sketchbooks. I pulled a few of the more interesting ones from the recent months. The toony stuff towards the bottom are some sketch ideas for a project that several of the artists I'm working with came up with. I'm just helping concept some characters. I'll explain more about that in later posts as I'm sure to have more concrete concepts.
My experience with color has been all about saturation since I started working and I've never really focused and just spent more time studying it for myself. So you'll see a few digital random things in here and that's me just trying to learn how to paint better and find new ways of working. I'm trying to be more concerned with limiting a palette and not letting my color work overtake the value and lighting. The last image you'll see on here (the girl with the red scarf) is still in progress. You can probably tell what I'm trying to learn from how I'm approaching that image.
So yea, there's a lot of ballpoint, mechanical pencil, brush pen and digital in this update. Sorry it's just sort of scatter brained and all over the place. I'll try to update more regularly so that it isn't such a mess. And man, I forgot how long it takes to scan and get all this crap in here! lol So thanks for looking and I promise to keep my mouth shut better next time.
- Zebz (Ryan Bowlin)
Last edited by Zebz; August 24th, 2012 at 10:25 PM.
Hide this ad by registering as a memberFebruary 18th, 2009 #2
Great new start dude, really diggin' the moleskine pages and the studies, keep it up the good work.
February 18th, 2009 #3
Hi there looking forward to your new book, oh and I love this page
February 18th, 2009 #4
Truly great drawings! The boobs in the last painting are looking very weird.
: ) Look that you are drawing with lines as simple as possible. (sorry for my english) - Like her right arm...
keep it up
February 18th, 2009 #5
February 18th, 2009 #6
February 18th, 2009 #7
February 20th, 2009 #8
I've had better days...
azekariel - Thanks, man. Keep pushing your stuff too. You'll get there in time.
Jano - Thanks! Yea, she's a saucy little thing isn't she? lol I don't think eyes are too far apart. I actually think I just made her face bit too wide. At least that's what it seemed like after looking at the photo later. Thanks for the crits tho.
Hyptosis - Thanks! Glad you like 'em. Yea, he's apart of the news crew for this monster movie type animated thing some buddies of mine are working on. I'm just trying to scribble some characters out for 'em. More on those soon, I think.
Schmitz - Yea, it's still not finished. I'm still trying to sort out the values and really some parts are still just blocked out a bit and need to be refined. I really need to sit down and hammer the rest of it out. I should have plenty of free time soon tho... sadly. Thanks for stopping in! Let me know what you think of it when I finish. Your ladies look very nice in your thread, btw! Great work.
Max - Good to be back, mate. Yea, I love sitting and just rendering. It doesn't really help much with job type stuff tho. i need to continually find ways to cut corners and get faster. Heh. I'm sure you know how that is. I always love fully rendered pencils tho. Maybe it's the strange inks that you like in there and not the pencils... in that case disregard my comments. lol
Diego - Thanks! I'll do my best!
Thanks again for all of the comments! It's nice to be back and having people look at my scribbles. I do have some sad news tho as I update today. Today the developer I work for laid off a good portion of our work force and almost all of the art stuff felt the blade. This is my first time going through this sort of thing and it's been hard to swallow. The studio is being very cool tho about letting us show everything we've created for the game. I was told I could post all of the work I've done for it which is pretty gracious on their part and unheard of from any other dev I've seen. So I'll be adding more stuff from there soon as I start gathering all of my art that I've created over the last 2.5 years. Not sure if I should start a thread in the finally finished section or what but regardless I'll let you guys know in here what's going on. So it sucks but hopefully I'll find something else and it'll be even better. If anyone is hiring and reading this be sure to message me! lol Anyhow...
I went to the many random images I worked on and just grabbed a few within context for me to toss in here tonight to celebrate the occasion. lol These concepts are for Lightless Cultists. They basically worship a sort of undead group in the game. Kind of wannabes, y'kno? The first couple images are me sort of feeling out some ideas. The last three characters are what we ended up going with. I've been all over the place in terms of my process and it's continually changing and evolving. These were done last year sometime. I'll have to get the more recent ones in here so I can show what I've been doing lately. Also, Street Fighter 4 is pretty awesome. I need to finish a Ryu sketch I started the other day and I'll post that soon too. Anyhow.... thanks for looking and I'll catch you guys next update. Take care.
February 20th, 2009 #9
ah sucks to hear man, but on the bright side you can smash out heaps of nice personal works while you're on hiatus.
February 20th, 2009 #10
CamSkyo: Thanks, man. I'm going to do my best to keep cracking on my stuff but the next week or so is going to be me getting my portfolio together. Thanks for the encouragement, man.
Here's another few concepts for a human style guide I was working on a couple months ago. Basically just for the wardrobe and hairstyles. These were loose ends that I was supposed to tie up once we got all of the race style guides finished. I'll probably refine these and paint them up for my portfolio tho.
February 20th, 2009 #11
Hey man, diggin' your latest stuff, i like the latest characters, they look more solid and more functional than the previous designs in terms of balance of the gesture and design, i think the non-armor gear are your weakest points in those chars http://www.conceptart.org/forums/att...1&d=1235113490
Keep on going dude, i'd love to see a color version of the human chars.
February 21st, 2009 #12
Hey man, Great stuffs as always. You know I heart the work you do, dude! I'm really looking forward to seeing how the portfolio comes together. This is a hard thing, but like I said last night, I know it'll all work out in the end, and maybe this is a good opportunity for you.
Also, it's important to remember that there is a big difference between getting laid off, and getting fired. This wasn't because they didn't want you, and chances are good that somebody else is going to want you too. I'll miss you when you move though... lol.
I'll talk to you later, dude
February 22nd, 2009 #13
February 22nd, 2009 #14
Diego: Thanks! Yea, I'll probably colorize those for the portfolio if I can get some extra time this week while prepping the stuff to send out for more work. As far as the cultist designs and their "non-armor" portions being weak. The idea that we ended up running with was that we wanted them to have a high contrast silhouette. You'd have patched together, dark leather bits and then you'd have the more detailed chromed bones and such. That was the direction my art director pushed me in at least. The first ones were just trying to find some ideas and second ones seemed to push them too far into creature territory (tho I think I like those designs better then the ones I ended up with even if they are pretty busy). So in a job you do what they tell ya. Heh. I was pretty happy with them tho.
KC: You're always a wonderful friend and I appreciate all of your support, dude. Thanks again for the Darth Maul Mighty Mugg you gave me to cheer me up. It's just a pitty he won't get to sit on my desk at work with all the rest of the brothers. I'll bring them all home soon so he can have a happy family! Love ya, man. This is still our year, man! We've got this shizz!
Da' Gnoll : Yo! Glad you're digging some of it. Yea, I struggle with the feet. But now that you've called me out I need to kick around some studies. Be looking for those in the next couple weeks! Hold me accountable and keep me posting, man! I need a community now more then ever! lol
So thanks again for the people who've looked this crap over. lol I'm still in shock a bit but I'm starting to rally forth and pour my effort into my portfolio. By the end of this next week I should have a new website up and will be hopefully ready to send out my stuff to a ton of companies. I have a couple strong contacts so I'm hoping those work out first. No matter where I end up I'll have to move but thankfully I'm in a position right now where that's not a problem. So if you know anyone who is looking for an artist let me know! I can do textures, GUI, concept art and even low poly models! lol I'm advertising myself here now, this is sad!
So I haven't had much time to draw as I've been compiling things for the portfolio. But I figure I'd take some time to post some of the stuff I've worked on at work over the last few months. These were last fall/winter, I think. I'm not a great environment artist (character is my stronger area, I think) but I tried to get these out there and some came out decent. They were really supposed to be more speedy type paintings where I nailed down some colors and basic shapes in an area. These were just to give a basic idea for what an area might look like. These were areas we hadn't previously concepted and had very little info available to us. So we took what we had and just started pushing paint around and seeing what we liked. Some of these I worked on more then others, as you'll see, but I generally got a couple done a day. As I said before, I sort of had to feel around for a color scheme and such since nothing was really noted before. These were more of a starting point for future concepts. I'm considering taking some of these and pushing them a bit more and including them in my portfolio. If I get some time this week I'd really love to bring some of them to a bit more of a finish. They're pretty rough right now. So which ones do you think I should focus on? I'll probably go back to these regardless of whether I can do it with this portfolio or not. We'll see...
See ya next update! Thanks for looking.
February 22nd, 2009 #15
What an incredible start for a sketchbook. These environments are amazing...I especially love the abandoned mine shafts and the enormous weeping willow. Your handling of trees is so skillful--they look magical! I look forward to seeing the development of any one of these.
February 22nd, 2009 #16
ALERT: i am no enviroment expect at all, actually, i know shit about enviroments, so take comment with pinch of salt.
i like 2.22.09.2 the first two work better than the green ones imho, contrast makes em more interesting
in the weeping willow the foreground objects are a bit too light, maybe making them darker would guide the eyes better
my suggestion would be to carry on with this one
and this one
they all seem very "busy" to me, maybe try and focus on something specific, strong focus on small elements scattered around imho doesn't work
and don't give us that low confidence title man
no really, at least stop calling it crap
keep on rollin'
February 22nd, 2009 #17
first i like to comment on your icon lol bob ross... next i would like to say that your work is good ... i believe your strengths are in the planning stages. I know digital painting is difficicult so i have to give you a plus on that. you style is very original and keep it up
February 22nd, 2009 #18
February 22nd, 2009 #19
hey i added a couple of more pics to the forum i found them hiding lol , the link that you sent me helped me out alot thanks for that amigo
check out my Sketch Book
February 22nd, 2009 #20
Oh, i see man, well, that was i saw about those characters, just a minor crit, brcause the silhouttes reads very well, and if that was what your AD wanted you did your job man.
About the enviros, you said your not great at them, i dont think so, you have a great base that you'll feed as you go along with color, mood, perspective, it's just a matter of time and studies hehehe.
Keep on going mate.
February 23rd, 2009 #21
Good to see some of the stuff from your work. The environment defiantly have potential. I agree with gnoll, they are a little to busy. trying to simplify the values and have the most extreme contrast around the focal point will help. Personally i think the one with the floating trees has a nice feel to it.
i also like the demon that is eating babys
February 23rd, 2009 #22
Hey there. Long time no see. Thanks a very mucha for your kind words in my sb. It was a nice start to a dull and grey monday morning. I'm loving your progress. especially those moleskine drawings on feb 18 post are really looking good. Good to see that your still at it. I'll keep you company on your journey to excellence.
February 23rd, 2009 #23
Ryan you finally got around to scanning all of that moleskine business, way to go...looks great, man...the circumstances for the return to the sketchbook are certainly awful, but it's good to see you back here with new work. Now keep going!
First off, the color stuff looks really nice, beautiful renderings. Try to push your values more, you seem to just fade towards neutral tones a lot and you end up not letting things reach the amount of drama they could. I think you've mentioned working from movie stills before, give it a shot...you won't find more perfect lighting to recreate. Good luck! Can't wait for more!
February 23rd, 2009 #24
February 23rd, 2009 #25
February 24th, 2009 #26
courtyard: I don't know how magical they really are but they are twisty and curvy! Heh. Trees are fun to draw and paint. There's something abstract and just fun about them. I'm glad you enjoyed your browse. Hopefully you'll find more to check out as time goes on! Great stuff going on in your thread as well.
The Gnoll: Wonderful crits and very helpful, mate. Thank you so much. If I can manage to swing it this week in the midst of portfolio creation I'll definitely make some changes to some of them. I've been studying value a bit more lately so I'm starting to see the need to limit my areas of light and saturation so that the eye can be guided through the composition a bit more. It's funny that you picked those two tho. I actually felt the mine shaft one you chose was also the most successful of the rest. Probably because the lighting is more limited and the details less random. Good to know my eye was picking up on something! Brilliant helps! Thanks! And I'll try and be a little less self loathing in here. Heh. Appreciate the support, man.
JimahJames: My own style, eh? I don't know if I've quite gotten there yet. But thanks! Bob Ross rules! Keep pluggin' away at your own sketchbook.
Diego: Thanks! Yea, I think that the more I work on envioz I'll improve. Just in doing these I already could start to see progress in the later ones. I was more confident in my process, I guess. I think that's the thing with me. Sometimes I just need a structure to follow to get myself moving in a direction. Then once I find a comfort zone there I can move towards some amount of variation. It's been good tho. I'll get cracking on more studies and such of these soon! Appreciate the comments!
Argh: Thanks, man. Yea, I really started losing focus on some of these and plopping details everywhere and scribbling away. I think you're right. Just some clever placement of deep shadows should really help pop a few of this forward into something more finished. Did you notice how the baby eating demons has no hands? I was going to finish him... never did. I call that piece "The Babysitter." How clever. lol
Placeboast: Yea, man. It's good to be back. It was amazing to see how far you've come. You guys have really been bustin' lead while I've been away. Makes a guy feel pretty guilty! Ha! Keep moving!!
Sketcheth: No worries, man. Bobby Chiu says that if something bad happens that only means that something amazing and even more wonderful is on the way! Ha! Thanks for the crits too. As you can see from my comments above I definitely agree and will take them to heart as I revise them or start new ones. Update that book soon! I'm gettin' lonely out here! Can't wait to see you over spring break! When is it?
Janos: Thank you! Yea, they're getting there. Just takes some time for those processes and thoughts to seep in there. We'll all get there in time, right? Keep moving forward yourself, man.
Flaskpost: As have you! Thanks for welcoming me back into the fold. It's nice that some people still remember me. lol So much new blood in here these days!
So I know this is my sketchbook but I haven't had time to sketch at all. lol Since being laid off last week I've just been pouring effort into a portfolio to get out there and look for more work at another developer. But this is stuff that I'm working on so I figured you guys might like to see some of it as I progress. I won't post all of it until I actually finish the portfolio (hopefully this week). But it helps give me motivation to push forward with it if I post some of this stuff and no one has ever seen any of it since we've never released any of the content before so I figure what the heck. The first is some texture work I did for this player character's armor. I didn't model it or anything. I just did the texture work. The layout of that page is kind of what I'm working towards with my portfolio. I'm going to include a bit more design towards the bottom with a logo. But it's a general idea. Comments on that would be great too. The second one is a progression I saved out specifically thinking someone might like to see how I've been going about doing some of my rendering lately in Photoshop. It is a character outfit concept that we ended up going with for a style guide for a particular race in our game. She came out kind of cool. I'm working for a more loose, painterly style. My digital work seems to loose a lot of energy that my pencils somehow have at times. I'm trying new ways to capture that and I think I'm getting closer. So thanks for looking and I'll catch you guys next time! Wish me luck! I need some money! lol
February 25th, 2009 #27
Been working on the portfolio all day today and was working on this one a little while ago. I think he's my favorite creature I've ever textured or concepted. lol He's an Arcanum spider and the basic idea is that he's a magical, hand crafted spider. Magic is what has brought him to life. And in our game you could fight him and all his other spider friends. Heh. He's reflective and stuff in the engine and it's so nice to watch the light glisten across him. I'll have a turntable of him eventually when the website goes live later this week. I wanna draw and paint so bad but this portfolio is kicking the crap out of me. If anyone wants to give me a job drop me a line! lol Also, still not completely finished with the layout. I'm still going to do something more interesting with that bottom bar at the bottom of the image. Thanks for looking. Sorry I keep posting random portfolio stuff. But... it is what I'm working on right now so I guess it's fair. lol
February 25th, 2009 #28
Great work man! Good studies and interesting texture work. My only crit would be your colour paintings seem a little bit behind the standard of the rest of your work - so just keep practicing your digital painting! Can't really offer any more specific crit than that as I'm a complete newbie on the digital painting front.
February 25th, 2009 #29
Wow really impressed by your 3D skills. The texturing and colouring look great and I can definitely see this one in a game. I actually kinda want to slash the crap outta him!
No shame in not having time to draw. These things reflect what you are working on right now, so it is totally fair to post them.
I'd like to know more about this game of yours...
February 25th, 2009 #30
hey man, you keep on flooding the thread with great stuff, thanks for sharing your hard work ryan. And good luck !!!!