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Archives for Characters » Shawn Woods - Art Director/Senior Artist
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Category Archives: Characters

CONCEPT ART OF: Warcraft

From the author of the original post:

Welcome to our periodic spotlight feature where we take a look at the concept art and design of a game or film. The intent here is to get the creative juices flowing, remind people what’s out there and what’s being done, and to not lose sight of the quality of professional work. We can also discuss what works and maybe what doesn’t, what you dig, or what you DON’T dig.

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Game: Warcraft / World of Warcraft [link]
Release Date: 1994/2004
Company: Blizzard Entertainment [link]
Lead Concept Artists: Sons of the storm [link]

You KNEW it was coming! It is impossible, you might even say disrespectful, to study the art of concept design and not acknowledge the art of Blizzard Entertainment! Ignoring the titan in the room with the six-meter sword at our tea party would be.. dangerous.

Continue reading…

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Dominance War IV Entry – 3D

Dominance War IV Entry - 3D

Dominance War IV Storyline:

The two heroes in the third Great War for Dominance foresaw what would happen if Machines were allowed to continue their hostilities, but it was too late. 5 year’s after their sacrifice to end Machines’ disruptive means for war with unstable dimensional travel, the sinister threat they foretold, emerged!

…Reality collapsed.

Everywhere, dimensional tears opened to hellish realms and everywhere, nightmares emerged! In the first wave alone, Machines were struck down with such ferocity that for the first time in any war, Machines had to take a more conservative stance. Norms were clearly outnumbered on all fronts and had to withdraw to their great magically protected cities. It was a new era and everyone soon began to realize, including Machines, that it might very well be the beginning of the end in a new chapter of the Epic Dominance War Series: The Rise of Demons!

But there is still hope. The tears in reality are not normal. Something is keeping the dimensions destabilized. Both machines and norms have the mystical power or technology to correct the crisis, unfortunately, to find the source of the problem and to revert everything back to normal requires a luxury neither Norms nor Machines have… time. With death beating down on their walls, and darkness looming around every bend, the missions are as follows:

Norms:
Your mission, again, armed with a powerful magical weapon, is to protect the cities, lead an assault to other worlds and destroy the mysterious force that is keeping the dimensions destabilized.

Machines:
Your assigned tasks: Protect homeworld, destroy all resistance, terminate the dimensional rifts caused by a yet unknown source, and reclaim your rightful dominance over the entire planetary system.

New Race: Demons!
Your purpose: Destroy every man, woman, bot, alien or child. Leave nothing unscathed!

Topic:
Choose and create a character class from one of three races: Norms, Machines and an all-new class – Demons!

Time period:
Post-apocalyptic futuristic fantasy where magic exists.

Dominance War IV Races: Demons
Demons are a new race in the Dominance War universe. Unleashed by Machine’s dimensional tampering, Demons are the shadows from untold nightmares made real. Pure evil in nature, they only care for chaos, feeding and destruction. Demons cannot manipulate or wield magic, but they do possess a single fusion of power with one of the following elements: Fire/lava or Ice/cold or Death/Darkness.

Demon Prince – Demon Princess
Demon Princes are human sized demons with human-like or alien-like characteristics. If not for a few demon-like body traits (bat wings, horns, tail etc), they could easily pass for a natural intelligent human, alien, elf etc of that kind. Demon Princes, like Demon Lords, can manipulate their inborn fusion of power.

My Dominance War Entry Thread on CG Society:
‘Demon Prince Maluum Ex Nihilo’ – Evil Out of Nothing

http://forums.cgsociety.org/showthread.php?f=282&t=744261


Your creation’s budget:

Up to 10 000 tris max for everything (everything = characters, laser beams, shield effects, glows, other special effects, magical weapon, gear, steed(s), pet(s), twin(s), multiple characters, summoned monsters, personal equipment, etc).
1 x 2048 Color Map
*1 x 2048 Reflection Map
*1 x 2048 Specular Map
*1 x 2048 Specular Color Map
*1 x 2048 Normal Map
*1 x 2048 Bump Map
*1 x 2048 Opacity(transparency) Map
*1 x 2048 Glow map
*1 x 2048 Glossiness map

*Optional

Important – You cannot break your 2048 sheets into smaller sheets.
2-sided tris are permitted.
Shaders: All shaders from any game engine or 3d software package on planet earth, is allowed.
Lighting/rendering: All lighting/rendering solutions from any software package on planet earth, is allowed.

Your Presentation Pedestal’s Budget:
ALL 3d entries must include a pedestal in their Presentation Image. You have unrestricted polygons and textures to create a pedestal with the following guidelines:

A pedestal is NOT a floor and/or it is NOT a room. It’s a block, pillar, coffin, box, crate, stone slab, etc. Pedestal Examples: Hela by Chang Gun Nam | The Mole by Rémi Monier
No additional weapons or gear that your character can pick up and use can be put on the pedestal.
No additional characters, pets, animals, pieces of characters, dead characters, etc, can be put on your pedestal. Only Bones and skulls are fine.
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G.I.Joe Characters: Snake Eyes

G.I.Joe Characters: Snake Eyes

G.I. Joe Characters: Featuring Snake Eyes

I love G.I.Joe. Growing up I collected all of the toys and played with them for hours. My brother collected the comic books and I looked at the pictures.

With the hype of the new G.I.Joe movie coming out in the summer of 2009, I thought it would be fun to create my own concept of the infamous Snake Eyes!

I have already started to model him but have not gotten very far yet. I will post updates along the way. For now, this is a concept, an idea. I have bigger plans for a short movie clip of him animated too.

Snake Eyes: A Commando with Ninja skills.

That is how I like to view him. Even his backstory tells us how he was a war hero first and later trains to become a Ninja with his brother-in-arms, Storm Shadow. I am not going to debate this, I just liked the idea of him being more “real” so I went with traditional army gear. However, since he has been trained to be a ninja, he keeps his weapons close to his body, each having a place that is quick to access. In this concept he wears traditional black army boots but that may change to something slightly more up to date.

The toy soldier is my guide for creating something more realistic in proportions. These toys are excellent reference for any character artist working on high resolution designs in zBrush!

Be sure to checkout the new G.I.Joe comic books published by IDW. I like their new character designs.

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Dawn of War: Making of the Greater Knarloc (Tau)

Dawn of War: Making of the Greater Knarloc (Tau)

Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War

The Making of the Greater Knarloc (Tau Race)

About the Greater Knarloc
A huge dinosaur-like creature from the Kroot genetic family. Originally, they were used as beasts of burden but were later trained for war after proving as effective at eating enemy infantry as at carrying heavy loads.

I had a lot of fun creating the Greater Knarloc. The original Dawn of War game did not support normal maps… only diffuse maps were used. However, I tried a different method. Instead of using zBrush to create a high resolution normal map, I used to to build up the musculature in a seamless way and then baked out a grayscale diffuse and lighting map. After that, I could paint over what I had and add the colors as overlay layers. This worked out well since our team coloring for the game was also done using overlay layers.

It was a different method to texturing old school but i am happy with the results! If I had only known zBrush back when I modeled and textured the Ork Squiggoth. That was time consuming trying to create a seamless texture!

Knarlocs have a lot of stuff on them, like a camel caravan in the Sahara Dessert. This worked out great for the animators to add secondary motion to their animations.

They also look a lot like a T-Rex with a more bird-like head. I referenced the skeletal structure of the T-Rex to make sure he was anatomically correct. These photo references from Forgeworld worked out great for the details of the skin.

For his skin, I looked at many reptiles like alligator skin and how it cracks and splits, along with the pattern along their spine.

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Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War Wallpapers

Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War Wallpapers

Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War Wallpapers

Here are a collection of wallpapers I had created for the Dawn of War franchise. Every single character in the original series of games (excluding Soulstorm) were rendered using their texture maps and model from the game with the Brazil Renderer.

Most characters in the original series used one 512×512 diffuse map. A few characters had additional reflection maps or glow maps and sometimes another small diffuse map. Larger units like the Squiggoth and Greater Knarloc used two 512×512 maps.

Additional Texture Maps:
Specular, Raytracing, Reflections
Lighting using Brazil

I create 90% of the Orks, the Kroot Warriors, Squiggoth, Krootox, Greater Knarloc, among others. Click here to read more about the Making of the Greater Knarloc.

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Character Art – Company of Heroes: Opposing Fronts (PC)

Character Art - Company of Heroes: Opposing Fronts (PC)

Company of Heroes: Opposing Fronts (PC)

Expansion Pack to the highest rated RTS game of all time.

I was the Art Supervisor for the Characters team on Opposing Fronts. It was a fun project and great opportunity to work on the expansion to such a highly rated video game. The standards were set very high and with most of the original team moving on, we had a challenge ahead of us.

The Heroes Team (character artists) was filled with 4 people; Melanie Caron, Kristian Bourdage, Stephen McDonald, myself, and Cheol Joo Lee on concept art.

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