Wes's Art Dump

edited in Portfolios
Okay, so I majored in Illustration for the last year of my degree (last year :D ) and minored in 3D and Stop Motion. Which means I've got an eccentric skill set *slightly* removed from the gaming world, but I'd like to see how I can adapt my stuff to fit into games and hopefully work with some of you to produce some awesome 2D stuff (I can model in 3D, but as soon as I have to rig something I'm out :p ). I'm also REALLY getting into interface design and UX, if anyone wants to risk me making sumthin horrible, I need to get some experience and get a proper portfolio going (one that is more appropriate for this community).

Anyway: stuff.

Stylised Characters:

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Detailed Character Work:

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Other Thangs:

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My Behance Portfolio if you want: http://www.behance.net/wesselmatthews
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Comments

  • It's all very eerie. I like it a lot!
  • Wow awesome stuff! I really enjoy the very simplified black figures that you began the forum with. Your work is creative and I look forward seeing more from you.

    On a side note I would like to see some more resolution on some of the character paintings you have done. You seem to have stopped a few of the paintings half way through and I think they have a lot of potential.
    Thanked by 1Wes_Matthews
  • edited
    I really like the alien mind control image, I like the colours, I like the humour.

    Looks like you've experimented with a lot of different styles, which is awesome. Like @TasticLuc said, most of your work is a little rougher than I'd expect in actual game production.

    Nothing wrong with having a 2D game development skillset (in fact I have found it harder finding good 2D game artists than good 3D game artists in this country).

    If you are looking to adapt your skillset to game art, and prove it to prospective collaborators, a good thing to try is draw-overs of games. e.g. Take an old game like Flashback and draw over it in your style. I mention Flashback because of your jungle image, and also there is an HD remake of Flashback which isn't all that great looking and has much more confusing visuals than the original.

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    It's easier for someone to commit to working with you if they can see what your work would look like in a game (rather than having to imagine it and hope that their imagination is accurate).
    Thanked by 2hanli Wes_Matthews
  • Really beautiful work. I look forward to seeing more!
  • @TasticLuc : A lot of those paintings got canned halfway through as production art and illustration are WORLDS apart (for the most part, anyway) and I was trying to get my own illustration style up and running (like the first characters). I'll get some close ups in later today, along with a WIP of another thing I'm working on. And thanks. :)

    @BlackShipsFilltheSky I'm totally going to take your advice! I'm gonna have a look today at something that seems like fun (quite honestly I love Flashback the way it is, but then it reminds me of games like Pitfall and Lomax and Simon the Sorcerer's art and I'm heavily biased towards that era's visual flavours). For the developers sake: in the case of say a character sprite, should I present a sprite sheet, an animated gif, both? While I'm on this I'd like to know what the developers want to see.

    Anywho, thanks for the advice guys! Let's see what I can do. Hmm... I'm very tempted to look at Day of the Tentacle, but then I think that game is an artful god and you don't mess with gods...

    (I never hit send :P, this was meant for the day after I posted these)
  • Okay, some close ups and some other stuff. I'm working on reproducing a screenshot from a game and redoing all the visible elements, but work's been keeping me busy (on the upside, it's the first time in my life I'm actually getting paid to paint, so I'm very happy). I'm not sure what company policy is here, but if it's allowed I'll post some stuff from work I think is suitable here. In the meantime: STUFF!

    Haremageddon was a game I was working on for Flash. Actionscript is a bitch though, and I only got as far as getting a looping parallax background.

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    Close ups:
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    Other Things:
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    Hipsters on Fire was a zine I did. Long story short it's a style I really wanna develop and animate, get some landscapes going and seeing as I can do an inventory, produce a game interface.
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    Okay, that's it for this week. Next week I'll have some dedicated in-game art for you guys, so ready those crit guns.
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  • Very, very cool. I love it all.
    Which means I've got an eccentric skill set *slightly* removed from the gaming world.
    Nah, I think your skills are very applicable. Are you working yet (I got the impression that you are still studying or just finished, but could be wrong)? I'm interested to see where you end up. Hopefully somewhere where you get to use your talent -- I've seen too many talented artists end up at graphic design jobs that eat their souls (not saying all graphic design jobs are bad, just those particular ones).
  • I've got a design and animation job that's eating my soul. Haha, trying not to get complacent so I spend my nights producing the kind of stuff I'd rather be doing in the hopes of opening up a few doors at some point.

    And thanks, if people like the stuff there might be hope yet. :)
  • Hey guys. I need some technical input. Working on as isometric tileset and I wanna know what kind of technical restrictions there are for this kind of thing. My tiles don't fit neatly into the diamond shape and have a bit of an overlap, this way I could break the hard lines a bit on the edges of tile sections, how big an issue is that for people working with isometric tiles?

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    Anyway, take a look and tell me what you think. The colours are for the most part a bit of a retinal-burn bright, will tone them down a bit I think, but the tiles should work well for something colourful. Think Legend of Zelda: The Windwaker meets Minecraft. If anybody thinks they can use these, I will release them as free to use, just gimme credit. I'm making trees and rocks and stuff too, if you've got tiles in mind that would be useful, I'd like to hear about it.

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    Thanked by 2Tuism francoisvn
  • edited
    I've been working on a touch screen GUI for Sun International's Kiosks. The mock-ups don't have all the text in as that gets done on the coding side (it's multilingual) and the MVG card image is to be replaced with the Sun logo, but here's proof that I'm not completely useless as an interface designer. Should be running in casinos later this year, but i'd like to try something with a more prominent theme given the opportunity.

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    Thanked by 1shelton
  • Meanwhile, back in the world of digital painting and illustration, I present to you the dragon I'm working on.

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  • Final version. Would love to do more but I've got some other projects that need love.

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  • Some character designs and posters.

    Steampunk Girl:
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    Camp Guy:
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    Doom Goat Rider:
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    Beasts in Battle:
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    Beware the Sauce Poster:
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  • I want a "beware the sauce" T-shirt
    Thanked by 1Wes_Matthews
  • New work in progress: Evil Boy. Have finally gotten 2D character rigs to work in After Effects, so wanna see if I can create a sprite of this guy and some others, though I haven't done a walk cycle in 2 years and from my first few attempts I can assure you: it is NOT like riding a bike. o_0

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  • Wow, some awesome stuff. I especially love the upside down person in water.
  • Doom Goat Rider! This needs to be a game! :)
  • Perhaps a simple side scroller? Haha, I need to justify myself to the game devs in advance: yes I'm building a game around the art and not the other way around which I admit is not ideal, but I'm here for the pretty. ^_^
  • Update on Evil Boy. Think most of the fleshing out is done, now for hectic cleanup.

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  • They got into our house and stole my Wacom, laptop and camera last week. My boyfriend took pity and got me a Cintiq!!! Anyhow, here's my first thing from there.

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    Thanked by 2shelton texhkt
  • They got into our house and stole my Wacom, laptop and camera last week. My boyfriend took pity and got me a Cintiq!!! Anyhow, here's my first thing from there.
    Argh, noooo! ... Wait, yay? Win boyfriend :)

    Thanked by 1Wes_Matthews
  • Going to the MGSA meetup in Cape Town tonight, so thought I'd remind you guys that I'm alive in spite of my first CT winter (I'm new here).

    Here's some production art I did for a project a while back, it ultimately fell through though. Was supposed to be a short animated music video about a VERY uncomfortable encounter in a restaurant. I thought it's a pretty decent display of the process and something that might be appropriate for a point 'n click adventure game. Let me know what you think.

    A few frames from the storyboard:
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    Character Design Process:
    The story itself was actually quite crude and explicit, se we decided to temper it with a bit of cartoony cuteness.
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    Further Development on the male lead:
    After selecting a winner, some fine tuning options for the client.
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    Animation Prep:
    Her puppet, almost ready for animation, both assembled and with the pieces separated. Pieces are kept rounded where joints will be to accommodate movement, and facial features are kept separated to accommodate for replacement parts (blinking and mouth movements).
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    The set pieces:
    The set, being 2D, relied on parallax scrolling to achieve depth.
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    And a mockup of all the different pieces assembled:
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  • Very very nice dude! I like it a lot! Can definitely see that illustration is what you are really good at, and you you've got quite a big variety of styles you can pull off. Will keep you in mind if I need ever need someone to draw me something for a game :D
  • you are amazingly talented man, keep up the good work
  • Been a while, but finally got back into it. New piece.

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  • Quit my day job, freelancing full time again, back to pimp myself out.

    Here's the tileset I'm working on for a little art demo I wanna get out: parallax scrolling forest thingie. (My copy of Rayman Legends recently bombed out a bit revealing some of the lighting maps they use in game, if ever I get THAT much time to work on it I'd love to build something a bit more versatile in terms of colour and lighting.).

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    Thanked by 3pieter Bensonance vince
  • edited
    In today's installment:

    I built a set for Nessie. Water was made by using these swirls, spinning them, stacking them, then staggering their animation using a bit of javascript. Was an experiment more than anything else, but it created a decent effect and plausible stylised 2D water.

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    You can watch it in HD with a bit of lighting and DOP here.


    This was my first ever YouTube upload so any feedback in that regard is very welcome :D
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  • I love it all but I adore Nessie! Looks fantastic! :D
    Thanked by 1Wes_Matthews
  • I love your art man, let's collaborate!
    Thanked by 2texhkt Wes_Matthews
  • @texhkt

    Thanks man. I'm chuffed with the water, but also that Nessie seems to be a bit herpaderp.

    @Mexicanopiumdog

    Sent ya a DM. Let's dooooo eeeeet. :D
  • Today's installment: interstitial screens and illustrations I did for a social app. These screens were mostly canned as we found they interfered with the flow of the app too much, but I liked 'em so spruced them up a bit for my portfolio (and bloated the SVG files in the process *shrugs*) as I thought they're a nice example of vector work.

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    The app itself was a social/dating app aimed at feature phone users in Africa, around 18-25 in age.
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    Stop Motion project I did titled "Circus".

    Salvaged rat bones from owl pellets (pretty much as gross as it sounds), strung them together and shot this on a 3 tier multiplane using a DSLR.



    Rigged the Freak in a Tank to show the rendering process and make a looping splash image.

  • Some characters I did for a world I'm building to keep my Instagram account busy.

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    From left to right:
    Pop-up Murderer, Greasy Merchant, Needle Princess, Omen Bearer, Tranquil Mystic.

    If you like you can follow me on Instagram (wesselmatthews). Wanna do at least five more of these and start looking at environment design.
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  • I love the characters so much. Fucking A.
    Thanked by 1Wes_Matthews
  • edited
    Thanks so much SUGBOERIE! I'm still trying to push the style into something a bit more refined. Progress in increments. ^_^

    On that note, here's Osiris, my entry for this month's Character Design Challenge! on Facebook. This month's theme is Egyptian gods.

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    And my previous entries for the hippie and samurai & geisha challenges, cuz apparently I haven't posted them here:

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  • I love the colours in the last few posts you've made (the spots of vibrant colour on the warm leaves in the parallax forest, the desert characters on the red background, these three characters in this most recent post).

    It's really rad to see your progress over the last couple years.

    Btw. Did you ever finish that parallax forest (like actually putting it into a game) ? Seems like there must be a programmer round here that would love to help make that space come to life (if you haven't yourself).
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    @EvanGreenwood Thank you! It's been a good year for colour. Inexplicably so. Almost suspiciously... *shrugs*

    If a programmer/game designer is out there who wants to help with this: BY HIS NOODLEY APPENDAGE YES PLEASE. I've been working on it intermittently, but asset generation and animation are keeping me busy (and those are admittedly my main interests in this), so someone with a bit more experience in the technicalities would really free me up to invest more time in polishing the crap out of the viuals. I think I'll open a new discussion with a bit more on what I have so far and where I kinda would like to see this thing going (visually at least)?.

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    Having said that, I know this is amazingly basic compared to quality and complexity of stuff on these forums, but I'm proud of having figured out:

    * The basics of scripted level generation
    * A character controller (double jump not seen here because still painting sprites [by hand])
    * Sorted out clipping issues/layer sorting (foreground script hasn't been updated but those bushes were whack for a while)
    * Getting the cameras working
    * Basics of lighting and cameras in Unity

    What I wanna still do or at least look into:

    * Finalising terrain ascension and descension
    * Some variance in generation of trees and scenery by assembling sprites
    * Fiddle to see if I can use normal maps for some lighting bling bling
    * A few 3D touches (think giant bridge/mountains in the background)
    * Get the middle and background layers' sprite sheets out
    * Figure out the rostrum thing because none of this has really been optimised and all my sprites are needlessly huge

    Haha, so ja, progress is slow. Send help. :D
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  • That looks amazing! You really have done a fantastic job so far and I cannot wait to see what comes out of this.

    So... like... please don't stop! :D
  • Long Street Crawler (inspired by the peeps over on Long Street). Actually started a Pinterest board for ambient occlusion studies: I want to be able to get things to read like brightly colored clay in a 3D environment, and I feel like I'm getting tantalizingly close to pulling that shit of (his head). If I can understand the effects needed to fake it, I might be able to build some custom effects to dynamically light 2D sprites to whatever degree of effectiveness.

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    Detail
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    This is what I'd like to make things look more like (not my work):
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    So I'm keeping the highlights and shadows pretty darn subtle for the most but I'm missing something. I'm guessing it's the bounced lighting, also kept fairly subtle, but... eish dis moer baie werk daai, and easy to botch (looking at you, torso). XD
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    Thanked by 2critic Elyaradine
  • In my experience what sells AO are the soft gradients near crevices and where surfaces meet. I usually paint those by selecting an area and then using a large, soft brush, though obviously as with almost anything there are many ways to do this.
  • @Elyaradine Ha! I was hoping you'd comment :D

    I'm gonna try some small thumbnail studies with simpler shapes and see what I can pull off there.

    Back on Sprite Sprint:
    Wanted to show my run cycle with a leaf. Motion can be polished up a wee bit I think, though I'm pretty chuffed with leaf: putting a mild rotation around the Y axis in scared the crap out of me but I think I pulled it off. This is all hand animated, so if the speed or frame rate is out I may have to redo the whole thing anyway. Joy. :D

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    Trying out VFX made by hand: looks okay, but wanna try building particle effects in something else and just painting over that.

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    Have also sketched out an idea for a jump animation.

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    The idea is:
    * Leaf shoots out, propelled magic or some inexplicable foliage fart.
    * Leaf then pulls Sprite in, propelling it into a jump.
    * Leaf flares out at the end of it's distance to create a parachute
    * Directly after the precipice of Sprite's jump, his fall gives the leaf a slight tug downwards, but then their movement stabilises into a glide cycle, with the leaf kinda fluttering a bit.

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    Not satisfied with it yet: the little sequence should be reading as the two taking turns to lead the motion and tugging the other into submission before it ends with a glide, and not pulling that off yet.
    And then I read a few pieces about how anticipation in game animation makes it feel like your character isn't responding to your input, which makes total sense but I hadn't thought of that, so test more to make that jump button press feel hellah good.
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  • :D

    The character's run is super cute!

    With the dust puff, it looks like each puff has the same lifetime. I think you'd get a more organic feel if the puffs disappeared across some 3 frames or so, and if the last frame of each didn't look so similar to each other (they all look like they share the same "dot" shape). Some might dissolve as lines, some as C-shapes.

    Keep kicking ass dude!
    Thanked by 1Wes_Matthews
  • That's pretty darn solid, thanks! I'm gonna work that in, should make a helluva difference.
  • edited
    Another piece I'm working on for (eventually) Instagram: map of Cape Town around the mountain. Wanted to put together some kind of map art for my portfolio for a while now and thought this might be able to get some social media traction (mama needs some marketing) if I add a bit of write-up.

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    I want to break this thing into nine images so it looks pretty in the grid view, but also make sure each of the 9 sections works *decently* well as a standalone image, so currently running through each square for a layer of detailing work, starting at nice and working back.

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    Biggest pyn in die gat so far has been trying to come with a way to *quickly* render the masses of buildings in a way that fits with the style of the overall but still lets me point out specific landmarks. That's three goals, I may have to let one go (and I just can't see myself meticulously painting every building in the city bowl, I'm just not THAT into this thing). Also want to add in the AO effects @Elyaradine mentioned, as I still want it to have that kinda clay-ish effect.

    Also considering re-styling common emoji to use as icons on the map and then supplying a key in the post comments, essentially making it a light UI project too.

    I might be trying to do too much with one piece but gotta leverage what I have for all it's worth. (People always want a *specific* example of something in your portfolio, I've got a list of things I wanna prove I can do). We'll see what sticks...

    Welcomed: your thoughts.
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  • Some pieces from a portrait series, my first ever book cover (which was a bit of a doozy, but now I can say I have work published in the Philipines), and a quick experiment in pixel animation.

    Everything I make the last month or so just doesn't seem to meet the quality bar. Not great for morale. :/

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  • I dig your colours in the portraits! They're uncomfortable and unnatural but still harmonious.
    Everything I make the last month or so just doesn't seem to meet the quality bar. Not great for morale. :/
    I feel this regularly. I believe it comes partly from placing the measure of success too far ahead (i.e. the work itself being great), rather than placing success on the systems and consistency that gets you there. I've been trying to celebrate just making art every day, even if it comes out badly. I recently listened to an artist interview where both artists were laughing about how many bad drawings that have that nobody ever sees because they don't post those online. :P Our perceptions of everyone are curated. Everyone fails to meet the quality bar. :)
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