The Roles of a Video Game Artist - 3D Animation and Design by Cody Landon

How often do we hear people that have careers complain about never doing the job they were trained to do? They did not realize when they entered into their chosen field that there would be many aspects to the job.

Image created with 3D character modeling
Image created with
3D character modeling

The same premise applies with the video game artist. Before really researching the subject many would be artists think it is just a matter of sitting down and designing a game and then putting it into production and it is ready to play. It does not quite work that way. If it did there would probably be even more games on the market than there already are. Video game artists have such a variety of jobs to do that many of these jobs have somewhat evolved into becoming specialties.

A good example of this is the concept artist. In other words the idea maker. It is his job to be creative and dream up the various characters and the types of atmosphere it will demand.. Once it is put to paper it is scanned into the computer and it is cleaned up using a software program with these types of capabilities such as Photoshop for example. Now we are still at the rough stage and color now has to be introduced.

This is where the texture artist now fulfills his roll. It is his job to create the texture for the colors, and then it moves onto the 3D model builder. So where did the role of the video game artist end? Actually, it did not; the video game artist may have been doing any one, several or all of the duties as outlined.

To become a concept artist you need to be yourself, you cannot really take training to be one. Simply being because it is based on creativity. No one can teach you to be creative, but they can teach you to develop your natural creativity. This is usually done by practice and more practice. You can never reach a plateau where you can say you have mastered it all, it just does not happen with the arts. Another thing to remember is doing not be a copier, be a creator. It does not take much creativity to sit down and copy anothers work.

Be observant, watch things how they move, animals, humans and even the elements. By doing this you will perfect your skills in proper proportions, and skeletal structure. The setting you are going to place your characters in is almost as important as the characters themselves. You are setting the atmosphere, which in turn sets the theme.

You may decide that you want to specialize in 2D or 3D animation, which is great. It means you are going to have to determine the levels of the various games and edit them as necessary. You may even have the responsibility of that of the texturing artist.

Now the 2D texturing artist has the job of texturing all of the elements found within the game as it pertains to the 3D objects. This can be greatly perfected and enhanced by the use of good quality software designed for this purpose.

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