Wednesday, 24 October 2012

Thought process of a professional artist

After reading an article on the process of creating a concept, and then discussing it with my fellow peers I have come up with 5 rules of an ideal thought process when creating art.

I have prioritised these from most important to least (but is still important in the grand scheme of things)

  •        The 5 p’s

That’s proper planning prevents poor performance.

This is one of only a few sayings I actually like and try (especially lately) try to live too. The whole idea of planning is to set yourself targets and deadlines  so you achieve you end goal as efficiently as possible.
If this crucial stage isn't done you spend the first few days of your project doing nothing as you think ‘ah 4 weeks is ages, I can easily so it in 2, so I’ll leave it a few days then start’. Then you start and notice the project is a lot bigger/time consuming then you first thought, and you run into problems you never saw happening but they always crop up, so now something which you wanted done in 1 will now take 2 days, which pushes the whole project  back. And if you have a non-negotiable deadline you’re going to start taking shortcuts and your work will suffer for it.

From the little experience I already have I have notice this always happens to me. So now when I plan I make buffer days to combat this.

Planning is a major skill in anything anyone does, without it, the world would be a mess. All the following points can be loosely based in the planning stage. That is why its number 1 for me.

This poster should be in every workplace

  •        References

As fantastic and mysterious as the brain is, it can only think up so much, you’re gonna need references to help you out.

Actually scrap that, don’t do anything without reference. Reference is key! No matter how much you think you might know your brain doesn't exactly know how the folds on a silk cloth is going to deform while its covering a body, or how high polished metal reflects the environment.

This is why we gather references. Also don’t use your lack of references as an excuse because you’re creating something non-realistic i.e. anime.  Even that still follows basic proportion, form and confirms to physics.

Realistic or not, you need reference. Be it from taking pictures yourself, setting up lighting rigs or draping clothes over objects, heck Google images is better than nothing.  

  •        Rip yourself a new one

People need to learn to be more self-critical and not get emotionally attached to their work. If they’re too attached to their work all they’ll do is look passed all the flaws in what they've produced, thus not really learning much from it. You need to stand back at the end of your project and analysis everything about it – What could have I done better? Why didn't I spend more time on that? That looks wrong, but why?
Being critical on other person or your own work will help improve your artistic eye.

Hmmmm don't be too harsh on yourself or other though

  •        Gimme a brief!

A Brief will set out a line of objectives or goals to do by a certain time.

Without briefs we would be pretty lost in what to create , or what constraints we have to work too. And to a certain extent it would make the whole project very difficult to plan.

If no brief  existed between you and your client it will make things very difficult. If they don’t write a brief but just give you a general idea of what they want then you’d go off creating what you want to an extent, which might not be exactly what the client wants, so you then have to rework it. So everything you did before was wasted time, and as we all know (especially in this industry) time is money. So you need that brief.
Even if it’s just a personal  project, write a brief for yourself.

  •        Work it at the thumbnails/keep it simple

As easy as it is to jump into Max/Photoshop to create your idea you must fight your lust to do that and start of by creating quick sketches/ideas, aka thumbnails. This is so you can experiment with designs in a very quick way. You’ll find that very rarely your first idea will look good, or even work, you need to flesh out these ideas. There’s a saying: If it doesn't work at postage stamp size, then it won’t work at any size. This is very true, you can tell when something  just works, and its better to the reach that stage with only ~30 minutes of work, rather than 30 hours.

Right, I think I’m done here.

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