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Employer: Blizzard Entertainment.
Title: Art Lead, Creative Development
Glenn heads a team of elite artists who create "high profile" illustrations for Blizzard Entertainment. Purposes of artwork include book covers, game box covers, magazine covers, concept art and patch artwork.
Visit www.sonsofthestorm.com for more of Glenn's work.
Thank you all for the favs, encouragement, and compliments! Special thanks to the people at Blizzard, who make me a better artist. Extra big special thanks to Chris Metzen who provides most of my creative/art direction.
Due to the volume of messages I receive and,unfortunately, my limited time to respond to them, I'm starting this little FAQ section. Please review before sending any further messages. Thanks!
*How long have you been an artist?
I started as a toddler and have always had an interest in art, but got super serious about it in High School.
*Did you study art in College? Yes. I went to Art Center College of Design in Pasadena. There I majored in Illustration and received a BFA.
*What made you want to get into doing game art?
Warcraft 2. That and Baulder's Gate.
* What inspires you to keep making artwork?
My job, my drive to become a better artist, fans, and I just like drawing and painting.
*How do you deal with artists block?
I try to force the doubt out of my mind. Sometimes I turn on music or a movie, and sometimes I draw with my left hand, then switch back to my right. It comes with the territory and you just have to push through it.
* Who did you work with before Blizzard? How was it different?
I worked at Vivendi Games, the parent company of Blizzard. I worked on covers for a variety of games, from Jump Start to Leisure Suit Larry... it wasn't nearly as cool.
* Exactly what about being an art director is different from an artist? Leading and Managing people and being the keeper of the house style. Basically more responsibility.
*What's the most important thing to keep in mind when drawing concept art? If you are working on a concept, someone is asking you to solve a problem. You have to make sure you are solving that problem in the coolest way possible within the design boundaries.
* And what’s the most important thing to keep in mind when drawing magazine, box art, or book covers? Logo placement. Another thing to consider is how the product will be presented on the shelf.
* How much freedom do you have in constructing your illustrations?
My main job is to make sure Blizzard's requirements are hit. After that, I have all the freedom I want.
*What is your process? How do you work? What programs do you use? First I gather creative direction. I then sketch thumbnails with pencil and paper; usually about 6 different ideas. I'll send those out for review. I work up a final drawing in Photoshop. I then work out a value and color comp. Once I decide on a direction, I typically finish the painting in Photoshop, however, sometimes I use traditional media such as Oil.
*What Brushes do you use in Photoshop? I tend to use the standard round brushes, with very slight taper, and with an opacity jitter. I have one odd shaped bush that I use with these same settings.
* What tablet do you use? I use a Cintiq at work and a Intuos 3 at home. I have no problem working on either interchangeably.
* How do I learn to paint and draw? How do I become a better artist? I think people learn by doing. It's all about mileage. Do something once and you probably suck at it. Do something 50 times and you're probably starting to get the hang of it. Do something 500 times and you are probably getting pretty good at it. Do it 10,000 times and you're a master. School is good, but in the end, your education rests solely on you.
* Besides skill and such, in your opinion, what’s the most important attribute to have in the industry? Professionalism. This means being easy to work with, doing what is asked of you, and taking criticism well.
* How much training would you say is needed to work as a game artist (education and otherwise)? Enough training that makes you competitive with people already working in the games industry.
* What advice would you give to someone who wants to make art for games? Be competitive with the people already working in the industry and show in your portfolio how you will benefit your prospective employer. Also, be professional. This is how you get a job.
*How long does it take you to do a concept or painting? Concepts can take a couple of hours to a couple of days, while a painting can take a week or three. It really depends on the level of rendering needed, the size of the piece, the amount and scale of alterations and feedback, and the deadline. In the end, you always have to hit the deadline.
* What's your favorite non-Blizzard game? Red Dead was fun. Assassins Creed is great also.