How to de­sign a unique species

Ilya Golit­syn en­cour­ages you to ask “why”, as he shares his process for de­sign­ing and il­lus­trat­ing am­phib­ian hu­manoids for a video game

ImagineFX: Sci-fi & Fantasy Art magazine - - Contents -

Ilya Golit­syn en­cour­ages you to ask “why?”

close your eyes and imag­ine a post-apoca­lypse world where only hu­mans sur­vived, and be­cause of the nat­u­ral se­lec­tion hu­manoids evolved to fill all the bio­sphere’s habi­tat. The clos­est thing to this hap­pened when di­nosaurs died, leav­ing a whole new world for the sur­viv­ing mam­mals to con­quer.

Now what if the same ex­tinc­tion event hap­pens again, and only sapi­ens sur­vive, but de­grade just enough to start the adap­ta­tion process with­out all the fancy tools they have nowa­days? In the course of, let’s say, a mil­lion years we’ll have new fauna, de­rived from the homo sapi­ens. The world of fly­ing, ground dig­ging, hunt­ing and swimming hu­manoids.

The rea­son why I’ve spent so much time de­scrib­ing this world is be­cause the set­ting is cru­cial when you have to cre­ate any de­sign in an imag­i­na­tive en­vi­ron­ment, es­pe­cially if it’s a crea­ture or char­ac­ter con­cept. It makes the de­sign so much richer when the fin­ished vis­ual doesn’t only an­swers “what” and “how”, but also “why”. In case of crea­ture de­sign, “why” will help to ap­ply anatomy knowl­edge when de­sign­ing species that fit cer­tain con­di­tions.

This work­shop’s task is to cre­ate a de­sign of one of the species that could in­habit this world, fo­cus­ing on aquatic hu­manoids as a theme. These shouldn’t be fish-men or mer­maids, but rather hu­mans that evolved into the new homo am­phib­ian. Through­out the work­shop I’ll show you a bit of my thought process and de­ci­sion mak­ing, as well as the dig­i­tal paint­ing tech­niques I use. The re­sult will be an il­lus­tra­tion pre­sent­ing homo am­phib­ians in their nat­u­ral habi­tat.

1 Re­search and idea

I start with rough sketches of the crea­ture’s head. I de­cide I’d like these guys to be par­tially a land species, like ot­ters or fur seals. These an­i­mals breathe once in a while with their nose just above the sur­face wa­ter. That helps me come up with the idea of rais­ing the nose to eye level. Out of sev­eral de­signs I pick the ones that are a bit more hu­man-like.

2 Anatomy de­sign

I draw a quick hu­man skele­ton pro­file and make it semi­trans­par­ent. On top of it, I line out a new crea­ture’s skele­ton, keep­ing in mind the ot­ter’s and seal’s anatomies: over time these an­i­mals have de­vel­oped more stream­lined fea­tures and elon­gated body parts. On the new skele­ton I sketch out mus­cle vol­umes and ad­just it un­til I’m happy with the re­sult.

Now it’s time to start with the main il­lus­tra­tion. I do a cou­ple of rough poses sketches, try­ing to cap­ture the grace that you can see in the un­der­wa­ter footage of sea mam­mals. I de­cide to make mul­ti­ple fig­ures in­ter­act­ing with each other. It’ll help me to sell the idea of them be­ing still quite so­cial.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.