1. shimmergirl
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    shimmergirl New Member

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    using an artist

    Discussion in 'Setting Development' started by shimmergirl, Sep 13, 2016.

    Has any one ever asked an artist to draw something based on your description to see if you were adequate in getting your imagery across?
     
  2. Phil Mitchell
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    Phil Mitchell Active Member

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    Don't you mean has anyone ever paid an artist to draw it... artists have bills too!

    No, but I've been on the other end and illustrated a character for a novelist.
     
  3. Cave Troll
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    Cave Troll Bite the bullet, do your own thing. Contributor

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    No, but if I needed to I could do it myself. Though there are a fair amount of eager and willing artists on deviantart.com that would be more than happy to oblige. Although the prices I have seen vary, but not into the unreasonable range.
     
  4. BayView
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    BayView Contributing Member Contributor

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    I've commissioned art for covers, but not just out of interest, no.
     
  5. Malisky
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    Malisky Fuzz Overdriver Contributor

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    No, but this question reminds me of Albrecht Durer's "Rhinoceros" woodcut. It was made in 1515 and Durer had never seen a rhino before. His design was based upon the description and a quick sketch of a letter sent by Valentim Fernandes to one of his friends (the sketch was not done by him though. The artist is unknown).
     
  6. IlaridaArch
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    IlaridaArch Active Member

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    Would this be something that you guys would want to have? Because while as my part-time job I have been drawing fantasy maps, I am also learning to make concept art.

    [​IMG]

    I always look out for signs of demand, if I can improve my art service so guess I am asking - would you guys buy services like that? Lets say, 5-10$ price for a piece of concept art. I don't know are there services like that, but I do know that illustrators are expensive as a sin.
     
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  7. BayView
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    BayView Contributing Member Contributor

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    Would you sell the rights to have it used as cover art? (And are those rights yours to sell? Like, you're not using someone else's base drawing or images or anything?)

    If so, I'd suggest looking at at a way to put text on the images in an effective way and trying to sell that way. If I block off the right-hand side of the image, leaving a cover-sized rectangle, I think the image is quite interesting and would make an effective cover, if the text was added.
     
  8. IlaridaArch
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    IlaridaArch Active Member

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    @BayView - if you mean that specific image that I linked, it is not made by me. I took it from an art tutorial book that I have (I think the artist is Amit Dutta). Obviously if I was to start selling my service, all of it would be drawn from scratch!

    Guess I could give deeper understanding of what concept art is:

    concept art is widely used within entertainment industry; tv shows, movies, games and so on. Concept artist seldom gets loads of reference details for the work. The order might be "draw us 4 different landscapes that could fit for our mmorpg game". The job is to come up with wide range of ideas and put them on paper. The client is rarely looking for something that will be published, as most likely it will only be used within the company to have all guys on the same page. Or, if it is so early in the development that they simply just want someone to give them ideas and ignite that creative flow. This is also reason why the concept art as a style might seem extremely vague and shapes arent so clear, like in this example. You can tell that we have a soldier in wintery condition, and on the background some pile of rubble and buildings. It's left so vague that we dont even properly see what the soldier is wearing. (that image is someone's practice art based on the game called The Division).

    Concept art is more productional design than highly detailed illustration. Sometimes the concept art image is taken to the final level that we would call published work. (The Division is good example, game's cover art is one of their original concept arts)

    "The purpose of the concept artist is to quickly explore ideas and communicate them as effectively as possible. The role of the illustrator is to create highly polished artwork." - James Pickhall, game developer

    That is why I brought it up. If you are writing a novel, you might want some ideas for scenery or simply cater some extra for your readers while they wait for the sequel. It works for television and games, at least I don't see why authors wouldn't have some benefits in it as well. Though if you are looking for cover art, professionally speaking, it falls under illustration. But obviously, you might just like concept art feel and use them as cover.

    I think I still got some time to practice, before I am comfortable trying to do it for money (for now, I feel I am too slow to make clients happy).

    (sorry for the wall of text)

    EDIT// Thought I would show something of my own, a sketch that I never colored.
     
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2016
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  9. BayView
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    BayView Contributing Member Contributor

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    It seems like art of that sort would be more useful for those working as a group?

    I can't personally imagine having someone else draw up ideas for my own scenery...?
     
  10. IlaridaArch
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    IlaridaArch Active Member

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    Yes I agree, it is more useful for a huge group, where you also have people who don't exactly do any visual things. For many games though, it's more about finding the perfect balance of how much details they can put in the world.

    The idea side of it is more to spark the creativity for others (a new little detail to include, or the opposite, realise something is out of place). It is not about creating full environment with all details, more about parts of it and to find 'the mood' of it. In movies, they use it to see if their planned set or background for the scene actually works (before taking someone's week or two to actually make the scenery).

    Here is a group of sketches, you can tell how they are within the same theme and include similiar things but try different approaches: LINK

    Guess it is really down to the author, if something like this is useful or not. Some might find it useful for worldbuilding phase, or maybe someone wants the final climax scene drawn. Really don't know.
     
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  11. deadrats
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    deadrats Active Member

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    I don't see how you would know if the writing is any good based on the artwork someone created. Unless it is an artist who does this all the time and you can see other examples... No, I still don't think that would make a difference. He could just be a really great artist, and it would have nothing to do with the writing. Or the writing could be great, but the artist saw something different or just isn't that great at this sort of thing. It's a little weird to think an artist would need or want to use your writing for inspiration. And if this is solely for your benefit, then I would say it is a lot to ask someone without paying this artist.
     
  12. Spencer1990
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    Spencer1990 Contributing Member

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    I think you've mistaken the point.

    The idea OP was referring to was having an artist draw something that you have written to see if what they read is reflected in what your aim was as the writer. It would be a good gauge regarding the writer's effectiveness of description.

    It would be especially useful for a fantasy/sci-fi writer. If I wrote in those genres it could ABSOLUTELY help to hone my skill

    Scenario:
    [Writer has described a fantasy beast that is unique to his/her story.]

    [Writer]"Hey [Insert artist's name] would you mind drawing this monster based on the description I've written?"

    [Artist]"Sure, that could be fun."

    [Artist draws the monster]

    [Writer] "Oh my goodness, that isn't anywhere near what I was picturing in my head."

    [Artist points to various phrases that led him/her to the artistic choices he/she has made]

    [Writer now knows which parts of his/her descriptions were effective and can adjust accordingly]
     
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  13. deadrats
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    deadrats Active Member

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    I understand what's being discussed. Sure, if you've got an artist friend and you both think it could be fun, why not? Still, I don't think it is an effective way to try and see how your writing stacks up or tell if you are doing a great job expressing your images or whatever. I just don't see how doing something like this would tell you anything about writing. You could just ask your artist friend, "Hey, what kind of images does my writing spark for you?" Most of us here are not writing picture books.
     
  14. Spencer1990
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    Spencer1990 Contributing Member

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    I think there's less of a rigid focus on only using this as a way to improve one's writing and more of a focus on it being a fun way to see what your descriptions look like to other people.

    You don't see how this is effective in the situation I described and I don't see how it's not. I guess I enjoy ideas like this and you may not. That's valid.

    The fun needn't be sucked out of everything, am I right?

    ETA: I'm not sure when we started talking about picture books, though.
     
  15. Nicola
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    Nicola Member

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    I've done illustrations for children's books and the authors were very specific about how the characters should look.

    It's something you could scrapbook from holiday brochures etc, that's much better than a drawing or even painting of a place.
     
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