Abstract Approach to Concept Art
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Latest comments
by derjyn@gmail.com
5 hours ago

$16 for a *very* non-performant material? If this was intended for use in high-detail scenes, not meant for gameplay, one would generally just use a flipbook animation, or looping HD video texture (both of which are higher quality and available for free all over). I love options, but c'mon, that's pretty steep. $5, maybe. And you can loop in materials, using custom HLSL nodes. Also, there are better ways of doing this, all around. Somewhere on the forums, Ryan Brucks (of Epic fame) himself touched on this. I've personally been working on a cool water material (not "material blueprint", thankyouverymuch) and utility functions, and am close to the quality achieved here, sitting at ~180 instructions with everything "turned on". The kicker? It's pure procedural. No textures are needed. So this is cool, no doubt about that. In my humble opinion though, it's not "good". It doesn't run fast, and it's more complicated than it needs to be.

Lee is right - you can use a gradient effect when you vertex paint in your chosen 3d modelling platform (I've done it in max), meaning the wind effect shifts from nothing to maximum along the length of the leaf/branch/whatever.

by Lee Stojkovic
6 hours ago

I'm fairly certain you can vertex paint the bottoms of the foliage and control the movement using vertex colors along with the wind node. I did this in an earlier project and was able to create a scene with grass that moved less and less as it went down until stationary. I created the grass and painted the vertexes black to red (bottom to top) in Maya.

Abstract Approach to Concept Art
19 November, 2015
Interview

Wadim Kashin is an amazing artist from Moscow. He’s got an amazing style that unites abstract painting and fantastic themes. We’ve had a chance to talk with Wadim about his work, the kind of tools he uses and his main sources of inspiration.

Abstract Approach to Concept Art

Wadim Kashin, Artist, gamedev, gameart, visual art, concept art, visual art, abstract art, PC, Arthur Haas, Photoshop, calssical art, fantasy,

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Introduction

My name is Wadim Kashin. I’m from Moscow. I have been a huge art fan since my early childhood. I’m the only artist in my family. I’m mostly self-taught and I’m used to drawing with a simple pencil or some paints. I’ve tried it long before I got introduced to CGI.

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The older I got, the more I felt my art was lacking something. I’ve been just drawing something, without giving it much thought, but slowly I got moronity the theory and started reading more about the theory, aspects and principles of drawing.

Since those days I’ve contributed to a number of different projects. Every piece of work has something very interesting about it. It could be an album cover, or a book, or some concept art for a movie or a game. Every single piece of drawing has something interesting about it.

I definitely want to work on smoggier projects, but so far I mostly did some freelance tasks.

Abstract Diving

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I’ve actually been looking for my own look for quite some time. I experimented a lot and did a lot of work.

In terms of style I was always interested in sort of messy works, where you can see a lot of artistic elements. I really like abstract style, impressionism, surrealism. I try to combine all these styles with a lot of details to keep the main composition readable. One of my biggest inspirations is Nikolay Fechin (Николай Фешин). I’m always amazed by the quality of his works.

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Although he’s more of a traditional painter, who doesn’t like all that fantastic mumbo jumbo, he really showed me how important is style and execution.

My own style is called Abstract Diving. In August 2015 I’ve been working on a little lesson/tutorial for 2DArtist (3D Total Publishing) and that’s when I really had to crystallize the peculiarities of my particular method.

Wadim Kashin, Artist, gamedev, gameart, visual art, concept art, visual art, abstract art, PC, Arthur Haas, Photoshop, calssical art, fantasy,

I usually begin my works with a lot of chaotic brush strokes. I pay a lot of attention to abstract imagery. In this chaos and randomness I usually see something very interesting and start to build the painting out of it. It’s like a constant game of imagination, where you see something of value in every part of the image. Abstract Diving is sort of fundamental to my works.

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Everything starts with it. This is how I define the colors of my image, the composition and the form of the objects. I’ve actually achieved this effect for the first time when I was painting with pastel. Later I decided to transfer this method to my digital paintings.

Wadim Kashin, Artist, gamedev, gameart, visual art, concept art, visual art, abstract art, PC, Arthur Haas, Photoshop, calssical art, fantasy,

I also use a lot of very popular artistic methods in my work: from photo-bashing to painting some of the most peculiar details with normal brushes. I almost always use Mix-brushes, calibrating everything to my own liking. Almost half of my instruments are brushes with individual settings. I try to combine them all during work to achieve the necessary effect.

My software of choice is Photoshop. It’s a great tool for drawing, but you have to understand that it’s just a tool and it won’t make the work for you. It definitely has a great potential.

The Mystery of Painting

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Atmosphere is the key for me. To achieve the right tone I choose the right color scheme and pick up the right lighting. It’s also incredibly important to create different forms and objects, that are going to be interesting for the user. While creating these objects and images I usually keep in mind that the place I create really exists. It can be somewhere in another part of the world, but it does exist.

Wadim Kashin, Artist, gamedev, gameart, visual art, concept art, visual art, abstract art, PC, Arthur Haas, Photoshop, calssical art, fantasy,

For example, let’s take desert as a setting and dawn as the time of day. I start from the real details of the world like stones, sand, land and sky. Then I add some cool stuff like stone cubes somewhere at the horizon. They’ll be like really high, like a skyscraper. Nobody knows who created these cubes, how did they appear here and this creates sort of a mysterious tone. Adding smaller details you can show that these cubes are ancient and have been standing here for ages. Still their purpose remains a secret.

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When I’m working with some company, I usually have a certain idea and something I need to create. But that’s a completely different story.

Abstract Approach to Concept Art

I believe this feeling of mystery and exploration is very important for image creation. Everything should look really interesting, but nobody knows how it all works. I draw a lot of inspiration from different eptry locations: fields, eptry parking lots, abandoned halls. That sort of thing. I believe there’s a lot of atmosphere there, a lot of wonderful silence.

Abstract Approach to Concept Art

I also like to look at the alien landscapes. Take Mars, for example. It’s completely dead, not a soul around. And then you begin to imagine: what if someone had been living there? What would they leave to their ancestors? This is when the real magic happens. You can add some random settlements or canyons, or some other stuff. You can create a lot of great stuff with this kind of approach.

Traditional Art VS Digital Art

Abstract Approach to Concept Art

It’s an old fight. I personally believe, this comparison is absolutely unacceptable. All the methods and theories from traditional art works with digital tools. The theory of color, the rules of composition – it’s all the same! Modern digital tools are just tools, they serve the same purpose. The only difference is that you use computer to draw. Photoshop is a great example of this approach. This software has a lot of features and works great for building different kinds of illustrations. It’s just a tool.

Abstract Approach to Concept Art

I had a friend once who said that he can’t paint, but he thought he could if he used the PC. Of course he could make anything, because he didn’t know the basics. If you are a professional you can do your work with any tool. It could be digital or classical.

The Value of Color

  • Wadim Kashin, Artist, gamedev, gameart, visual art, concept art, visual art, abstract art, PC, Arthur Haas, Photoshop, calssical art, fantasy,
  • Wadim Kashin, Artist, gamedev, gameart, visual art, concept art, visual art, abstract art, PC, Arthur Haas, Photoshop, calssical art, fantasy,
  • Wadim Kashin, Artist, gamedev, gameart, visual art, concept art, visual art, abstract art, PC, Arthur Haas, Photoshop, calssical art, fantasy,
  • Wadim Kashin, Artist, gamedev, gameart, visual art, concept art, visual art, abstract art, PC, Arthur Haas, Photoshop, calssical art, fantasy,
  • Wadim Kashin, Artist, gamedev, gameart, visual art, concept art, visual art, abstract art, PC, Arthur Haas, Photoshop, calssical art, fantasy,

Once I had a talk with a very talented artist Arthur Haas. We’ve discussed the issue of color depth in his illustrations. He paints incredibly lush jungles from alien planets. His images are mostly created by the correct usage of different color. Color also plays the utmost importance in my works. Color is a great way to set the mood for the image. Adding new colors and figuring out the transitions between different colors, I try to make everything look great and not to add too much contrast. Photoshop is great for playing with color. It gives you a whole bunch of different tools (Levels/Curves) and filters. If you work with these settings correctly you can achieve incredible results. It’s so much fun adding and changing the pallete, figuring out the new look for the image. Sometimes that will give me ideas for new images. Colors help us to create amazing atmosphere and mood. And you can do it in just a couple of clicks on your PC.

Wadim Kashin, Artist

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