The custom shapes tool

It's been a month since i started experimenting with a new technique based on custom shapes. i had given it a try last year but i just couldn't figure out how it was going to be THAT useful to a work process already based on custom brushes. it turns out that custom shapes are, in a way, far more versatile than brushes when it comes to organizing your canvas. the "abstract" factor is partly taken out of the workflow. not entirely though, as you can still mess around with insane shapes. but the way you apply shapes is just more connected to the environment you're creating, allowing super fast compositions in no time at all. i'll continue pushing this technique as it is, for now, extremely promising.
here's an environment extract i'm working on, done mainly with custom shapes. also, go visit kekai's blog for his latest, it's based on custom shapes and it's one thousand times worth it.

Hunchback Racer

a personal image done in a few hours.

halo cryptum

343Industries and Microsoft have announced the first volume of the Forerunner trilogy written my Greg Bear. here is the cover for the novel.

i also have been continuing my ipad explorations and will post another batch of concepts very soon. The Artstudio app has been updated not long ago, and i got to admit it is becoming my favorite of the bunch now. line tool is awesome, and they finally implemented a clone stamp tool which is easily configurable and a pleasure to use. Now i hope they will add a selection tool soon, as it's the only feature i wish to see on the ipad one day.

more soon!

Give me a clone stamp tool on the ipad!

After two weeks of doodling around on the ipad, i got to admit it's an awesome digital tool, and this despite the lack of pen pressure which is dramatically missing from what could have been the perfect digital sketchbook.
Now it's not all marvelous though, and this for one reason: you have 5 main drawing apps on the ipad, and each one of them is having features that the other don't have.
finger tool? ARTSTUDIO, and LAYERS.
clone stamp tool? only in PHOTOFORGE.
add an overlay layer? BRUSHES.
save your custom brushes and parameters? ARTSTUDIO.
"multiply" blending mode? SKETCHBOOK PRO, BRUSHES.
anyway you see the point. it's pretty infuriating!
i have high hopes that there will be additional features soon that will allow us to chose an app for good instead of permanently sending sketches to the photo album in order to switch from one app to the next. just in case it may happen one day, there's one feature i would LOVE to see implemented, in a better way, and whatever the app: Only PHOTOFORGE is having it for now, and in a very basic way: the CLONE STAMP TOOL. seriously, maybe it's probably only considered as a photo thing by many, useless for anything related to conceptart. well you're dead wrong! Clone stamping is vital to my own workflow as it allows me to reproduce entire areas, and it totally belongs to a concept art process.
we're at the very beginning of the Ipad, and i'm already excited about what's on there. can't wait to see more !

here's three sketches done in ... multiple apps!

Naval myth

Another fast sketch leading to weirdness. thanks for your attention and comments!

Inner bridge

personal work

Medieval Interlude II

two months since my last update. wow! - Medieval interlude II is just a personal work. Also, i have another Dune cover out on the french market. and last, i wanted to thank the zupi mag team in Brazil for their interview done last month. As well as Sam bathe who presented an awesome presentation of my photos for the "fan the fire" mag June 2010 edition, here.

their tree

an hour and a half playing with color tones and random shapes, it gave this at the end. i can't help but think i had Avatar in the very far back of my mind for this one.
Among other news, i just wanted to share that link to an interview i've done for nicolas Tarier and Pauline osmond at Artspire. huge thanks to them for their dedication.
oh, and i'm also on CGhub now.

built up north

tried this exercise tonight: imagine a small scenario before painting it. it worked pretty well. 3 hours of digital sculpting.

Structura - second printing available!

Structura - the art of sparth. is now back in stocks! the second printing is finally available on Amazon. it will probably take longer for the books to reach other book stores, but i'm sure it's only a matter of days. you can get it here.
it seems that it's not yet available on the designstudiopress website. more soon.


i rarely draw mech any more. i'm a bit rusty in that department. same for characters actually. i gave it a try with a foreground character this time. it's interesting to me, observing how things are going so smoothly when there's only architecture in a scene. add a character in there and i'll be spending time refining, changing things, getting lost into details. i should draw bots only :)

trantor interpreted

and yet another distorted compo for the fun. it's still a work in progress, but as i am less reluctant than before at adding hours on sketches, it's no big deal. i'll finish it soon.

medieval interlude

i have been painting so many spaceships and flying things lately. here's another type of scene for a change. 2 hours of distorted pixels and shapes.

mother planet 2

inspired by my previous attempt. tried another extremely vertical version. 3 hours of deconstruction from the first image.

mother planet

and yet another tribute to the world of asimov's Foundation. i don't think i had a specific spot in mind. it just came out after finishing the second book. the mule, and the tragic ending of the first foundation. it could as well be trantor, or kalgan. anyway. my addiction to spaceships isn't fading!

urban pilot

until now, i rarely had the dedication to spend more than 5 hours on a concept. but i have probably opened some cool "doors" lately, that allow me to be more successful at doing more finished works, without killing the images. here's an image done this way. always trying to keep the loose aspect from beginning to end. it's tuff. but rewarding.
this image is dedicated to my friend scott robertson. the flying thing in the middle is clearly "concept design 1" inspired. many thanks scott for all that visual stimulation!

and a small extract from the lower left part.

up jim river

Up jim river by michael flynn, a book cover done for Tor a few months ago. i realized i had not posted it on the blog yet. i'm uploading it before posting more recent pieces very soon.

life surface

i have tested this new technique lately and i tend to have interesting results out of this. two hours of messy blurby shapes. i'm glad having your feedbacks. i cannot believe i have let my blog silent for so long. catching up now!

another dune tribute

here's another dune tribute for tonight. i did this one by extracting a lot of shapes from a previous painting. pretty fun, and rather fast. oh, also, don't pay attention to the blog changing tones every now and then. it's in rainbow mode lately as i'm updating things all the time, and i can't decide which tones suit best my images. :)


personal sketch. started this one with bold brushes without any pressure sensitivity on opacity etc. pretty tricky for me to start that way, but it's fun nonetheless.

more flying things

more flying things for your viewing pleasure. :) oh, and that link has been circulating here and there lately. it's pretty amazing. i'm still wondering if this whole thing is real.

fin d'empire

wow. i've been posting like a turtle for months, and now this... but i'm i a good period, and it would be a shame not to paint for the fun. just came back from Avatar. seen it a second time with my friend robogabo. second viewing wasn't as fascinating, but this movie is changing all the rules in so many ways... it's genius.

hoovering postman

it could as well have been a small tribute to IDsoftware's Rage. i impulsively designed that small beat up flying car the other day. i love postapo stuff. i prefer my version to the kevin costner's version on a horse. :)

Tribute to Foundation

A small tribute to Asimov's Foundation. no specific scene. Also, i have been messing around with my blog, i can't decide what template i should keep. i guess none! as usual, the simpler the better. i still haven't found back all my links. will put them back slowly.

Tribute to Dune

A small tribute to Dune. This one is just a sketch for a possible cover, but they chose different options we're still working on. i still liked this version though.

ImagineFX interview in issue 53

I wanted to mention this article with an interview i did for the very kind folks from ImagineFX. I've had an exciting time working with them on it, and i would also like to thank them for their patience, as i've been slower than a snail nowadays when it comes to give materials on time.

In the US, ImagineFX is usually available at Barnes & Nobles as well as at Borders. you can visit this page in order to check availability depending on the country. It should be out in the United Kingdom on January 12, 2010, and three weeks later in the rest of the world.

2010 Update.

It's about time for an update. I would have so much to say, but i'd have the page filled in no time. For the same reason, i'll select things at a more reasonable pace. First of all the blog has been revamped. i apologize if anything weird pops up, but i'm so bad at these things. I lost all my links for now, but will update as soon as possible.

Structura - The art of Sparth, will be available very soon. The first print has been sold out for quite a few months now, but no worries, DesignStudioPress, Amazon as well as other retailers will have it very soon. i'd like to give a big thanks to those who have been waiting to obtain a copy. i did my best to reply to your emails concerning the fact Structura was nowhere available.

Microsoft and 343Industries released Halo: Evolutions - Essential Tales of the Halo Universe, a few days ago. The book is now in stores. My friend Robogabo and myself, shared the work for the book art, and both have contributed to several images. Robogabo did the front cover as well as two pieces inside. I did two black and white images for the inside pages too.

Back in November, SFsignal did another one of these book cover "smackdown". It's always a neat exercise. This time, they were featuring a cover i did last year for Paul McAuley's Gardens of the Sun, a book that will be out around march 2010. In the same style as "the quiet war", the image is mainly a funky depiction of spaceship epicness.
Last but not least, i've been going more and more into photography during these last months, and i am planning to build an even stronger link between conceptart and photo works, not to forget about all the post processing work that goes with it. I hope you'll enjoy my photos as much as my illustrations. oh, and most important: a Happy new Year to all of you!

Copyright 2010. All rights reserved.

RSS Feed. This blog is proudly powered by Blogger and uses Modern Clix, a theme by Rodrigo Galindez. Modern Clix blogger template by Introblogger.