Wilson Chan - 2022 Rookies Concept Art
I'm a self-taught artist, relying on the fantastic resources online, peers and discipline. My goal is to draw viewers into a world that I helped design; to excite others like how the universes of Halo, Warhammer 40k and Star Wars invigorate me. I'd love to know where I stand in the eyes of professionals.
Project Brief - Crime Scene
The brief for this year's Ubisoft NEXT student challenge (see here for more info: https://toronto.ubisoft.com/next/).
“Today was going to be perfect. I could just feel it in my bones, but then I got called in... Body in the upper quarter, near that fancy cafe, they make those cappuccinos people travel across the city for. Looks like I'll be one of the few that'll be visiting for a different reason... and all on my perfect day... You know I've never noticed how over the top these sculpted details on this building were until they were glistening with blood. It's all kinda macabre. This kind of thing doesn’t happen here...I mean it happens in the city, but not this part. And what's even more perfect about today -the rain from last night washed a lot of the evidence away, like foam off an old cap. Man, I could go for one... You know, if this was some crime of passion, or a robbery gone wrong I wouldn’t be so grumpy. But whoever killed our Vic left something for us. A calling card. This city just got another show-off...”
- Ubisoft NEXT 2022 Team
This was really interesting especially the use of Art Nouveau and being able to select a city. I enjoy Roman history so Rome immediately resonated with me. The brief also mentioned imagining an Urban Fantasy inspired Rome, 10 years into the future as well. It was great learning about those topics.
3D Scan of Farnese Atlas - https://www.myminifactory.com/object/3d-print-the-farnese-atlas-at-the-museo-archeologico-nazionale-naples-14090
Use of 3D
I decided to use a 3D base to quickly establish the perspective, focal length and especially colors and materials at night to more accurately paint it afterwards.
Character: Matteo the Polizia Investigator
Matteo's design for Ubisoft NEXT 2022 was a personal brief that was based on theirs which focused on the concepts of deriving power from a fantastical tattoo where his police work is aided by magic-tech and augmented reality. The goal was to envision what a sci-fi fantasy police investigator in Rome, Italy would look like in 2030.
I decided to use much more photobashing than I normally would because Ubisoft Toronto tends to prefer realism. It was fun and to see how I could adapt to their needs.
General Design Process
At this point in my development, this is my personal workflow (see above diagram) as of 2022. I'm sure it will develop further as I gain more experience. I've arrived to this process through research like industry podcasts, Youtube, blogs, and articles.
Game Design Education
My education isn't art based but focuses on game design instead. With that said, it is great supplementary knowledge to see how my role fits the team and studio. Having enough knowledge in other aspects of game development has made it a lot easier to communicate across disciplines. But most importantly, the experience of working on game projects for entire semesters throughout each academic year was great to develop my team work skills.
"Centuries after an ancient automaton was felled, civilization was once again thrust back to the stone age. However, humanity's remnants congregated near this sacred site and subsisted off of the holy offerings from ATLAS where civilization began anew."
Much of this project was inspired by themes found in Warhammer 40k, a universe which has my favorite lore and worldbuilding.
*Bridge and the base main sculpture (later I sculpted on top) were not made by me but were acquired with rights to use in this manner*
Sculpture: https://threedscans.com/kunsthistorisches-museum-wien/jungling/Bridge: https://www.turbosquid.com/3d-models/bridge-max-free/424181
Initially started out with photobashing and line sketches but ultimately decided to use Notan, high contrast sketches, to focus on shapes, and composition. I felt this worked better for a landscape scene with fewer interior compositions (i.e. lots of crumbling buildings in addition to what exists already).
I used Unreal's Megascans, Blender and Zbrush to create a base for perspective and color for this concept. I also wanted to experiment with different workflows to achieve a higher level of realism.
Above is the workflow I used for the ATLAS project.
"In an underwater orchestral stadium, a ritual is underway where ancient melodies are amplified by alien technology. Their goal is to rip stellar energy from a god trapped in stone. To the audience, it is an event akin to a King's coronation — sacred entertainment, except for the few who despise such barbarism."
This piece had the goal of inspiring gameplay puzzles (floating platforms) and envisioning the mood of the environment as aliens fill the stands through teleporters (blue glow). As a personal IP, it was enjoyable creating a small world with characters, props and an environment.
Apophis, the god in ALTER, designed as an interstellar power with constellations and galaxies flowing across her body pulled into the black hole on her forehead. Apophis is (white streak in environment shot) trapped by the aliens.
ALTER's Chanteuses have rare vocal cords, and thus they are preserved while their physical body withers away.
I enjoy painting , and as a personal project it was really fun to start from a blank canvas and then render it.
The Ecclesiarch in ALTER is the "matriarch" of the ritual given ancient armor.
Eventually, when transparency no longer has a negative performance impact in games, more designs playing with transparency can be done. So I'm looking forward to it.
If you'd like to stay in touch, you can find me here: https://linktr.ee/WilsonArt
Thanks for taking a look, and if you love Warhammer 40k, Halo, and Star Wars then even better!
In terms of my experience, even though my Linkedin states I have a couple months of experience , in reality it has been very infrequent contracts. So far I've worked very briefly (less than a month in total) with AAA veterans and a studio. I found its awkward to list it in other ways.