How to draw monster art concept like creepy dark horror design. This is a creature design aiming at horror Sci-fi theme for games or movie visual concept. I will show you a quick step by step painting tutorial on how I accomplished this quick painting.

What is the essential element when you design a creature? If you want to design a good, convincing and life like then you will have to come up with good idea and some research. Good idea will often produce a good result. First you have to think what kind of environment this creature dwell. Then is it a predatory type or something else. If it hunts what would be its strategy. What kind of presence does it has? Is it creepy, intimidating, or adorable? Can it fly or is it bipedal, or else?

Here is a creature monster concept art

how to draw creepy monster step by step

how to draw creepy monster step by step

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Thursday night, I am sick like a dog, but can’t sleep so I thought I would do something useful. I can’t just sit around since I can go out…I might as well. Here is another tutorial if you are interested in doing quick Color Concept for Creature. I called it creepy horn face monster. This one took me about three to four hours messing around.
In figure 1, I start off with looking around in my sketch book for the thumbnails/comp I did. I usually do a bunch of thumbnails and scan them in so when I got bored I have something to do. Thumbnails are quick useful and you can have variety of stuff because your hand is trying to catch up with your brain flow full of ideas. Then I found something I like so I bring it in to Photoshop and enlarge it to about 700 to 900 pix. A very good size to do quick comp. Step 2, From the first image, now…I decide I would go with dark warm background as color scheme. Usually I just scribble something with texture custom brush for a quick background. Then I select the creature image put it on top of the BG layer. Then I either use Overlay or Multiply. In this cast I use multiply because I want it to be dark and scary. If it is too dark you can goto Menu Bar> Image> Level then adjust the clearity of your image over the BG. Then I layout the rough basic lighting. I put shadow under its torso, neck, and legs. Then lighten up the back and top of its head. Think FORM, not flat. Step 3, After I get the basic form/structure then I go into tighten up the figure. In this case I want its head/neck/shoulder to be the focus so I am bringing it out by adding more light on it. On creatures, I usually use a lot of texture brush to make it looks more gritty. As for its bottom part I will leave it as fade or soft edge so the torso and neck will be more pronounce.

How to draw scary monster

How to draw scary monster

Step 4, At this stage, I will enlarge the image to about 2500pix to 300 pix. So that I can get more detail painting. Now I am lighten up part of the back ground so that the figure IS separated from the BG. I also add cool light along its outline to make it stood out even more from the overall warm scheme. I also adding more detail to its shoulder to make it pop out.
Note 1: *Do not forget to flip and check your image if it looks correct. You will usually find mistake when you flip your image. I suggest you flip then work on it on the flip side for a while, then flip back.
Note 2: *Always check your gradient map. Don’t get too caught up with all fancy color. Check your value in Black and White. If it looks good Black and White, it will looks even better in color. On this piece, it almost a monocromatic image.
After I get the overall form, I am going in for the darkest dark then highlight very sparingly. At this stage I also define muscle groups and try to make it mimicking life like. I also try to make its skin differ from its nail, if you notice you will see that its dark shinny nail and spikes are more reflective than the skin itself. It has to be distinctive so that it will fool your eyes. Lighting is pretty much everything in painting. *For purpose of exercise try painting satin/velvet/steel right next to one another, you will see how lighting is really a big deal in making our eyes see different textures.

how to draw creepy monster step by step

how to draw creepy monster step by step

Finally, I tighten up the figure even more. I bring out part that needs to be on focal point, then soften the further away part. I fixed its toenails because it looks out of balance with toenails that short from the previous one. Then since I give it cool light, I add warm under lighting from below. Cool light = Warm Shadow likewise Warm light = Cool shadow. It’s the golden rule if you are doing under lighting. Then I clean up the figure, lighten up the background so that the creature will be separated and stand out more.

More monster drawing tutorials
-How to draw minion dragon
-How to draw fire dragon
-How to draw wood dragon
-How to draw sabre tooth dragon

How to draw monster art concept

About The Author
- Xia Taptara (黃曉聲 Huang XiaoShēng), currently a freelance concept artist for games and films, formerly a character concept artist for ArenaNet/NCsoft (GuildWars & Guildwars 2). I also work on various projects for Game of Thrones, Square-Enix, Paizo Publishing, Fantasy Fight Games, Disney Interactive, and many publishers & clients. I use Wacom Tablet Intuos and Photoshop CS2,3,4,5 to do most of my professional art work. I use pencil, pen, and traditional medium in my free time. I founded ( in 2007 to motivate myself to create more and better art. Also I get to draw and paint whatever the hell I want to. Hopefully I can inspired some young soul and old soul alike. *QUESTIONS & COMMENT: PLEASE POST THEM ON THE BLOG. Business Inquiry please e-mail me.

  • Cassle Tanggyono

    Whoaa, that’s so cool!! Ok, just to be honest, I’m very beginner in digital painting and sometimes I couldn’t completely follow all the steps in your tutorials, but seeing your works already motivating me! 😀 Thanks a lot!

    Btw, do you have any tutorials in making a proportional sketch outline with digital painting? Well, I usually have to draw the sketch and messing around to seek for some ideas through papers and pencil first before I could paint it digitally, but I really want to make a 100% digital painting one day. So, I’m just feeling confused how to compose the proportional sketch on the monitor.. I found it’s hard for me to ‘imagine’ the real size of what I draw, and whether it’s proportional enough or not. It’s also my hardest part when doing drawings on Sketch Club iPhone app.

    Thanks a lot for all your awesome works! Keep painting!


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