Thumbnail design for concept art. Most concept art process begin with simple idea, even if it is an elaborate complex piece. I usually look for cool looking and easy to identify silhouette before I explore further. In this example, I will show you how I create simple thumbnails in my sketchbook, then I select a few and working on more detail for the final cut.

My process is quite simple, I usually start with thumbnail to get the basic idea then composition. A thumbnail is a tiny sketch, so called because it is typically about the size of an actual thumb. Thumbnails, in the context of art, are rapidly executed near-doodles, and serve to get the creative flow flowing. They are preliminary designs. Like I mentioned, I will pick a few out of a group of thumbnails. We usually start with thumbnails then comps and finally a concept art piece. It makes our job a lot easier.
Concept art piece is intended to convey an idea or concept to the perceiver and need not involve the creation or appreciation of a traditional art object such as a painting or sculpture.

Below are my thumbnail process of creating a group of steam punk ninja characters.  Step one, these are a group of basic thumbnail character design I scanned in from my sketchbooks.  I was just trying to create different types of ninja characters.  They are just basic small thumbnail drawing and I emphasis on good and easy to identify silhouette.  Step two, I then assign medium gray to part of the costume for selected characters.  This make them easy to recognize as an individual character.  Step three, I tighten up the outline of the characters.



thumbnails creation process

thumbnails creation process

Step four, I apply dark gray to the three selected characters to make them more identifiable as each unique character.  Step five, I assign light and shadow onto thumbnail number one to give it more detail.  Once I did that I can select that refine thumbnail and paint over to make it a finish concept art piece.

Thumbnails creation process for concept art

Thumbnails creation process for concept art

More painting tutorials.
-How to paint Blood Elf World of Warcraft
-How to paint Conan the barbarian
-How to paint Thor

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Thumbnail design for concept art

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.