These are some really quick thumbnails that I did for shattered plains environmental concept. These thumbnails sketch aren’t meant to be pretty or refine. The purpose of thumbnails for any concept artist is to convey the early stage of idea. They are usually really quick and scribbly just to get the idea across for refinement later on if one is selected.
Usually I will sketch ten or twenty at the time from the same descriptive concept from a writer or whatever inspired me.
This concept of shattered plains is from a book called The Way of Kings (The Stormlight Archive) by Brandon Sanderson. It is now becomes one of my most favorite fantasy novels. I just finish reading book one, now I will have to wait until the next book comes out.
Anyway, I was on a long bus ride so I pulled out my small sketch book and sketched some thumbnails so that I can paint over some of the ones I think fit the concept later in Photoshop.

Below are the thumbnails I did for shattered plains environmental concept.

shattered plains thumbnails concept

shattered plains thumbnails concept

The first one I did was the image that pop up in my mind first when I think about the idea from the book.  Notice that I put a tiny figure in the frame so that you can visually see the scale of how big the plains are in relation to human body.  The second one below it, I try changing camera angle a bit to slightly bird’s eye view.  The third in the bottom, I took my imagination a little further and try to visualize how they connected in the bottom, but then it doesn’t really fit the description in the book.  Next, the top middle image, I am trying to convey the great height of the plains so I did a vertical format.   On the far right, I tilt the camera angle and put two groups of figures on the opposite plains.  This one could be a battle scene or a stand off between two groups.  The one in the bottom right, I zoom in close to behind the back of one group facing forward.  Further in the background, you can see a group of soldiers on the plain across from the camera.

There will be more thumbnails for Shattered plains tomorrow.  I also plan to paint some of these so hopefully I will have some step by step painting process later on this week.

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Shattered plains environmental concept sketches

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.