3 Month Portfolio Prep
Here's the idea, and it's a bit last minute since this schedule technically starts today but I thought it'd be cool if anyone wanted to join my friend and me. And feel free to join at any time even if you've missed a week or two.

I'm really getting to the point where I need to get a job sooner than later and decided to make a study schedule that squeezes in all the subjects I need for a concept art portfolio fairly quickly. It'll be 3 months, more or less, and provide time to study each major subject and produce a concept for it. I also hope this will aid me in being faster, looser, and breaking out of some bad habits I have with art. There's also a lot of subject matter I've realized I've avoided and never really drawn, so this is also aimed at improving my visual library. There are a lot of things I need to work on and I feel like this schedule should help address them. My friend Carlos will be joining me in this and if this schedule looks like it could help any of you I hope you will join us as well.

This schedule currently runs up until May 18th and I hope to revise it soon once I figure out exactly what is going on with my summer. If enough people take interest in this group me and Carlos may start doing a weekly livestream for it to talk about our progress and how everything is going. Feel free to post your work and your progress in this thread, and discuss any issues you're having with the given subjects. We'll be spending 1-2 weeks on each subject, which should hopefully allow for a good amount of studies while producing a painted concept. We'll see how it goes.

I should mention a lot of the lessons and information will be coming from Scott Robertson's book "How to Draw" which I would recommend to anyone since it has a lot of useful information for these topics. Specifically for the perspective aspects of it. The Skillful Huntsman is also a pretty good reference book for the type of work we'll be doing.

Here is the schedule, I hope you get the basic idea from it:

Week 1: Perspective

This week is all about learning and getting better at using perspective. To be able to apply the lessons you'll learn to imaginative work. I'll be working through Scott Robertson's book I mentioned in the first post but information on perspective can be found online for free too. I know Andrew Loomis has free books for download that cover perspective as well.

Feel free to post any studies and sketches you do, and try to do both studies from reference and sketches from your imagination. Perspective is a really important skill that applies to all the other subjects so I thought it was a good one to start on. You can see how much Feng Zhu's student's work is heavily focused on perspective if you check out his blog, for example.

I figured a good "assignment" for this week could be an interior scene (examples in the link below) but anything that applies what you learned works fine.

A bit of a slow start to the week, but here's some perspective studies so far.

lets see here

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WIP fun fun

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So I'm a bit behind. Will post what I have when I finish it soon. Moving on though...

Week 2-3: Mechanical/Vehicles
This time it's 2 weeks, and is about learning and getting better vehicles and mechanical things. Study vehicles, and mechanical objects to get a better idea for the subject matter.

As listed on the schedule, if you want, do 10 or more studies of each type of vehicle and variations from imagination to really solidify the information. Do whatever sketches or quick concepts you want as well, but the finished assignment will some sort of vehicle concept. Mech, car, tank, aircraft, etc, it's up to you. April 27th will be the last day for this topic.

Some good inspiration I saw earlier this week.

A few quick Sketches of random vehicles and a mech, a weird mech... eh I like it.

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A bit late, wasn't able to post yesterday. Need to finish a concept for this last week, but moving on to weapons/props this week...

Week 4: Weapons/props/misc
Posting a day or two late but:

One week for this one. Working on weapons, props, and any thing that may populate a scene. Do any sorts of studies that fit. Going to study a lot of different kinds of weapons.

As with the others we'll try to finish with a concept. I'll probably do a set of weapons.

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Some weapons sketches. Need to start on some painted concepts.

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Cool, I like what you're doing. I'm also doing something similar but on a daily basis, rather than weekly. Similar subject matters too. Except I'm not creating portfolio pieces at the end. I will though, after a few months to see how I progress! (Just started a few weeks ago.)

Drawing guns is a lot more fun than I recall. :)

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Late again, but:

Week 5-6: creatures

Two weeks for this one. Study animals and all sorts of different creatures. Post any studies and concepts. Going to try to have a finished creature concept at the end of this one.

Canvas look for the hell of it.

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Here's my creature! whatever the fuck it is...

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I am stariting week 1
[Image: sCJ2Okw.jpg]
Nice Bart, keep it up!

Hey guys, sorry for the delay. Going to try to pick this schedule back up and finish off the remaining topics. Need to get back on track.

Feel free to follow along with this new schedule or post work for any previous weeks. Whatever you think will benefit you most. I REALLY need to start doing environments so this will be a great start for me.

I'm also going to start trying to stream to keep myself on track. I should get a stream up today and plan on shooting for 10:00am Monday-Wednesday, and around 1:00pm on Thursdays Pacific Time Zone (UTC-08:00). I probably won't be streaming Friday-Sunday but we'll see how it goes. Streaming schedule could change if my own schedule does, but I'll update you if that happens.


Heya Sam, love your design study, nice work. I have an observation to make based on my own experience with doing something similar to this over a 3 month period. I consider it a failed attempt mostly, for a couple of reasons:

1. The schedule I had similar to yours, was way too rigid, too intensive and forced for me. So I always felt like I had to catch up, or leave things behind undone or rushed. It was not good.
2. There was no underlying reason for my work besides "study" and "folio build".

So to mitigate 1. I would be a bit easier on yourself and have a regular realistic look at your schedule and modify it if you feel you don't have enough time to get things done according to what you have set.

For 2. And I think this is the kicker, instead of only random visual library building, or random concept development, try if you can to work on a personal project and build your concept design and study towards this. It has two benefits; first that you are researching and studying with a goal, rather than just randomly; second you are also able to explore and develop the other important part to design which is art direction and style consistency across multiple concepts. Also the iterative nature of designing for a purpose is much more fun because you are building a world that feels cohesive. Studios in particular love to see folio work and iteration that shows how you can apply your work to many concepts on one project, because this is how the work comes in for them. Rarely do they get one-off designs to do.

Also I would say visual library development in all areas across the board (enviro, vehicle, creature etc) is good for your general study purposes, but you can't possibly expect to pump out really good unique concept work in all fields at the same time and you can't really use your study pieces in your folio because no one really cares about that. I would really recommend you think about picking an area or two to specialise in a little bit more when it comes to your folio itself rather than try and be everything to everyone. I know the drive is to try and shotgun your folio in order to net more jobs, but this is a fear based approach.
I have consistently been getting this message myself from my folio reviews....specialise first, be amazing at one or two things, generalise later.

Hope that helps, and good luck!!

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One study, one half study half sketch and some random hell cave concept.

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