Matt's Place
I'm Matt and I'm trying to get better. First off is my show and tell of shame. This is old stuff that shows my laziness and negligence over the past year.

Now that is over I'm putting it behind me and using these images to track my progress. They will always be here for honesty and honour.

I currently work a full time art teaching job in Hong Kong and plan to change that soon to give me time off to draw and paint. I have $$$ saved up and I'm lucky since my living costs here are pretty low. I study in the evenings and days off. Can't wait to be free!

Latest Studies:

John Noble Head Construction Study

Back Studies using Elliot Goldfinger, Strength Training Anatomy and Gray's Anatomy.

Watched and studied my first Glen Vilppu lecture.

Photo study of someone's back. Surely I don't need to say who it is.


Process: Step by Step Back Study

I know the pitfalls of studying these guys who like to flex all day. I did it because the muscles of the back are difficult to see on most people so it was useful to be able to see all the muscle forms clearly and allow them to sink in a little. I'm over it now. Next I'll study some more sensibly built dudes doing some stuff, rather than flexing. Film grain was for fun, just thought I'd push the render for practice and couldn't resist some grain.

I'll be pushing myself each day to do more and also to put my studies to the test with my own paintings. Will stick mostly with anatomy for now but will give Bloodsports 6 a go!

Please don't crit the old stuff at the top. I know the flaws and I'm taking action against them now.
Please crit everything else.

Proud to join the Daggers!

New studies for Bloodsports 6.

I'm mainly basing my hunter off of Serbian tribes mainly Koryak and Evenk, Semi Tundra/Forest area but also including some elements of Zulu design mainly for weapons and their big simple shields. I also like the form of Zulu warriors when they're hunting. I know we're not doing Illustrations based off of it but after Bloodsports it can be taking into Illustrations.

So, Zulu study (Erasable biro yo!).

Another. Kick as mood in the original piece!

Evenk Armour Study, Iron skirts and wood 'n' hide shoulder shield.

My studies PSD.

I'll be having my days off on Monday and Tuesday so I'll be hitting it extra hard then. I'm getting at least 3 - 4 hours of sketching and studying in the evenings so I'm pretty happy. I really hope I can push something out for next Friday! More Tomorrow hopefully!

Haha that last post was funny. 2nd post in "I'm going to be hitting it extra hard

I've been drawing a fair bit and updating my blog at
In no particular order, this is the stuff from my blog during the "drawing a fair bit" period. (Note that "drawing a fair bit" isn't enough of course. Read on!):

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That's the basic idea of how lazy I've been during the "drawing a fair bit" period. There's more from another sketchbook that I'll add soon but more important things need to be done. Continued to next post...............

I'm here again now for the final showdown. I'm finishing my full-time job in 8 weeks time after which I've planned a 4-5 month break from full-time work to better myself artistically (living off savings and support from my laydee!) and hopefully produce a small portfolio for applying for freelance and/or studio work in Hong Kong.

I'm trying not to write too much but for this circumstance, for people to understand my position, it is a necessary evil! I'll try not to make this too long:

My story is I've drawn and enjoyed drawing all my life. I was one of them people Dan has mentioned before, being praised my whole life, being the "creative one", "quiet and artistic" etc. At my primary and high-school I was led to believe that I was something special in regards to art but I never achieved much past some bullshit pencil renderings, acrylic and oil paintings. I went to Uni studying Illustration and Visual Communication Majoring in Illustration, had a bumpy ride at uni, left with a BA(hons) in Illustration without having a real portfolio. Me and my girlfriend realised there were next to no jobs for us in the UK for what we wanted to do and so we came to Hong Kong knowing we'd have cheaper living costs (rent, bills etc) and got our first full-time jobs after graduation just 3 months prior to graduating.
Life was good, being in a new place (Hong Kong is an amazingly inspiration place for characters and cyberpunkesque vistas everywhere!) Joined Wing Chun classes, Did my PADI open water course, built a fair amount of Gunpla (with more to do!), played a lot of video games, collected a lot of toys and have been drawing and painting consistently but thinly spread. I've had some projects come and go like building a 32 DOF robot about 2 feet tall, making my own iPhone game that I'll pick up again but not after sorting out the lifetime goal problem!

The past 2 months I've slowly discarded almost all of that stuff, and have been drawing and painting an increasing amount but I've felt "Too busy to post", too busy to be part of a community for once in my life when the said community is full of people like me that I can learn and grow with. It's not been until recently that I made the decision to leave my current job, meaning I actually discussed leaving with my boss (who is awesome and will be a good friend in the future), and decided it's time for me to assess my goals with art and find the solution to get me working drawing and painting for a living. As I've been drawing and studying more and planning schedules etc I've realised that there is always time for IMPORTANT things. Meaning if I think about what is important to me and my life with my girlfriend and task myself accordingly, the other shit just dissapears. I'm talking about shit like procrastinating because I'm not serious enough about where I am artistically and convince myself that by watching copious films, playing games, reading books and buying toys alone will somehow allow my art to get better when I want to work in these fields (creating art for games, films, books, toys etc). I'm a pretty safe guy, I don't drink a lot, do any drugs or have any traditional vices past not drawing or painting enough. So my sole problem is about just fucccking DOING SHIT! The problem is rooted in the realisation that I wasn't good enough and had to re-educate myself but taking a very long time being distracted by many things and making very slow progress towards unspoken goals.

So I've been building up to doing nothing but art and realised, through scheduling my time for drawing/painting, that I can still have time to watch movies, play some game, walk my dog. Just not excessively which is cool. I have way more fun drawing and painting than I realise sometimes!

So I'm making my deathline which is my own custom deathline since its the final third into the year already but sticking with the deathline spirit, just on my own calender because waiting to set these goals would be more than retarded.

I had 5 days in a row off last week and instead of booking anything I scheduled my 5 days of 16 hour a day drawing sessions. It was successful on the Monday completing the full 16 hours give or take until I realised on Tuesday that my 2009 13" MacBookPro just wasn't cutting it. I decided to build a new desktop which took me all of Tuesday to research, plan and go buy the parts for the build, Wednesday to assemble and Thursday to setup and move files from my MacBookPro, clean my MacBookPro and all of that good stuff. Friday I setup my first Livestream account ( and didn't do a lot else. I've been back at work on the weekend but after work I've been rescheduling (down to 12 hours, I can do more if I'm not too burnt out) and have setup 2 schedules that is my Path to Deathline!

The first is for the last 8 weeks of work, I teach children drawing and painting and some basic english based on the topic we are painting so it's been a lot of fun and will miss it. I'll be full on 12 hours a day of studying on Mondays and Tuesdays, my days off since I work weekends, and after work is more free study around whatever portfolio pieces I'm doing. I'm not expecting work I'm doing now to be in my final portfolio at the end of this but to get most of the crap stuff out so I can make better stuff during my 4-5 months study and portfolio cram.

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The second is my schedule for when I'm not working for 4-5 months, after which, hopefully, fingers crossed and all that. I should be making steps toward painting for a living. My options so far are a few mobile/pc game studios doing slightly casual stuff, a couple of animation studios, Imagi Studios (TMNT) but I doubt they want 2D only guys and I'm pretty sure any 3D modelling/texturing pieces I manage wouldn't make the grade. They are the full-time options living in Hong Kong. My other options are part-time English or Art teaching whilst freelancing on the side. This may not sound too good but some jobs I've been looking at are 3 days a week with enough pay to cover the visa requirements (big international English only schools, Asia is crazy for'em!) and then I would be open to getting freelance for the remaining 4 days and/or keep pushing my studies and portfolio pieces to get freelance work whilst also sending
updates to studios and looking out for other studios I've not discovered yet.

Weekends are free here to either do more drawing/painting or go for a days hike with my dog and girlfriend. Me and my other half are planning to join some sort of class together to get into shape and keep each other motivated to do so. Yoga or Taekwondo maybe. Sounds lame but yeh, it's just something we want to do together since we had a lot of fun getting our PADI Diving Open Water License last year.

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There are some options (that are not options but may be suggested by others) like going back to the UK to live with family but for me it's not an option since noone can afford to put me up, part time wages suck in the UK right now and anything else would be full-time. I'll be going back to the UK in around 2 years to live again at which point I really want to be in a position to freelance enough to fully support me and/or get into a decent studio such as Opusartz, leading light or any of the UK developers with in-house artists, SuckerPunch, Rockstar, Rocksteady and quite a few more.

My goals are still a little optimistic and when you see my work and then see names like Opusarts and Rockstar games in just 2 years, I guarentee you'll be pissing your pants but please judge those goals after my 4-5 months of madness because that's when I'll be taking another look at what is possible and I can make more real estimations and ammend goals after that time.

Enough talk, I'll be streaming mostly all of my schedule if possible (no mic yet) and posting frequently to here and my blog. When my "finished" pieces start coming I'll update my Deviantart and create a CGSociety. On my schedule, the Projects parts also cover Blood Sports! I'm ready Dave and Dan, give me blood!

My Deathline Starts today and will be reviewed this time next year. I'm not doing this just because it's the thing to do here but because I need it, I need focus and I need people to know my goals to help me keep them in check.

My Deathline September 3rd 2013, goals:

1. Have a strong Portfolio geared toward game preproduction art (See my Schedules on
how I'll achieve this).

2. Get fit! Epic dog walks on weekends after I finish my full time job and some
excercise based class with my girlfriend on weekends to sort this out.

3. Keep active on forums:
- Bloodsports
- Livestreaming
- Generally checking on and supporting everyone here any way I can

4. Finances
- Save as much money as possible being mindful of wasted money. No more

spending on toys or adding to my portable game console collection.

Check my Signature for my livestream and blog, I'll be streaming every hour of painting toward my deathline goals!

Lets see where I'll end up a year from now when I'm pushing myself to the limit!

Latest Updates.

Some 30m gestures, need to be faster with blocking in forms. I should do shorter quicker gestures next time.

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SP, Morning, indirect sunlight, I'm facing a wall of windows on a fairly bright morning. All the diffused light is hard to get down!

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I've been working on a project bringing Darth Maul into the Gundam Universal Century Timeline, sightly redesigning him. This is the first. The idea is a realistic take on a pre-kill expression just before Maul purges some mobile suits with his mobile suit. I'll be doing some iterative character designs to work out a normal suit for him and also designing a mobile suit for him that takes cues from his character and his ships and gadgets from Star Wars. A light hearted project, may not turn out to be so cool but whatever. In the end it'll be some packaging design for a Gunpla kit for Darth Mauls Mobile Suit with shots like this around the edge of the box. Maybe I can do a real Gunpla package Illustration one day!

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Still going with this though. The process so far:

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I'll do a full process image when it's finished.

Finally a Sargent Study. Just start about 1 hour in:

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Lots to do on that. Proportions are already all over the place!

See you tomorrow, Livestreaming in around 5 - 6 hours!

Hey, nice sketchbook mate. Your stuff is getting better. Keep it up xd

Stuff from the past few weeks. Finally took photos of my sketchbook stuff but its mostly sucky studies I'm afraid. I'll get better.
At the end, back anatomy study with crap values, head study from photo in Hogarth's 'Drawing the Human Head' and finally a screen cap study of Ned the Dead from Game of Thrones! Just finished season one, should have been drawing but it's soooo good and I'm so late to only just be watching it!

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Check out my livestream in my sig for process of studies, you can just skip to points in the image, no need to watch it all lol. I'm learning a lot from these studies and meeting people on my stream gets me hella pumped!

Small update on Ned study! Pushing it to the limit and then beyond the limit! And further!

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wow, i'm definitely seeing some drastic improvements here.
keep it up!

and nice job on the darth maul redesign, totally digging it.

Studies and Non-Reffed stuff from the past few days. Been reading "Creative Illustration" again. I'm finding focusing on abstract composition and value shapes first is producing better ideas and making stuff from imagination more fun!

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cool stuff happening here, it seems like you really work hard, keep it up mate!

gen5: Thanks man! My pace has kind of slowed down a little but I'll soon be drawing all day every day! only 5 weeks left of current job to go!

EduardoGaray: Ah man, I don't work hard enough right now. At this place everyone is kicking so much ass! I'll only be working hard enough when I finally get some work. I'm a long ways off yet! Thanks for you kind words though!

Going for increased speed. I used to get disheartened when I tried to speed up my gestures since I seemed to sacrifice quality for speed.
Re-listening to Mr.Chiu recently and his free excerpts of "The Perfect Bait" ( at 1:00, reminded me of a good piece of advice that keeps me plowing through the turd! Something along the lines of when you try to increase your speed you need to expect around a 50% decrease in the the quality of work produced and then work at getting as close to whatever 100% is within the restricted amount of time.

I'm working on 2 minute gestures but want something close to what I could do in 5 minutes and maybe even 10 if its possible. We'll see. Then working on doing the same for imagination which seems to be faster since I'm not looking at ref.

Also some planes studying and an Angry SP around 2 hours. I streamed it but had to re-upload which is taking some time. It should be up soon! Trying out new brushes, not just soft round. I love soft round so much though!

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Hey Lewis!You are getting better ande better =) You work so hard bro!Thanks for helping me all the time ;)
impressive work, you have your own style, cherish and improve on it
Couple of gesture sheets, some from ref and some non-reffed! Also an update to the Eddard Stark study. I forgot to post it up! I'm calling it finished because I wasn't paying proper attention to the planes of the face really. Going to study some scary/beautiful women next!

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Keep on working hard! And thanks for checking my work :)

Love your studies and all the hard work you're putting into your art. Keep it up ;3

Great studies, keep up the good work.

So, a new month means new plans.

October Goals:

1. Stick more closely to set routine, studies scheduled need to ONLY be related to projects I'm working on too! I'll state reasons for each study and it's application to keep tabs on if I'm doing it or not.

2. I need to do full figure gestures and some quick head value studies every day before proceeding with other studies or project work. 30mins of 2minute gestures and 30 mins of 5 - 10 minute head studies on work days. 1 Hour of 2 minute gestures and 1 hour of 5 - 20 minute heads on days off (all before doing any other work from imagination).

I'm going to leave it at that for this month and make sure I nail this. Still following other deathline goals etc.

Here's my routine again, only 3 and a half weeks left!

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Going to fill the sheet with sketches of the girl hunter character in various poses, actions and possible costumes.!

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Some sketch that started out on my Fujitsu Lifebook T2010. Funny that Sickbrush mentioned using 'Slates' tonight. No ref, trying hard with colours. I need to start organising 'palettes' using swatches in Photoshop. After finishing the colour chapter of Loomis' 'Creative Illustration' I feel much more equipped to get organised.

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Sorry, I'm dissapointed that this is all I've got. The truth is that last week was the Chinese Mid-Autumn festival so I had 3 full days with my girlfriend for the first time in forever and I spent it stuffing my face at her families houses and watching 2 seasons of The Walking Dead and only drawing a minimal amount. I've been a bad bad boy. Time to reconcile!

Big thanks to Sickbrush for his Concept Art class. I was surprised that the first assignment is so much fun. Straight into drawing heads! It's 4am here now! Following his classes will kill me while I'm finishing up the last 3 weeks of my full-time job but it's soooooo worth it! The information is so valuable to me right now. All of the mentoring classes couldn't be coming at a better time! Better schedule all the class times in when they are announced!

Just going through Sickbrushes Assignment 1a and spending time sorting out my line drawing in photoshop. It's a real challenge since I only ever rough sketch with fat brushes before painting usually in photoshop. I need to be able to make these type of drawings so here's to more practice needed! I'm seeing some improvements already but I'm moving sloooooow with these! Need to speed up.

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Under Sickbrush command you are going to improve really faster, you are already getting better.
this last study is a big step forward.


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