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      GameDev.net and CRC Press have teamed up to bring a free ebook of content curated from top titles published by CRC Press. The freebook, Practices of Game Design & Indie Game Marketing, includes chapters from The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses, A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing, and An Architectural Approach to Level Design. The GameDev.net FreeBook is relevant to game designers, developers, and those interested in learning more about the challenges in game development. We know game development can be a tough discipline and business, so we picked several chapters from CRC Press titles that we thought would be of interest to you, the GameDev.net audience, in your journey to design, develop, and market your next game. The free ebook is available through CRC Press by clicking here. The Curated Books The Art of Game Design: A Book of Lenses, Second Edition, by Jesse Schell Presents 100+ sets of questions, or different lenses, for viewing a game’s design, encompassing diverse fields such as psychology, architecture, music, film, software engineering, theme park design, mathematics, anthropology, and more. Written by one of the world's top game designers, this book describes the deepest and most fundamental principles of game design, demonstrating how tactics used in board, card, and athletic games also work in video games. It provides practical instruction on creating world-class games that will be played again and again. View it here. A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing, by Joel Dreskin Marketing is an essential but too frequently overlooked or minimized component of the release plan for indie games. A Practical Guide to Indie Game Marketing provides you with the tools needed to build visibility and sell your indie games. With special focus on those developers with small budgets and limited staff and resources, this book is packed with tangible recommendations and techniques that you can put to use immediately. As a seasoned professional of the indie game arena, author Joel Dreskin gives you insight into practical, real-world experiences of marketing numerous successful games and also provides stories of the failures. View it here. An Architectural Approach to Level Design This is one of the first books to integrate architectural and spatial design theory with the field of level design. The book presents architectural techniques and theories for level designers to use in their own work. It connects architecture and level design in different ways that address the practical elements of how designers construct space and the experiential elements of how and why humans interact with this space. Throughout the text, readers learn skills for spatial layout, evoking emotion through gamespaces, and creating better levels through architectural theory. View it here. Learn more and download the ebook by clicking here. Did you know? GameDev.net and CRC Press also recently teamed up to bring GDNet+ Members up to a 20% discount on all CRC Press books. Learn more about this and other benefits here.
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GamerzEdge

Drawing beginner, need some targeted tutorials

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I reviewed some of the stickies in this section and the drawing resources has a few links to some sites with tutorials but I don't think any of them are a good starting point for me. 

 

I want to learn how to draw adequately so I can start doing some of my own game art. I was hoping someone could provide me with a good source for some real beginner tutorials to help define good habits when getting started. I am not going for full on photo realistic portraits, but in the end I would like to be able to perform some sketched out concepts for art in the game. 

 

Any ideas where I to start, some targeted tutorials would be very helpful.

 

Thank you!

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Prinz, thank you for the advice, I have already ordered the recommended book through Amazon and should arrive by Tuesday! Your article is amazing, so full of information, it will take a multiple reviews to let some of that sink in. 

 

I was previously familiar with the concept that a typical human proportion is about 7-8 heads in length, how do you utilize that when you are drawing? Are you constantly aware of this while you are sketching, or is something that new artists should be aware of until they are comfortable sizing up their sketches without measuring? Obviously the proportion is based on the look the artist is going for, but if one wanted to keep things proportionate, do they measure each drawing? 

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Thank you Sun! I have watched a couple artists demonstrate some of Andrew Loomis's techniques, particularly with drawing the heads proportions, and I did find it very useful. I think I have forgot them now, so maybe I should pick up a copy myself!

 

While it's not my goal to necessarily be able to draw still life (trust me that goal would be far far away anyhow) I have read that in order to draw anime, and other none proportionate styles, it is important to understand the proper physical proportions. Something about drawing anime is a form of abstraction, taking away from what would normally be there, and you cannot properly abstract from a drawing without understand what should be there to begin with. 

 

This scares me since I am a complete beginner, and my motivation is to create my own game art since I am doing a solo game project which has no artist. I support I just have to be patient and practice, and nothing I do right now has to be perfect anyway.

 

Love anime btw.

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Glad you like the article!

 

I don't really do figure drawing, but when I do I start out measuring things very carefully but after a while it becomes more and more intuitive. For really important things (like for a client rather than a sketchbook-type thing) it's pretty standard to make a few practice sketches and then be very careful in keeping things "right" by actually measuring with a ruler, etc. if necessary. But the idea is to get to the point where all the rules are just natural to you.

Your article was really awesome and well written. When I was reading it I was thinking wow just because of how complete it was. You could tell it wasnt rushed and you knew what you were talking about. Im puzzled to why I didnt know about it sooner.

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@JustAGuy Drawing a still life is generally considered much easier than drawing anime style, unless what you actually meant was life drawing or photorealism or something.  Drawing a still life just means you sit there looking at an object or arrangement of objects and draw what you see.  Drawing a still life is a typical beginner activity in drawing classes for both children and adults.

 

As far as drawing people goes (and worse, animating them), this is generally something a beginner cannot do well enough for a game.  (Well, maybe if it was a game that used stick figures; there are some pretty good indie games out there that do this.)  But between a realistic style of drawing humans and a stylized one like anime or western cartoons, there's little difference in the difficulty of drawing a convincing person.  People are something viewers are instinctively very picky about because we are used to reading meaning from details of people's facial expressions, body language, clothing/hairstyle choice, and those little details that communicate ethnicity and health.  On the other hand if you are drawing flowers you can get away with all sorts of things like putting tulip leaves on daffodils or putting trumpet lily flowers on calla lily stems or leaving the middle parts out of a flower entirely.  A lot of people have never looked that closely at a flower, and if it happens to be a fantasy game you're allowed to make up your own flowers anyway.  But even in a fantasy game the audience will object if you manage to give a character two left hands in some drawing, or if your female characters all look like they have male faces, etc.

 

That stuff about understanding realistic proportions being important as a foundation for using stylized proportions is true; there are shortcuts though, for an artist who has no interest in drawing realistic people.

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@Sun, Yeah I was talking about life drawing. I am not at the point where art is required, I am still working out the mechanics in the code, and I am just using blocks and so forth to represent the characters. I understand what you are saying and I don't expect to be able to draw quality character models by the time art is required, this is something I am doing for my own interest to see if it is something I enjoy, and if so will continue to work at it. If I give it some patience and time I think I will begin to enjoy it, I just want a way to express some of my thoughts on paper as I feel artistically stuck. I am dabbling in different mediums, writing, drawing, etc to see what appeals the most. I use to be able to draw somewhat in school but seemed to have lost a bit of that over the years. That is the frustrating part, being able to visualize something in detail but not being able to reproduce that on paper.

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