Firaxis Artists on Building a Portfolio, Leaderhead Creation


Retired Moderator
Jul 23, 2004
Red Sox Nation
Recently, Firaxis published two new articles on its website aimed at prospective game art makers. The first guide, "How to Become a Video Game Artist", is similar to their feature for interested programmers; here, Firaxis Art Director Seth Spaulding comments on the various subcategories of video game art design, including modeling, animation, and user interfacing. He also shares ten things not to submit on a portfolio.
It’s difficult for you to pick up the necessary skills and experience for a job in the games industry by teaching yourself. The best way to prepare for a job in the industry is through a four-year art degree program. There are more and more programs at colleges and universities focused on game art, but you don’t have to have a B.A. in Game Art in order to get a job. The purpose of your education should be to establish strong fundamentals and skills.

In a second article, Brian Busatti, lead artist for CivRev, talks about the process of converting leader sketches to fully-fledged game animations. "Concept to Character" focuses on Bismarck and Isabella, as well as the challenges and decision-making involved in art creation:
With Civilization Revolution, we were going for a more stylized and informal look overall and we had a lot of fun creating the leaders. Sid really wanted to push the "weatherman effect" of having the leaders pop up in front of the game, so by keeping consistent lighting for all of them, we could include the fun interactions like having them shove the advisors and other leaders out of the way when they came on screen.
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