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I just got back from the first annual Redmond Digital Arts Festival today, and what an experience!

First up was a 9am presentation by Ben Cammarano, Art Director of the Microsoft Game Studio, who talked at length about portfolios and what yours should look like if you ever want to get a job in games. Following that, he was gracious enough to sit down with a select few of us for one-on-one reviews of our portfolios.

I definitely have work to do. He flipped through my binder pretty quickly, pausing mostly to comment on the good use of depth in my landscapes (irony!), but I was left with the feeling that my work was largely unremarkable.

Getting a critique from one of the main men in game art is something you don’t take lightly, and I know that I have things to work on. See, I know that I’ve got skills, but I’ve been having trouble focusing my creativity. Thankfully, Ben’s critique really gave me a direction to travel with my art.

That direction is to work on value and composition. And action. And more creativity. Color is on the back shelf until I can bust out of my shell and start showing art directors what I’m really capable of.

Next on the program was a digital painting class at DigiPen. I learned some new techniques with Photoshop from Peter Moehrle, one of the men behind Ice Age 2 and Lilo and Stitch. It was tres cool, and I can’t wait to put some of these new skills to work.

All-in-all, it’s been a great day (despite the fact that I’m sniffling and coughing like the walking plague), and there’s more fun tomorrow. So, I wish you all a happy evening, and leave you with this little game my wife and I played during the Vice Presidential Debate.
I added phrases at the bottom that I thought she used too often. For the record, I wish I had one of these cards for Biden too, because neither one of them really impressed me.

2 Responses

  1. Good on you sir. I’m glad to hear that you got some useful feedback. As for the debates not impressing you, what about Biden’s zinger: John McCain’s Health Care Plan is the ultimate bridge to nowhere!?!

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