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Character Design Techniques

Traditional to Digital Process with Keith Thompson



In this lecture, Keith Thompson reveals his process for taking a zombie creature concept from a thumbnail sketch to the finished drawing. Keith demonstrates each step, from idea development and creating the initial drawing using traditional media to scanning the drawing into the computer and then applying colored glazes in Adobe Photoshop®. Keith also explains how to maintain the essential gesture and feel of the thumbnail all the way through to the final concept art. The entire traditional media to digital process is also applied to a collection of extra views of the character. Keith explains how these alternate angles and a set of orthographic rotations are designed to help the 3D modeler.

Duration: 160 minutes

Format: SD 1024x768

Keith Thompson

Concept Artist / Illustrator

Keith Thompson's unique art and visual design have become well recognized around the world.  He has regularly designed on Guillermo Del Toro's many projects for the past decade, including Pacific Rim, Crimson Peak, and At the Mountains of Madness with James Cameron. His creature design on David Bruckner's The Ritual has also received critical acclaim. Additionally, he is a multiple New York Times Bestselling Illustrator of many books, including the Leviathan Trilogy. Keith has also been extensively involved in games, designing on the first Borderlands, as well as designing the world of Warframe. His art, including originals used for feature films, has been exhibited in museums across the globe.

  • "Keith Thompson possesses the unparalleled eye of a true creator and the craftsmanship of a veteran far beyond his years. The scope of his vision pays tribute in equal parts to function and fantasy, the beautiful and the grotesque, while the myriad detail and tangible texture of his work communicates sublimely in a fashion that, in truth, exceeds imagination."

    - Matt Wilson
    Creative Director Privateer Press