Hi! My name is Ellen Imlah, though I’m mostly known as Red. I come from Guildford which has quite a few big game studios, like Lionhead and Media Molecule, which made Little Big Planet, and a few little ones too. The reason I chose Game Art Design is because I love gaming, whether it’s “casual” or “hardcore” games, and I love making art, and combining two of my favourite things is something I find really exciting. Originally I started off with an interest in animation, but I found myself more and more interested in the process of making games and the hard work behind the final product. I was pretty excited to find a Game Art course, because I thought I would have to take Illustration and try to break my way in from there.
This year, I’d love gain at least a basic grasp of 3DS Max, and be able to make good models. Right now it’s pretty intimidating because I’ve never touched 3D software before, but I’m going to improve my skills there, as well as improving my landscape drawing, and digital painting. All I want to do in the next three years is improve. I want to work hard and put the hours in and be able to look back and feel proud of my work, and feel like I’ve achieved something. In the future I want to have professional level skills and get into the industry; I don’t care about fame or glory or being well known, as long as I can help make games and contribute whatever I can, and maybe even occasionally make art for myself (also, getting paid) I’d be happy, even I’m virtually a nobody working at a company nobody has ever heard of.
Apart from games, I love reading, and will tear through books pretty quickly, and like everyone else, I really enjoy watching movies, my favourites being stuff by Studio Ghibli and Guillermo Del Toro. As a Game Art student, I love looking at the art behind the game, as well as the art of Pixar and Ghibli films. I come from a pretty traditional 2D art background, so I’m mostly into expressionist and fauve artists, as well as more modern game artists.
I guess right now, my dream job would be doing more 2D art, although I don’t want to restrict myself, as over the next three years I’ll improve a lot in 3D modelling and might even grow to prefer doing 3D. My dream job would be helping to make games for people who don’t tend to feel very welcome in current gaming culture (e.g. anyone who isn’t a white straight dude), but I’ll take pretty much anything I’m given.
To work in Concept art, or 3D Modelling and Texture Art, according to job vacancies, I would have to be getting my skills up to professional level in traditional art as well as modelling and Photoshop. I need to be quick and precise with my work, and have a very good grasp of drawing and modelling pretty much everything and being able to handle composition and colour. Not only is it important to know the basics, but being able to replicate different styles (say, for the next Spongebob Squarepants game) is really important. Right now I know I am nowhere near the level I need to be and I need to work really hard over the next few years to improve on all fronts, and though I think I’ve got a pretty good grasp of life drawing, though there’s always room for improvement. I know that the next few years are going to be a hard slog, and there’s going to be a lot of crap that I don’t enjoy, but I’m ready to really apply myself and work as hard as I can.