Category: Chit and Chat of the Day

More Work in Progress Shots

So I just realized, although I have been pretty busy with freelancing work, I am barely posting the stuff I am doing lately. I wonder why? well to be honest, maybe it is not crazy exciting work? Or I do not feel like entitled to show? or maybe it is not good enough to show? But I would like to change this. I have a website that I am pretty proud of. And I would like to use the Sketchbook Book to show exactly that. Work in Progress shots that are simply ordinary and simple work. Does not have to be mona lisa. But I would still like to show that I am active and doing a bunch of stuff.

Projects I have been working for Plattar: make a Product showcase for an Olive Oil with a cooking recipe animation in Augmented Reality, and an Engineering company doing some animated infographics.
I have also been working for Phoria, making a before/after scenario for a gallery in construction in Abbotsford Convent.

I converted scan dense complicated data into Low poly to use for Mobile and then created a variation on what it would look life after it has been repaired and use for functions and Galleries.

In the meantime I have also been making a world map view of the convent to complement with the Laundry, an art style is still in need to be set for the map view.

I might show some work in progress shots for the other projects I have worked for. Keep tuned!

Published on: 18 April 2018
Posted by: Paco Casares

The Vanishing of Ethan Carter

Note: Before reading too much into this, perhaps you should play the game first? The less you know about the game, the bigger the impact will be. Do your self a favor, and play this game. You shall not be disappointed.

Ethan Carter uses the rail as hierarchy to drive the player.

Last weekend I had the privilege to discover The Vanishing of Ethan Carter. I have been very busy recently, and now that I finished a couple of projects, I have some time to wind down and relax. A couple of friends have recommended me this game for some time, and I decided to get it on special on Steam.

And from minute one. I was mind blown. There are a lot of things made me think why this game is so special. It is not only on how realistic the environment is, but the gestalt, the combination of many of its elements.


Published on: 19 February 2015
Posted by: Paco Casares

Character and Creature Designer Tips

Today I came across to an artist that wanted to get some feedback on what to do next in order to get a job in the industry, while I am not a Character Designer, or a concept artist, I still had some views, and I have spent a little bit of time to formulate a constructed email. Hours later, I thought that this kind of feedback could be used by other people.

Before I give this feedback away, i’d like to point out that every person is different and you should be flexible on doing on what works or does not work for you.
So before we move forward, id like to share this link.
This guy is really good at explaining the difference on being an illustrator to a designer.
So, things to consider when being an emerging artist:
  • What came first, the egg or the chicken? In this case scenario how ever, its the portfolio and the website. A great portfolio might work very well as a hard copy brochure or a PDF, but nothing works better than giving a link (preferably just your name, or a incredibly short and/or easy name to remember) to show your work. So you should look for options on working on your website. But I do not think that you should necessarily work in just one, or the other. But having a basic, simple, minimalist, and straight to the point website works the best. Does not matter how ugly is your website if you have an amazing portfolio to show. You can always make your website better, but your website is simply and merely a tool to show your work and a frame of your work.
    I find this a very good example. lazaruz
  • Your portfolio should sell well what was the main objective/brief of the drawing. What are you trying to sell? what are you communicating? what was the purpose of your drawing? Who is the creature/character? and what the history and story behind it? But most importantly: What makes great character design great? A thoughtful process and a wow factor. When you create a character/creature. Ask your self as many questions as you can continually on what makes that character the character and its hierarchy to follow. Its easy to stop to think what or who are you drawing, and just texture, color and paint away. But sometimes you have to pause, look back, and ask your self the questions of what makes it.
    I found this pinterest board, and its stuff its delicious: Comparing the works in between can be a good example.
  • Presentation is the last key point on showcasing your work, is your work good enough to show? Avoid your art to be daft and sketchy qualities. (unless you indicate well that its a WIP or sketch) try to make sure that the brush strokes are not obviously seen unless its the nature of your art piece. Be careful and be sure to deliver the last 5% of your work. Also, framing, angle and use of white space is important. If you are doing to be a character designer, you have to show graphic design qualities that are shown in your work. For the nature of design, its important that the whole body is displayed, preferably in front, back and 3/4. If you have a design that might display different color and/or variations, that differs. In other case scenarios you might show the subject in different lighting conditions. Some characters could show different stages such as damage, age, for different angles of the different parts to clearly show better its intention from the design.
  • Last, some characters work really well on having a white background, but also try mid range greys. The reason behind this, its because its much easier to distinguish the different values. Also, the more research, the better. Do not be content with keep working on the first iteration, if anything, work on creating a lot of concepts, silhouettes and forms before picking one. And never be attached on anything you do, because changes are, when you are working, your boss/supervisor might think your design is amazing or great, but the design might not work for its purpose, and then it might be have to be done all over again.
  • Network. Find how you can meet people that are in the same industry and have the same interests. Ask around and see who you can meet. And learn to work in production environments. Time your self how long it is taking you to do the different designs and think how long can you take to do the different areas.
So, a summary:
1, make a website, do not worry on how good/bad it is, but on having your best work on site
2, before on starting new pieces or works, think well or ask someone to give you a brief for practice
3, presentation, framing, last qualities, placing your work in a good frame with the cherry on the top
4, detachment to your work and experimentation
What I would recommend for new aspiring artists or designers to do to build a new portfolio, its to focus on a project where several animals/creatures/people might be in an set environment. Does not mind if its a fantasy, sci fi or earthly place. But do several designs in the same universe to give a chance for the viewer to be immersed in a world where its all plausible. Before you start drawing of course, spend good thoughtful time on things as mood, setting, color, feel, style, etc.

To do this, make a word/google doc that explains the different qualities of the story/place in 1 to 2 pages. You can share this with a friend for feedback.

Even better, how about coming up with a well constructed character template?
This might be a little bit too in depth, but you get the idea!
Published on: 27 December 2014
Posted by: Paco Casares

A celebration to a lovely 2014

I must say that the last past months has passed very fast, and I have not updated the website with anything juicy or interesting for a while, so id like to apologize and explain why:

  • I have been working super, and incredibly hard, all jobs has been intense, but with amazing perks that enhanced learning and productivity skills, all projects with great and amazing opportunities that enabled me to learn to be faster and accurate.
  • Most, if not all of the work I have been doing, is all Non disclosure Agreed. So I even do I have done some exciting work, I can’t show until a later future! There is a project that I would like to show rather soon with some permission as it finalized back in the second week of September.

At my time off I have been doing my own teaching with Unreal 4 and PBR with unity and marmoset sky box. It has been all very exciting stuff, but at the same time, its nothing to really show other than simply understanding what it is all about. Perhaps I could write a tutorial about it?

Lately I have been also a bit involved with an app on my phone. Id like to share a new button on my website, a button to my Pinterest account. I shall create it, bind it and share it on my website for everyone to share and view. I must say its an amazing tool to quickly put together visual information to a tutorial, environment, research or idea, while at the same time be organized to what ever you are looking for, can be there.

Some of my boards include topology tips, anatomy references, texturing techniques and resources as ps brushes and textures.

I have been using Pinterest for a very little time, but when ever I shall find an interesting article that can be shared, I shall share it here.

A sample of boards at my account

A sample of boards at my account, it may be limited at the moment, but I am looking forward to keep adding


I am going to have a few days off in the next 10 days or so (thank god its xmas) because I am pretty itchy to make some thoughtful art to show.

As I mentioned earlier, I am very interested in PRB, and I’d like to explore it while using Unreal 4, so in the next few days id like to show some progress shots of a personal project that I am doing of an environment. Its an illustrated piece by an Australian artist, but recreated in Unreal 4. Currently I have only done some blocking and have put some ideas together, so its too soon to show anything. But its certainly in my interest to show a demo reel about this environment with some WIP shots. I have made sure that the piece is very minimal with a low list of assets. So should be done right away.

To give away a little a little treat, id l couple of works I have done in the past weeks for a very old project that I worked back in 2007. I thought the original art was not up to my new standards. So I have re imagined them and remade them. Here I present you Orpy and Lyde. A couple of creatures for Glow.

Before I do however, id like to wish you all a lovely merry Xmas and a fantastic new year!

A flaming sea horse

A flaming sea horse

A hermit crab

A hermit crab



Published on: 21 December 2014
Posted by: Paco Casares

Lots of work and not enough play.

In the past weeks, I have been very busy from finishing the last assignments of university in the last semester of my course. Saving up to buy some new equipment and software to keep practising digital sculpting. And working with the team to make new areas and dungeons for God of Blunder.

What are my goals and my plans for the next few months? I do not know, I only know this however: I have a lot to do, and a time limit that I’d like to have it in reach and done. Currently I am working as a  waiter to save money to be able to afford to go on a small trip to Spain, upgrade hardware for my PC (32 or 64 gigs of Ram, a SS hard-drive would rock) and if things work well, and last but not least buy a Cintiq, as by many I have been told it increases productivity by a bunch.

Financial Goals aside, my Portfolio aim is to produce (and with this prove) move environmental work. I would like to upload sketches, ideas and drawings for the next game environments. I may produce 1 Interior cartoony fantasy  highly inspired by the game I am doing the background art for (God of Blunder) and another game environment, exterior, with realistic rocks, trees and the short, inspired by the university project assignment I was doing for Chad Chatterton. I kept the project away from the website because I wanted to give it a polish. I may however, instead of working on the project, it may end up being easier to pick a new exterior topic and smaller in scale to focus on just one image to replicate as a 3d environment.

Also, in the next months I have to work with the team Brontide to make more backgrounds for the Touch Point and Click Adventure Game for the Ipad: God of Blunder.
I am uploading this post to show that I am still around and I have great plans to upload fresh content when things start to kick! I may upload sketches and ideas for the Brontide Logo and concept art ideas from GoB.

Published on: 19 November 2012
Posted by: Paco Casares

The Hello World had to die

With the coming years I have created so many bad websites. It all started with when I was a young teenager, and all I wanted to do is make a website that flashes, and makes flare effects and zooming effects just like 2advance websites do. And I did just that. Websites with no real substance and flair. It took me to a great path however. With the passing years I kept on insisting into giving flash to my works, but in order to give good light to my effort the flash lights had to stop and twinkle, it was about making stars shine with the work I do. And so far yet, to reach to the stars it takes way more than just that.

Satelites Contact

For the real substance, flash is not enough, sometimes you need twinkles like stars, and sometimes that its not even enough.

I have attempted many times in creating a portfolio website to show my works, and I kept on failing because I always forgot the most important goal, to show my works and portfolio pieces. Instead I just kept making websites that are heavy, cluttered, flashy and unimportant.

This might be website I actually need to cater, a website that is simple, easy to navigate and straight to the point. To show my thoughts in writing and my progress with steps and studies. This is my first post and my first attempt in making a website that has thought carried within. A post to kill the “Hello World!” that wordpress has when you install it. In the next few days I am going to introduce some pages like my CV and About (thanks to Kane, my friend who corrected the bad English in it)


Kroative, my last portfolio website before, was a website that wrongly focused into being more of a website to show my coding skills than a portfolio website to show my works

With the time I will introduce the work I have been doing lately, mostly 2D and 3D works I have done at university and outside of uni. I want to focus on preparing good portfolio pieces and interesting works. Some will be based from university assignments, others from work I have been doing around, and lastly personal works id like to show.
My biggest goal in this semester break (last semester break from my university course) is to have a good Blog going on, and kick-start and post my work to show to everyone.

Anyway, you really dint have to read this as this is just a filler, and a way of saying that its time start to fill up my Blog with important and thoughtful material 🙂
Over and Out!
Note: I know my English is bad, but I will be sure to go over everything I write, and learn to write better English as I go along while writing my blog.

Published on: 1 June 2012
Posted by: Paco Casares