In recent years I have used the computer more and more to communicate concepts to my clients. After leaving Disney I desired to find a happy marriage between my conceptual work, theme park, and theater design via 3D computer design. As computers become more powerful the potential to deliver concepts that are very close to the finished product is growing. Computers have also allowed me to work from my Oregon studio while remaining connected virtually to clients all over the world.



I have most recently started work as an Art Director at IMVU.com. I am currently responsible for not only coming up with concepts, but building, texturing, and promoting them, often all in the same day. So far this project touches ever aspect of my experience as an artist and designer... not to mention is a lot of fun!

< Here is a quick video recap of what I have been up to, brought to you via the magic of YouTube.


   
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The biggest challenge with this work has been expressing a wide variety of styles and environments, while using as few polygons as possible. I have found that this medium is very similar to designing for the theatre... low budget, but high expectations that your design will transport its audience to amazing themed places.

 

Creating "Place" As Interface

Most likely influenced by my theme park design background, I often strive to turn even computer game interfaces into an opportunity to create a "place" for activities to take place within.


I try to blur the lines between my traditional 2D and 3D work. Here I am using simple watercolors as my texture maps. I hope to establish a more illustrative look in the 3D environments.


Creating 3D Worlds

The past few years have been an adventure as I work to bridge the gap between concept and final product. Conceiving in 3D has allowed me to marry my design sense with tools that I can use to visualize an idea as close as possible to its eventual implementation.
No matter the theme, 3D concepts create a final product that communicates to multiple disciplines, and since it is 3D allows for a variety of outputs. Seldom taking longer than a more traditional concept illustration, 3D concepts can be used to create 3D renders from multiple camera angles, reference for architecture and fabrication departments, and even animated fly-through's.
3D concept art is especially effective for visualizing vignetted retail, themed, or interactive elements.


I have written two articles for Gamasutra.com on the potential of using Theme Park design principles for the creation of virtual worlds. These articles were the chief reason I was hired at There and IMVU . If you would like to read them, you can find them at:

 Environmental Storytelling Part 1:
Creating Immersive 3D Worlds Using Lessons
Learned from the Theme Park Industry*

Environmental Storytelling, Part II:
Bringing Theme Park Environment
Design Techniques to the Virtual World*

* Free Registration Required