GDC | Art Direction Bootcamp

Art Direction Bootcamp

GDC 2018 Content. GDC 2019 coming soon.

The Art Direction Bootcamp is a day-long event in the vein of GDC tutorials, completely dedicated to art direction and broader artistic vision. Come see the leading artistic forces of the industry share their experience and raise the most important issues of the day. Learn a ton about what really matters in art, and how to build or support a vision and make friends doing it.

There will be a wealth of concentrated art-specific information from the top minds of the industry that should be interesting not just to newbies and students, but seasoned professionals who are concerned with pressing issues of the day and industry realities. New friends that are also passionate about game art are welcome.

Art Direction Bootcamp takes place on Monday, March 19, 2018. Seating is on a first-come, first-served basis.

View all Art Direction Bootcamp sessions

Featured Sessions

All Access, GDC Conference + Summits, or GDC Summits Pass required.

Art Direction Bootcamp: " 'Windup': An Animation Feature Quality Rendering in Real-Time" & "On Cultures of Shared Creative Ownership"
Yibing Jiang (Unity Technologies)
Andrew Maximov (Naughty Dog Inc.)
'Windup': An Animation Feature Quality Rendering in Real-Time (Yibing Jiang, Unity Technologies)
In this lecture, Yibing Jiang will show how he and his team built a test scene of animation feature quality in Unity. He will go step by step with consideration to concept, color scripts, timeline, camera setup, character creation, environment building, and lighting. Rather than use methods seen in VFX, Yibing will show how Unity took methods from AAA game production that pushed the visual bar while being real-time.

On Cultures of Shared Creative Ownership (Andrew Maximov, Naughty Dog Inc.)
What if someone told you that dedicated management could be optional for creative production teams of all kinds of sizes? Can developers self organize and ship products without absolute and utter chaos destroying the production? The answer is "sometimes". It is very hard. It requires some very fundamental cultural shifts. But it has been proven to work, bringing you some of the most celebrated video game titles and earning hundreds of millions of dollars at the same time. All while encouraging every individual on the team to take a more active role in realizing their potential. Having your creative teams organized in a way that allows everyone to be most fulfilled is nothing short of a herculean effort, but come by this talk and engage in this dialogue on what you can do today to inspire shared creative ownership on your team.
Art Direction Bootcamp: Inspiring Creativity through Internal Game Jams
Peet Cooper (Riot Games)
It takes a long time to make great games. Over time, its easy for developers to lose energy and excitement for a project. Doing short game jams can reinvigorate teams, boost creativity and inspire people. In this session, Peet Cooper will go over his experiences and some invaluable lessons he has learned from doing internal game jams like Thunderdome at Riot. He will also look at some game jam resources and easy ways to get your teams involved.
Art Direction Bootcamp: A No Nonsense Approach to Designing Robot Dinosaurs
Jan-Bart Van Beek (Guerrilla Games)
In this talk, Jan-Bart van Beek, the studio art director at Guerrilla Games, will take you through the journey the studio had to take in order to design the majestic post-post-apocalyptic world of 'Horizon Zero Dawn'. As the originator of the concept, Jan-Bart is able to give unique insight into what it is like to take a small, almost silly, idea and see it slowly developed into one of the most successful new gaming franchises of the year. You will see the game, it's world, it's characters and it's iconic robot dinosaurs, developed from just a couple of sketches, through prototypes and ultimately to a fully-fledged game.
Art Direction Bootcamp: Artistry in a New Medium: 'Lone Echo' and the Magic of VR
Nathan Phail-Liff (Ready at Dawn)
VR as a medium represents a pretty large shift in both game development as well as artistic production practices. Going from AAA consoles to creating Lone Echo, now viewed as a landmark title in the new medium, required letting go of a lot of previously held beliefs, making a lot of mistakes, and ultimately leaning into the things that are so powerful and unique about VR. From achieving a high degree of player presence and immersion, gearing artistic design towards putting comfort at the forefront, and pushing the expectations of visual fidelity under daunting performance targets, Nathan will touch on a number of the challenges and lessons learned through the process, as well as what he found so exciting about the medium, from both from an artistic and creative standpoint.

Art Direction Bootcamp Organizers

Keith Self Ballard
Keith is a veteran world builder with over 15 years of experience in art production, level construction and leadership. Originally a production artist, he has contributed to a variety of titles including entries in the Deer Hunter, Myst, EverQuest, Red Faction and Saints Row franchises. As former studio art manager/director at THQ/Volition Inc., Keith oversaw development of both Saints Row and Red Faction franchise entries. Keith was an art manager at Blizzard Entertainment and in 2014, Keith joined Deep Silver Volition again as a Principal Artist. Currently he is the Environment Art Director with Agents of Mayhem being his latest shipped title.
Andrew Maximov
Naughty Dog Inc.
Andrew Maximov is a Technical Art Director at Naughty Dog. Develop Magazine's 30 Under 30, with numerous awards, publications and extensive education experience he is working with all departments to give an edge to Naughty Dog's art team and technology.

GDC Tutorials offer a full day of in-depth information and cover a range of game development disciplines on Monday and Tuesday, March 19-20, 2018. View all GDC Tutorials on Session Scheduler.

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