The Bachelor of Creative Media in Games Art and Design concentrates on three main production roles : Production Artist, Concept Artist, and Games Designer. Each role has very different job requirements and the Games Art and Design major deals with all three.
Designers make the game’s levels hard enough, but not too hard, talk to consumers in focus groups and argue with programmers and artists to keep the vision coherent. Senior designers make difficult decisions about cutting features to make deadlines, and how to re-work an Xbox game being ported to iPhones, and how to prevent cheating. Rarely do they get paid to think about brand-new game ideas. Skills: communication. Game design. Creative idea development. Leadership.
Concept Artists convert designer’s vague words into concrete images. They sketch both vague ‘visionary’ concept art and detailed, “blueprint” type drawings, rapidly and consistently. Production Artists depend on these drawings to build their models in a style that matches the designer’s original vision. Skills: 80% “raw” drawing & painting skill. 20% Visual interpretation, communication.
Production Artists are the ‘worker bees’ of game art: they sit in front of 3DS Max and Photoshop all day, creating assets such as 3D models of monsters, and sword swing animations. Their job titles include: 3D modellers, animators, and “true” tech artists (writing scripts and helping modellers). Skills: software; 3D modelling; animation; 2D painting
Simon Allen – “I joined Pixar Animation Studios in March 2006 as an animator for the Academy award-winning feature ‘Ratatouille’ and went on to animate on three more Oscar winners for Pixar, Wall-E, UP and Toy Story 3. I’ve been in the industry for over 20 years and have worked on 18 feature films including ‘The Matrix: Revolutions’ and ‘Constantine’ on which I was Animation Supervisor. I have also worked on another Academy Award winning movie, ‘Happy Feet’.”
Brad Power- “My previous industry experience was as the Lead Designer at the Perth studio of AAA developer Interzone Games. I am also a member of a local independent games development company: RocketHands. My research interests include artificial intelligence and emergent game systems, and the psychology of game design and user interface design, with respect to gameplay ramifications.”
Ingrid Richardson- “I have been teaching and researching at Murdoch University for over ten years, and completed my PhD in 2004 at the University of Western Sydney. I have a broad interest in the social and cultural aspects of the ‘human-technology relation’, ranging from scientific and medical technovision, virtual and augmented reality, to interactive media, games, mobile media, urban screens, the internet and web-based communication. Over the past five years, I have also focused on the development of innovative teaching strategies and assessment criteria in the fields of interactive media, games and digital design.”
For more information on Games Art and Design at Murdoch, visit http://www.murdoch.edu.au/Courses/Games-Art-and-Design/