dungeon process post-mortem

i've been getting a lot of questions about process lately, so i thought i'd throw this up to show the twists and turn i typically go through. 
this is pretty old, from a dungeon crawler challenge i did about 2 yrs ago! it's got a lot of problems with it narrative-wise and structure-wise, but they were obvious in hind sight so it was a huge learning experience.

the concept was this warrior lost in the depths of a cold, wet, claustrophobic dungeon. i wanted to stay fairly close to monochromatic to emphasis the singular light source.

1- i did a number of thumbnail compositions and this is the one i liked most
2- filled it with some basic values and color to see if it would work, thought it did...
3- drew out a detailed pass to give myself an idea of where this was going
4- referring to the values of step 2, tried to workout basic lighting and planar surfaces
5- getting into the detail rendering i realized my composition had a lot of abstracted graphic shapes that didn't describe the spatial relationships at all. so i redesigned the whole corridor thing into an corner archway 
6- balancing, trying to get a dynamic range of lights and darks, trying to put contrast in the right places


rooftop lunchtime


i've realized i need to focus on texture description with my mark making more.


more inks

this is just me being inspired by the likes of Jake Parker and Matt Barrett among others who have this amazing tech sketch style, where they doodle these iterative drawings of vehicles and architecture, and its sooo freakin' awesome, and i have no hope ever being able to come close...   sigh*



I got a lot of good feedback on my value mock-up, so I tried to stick with those strengths.