ZOMBICIDE: Undead or Alive

Hi there curious visitor!
It’s update time! I can reveal some sneak&peek of the most recent work I did for the brand new ZOMBICIDE_Western (Undead or Alive), a new board game released by CMON.
I’ve been collaborating with CMON for two years, but this project was the most challenging I faced up until now for them, even more difficult than Massive Darkness 2.

I wasn’t asked for my usual cel-shaded style, which allows me to get both quality and quantity with a reasonable investment of time.
This time, my art director asked for something more dirty, textured and “old-fashioned”, something that could match the hystorical theme better.

So, I proposed some partially painted coloring style.

I say “partially” because usually the fully painted style requires the linework to be totally invisible… but that’s a really time consuming style to apply, and the amount of material that had to be produced was absolutely massive, so we had to stay practical.

Covers, survivors, zombies, items!
I colored many covers, something around 80 characters (and many more were assigned to other colorists) and 60 + items, everything delivered within 5-6 months of production.
It was a hell of a rollecoaster, but maaan does it feel good when everything is finalized, all shined up and put on a glass shelf.

This is the reason why it’s pretty hard to keep my portfolio updated with fresh material!
CMON produces huge games with a lot of visual material, which requires a long production time… and since everyhting must be kept confidential, sometimes I can’t say anything about my work for more than a whole year.

But DAMN that’s so satisfying when you finally get to loudly boast about it!

What I absolutely adore about working for these projects is looking at the final product once it gets featured in the Kickstarter campaign, seeing all the neat and cohesive graphic applied, the hyping video trailers, painted figures and animated characters… everyhting based on the material I personally delivered (in collaboration with the pencil artist, of course). It’s just like the best magic!

Zombies are, of course, some the most enjoyable to color.
All the texturing, the gruesomeness… the most rotten and disgusting, the better!
They were also a big challenge regarding overall volumes. When you focus on so many small details, it’s hard to make everything consistent with a single light source.

This time, and it was a first, I was also asked to work on items!
The best part of the task was to embellish every single asset (even the simplest ones) with little juicy details. For instance, I love the scrapes I added on the pan, just as much as I love all the metallic highlights on the bullets.

I have to confess I love following every single step of the campaign, because I like reading backers’ comments, getting to know what people think of the art. Even though sometimes it can get rough… let’s say people can become extremely petty and demanding, but this usually reflects issue on the gameplay side, or the general design of a character… coloring issues aren’t usually spotted out.
Unluckily, I’m very aware not many people know about the existence of the of the “colorist”at all, so it’s not easy to get appreciations either.

Anyway, I get my satisfaction reading about “awesome art” (colors are a huge part of the overall visual impact of an image) and looking at how cool figurines painting gets when emulating my color palettes.
Even if it doesn’t get much recognition, I do love my job!

Once the campaign ends, I will of course create a couple whole entries in my portfolio section! I’ll show way many more characters and progresses, so stay tuned!