Woonyoung Jung

Woonyoung Jung, concspt art and illustration, Modern Witches, Athletics with Dinosaurs
Woonyoung Jung is a visual development artist with Dreamworks Animation, but most of his online presence is devoted to his personal work — in particular two delightful series.

One is “Young Witches”, in which young women in colorful — rather then dour black — witches hats are apparently on vacation or an extended road trip, accompanied by their cat familiars who occasionally photobomb the illustrations.

The other is “Athletics with Dinosaurs” in which dinosaurs, dressed appropriately, participate in athletic events with people.

Both series are rendered in a lively, colorful graphic style that has much of the charm of 2D animation drawing.

Jung has prints of some of his images available on Big Cartel.

 
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Raoul Vitale

Raoul Vitale, fantasy art, concept art, gaming illustration
Raoul Vitale is a fantasy artist, illustrator and concept artist who appears to work primarily in oil.

His illustration clients include “Magic the Gathering” art for Wizards of the Coast, and his private commissions often focus on scenes from the Lord of the Rings trilogy.

Vitale frequently works with a controlled palette, allowing the wonderful textural qualities of his work come to the fore. This is particularly effective in hie portrayal of dragons, rocky landscapes and gnarled, ancient trees (or Ents, for that matter).

He also takes on subjects from literature, such as his interpretation of “The Lady of Shalott” (above, second from bottom).

 
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Shae Shatz

Shae Shatz, concept art and illustration
Shae Shatz is an illustrator and concept artist based in Los Angeles whose clients include Columbia Pictures, Disney Feature Films, Motiga Games and Sony Computer Entertainment.

His wesbite portfolio is divided into projects and includes sketches and preliminaries as well as finished concept renderings.

I particularly admire his handling of the textures of stone and rocky landscapes, in which his approach has a nicely illustrative feel while still looking naturalistic.

Shatz teaches a course in Landscape Painting at the Concept Design Academy.

 
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Jean-Claude Mézières

Jean-Claude Mezieres, French comics artist, Valerian and Laureline
I haven’t yet seen the new Luc Besson film, Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets, but I have read a number of the French comics (bandes dessinées) on which the movie was based — Valérian and Laureline (alternately, Valerian: Spatio-Temporal Agent), created by writer Pierre Christin and artist Jean-Claude Mézières.

Mézières is an influential and highly respected French comics artist, though not well known here in the U.S. except among fans of Franco-Belgian comics.

He has worked on a number of comics and illustration projects over the course of his career, but is best known for his work on Valérian and Laureline, and as a concept designer for films like Luc Besson’s The Fifth Element (including the designs that inspired the flying taxis).

Valérian and Laureline is a long running science fiction comics series that was originally serialized in the French comics magazine Pilote. It has been tremendously influential on both comics and film.

It’s widely recognized to have been a distinct but uncredited influence on George Lucas in his designs and settings for the original Star Wars trilogy. There is an article on Core 77 that points out some of the parallels between scenes from the movies and prior comic panels from Valérian and Laureline. There is another article pointing out what Star Wars took from Valérian and Laureline on Popular Mechanics.

Mézières’s style is more light and cartoony than the styles usually associated with American super-hero and adventure comics, but it gives the stories and the characters a jaunty, breezy character, and works well with Mézières’s wildly imaginative settings.

The French Valérian and Laureline comics albums have been translated into English, and most recently are being collected into a series of volumes with three of the original French albums (what might be called “graphic novels” here) in each volume. There are three collected volumes available as of this writing.

You could start with Valerian: The Complete Collection, Volume 1 (Amazon link), and go from there to Valerian: The Complete Collection, Volume 2, or if you want to get right to the stories on which the film is most directly based (and that are the most overt space opera), start with Valerian: The Complete Collection), Volume 3. Beyond that, there are older printings of individual albums.

There is an official website for Jean-Claude Mézières, but it’s in French and does not feature as many images as one might hope. It is useful, however, for it’s listing of the Valerian albums (titled as Valerian, sptio-temporal agent).

The best resource I can find for Mézières’ art is this article from 2015 on Dark Roasted Blend.

You can also find some originals on Comic Art Fans.

If you try a Google image search for “Valerian”, it will mostly come up with promo pictures for the movie; try searching for “Valerian comics”, “Valerian and Laureline”, “Valerian et Laureline” or ‘Jean-Claude Mézières”.

 
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Atey Ghailan

Atey Ghailan, concept art and illustration, Path of Miranda
Atey Ghailan is a concept artist and illustrator living in Lidingö, Sewden and currently working with Riot Games.

The examples of work on his various web presences (also under the handle snatti/snatti89 ) are mostly of personal work, and primarily from a project called “Path of Miranda” which is the story of a young girl and her companions, a corgi and a penguin, investigating the disappearance of some robots.

His images for that project, along with some of his other images, have a pleasing visual character somewhere between digital plein air and Miyazaki-style anime backgrounds. I particularly enjoy his use of dappled sunlight in wooded scenes and patterns of light and shadow in interiors and street scenes.

 
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Zhong Biao

Zhong Biao, concsept art and illustration, China
Zhong Biao is a concept artist and illustrator based in The Prople’s Republic of China (not to be confused in Google searches with another painter, a Chinese Neo-Surrealist gallery artist whose name also resolves to Zhong Biao in English).

Zhong Biao the concept artist has very little biographical information on the web. The web presence I could find consists primarily of a Tumblr blog and a deviantArt gallery.

Zhong Biao’s digital paintings are imaginative, lively and rich with color and texture. They are best viewed in the larger versions available on the websites, and reward careful inspection with subtle details that often aren’t obvious at first glance.

 
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