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Session Name:

How to Train your Technical Artist


Over the past decade the role of technical artists has gone from a rare singular person in a studio who managed art assets to large teams of people who design, create, and manage all aspects of the art production pipeline using increasingly complex tools and methodologies.

Even with the growing reliance on technical artists within the industry there is still some confusion regarding the discipline. Studios may either not utilize TAs at all or under utilize the ones they do have. People who call themselves TAs do not all have the same skill set or knowledge base. Because of these variables it is hard hire qualified TA candidates and use them to their fullest potential.

This talk will provide a brief history of the technical art discipline, how it started organically and how the role has expanded and changed as game development has become more commercialized and complex.

Then a discussion of the skills that modern technical artists should possess will occur. Topics will include programming skills, art knowledge, look development, problem solving, communication skills, and system design.

Time will be spent on demonstrating how technical art can bring value to a company by improving work flow, reducing internal support requirements, and creating a liaison group between the graphics engineers and the artists.

Lastly a discussion of how schools can add classes to their art and programming curricula to being to introduce the concept of technical art and help students create a strong foundation of TA skills will take place.

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  • GDC China 2010
  • Jeff Hanna
  • Volition, Inc
  • free content
  • Global Game Development/Outsourcing
  • Other