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Environment Sketching for Production

An 8-week course focused on creating visual themes for use in a production pipeline

Course overview Course overview

Course Overview

Sketch a variety of environments

Environment Sketching for Production focuses on creating visual themes for use in a production pipeline. Students will learn to create quick thumbnails and develop a final piece that is suited for production needs. Subjects include lighting, style, composition, and visual cues.


Course Format:   Standard
Lecture Type:   Pre-recorded
Feedback:   Individual recordings
Duration:   8 weeks
Assignment:   Deadlines each week
Q&A:   Once a week
Materials:   Photoshop (any), Wacom tablet (or equivalent)
Skills level:   Beginner to Intermediate
Prerequisites:   Fundamentals of Architecture Design and Environment Sketching

Environment design WHAT YOU’LL LEARN

What you'll learn

The more you know, the better.

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Understanding what a vis dev artist does and what they are | Understanding the production pipeline for animated films | Introduction to class with design elements, principles and how they create a proper composition
Designing compositions | Master studies of cinematography | How to stage scenes and learn new drawing techniques for story moments
Creating visual development vs. fine art/illustrative pieces | Adding character to your environments, understanding shape language, taking a realistic thumbnail and transforming it into a style
Understanding motifs between different eras and culture | Organic settings vs. man made elements and how to tie them into your story moment
Drawing stylized organic settings | Understanding perspective in natural elements | Detail vs. realistic rendering in thumbnails
Understanding light logic such as highlights, reflections, cast shadows, core shadows | Explore film studies
Setting up an appropriate mood in an environment | Choosing and staging lighting placement to compliment characters | Rendering and editing details
Tying everything together | Finalizing line drawings and doing final tone painting with digital painting techniques

Igniting your imagination

Lectures by Patrick Raines

Patrick is an Illustrator, 2D Layout and Visual Development Artist who has worked for clients such as Disney, Titmouse, Obsidian and more! He currently works at FireForge Games as a Concept Artist on an upcoming online game.


July 21st!

May 14th - July 23rd

fall TERM Registration




July 21st!

Pricing & Schedule

Even though our courses are the most affordable for the quality of education.

These Finance Options allow you to focus on your goals instead of the barriers that keep you from reaching them.

Employer Reimbursement

Animation Guild CSATTF

Payment Plan

Companies that hire our students

  • Naughty Dog
  • Luma Pictures
  • Google
  • EA Games
  • DreamWorks Animation
  • Blizzard Entertainment

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