View Full Version : Portfolio– Sean Smith, Character Artist
11-29-2008, 12:06 PM
I rarely have time to post or get on the interweb too much, but I wanted to get some feedback from all of you guys on my portfolio. I just updated with a couple of new finished pieces and changed the color scheme and navigation around so there are less clicks and all of that mess. I plan on re-applying to some jobs at the beginning of the year so hopefully the 3rd time around is a charm. Feedback is appreciated whether its good or bad....just dish it to me ;-)
You've got some decent character stuff up on there, but your website is letting you down a bit right now.
All of your thumbnail images are HUGE resolution and scaled down in HTML, so they look all pixellated and not very nice. You'd be much better off just cropping an interesting area of the image and using that as a thumbnail, or just re-scaling the whole image in Photoshop and saving that as a thumbnail version. Would make your thumbnails look a whole lot more crisp and clear.
Also the way every thumbnail image gets reduced in size by about 2% every time I mouse over them is a bit annoying, I'd suggest leaving a border by default and just changing the border colour (say from black to white) on mouse over - this will stop your images flickering between slightly different sizes, again it's something that will make your site feel a bit more "pro".
I'd also probably make your name in the header a bit more obvious, right now it's easy to miss so if I didn't know who you were when I clicked on the site, I'd be none the wiser afterwards. I'd also recommend just reducing the size of the header too, the giant "Think Right" logo is just basically dead space right now, your character work should be the feature of the site so it should have pride of place, not this big header taking up half the page at 1280x1024.
So yeah, with a bit of tweaking this site could be much more slick and professional looking, I don't think it will take much effort so it's definitely worth it.
11-29-2008, 01:30 PM
Cropping interesting areas sucks. Scale down the whole image, and have the whole thing visible for a thumbnail. It's a gallery, not a puzzle. Also note that the full sized images aren't much to look at either. They are highly compressed and full of artifacts.
I really like that Savage Dragon model.
11-29-2008, 01:33 PM
Although thats more of a personal preference!
11-29-2008, 01:53 PM
Apart from that the header takes 1/3 here with 1280*1024 and almost 1/2 with 1024*768. In each case one needs to scroll down to see what matters.
You published your email adress within html,- that means that within the next hours and days you will get flooded with spam because bots crawl the net regulary for such mistakes. Better place the email adress in a image if you care about spam.
I like as well some of your characters- but its a little bit dense the selection. Usually modeling characters requires very good skills in modeling, shape, art... in general- creating humans is the hardest discipline of them all because its easier to spot mistakes for any human.
That being said I miss more general pieces like objects, environments ect.,- having only a few characters instead can imo. be a sign of taking to big steps without propper mastering the basics - maybe I am reading to much into it but the portfolio could use some more selection of related directions.
Cropping interesting areas sucks. Scale down the whole image, and have the whole thing visible for a thumbnail. It's a gallery, not a puzzle.
So are you saying that Caroline Delen (http://www.carolinedelen.com), Peter Boehme (http://www.peterboehme.com/gameart.php), Vitaliy Naymushin (http://www.t3h-v.com/portfolio.html) and Darren Pattenden (http://www.daz-art.com/3d_hi.htm) all have thumbnail galleries which "suck" ?
Each of those galleries are from long-time game industry character art pros, three of whom are very successful freelancers. I wouldn't be so quick to turn down a format which clearly works.
Cropping and scaling down an area of interest often leads to a clearer, more interesting image which people are more likely to click on. It can also lead to a more unified thumbnail page, since you can make sure everything is a consistent size and shape, which is easier to browse.
I'm not saying that it's something everyone should do, but artists often do it for a reason, and just saying "don't do that, it sucks, do this instead" is not constructive or helpful. Some sort of qualifying statement (and evidence, if possible) is always useful - as I have shown here, I hope.
11-29-2008, 02:06 PM
Thanks for the feedback everyone...I appreciate yall taking the time to check it out. I'm still fairly new to the web-design scene so I apologize if some things seem annoying. I went with the flash navigation b/c it was easy and effective to create...I never have issues with peoples sites that use this so didnt think it was that big of a deal. I'm still adding content to my site so I definitely intend on updating with better/newer work....I just didnt want to clog it up with "filler" content just for the sake of putting shit on my site.
I'll make some of those changes you guys mentioned and thanks again to everyone's input :-)
11-29-2008, 02:53 PM
What? What they did was fine.
I thought you were referring to when people crop out the window on a building in something that is a cityscape, and you have no idea what you are going to see when the image loads, or a closeup of someone's knuckle on an image that is a full body render.
What those guys did was cut the thumbnail down, but still gave a very accurate representation of the full sized image.
(and cool! From Russia With Love. I really like that game!)
02-28-2009, 03:20 PM
Finally got the chance to do some additional work to my site. The more I looked at it, the more I hated it so I completely over-hauled it. I'll probably hate this layout/design soon too...haha. I went with the basic images on the front page, killed the ginormous header, less clicks, created completed projects their own .html pages...gave visitors the option of clicking on those images to enlarge if they wanted a closer look. Also, went with green and black...kinda grew on me here lately. Anyway, feedback is much appreciated :)
Check out your site...I think the header at the top is still too big and I'm looking at it your site on a 17" monitor as it is. I'd like to see the two bottom characters that you have as soon I open up the page so maybe put 5 characters in one row to make them all fit in that same area. Doing that and trimming the header down by about 35% or more, should help tidy it up more.
Another thing are the icons you have at the top. People might wonder what they are, although I kind of had an idea what each did so maybe if you could write out in font what each does, or just having the font would be fine so we would know what each option contains. I know what you're trying to go for with the icons, but it won't bode well with too many people.
All in all, it's coming along, just tinker with some of the things I mentioned and it should be fine. I think overall, people just want to see the art right there and be able to only click once on something and see your render(s). People hate navigating through multiple pages so I think that's one area you've got down already.
The two first thumbnails open in the current tab, the others open in new tabs. Not a big deal, but easy to fix.
02-28-2009, 07:32 PM
Thanks for the feedback yall :)
G3L, good call on all those things you pointed out. Guess those icons arent THAT universal so I added some text underneath. I made the header smaller but if it still appears large, let me know. I suck at headers for some reason...haha. Thanks again man
BuCC - thanks man. I actually did that intentionally to condense the site since those completed projects have 3-4 images each. Making a pop-up for all of them would just add too much clutter...so making them their own html page was the easiest alternative.
I'm trying to get that pdf resume to open in another browser window, but for some reason it wont work when I publish the site. Testing it out within dreamweaver, it works fine. If anybody knows a fix for that, let me know :)
02-28-2009, 11:53 PM
The word logo is very huge and distracting,- it was even hard for me to guess at first propably because I haven`t used word in 10 years. Maybe have a xtra text layed over the symbols instead of the HTML text (which doesnt look like it belongs to them).
personally I like papaSmurf.jpg the most, the others are either uncomplete or odd designwise. I also think that as a character artist you could add more texture work as modling is only half the job - still you have only a few texturized characters on the page.
03-01-2009, 08:06 AM
Hey Render...thanks for taking a look at it again :)
And I agree, I do need more content. I'll work on those character designs too as ya mentioned ;)
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