Concept Art Lab

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You will collaborate with Art Director Rustam Hasanov with experience from major animated movies to take a story of your film or game project and create the concept art for it – design and create the style and atmosphere of the environment, design props and backgrounds, the style of render and FX of your movie or game.​

You will take a chunk of your story, or maybe just one sequence, and on a smaller scale, touch upon all the same things they would do to create the design packages necessary for production: storyboards, prop designs, character/costume designs, environment designs, FX design, shot plans (if it’s for a film), and a final story-beat illustration (or two…depending on complexity and skill level of the participant).

Rustam Hasanov

Disney, DreamWorks, HBO
Full Bio


Develop 4-5 images based on the concept prompts brought to the lab. Provide supplemental concept art to the images that fully explain the idea. Create at least one pitch-ready portfolio image.

How it works

You will focus on developing strong visuals based on the narrative concept you bring to the lab. Emphasis will be on how to establish world building design elements that reinforce storytelling.

In the first week, you will focus on designing character beat moments that also show key environments within your narrative. You will create some supplemental material that clearly shows your process and design choices. Everything from style and character design, to props, graphics, staging, composition, lighting, and color will be discussed.

The focus during the second week will be on using one of the images to create a more refined illustrated piece. At the end of the two weeks, you should have everything you need to finish an impressive pitch presentation of the project on your own.

Throughout all of this, you will discuss how designs will affect budgets and schedules, and how your designs will be used by other departments down the line in production.

At the end of the lab, you will have several portfolio pieces showing your understanding of how to break down a portion of a film or game, and design all the elements necessary to be able to move into production. The preference is to structure the experience as an overview, where you get to experience designing all aspects of production (props, sets, environments, characters, FX, etc.)

Lesson plan


  • Day 1:
    Introduction, approach to designing narrative. Discuss the concepts brought to class individually. Decide on key beat moments to develop.
  • Day 2:
    • Character/costume Design lecture/demo. Research.
    • Develop a character key beat moment.
  • Day 3: Composition. Characters in action in a set. Research. Develop an action moment.
  • Day 4:
    • Designing and environment, Lighting and color. Research.
    • Develop an environment reveal moment.
  • Day 5:
    • Characters in an environment.
    • Design characters interacting with an environment close up set.


  • Day1: Designing composition and layout.
  • Day 2: Establishing lighting. Shadow shapes and values.
  • Day 3: Understanding color and light sources.
  • Day 4: Creating graphics elements and texture.
  • Day 5: Final critique and refinement.


Lab includes

  • Concept art lectures by an accomplished professional
  • Professional mentoring and consulting of your project – film or game
  • Team collaboration with the mentor
  • Taking both Story and Concept Art Labs as a team project would qualify to get feedback from the panel of experts (see Story Lab details)

Target group

Participants should have drawing skills already at an intermediate level and bring their own projects to the lab to boost both their skills, workflows and their projects at the same time.


In order to be eligible for the lab, you need to submit your project idea as a synopsis or character profiles and or designs no more than 500 words max. along with your registration. Participants bring their own materials, computers with Photoshop and projects to work on

Selection criteria

  • Portfolio – expertise and experience in the field
  • Priority given to animators and artists
  • Motivational letter
    Emphasis on career motivation and vision
  • Own project
    Participants’ involvement is conditional on their having a project of their own
  • Own creative team
    Teams of at least two or more will receive priority
  • Participation in both Story & Art workshops
13. - 24. 7. 2020
10 days
/ 10 projects
at least intermediate drawing skills
Litomyšl, Czech Republic