Paint over a scene from Spirited Away to simulate overcast lighting
What I didn't realize was understanding the light and color theory for film is simply not enough, you actually have to be able to execute the idea into concept painting. The concept paintings have to have the accurate sense of lighting as well as cinematically pleasing visual, and it has to support the emotional arc of the story. The painters' understanding of lighting has to be so accurate that the 3D lighters should be able to simulate the exact lighting using the 3D software based on the concept painting.
This might be a real high standard for concept artists in films, and could be geared towards specific concept art directors at certain places, but this is definitely the exact reason why I feel utterly lucky to live in this area. I get to be exposed to these kinds of mastery and get the chance to learn the craft.
The workshop was very competitive to get in. The only reason I was accepted was because Dice saw the potential to follow the curriculum from my traditional Atelier style figure drawings, and a mutual friend told him that my work ethic is great and I WILL WORK VERY HARD to meet the standard. (This is true, people. It's very true)
I have a little bit of oil painting experience from school eight years ago only from observation, never conceptual, and I had no experience in digital painting. On top of that, because I had a very old dying laptop, I got a new desktop (Mac), and a portable painting device (Cintiq Companion, Windows8), which meant I had to set up the new machines and learn the new OSs, while juggling between Mac OS(desktop), Windows XP (laptop), 7 (work) and 8(cintiq) all at the same time, while problem solving all sorts of issues, and well, learning how to paint in Photoshop and learning how to paint BETTER in general.
The painting ninjas got out of the class with beautiful and breath taking color script of Where the Wile Things Are. I focused on color roughs, observational paintings and master copies. In the end, I found my painting skill improved dramatically, and I experienced the change in mind and brain in terms of painting impression instead of painting information. That was huge. The amount of learning I've got in that short amount of time was unbelievable, and even though I know there are so much more to go, I am forever grateful for the opportunity that I've got. I now have to keep the journey going, and slowly herd my effort and result toward my final dream goal: Film Making. I don't know how yet, but I will figure it out....eventually.
What a life and how much I'm in love with it. This gives me an endless happiness and joy as I improve as much as I want to, and as much as I work for it.