An ESports rig.

Many young creatives dream to be a professional concept artist. But some might not really know how a concept artist actually spends their working (and nonworking) hours. In this article, Sangnila’s Lead Concept Artist, Katherine, shares what a day in her life as a professional concept artist looks like.

9 – 10 AM

The first thing she does when she gets to work is to check on the day and week’s schedules and deadlines. She gives her team the day’s assignments and looks through the assignments they have already completed, giving feedback as necessary. Remember, you’re not a one man team! Coordination and teamwork is crucial to the success of the project.

10 – 10:15 AM

She connects with the 3D gang to deliver the assets they need for their work. Again, you can see that good communication and social skills will take you far.

(Psst, the Sangnila 3D team loves chips. If you bring a bag of chips, they’ll make your life so much easier!)

10:15 AM – 12 PM

She draws key arts and thumbnails, and designs in-game environments. This is when Kat gets really in the zone, and starts to unleash her creativity.

12 – 1 PM

Lunch break! Truffle rice bowl, yamien noodles, pasta, you name it. Our brain needs food to create, so give that muscle what it needs.

1 – 2 PM

This is the primetime for meetings, whether it is with the project manager, the game director, or even the client to give progress updates. These meetings can be scary at first, but after a while Kat has gotten the hang of it.

2 – 4:30 PM

In the afternoon, Kat will get back to her computer and draw more key arts and thumbnails, while continuing to design in-game environments. Sometimes, Kat takes a short sugar break with the team—ice cream or chocolate will give the extra sparks in those artworks.

4.30 – 5 PM

Before leaving the office, she’ll go through what ther team has accomplished that day to give them feedback as necessary. Kat also likes to back up all files and data before clocking out. Backing up files might be a boring administrative task, but if you have ever had a day or even an hour’s hard work disappear due to whatever reason (electricity failure, internet connection, etc) then you know how important this is.

As you can see from the schedule above, Kat is drawing only for about half of the working day. The other half is coordinating with her team, organizing files and data, coordinating with other teams, and meeting with external parties. Oh and, of course, sugar breaks.

What do concept artists do after work?

After Katherine’s dinner time, she sets aside time to do personal study to upgrade or expand her skill set. For example, on some days she even takes 3D animation lessons to be able to do 3D also! We love people who are constantly learning, and evolving their skills. If you stay stagnant, you are actually falling behind. So be sure to keep challenging yourself to grow.

After her personal study time, she chills out by playing games until bedtime, which is about 10 PM for Katherine. During the weekends she’ll hang out with family or friends, and do some personal drawing projects.

So that’s the life of a professional concept artist, and if this is the dream job for you, then come study with Sangnila to help you realize your aspirations!