PK 096: How to Become a Fantasy Concept Artist With Gateway Creator, Sean Murray

PK 096: How to Become a Fantasy Concept Artist With Gateway Creator, Sean Murray 2 pk 096 how to become a fantasy concept artist pencilkings
Ever wondered how to become a fantasy concept artist? City of Gateway creator Sean Murray has stacks of useful advice in this podcast interview

Subscribe to the Pencil Kings Podcast: | iTunes | Stitcher

“If making art seems like a chore, then you’re doing something wrong.

~ Sean Murray


Ever wanted to know how to become a fantasy concept artist?

Sean Murray has been creating his own fantasy worlds for many years.

Along the way, he’s collaborated with many other artists and creatives, including Pacific Rim and Hellboy director, Guillermo del Toro, who said: “He is destined to be one of the great image makers and storytellers in our field.”

So what inspires Sean to come up with incredible fantasy worlds such as The Great City of Gateway?

And how can you get all those amazing ideas out of your head and onto the page?

The answers are all in this week’s podcast…

The cover to Gateway: The Book of Wizards by Sean Murray

How to Become a Fantasy Concept Artist – Sean Murray’s Journey

Sean started his career as a concept artist in the video game industry, but he’s since moved into film and television work with Guillermo del Toro and Travis Beacham, writer of Pacific Rim and mysterious new fairy tale, The Curiosity.

These days though, his main focus is on creating art for his own Kickstarter-funded fantasy role-playing concept, The Great City of Gateway.

It’s a project Sean first started thinking about 20 years ago. He grew up loving Tolkien and Dungeons and Dragons, and became fascinated by the idea of creating a fantasy world that was unlike any other.

So he started sketching and experimenting with different characters, writing movie scripts, and juggling various ideas  around.

Then, in 2012, he decided to use the newly-launched Kickstarter campaign to see if there was a demand for his work.

He says: “I thought that maybe this was a good way to put my ideas out there and see if people were even interested in what I was doing.

“If people are into it and it’s successful, then I know I have something to work towards. It would allow me to get over all that self-doubt.”

Through creating The Great City of Gateway and other projects, Sean has picked up some incredible insights which you can use to help bring your own creative projects to life.

Here are some of the questions we asked Sean Murray in this week’s podcast:

  1. Where do your ideas come from?
  2. How do you go about creating a fantasy world?
  3. What’s the best way to start your own creative  project?
  4. What kind of fantasy or concept art should you be making?
  5. Is there a kind of process you should follow?
  6. Who should you approach to give you advice on your portfolio?

You’ll find the answers to these and many more questions in this week’s podcast.

So, if you’ve ever wondered how to become a fantasy concept artist, we hope this podcast will help you bring your ideas to life.

And, if you enjoyed this podcast, you might also like:

PK095: Corey Pelton on How to get Hired in the Video Game Industry

PK087: How David Luong Became a Cinematic VFX artist

PK003: Kan Muftic on Becoming a World Class Concept Artist

People on this Episode:

Links From This Episode:

Listening options:

Subscribe via iTunes.
Listen on Stitcher Radio.
Android users can grab our RSS feed here.
Right-click and “save file as” for direct download.

Thanks for listening to our show! We’ll be back next Wednesday morning 8AM EST.



PS, there is also Pencil Kings content on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest.