A few months ago I stumpled upon Trent Kaniugas YouTube Channel and have seen every video – and most of them twice. A great artist and a pretty awesome human being (it seems) who shares his knowledge and philosophy with the rest of us.

Whos is Trent Kaniuga

Trent Kaniuga is a concept artist for Diablo 3, League of Legends,  World of WarCraft and many more. Furthermore he is the creator of the comics Creed and Twillight Monk. Twillight Mon it being made into a computer game.

Trent Kaniuga in 100x100px
Trent Kaniuga in 100x100px

Trent shared a great deal of tips and trick not just for drawing but also a bit of life philosophy. Here are some of the points I picked up along the way.

Back to the line drawing

A lot of the videos online by artists like Feng Zhu, Xia Taptara and Nicholas Kay there all leaning towards photo realism or a painterly expression – and it looks good, no doubt about it.

So I brainwashed myself – yup, all by myself – into believing this was the way to go, the way it should be done. I struggle with this since I’m coming from a background in comics made by hand with pencil and ink.

Gor some lines back in my work

So along comes Trent Kaniuga with his awesome painterly line drawings making the point that line drawings are still awesome and you should do it if you want. Thanks dude!

Remember the story

Making great paintings and drawings is cool in itself  by the design, composition or just the tchnic used. But in many videos Trent emphasize that drawing is simply a way for him to tell stories. And that the drawing should tell a story as well.

So I now try to keep the story in mind and not get lost on technicalities – which I often do since this is an issue at my level – when I’m workin on something. Don’t just do some dude in an armour, make the armour tell a story.

Be a team worker

This might sound corny to a lot of people but it’s still important to keep in mind. Trent Kaniugas mentions that he sees his work as a service for the team and the end user, not a unique piece of art which should never be touched again. Let you team members know you’re there to help them and the you’re in it together to create an awesome game or comics or what else your doing.

Revisit your old art

I guess we all do this, either to feel nostalgic or to shiver in horror. But going back and see where you were 3 months or a year ago hopefully shows you how far you have moved. Wanting to correct or redo old pieces just shows us we’re getting better. And we should remember that.

Some progress made from 2014-15
Some progress made from 2014-15

I’ll keep looking back in hope of seeing progress. It’s slow since I don’t have that much time for drawing but it’s there. At least bu monsters have boiles now. Nicholas Kay have  a great technic for this by the way in his video Freeky: Speed Paint Tutorial.

So what now

Now you go and check out the Trentness at YouTube, find his In Depth Tutorial at Gumroad or pick up a copy of Twillight Monk.

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