Shaddy Safadi

Concept Studio

The Art of Uncharted 2: Among Thieves - Book Available Now from Ballistic Publishing Shaddy Safadi Concept Studio: Now Hiring

Welcome to Shaddy Concept Art

Available for varied styles of character and environment concept art, as well as 3D blockmeshing, high-level Art Direction and help in defining the visual style of your project! Contact for availability and rates.

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Homework Week-7 Fall-2012

Finish you painting from Vasquez Rocks and include a character or group of characters or element that would be found in the movie Looper. Go see the movie but you haven’t or don’t plan to watch the trailer and notice that what I like is the “near future” quality of the movie, the things you have to play with are near future technology, hover bikes and old beat up hover tech, telekinesis and levitating objects as well as a semi run down farm and city. Obviously our shot is in nature and I want you to keep it classy, no giant robots fighting, but a giant run down realistic robot walking with a limp, maybe! like I said “MID-ACTION” in an image is cheezy, the moment right before or right after the action is classy.

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Homework Week-6 Fall-2012

Pick a spot in nature that stays away from “stick’y” tree branches and focusing on big shapes that can be modeled nicely.

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Homework Week-5 Fall-2012

Finish you beach painting and send me your progress as I want to see the strength of your black and white composition before you move on! shoot me an email but don’t email the image, PUT IT IN WEEK 5 FOLDER IN THE DROPBOX. We didn’t get to crit but last week everybody did a decent job but suffered from similar things.

1. Weak ass tree shape styling (except Jason:)

2. Not understanding the visual essence of a thing before painting it.


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Homework Week-4 Fall-2012

Another Painting from life, at least 2 hours in the field, and 6-8 hours at home adding polish. Focus on big simple shapes, things that can be easily modeled and stay way from architecture, and very “stick’y” trees. Attached is the new brush set page to help you identify the brushes we’ll be using for the rest of the class. Take the time to memorize the names, as without names, we have no way to identify critique and discuss a critical part of this artform.

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Homework Week-3 Fall-2012

Finish the Painting we started out in the creek. Focus on deciding which textures and edges you want to emphasize. Final in the dropbox with the photo in hi rez and the painting you are trying to copy the style of.

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Homework Week-2 Fall-2012

1. Digital Life Painting started from life and finished at home. 2-3 hours in the field and 4-6 hours at home loving on the textures and edges. It doesn’t have to be TIGHT, just carefully beautifully done. Attention to textures and edges and most importantly depicting the essence of the thing you are painting. remember you have some leeway with the arrangement but keep it true to the lighting of what’s in front of you. Also pick a clear simple composition with good depth and contrast. you ARE NOT PAINTING THIS ATTACHED PHOTO, I’m just adding it as an example of the style of composition I want to see. Don’t forget to pick one of the 4 artists in the Dropbox folder “4-artist-ref” and put their image in your file and mimic that style. REALLY try to capture what they do and you will get better 100 times faster. Make sure your final is named your name/week and include ALL 3 IMAGES, the painting, photo, and painting you copied. Put Homework in the new DB folder I made: Week-2-Homework.

2. Tie up loose ends! Very impressive first showing of boxes and following instructions for almost all of you! NICE WORK! but for the handful of you that had snafus’, I want to see a snap of your remade box BEFORE class next week, no shipping excuses for ANYTHING next week, I want it all there and don’t forget, I want it ALL ON YOUR BACK! that means no dangly bits or carrying stuff in your hands. We will be traversing areas that may require your hands so everything should be tightly strapped to your back. SORT IT OUT:)

3. SEND ME COMPS if you want to check in on your composition before you start detailing, but don’t email anything to me, just toss it in the dropbox named your name in the week-2 folder and tell me when it’s UPLOADED. please don’t ever email me to look at something that is still uploading because I will be annoyed that I stopped in the middle of my day to check your work only to not find it:) big hugs!

Keep up the good work yaul!

DO NOT PAINT THIS PHOTO!! It’s just a good example of the simple composition I want to see.

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Sella Pass Image Week-1 Fall 2012

Do a painting of this image, don’t trace or color pick.

1. Start with flat black white and grey and get proportions and placement exactly right before you add color

2. Color by adding vibrant shadow colors on a given layer and overlaying the actual color on top on a clipping mask or on the same layer.

3. Don’t forget to paint the ESSENCE of the shapes, instead of focusing on every detail and use the brushes I gave you and no others. be creative with them.

CONFIDENT BLIND SAMURAI LIKE MARKMAKING PLEASE!:) I expect this assignment to take 6-8 hours. LOVE on all the colors and edges and gradients.

(also includes the diagrams for the box and sheet with all the materials needed)

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Homework Week-1 Fall-2012

“If you want to kill me you musn’t make any sound at all.”


1. 110$ for a custom box shade made to the specs of your laptop. Payable via Paypal to, or by cash in class.

1. Two camping stools like this: (but only order online if you can get them delivered before Tuesday) otherwise get them at Sports Authority or Big 5.

2. Extra battery

MAC USERS!!! the extra battery in that diagram is only for PC. Mac users need to get the Hyperjuice AND they also have to get the cable to attach it Yes I know it’s expensive but that’s what you get for buying a stupid Mac.

3. A LAPTOP that is FULLY CHARGED and that has Photoshop CS4 or CS5 installed. Get a 30 Day Trial of CS5 for free here:

4. Intuos Driver installed. Get the right driver for your tablet here:

5. Have your tablet set up with all the brushes and hot keys ready to go. HAVE YOUR TABLET SET-UP WITH ALL THE BRUSHES AND HOT KEYS READY TO GO… also have your tablet setup with all your brushes and hot keys ready to go. Find and instal brushes and hot keys here:

6. Buy the book Alla Prima, Everything you need to know about Painting by Richard Schmid.



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Life Painting to Stylized Concept

Here is an example of a life painting turned into a concept. The top left image is the photo, the top right image is what got done in the field after about 1.5 hours. A few things to notice:

1. How the shapes in the environment were used as a starting point but then altered to suit the action. Branches were moved around, rock clusters and shapes were simplified, The foliage in the background was almost entirely made up using what was there as a hint.

2. The farther back elements have a SLIGHT Gaussian Blur on them, and the edges of certain foreground things have a BIT of Ned Stark on their edges to take away the super crisp photoshoppyness. The way you decide what needs to be softened is if at a glance you feel like it’s taking too much attention and drawing the eye then you soften it with Ned.

3. Character was designed previously and bear was referenced from a photo in that exact pose. Also the character was created EXACTLY like the landscape, flat black silhouette, then flat graphic layers for each item of clothing, then shading done on each individual clipped layer, THEN the whole thing was flattened and a duplicate sun layer was erased out.

4. Fog! added it to pop the guy, otherwise he wouldn’t read in that spot at all. Also made sure to darken the fog on the left so the bear wouldn’t compete for the first read.

christo, creek crossing, shaddy safadi, concept art


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Homework Week 8


1. Finished concept piece based on an image you already have that is at least 3000 pixels wide.


1. Black and white sketch using flat solid blacks or greys, no blending. And just because mine went fast doesn’t mean yours will. spend time FIRST blocking the shapes in (who cares how sexy you’re just figuring out what you want where)… THEN spend time making the shapes FINAL… YES FINAL. Design those shapes beautifully and THEN send it to me for evaluation.

2. Find a photo that has the exact lighting scenario and color you want (spend an hour looking for it if you must) and put it in your image by making more room at the top and pasting it in.

3. Color in your B&W shapes by color picking off the photo and making adjustments to the colors based on your outdoor painting knowledge. Then make a copy of that color comp and put it up there with the photo above your image. BUILD A 3-D mock up of part or all of your image that needs it and put the render of that in the image in the your composite

4. Do another photo ref search for EVERY SINGLE ITEM IN YOUR IMAGE… EVERY INCH OF SCREEN REAL ESTATE SHOULD HAVE DIRECT PHOTO REFERENCE. Find photos in ambient light composite all of them into the image in layers. You should have a very shitty looking unlit composite image.

5. Love on the the shitty composite by making duplicate layers that are color dodge and painting your light in with layer masks on said color dodged layers.

6. Overpaint on the whole thing for hours softening edges, keeping your comp and focal point in mind. Soften the texture of some photos, add detail where you want it. put things in the photo didn’t have, specular light, fog layers etc.


Repaint over of Ashton’s image. Trying to get dumber and simpler and focus on the action… plus cheating our asses off, grabbed both the horse guy and the monster from google, colors picked off a photo with the exact same lighting scenario. (this image is only %40 done. NONE of the painting love, texture love, or final 5 hours of styling is in yet. AKA this level of finish would NOT fly for next week.)

Repaint of Noel’s image. Trying to get a more dramatic realistic looking shot by… you guessed it CHEATING OUR ASSES OFF. photos from the grand canyon, a horse from a “gasp” Bill Anton painting (AND I WOULD DO IT AGAIN AS I TOOK GREAT PLEASURE IN THESE ACTIONS) and some 3-D in the buildings. This one is closer to %80 done, needs some love on those vista rock formations, love on the architecture to make it more alien.

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Homework Week-7


This week I want you all to go back and bring 3 paintings you’ve done in this class up to par. Using what you’ve learned so far and looking at other peoples work as well as the work of the Artists we’ve talked about I want to you rework/love on them until they are A level. COPY THE ARTISTS I GAVE YOU FROM LAST WEEK!

I’ve also attached 3 paintings from our class that I would consider A along with their photos so you can see what each artist did to you add to and change the image to make it work for them. Pay close attention to how they did textures and how they stylized shapes. Heck email them and ask them what the heck they’re doing because it’s working.

To turn in I want to SEE 3 paintings revised INCLUDING the old version and the original photo all included in ONE IMAGE. SO 9 images in ONE GIANT JPEG that has 3 photos, 3 old paintings and 3 new paintings.

Ashton getting his Dorje on.

Assaf doing a great job of stylizing elements

Sylvia really pushing the stylization of the shapes! awesome!

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Homework Week-6

OTIS: Another painting from life copying one of these 4 artists styles.

ACCD: Finish the Matador Painting and do another FROM LIFE copying one of these artists styles.

When I say copy the style I don’t mean look at it and soak it in and then go about your painting. I also don’t mean combine the this with your own style to create an ALL NEW personal style. NAY! I mean copy the style, COPY IT! Copy it exactly and as precisely as you can… Dissect the reasons it’s awesome, try to see what kind of brushes were used or what kind of layers/techniques were implemented and make your painting look like it was done by the same artist. I included 2 Dorje paintings, one Neil Campbell Ross (the more graphic one) and Scott Christensen (The more painterly one)



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OTIS, do a painting from life. spend at least 5 hours on it. make sure there are mostly natural elements in it… nothing man made.

ACCD, Finish the painting we did in the field and do another again focusing on the natural and organic. Feel free to push the shapes but keep the colors PHOTO REAL.

Again focus on clouds plants, trees, etc… don’t put architecture in there unless it is simple and/or a small sliver.
Also keep a painting that you are copying the style of up at all times… and then COPY THE STYLE! Getting good isn’t about finding the path too goodness, it’s about copying what good people do to make shit look good! This is a Bill Anton Painting of Sedona. Bill Anton is the best and there is no reason that you can’t to be as simple and model forms and pick accurate colors the same way he does.
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Pick something ORGANIC… a small building here and there is ok but 90% of the canvas should be organic things with shapes that can be styled. Here is Sylvia’s from last week as an example of what I want in terms of shape styling. She took was there and pushed it farther focusing on making the shapes sexy. It’s not an overly complicated composition which is what makes it work so try to do the same. Pick something simple and organic to make your life easier!


2805 North Windsor Avenue, California, United States


8317 Vista Del Mar, Los Angeles, California, United States



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OTIS STUDENTS, finish the 2 paintings from photos, one from class and the one on this blog

ACCD STUDENTS, finish the 2 paintings, the one from outside today and another from another local. Please make sure it has NO manmade elements. All mountains, trees or sky… a tiny house or building is ok but it must be tiny. I want you to focus on natural shapes and picking a shot that ALREADY has nice shadow and light shapes. Don’t change it too much, find something that’s already good and tweak the shapes, but don’t add a big ‘ol tree or some element that isn’t there.

Also here is my shot at the Arch painting. I got tired of just taking about what I WOULD do for 8 hours, and I discovered one important truth about artmaking… Shit be hard! so nice work everybody. I think we’re making good progress. (And I have more brushes but I tried to stay fair and only use the ones I gave you thus far:)



Otis Homework for week 3

Otis Classwork from week 3

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less crack, more baby goose!

Thanks Kelly for sending me your stuff for the first official reeming:) So I want to post here for both classes so everyone can see what I want. You are using the photo to look at the shape BUT THEN you are stylizing the shapes based on what the picture “needs” 1. You decide on your focal point 2. You design every shape as simply as possible while keeping the focal point as the main attention-getter. You have to be RUTHLESS in omitting unnecessary details. Also don’t just paint in with Daniels, ERASE OUT with Daniels, that’s how you get sexy shapes. Also homework is supposed to be in color, this is just an example of a correction on the black and white.

paint this

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Book List

Richard Schmid – Alla Prima

Edgar Payne – Composition of Outdoor Painting

The Complete Guide to Perspective

Light – Science and Magic

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