Environment Art Direction for Games Vol. 1

Ideation Sketching

Chapter List


In this first title of a series, Cecil will demonstrate how he quickly produces various design options using traditional drawing tools such as markers, ink pens and mechanical pencil. Cecil will guide you through more than eight environment production sketches describing how he creates various drawing concepts to support creative leads and a production team on a daily basis. He will begin with concepting the main fortress buildings for a game level idea, continue with rough thumbnailing of the organic building profile, and also create a hi-level production vista shot of a city concept using pencil. Street angle environment layout and futuristic design are explored as well. Learn how Cecil establishes perspective layout, filling it with architectural details, as well as how he designs the surface of the abstract shapes he initially starts with.

Duration: 111 minutes

Format: HD 1280x720

Chapter List

  • 00. Preview
  • 01. Introduction
  • 02. Level Design: Main Fortress HQ Building
  • 03. Level Design: Fantasy Organic Shape Building
  • 04. Level Design: Facade and Street Concept
  • 05. Hi-Level Concept: Cinematic Layout for Neo-Classical City
  • 06. Hi-Level Concept: Futuristic War Pitch
  • 07. Hi-Level Concept: Vehicle Idea Sketch


  • Environment Art Direction for Games Vol. 1
  • Environment Art Direction for Games Vol. 1
  • Environment Art Direction for Games Vol. 1
  • Environment Art Direction for Games Vol. 1
  • Environment Art Direction for Games Vol. 1
  • Environment Art Direction for Games Vol. 1
  • Environment Art Direction for Games Vol. 1
  • Environment Art Direction for Games Vol. 1
  • Environment Art Direction for Games Vol. 1

Cecil Kim

Concept Designer

Cecil Kim has been working as a concept artist and illustrator in the entertainment industry for the past 15 years. Originally from Seoul, Korea, Cecil moved to the U.S. with a dream to pursue an art career, and studied Illustration and Fine Arts at the prestigious Art Center College of Design. Cecil began his career in the game industry as a cinematic storyboard artist for SquareUSA. With strong layout and detailed environment sketches, he began designing memorable locations in Final Fantasy IX and later joined Sony Santa Monica Studio where he devoted seven years of his career creating the God of War series as Visual Development Lead. Cecil also teaches at various institutions such as Gnomon School of Visual Effects, Art Center College of Design and Otis College of Art and Design where he serves as Concept Art Area Head. From hi-level production art to prop design, Cecil's intuitive and energetic artistic style has been inspirational creative fuel to the directors and production team at Sony Santa Monica.

  • "Cecil's visions of Olympian worlds put blood back into the marble. His legendary ability to teach others to create these for themselves is a double marvel."

    - Iain McCaig
    Illustrator and conceptual designer

  • "I admire Cecil Kim for his intuitive, creative design and his generous, patient attitude with students."

    - Gary Meyer
    Professor - Art Center College of Design

  • "This is the man who through the power of his artistry can bring the very gods of Olympus to their knees. He inspires both his team at work, and his students at Otis to excel beyond even their own expectations. Cecil does this through rigorous attention to detail, yet also through an understanding of how to motivate individuals of differing skills and talents. He teaches how to tell stories through character, using light, color, and shapes."

    - Harry Mott
    Chair Digital Media, Otis College of Art and Design

  • "I have had the pleasure of working with Cecil for the past 8 years, during which he proved to be a driving force behind the vision of the God of War series. He has a combination of skills that give him an unlimited range, and command attention in this industry. On the first day I worked with Cecil, I was in awe of the beauty he created. Today, I am still in awe. His art truly inspires me."

    - Stig Asmussen
    Video game developer