Mar 26, 2015

| Kickstarter and Yufu...

Ever been a backer for a kickstarter project (or any crowdfunding campaign for instance)? I believe that this fan-based support system is amazing and has changed a lot of things when it comes to helping great ideas become a reality. However it could be very frustrating when you don't get regular updates or when the product is getting ridiculously postponed to an unknown date. That's what we are experiencing with the Yufu stylus by Hex3. It started with the best intentions: becoming the best pressure-sensitive stylus for the iPAD (or other tablets on Android and Windows) with a precise fine-point, tilt, gyro, palm-rejection and high-quality design.
Anyways, over a year later we are still waiting to receive it, I'll give you a review as soon as it arrives and hope this will meet our expectations!

Mar 5, 2015

| Secret project #2000...

I have been working on a side racing game project with some friends, it's currently on hold because we are too busy with our respective jobs but we'll eventually finish it and make it available for free. The prototype already works well and it's fun however the art is still far behind! I wanted to share the 1st researches of its initial art direction, as you can see there are different styles within the stylized approach, my goal was to try and see what could be interesting.
early sketches...
As you can tell it involves jet-powered vehicles and some hmm "weirdo" pilots, I can't reveal too much of the gameplay right now but trust me, you'll enjoy playing it :)
Adventure Time style...
Since then I have completely changed the global visual direction and have more interesting ideas, this was a worthwhile exercise nonetheless and it kept me busy last year.

Feb 22, 2015

| Shaping SHAPE UP - Part #2...

Here are some early visual development researches when I joined the project. They had already started a year before my arrival and they needed to fill the Art Director's position because Serge moved to Child of Light. At the time it was supposed to be a family game and a sequel to the Your Shape franchise with a new type of gameplay based on the motto "gamify fitness". The game was a surprisingly fun and efficient workout but on the art side it was a mess for many reasons: 3 people-only art team with the unfair pressure to create exciting graphics for a "next-gen" game, an unrealistic scope for such a small team, a fuzzy target, a broken engine, too many chiefs with too many different visions which means... too many compromises and in the end a totally flavorless product!
SNOWBALL challenge, unfortunately cancelled...
paintover of the early WORKOUT environments...
My mission was to bring something unique and appealing while respecting the work already in place, all in all on a VERY tight schedule. Well it was clearly a difficult task and it failed! I always wanted to make something stylized, bright and colorful but it meant taking a lot of risks and starting from scratch, during the following months of production the results started to feel quite visually unimaginative for the same reasons stated before, a semi-realistic mash up of interesting settings and ideas but poorly executed, in short too many compromises again. 
early version of PIANO STEP...
ARCADE low-poly art direction, when everything shifted!
ABS ZAPPER space arcade challenge!

Feb 15, 2015

| Shaping SHAPE UP - Part #1...

I have proudly worked almost 2 years on the latest arcade-fitness game by Ubisoft; Shape Up and even though it didn't make much noise, it was a fun project created by a dedicated small team and the visual result is still very original. I'll put some more artworks soon and in the meantime here are some screenshots of the crazy environments we made which will give you an idea of our general art direction.
Training rings (WORKOUT mountain and island)
ARCTIC PUNCH submarine and secret robot island (SMTTM)
Mexican pueblo (KNEE UP SPLASH) and pirate lair (PUSH THEM UP)
Arcade space station (ABS ZAPPER) and J-pop space concert (PIANO STEP)
Inspiration concept art for the Shape Up Battle Run companion app available on Android and iOS.

Dec 20, 2014

| NBM3 visual bug...

DONE!!! OOoh yes I'm finally done with the 2 images I had to make for the next Nuthin But Mech (book #3) by DSP, what a relief and just a day before leaving for our Xmas vacations. When I saved a Jpeg copy of the final Psd something strange happened, a very unexpected visual bug, I guess the memory ran out because of the huge size of those files?
So here it is, a sneak preview of what's coming and a nice little edit entirely done by total random digital luck :) Merry Christmas everyone and I wish y'all a Happy New Year, enjoy your break and party like there is no tomorrow!!! Love, T.

Nov 27, 2014

| Square-Enix GO!..

I have recently left Ubisoft to join the amazing teams behind the Hitman mobile games (award-winning Hitman GO and Sniper) and I am now a really proud Studio Art Director at Square-Enix Montreal. We are currently hard at work on some exciting titles for you nomad gamers :) the future is bright!!!
Working on Shape Up was a great experience, I want to thank all of my colleagues in the Mile-End area and wish y'all the best on your next projects.
beautiful view from the office on the Mont-Royal...

     #CanadianVideogameAwards - @SquareEnixMtl - @Hitman

Oct 21, 2014

| Modo mission...

This week I'll stay home and keep working on my images for Nuthin But Mech 3, it keeps me busy because it is actually a good pretext to learn MODO, now with the right set of mind and some free time I'm enjoying it. Forget my previous camper Sketchup model and here is what I'm working on, an AAV that has been transformed into an hovercraft, it has much more angular shapes to contrast with the drones (coming soon). I really like the modeling/sculpting tools and the renderer, it feels so smooth compared to Max and Maya, can't wait to know more and start using MeshFusion.
Modo mesh evolution...

Oct 18, 2014

| Golden times...

Shape Up is gold and it feels good! working on games can take a toll on any developer's carapace, it's a long and unpaved road with the same repetitive patterns of mistakes, overtime shifts and little happy victories, in the end when you get closer to the release date, there are gates you are proud to go through and "gold" is assuredly one of them... the game is really good and congrats to the team, keep it up for the final sprint! I can't wait to watch people playing it.

We also had a cool team party at Nacho Libre this week to celebrate the event, the next morning wasn't easy after so much rhum, tequilas and horrible memories of vintage fitness videos.
Fun House at the De Gaspé building I'll miss you...

Sep 29, 2014

| Home office...

VacatioOons!!! Yes at last, now that I have officially been released from Shape Up I can enjoy some well deserved time off! It was also a good moment to clean my desktop, so I got rid of my old PC tower, bought a nice Thunderbolt monitor and all the accessories like speakers, Wacom Intuos Pro, keyboard...etc. are now neatly plugged to the Belkin Thunderbolt Express Dock. No more clutter, it's a perfect setup and it's the 1st time in almost a year that I'm excited to seat here and be ready to work again :)
Ikea hack, efficient and clutter-free setup
Plug the laptop to these 2 cables and vamos!
I'm not a pro Apple at all but I have to admit that it is the best workstation I've ever had and the 27"monitor is just incredible. Don't hesitate to share your own setup and any tips to improve efficiency.

Aug 18, 2014

| NBM3...

I haven't posted anything exciting for a long while and there are a lot of reasons. First, we are working like crazy to finish our game, which means lots of office hours, and also because when I finally have a little bit of free time, it's easily spent with my relatives and outside paddling... basically it feels like an overdose of computers. However it's difficult to escape some previous engagements so here is a little update on another project with the Nuthin' but Mech crew, I'll be featured in the #3 book so there is some obvious pressure here > the artists are simply fantastic and their content is beyond awesomeness...  can't slack on that one!!!
The final image will be exclusive to the book but I still can share the process, and these sketches :-)
Sketchup/PS, WIP research for Image #1 without any "mech" yet...

Aug 2, 2014

| Fantasia reviews...

Le jeu sur lequel je travaille s'approche rapidement de la fin, c'est une periode vraiment intense et ca ne me laisse que peu d'energie pour travailler sur mes projets persos. D'un autre cote, j'ai la chance cette annee, de faire partie du groupe des bloggers d'Ubisoft pour le festival Fantasia, ca fait presque 10 ans que j'y vais, le rassemblement parfait pour les amateurs de serie B et films de genre!
L'avantage c'est d'avoir un passe-Presse et d'eviter les line-ups interminables, ca change ma perspective sur l'evennement et je peux me concentrer davantage sur le contenu, merci Christophe Gagne pour cette opportunite ;-)

Jun 13, 2014

Jun 1, 2014

| The art explorers...

I'm really proud to announce the beginning of a new cool project with my old friends Manu and Vyle. This is going to be different and fun :) please go and check it out and leave us some comments! #speedpaintingexplorers
DYI speargun...

May 2, 2014

| XD Theater invasion...

Last summer I accepted to take on a freelance job for a friend working at Triotech, (a cool Montreal-based Cie. creating their own multi-sensory interactive attractions)  I was really busy already and only did it because he insisted. At least it was a different experience working for a 3D XD ride interactive short film, especially a Sci-fi one!
The goal was to make a classic "Aliens" type of story with quite stereotyped environments, creatures and vehicles so people felt at ease during the spooky ride. I invite you to go and try their XD theaters if you spot one in your area, it's a lot of fun!
SO... here are some Alien soldiers and their beloved slimy Queen, as I said it is not surprising but it was an interesting challenge to try to design something just slightly different from the usual space-bugs.

The fun part was to design a "transformer" type of heavy-armored buggy, that can also roll'n fly. I wish I had more time to spend defining all the details.

It was taking too much of my energy so I only worked on 2 interiors, the cockpit and a generic corridor. The challenge with 3D movie scenes is to add a lot of depth using objects or industrial parts that stick out for no reasons just because it looks cool on screen.

And I took the opportunity to learn a bit of SketchUp and V-Ray to block out a rough model of the Human spaceship (#10 was chosen, of course not my favorite)

Apr 14, 2014

| Happy podcast...

Syn Studio has just released a podcast that we recorded a few months ago, un grand merci to the team for giving me the opportunity to talk and to introduce them to a specialty of my region in Southern France;  le Muscat de Rivesaltes! Thank you Anthony for the shots of Vodka I hope it doesn't show because I felt the heat on my half-Asian cheeks, all apologies for everything that sound too weird... obviously it was happy hour time :-)