Ian McQue is absolutely one of the best concept artists working in entertainment media. This interview really gave me a good grasp of his method, which I have made some attempt to emulate. In particular, his use of color to block in his overall piece before rendering speaks to a few of my weak points: I always work from the outside-in, as it were, defining the outside of my forms before rendering them in, and I rarely work with color as I have little familiarity or facility with it.
I also find it interesting how he conceptualises the overall tone of his science fiction pieces. There’s a human…dimness to them, a roughness which of course belies an absolutely optimistic, shiny future. I strive to create a similar feeling for the worlds and characters I create, a sense of lived-in-ness which will create a feeling of empathy instead of alienness.