Lesson 1: Lines, Ellipses and Boxes
Do not grind. Complete the recommended amount of each exercise to the best of your ability and move on. You'll have ample time to keep practicing and improving your skills when doing these exercises as warmups later.
Do not rush. Give yourself the time you need to plan your lines out, to prepare appropriately, and to demonstrate your current best. Every mark is independently important. Once the ghosting method is introduced in the Ghosted Lines exercise, use it consistently for all your structural marks.
Read all of the instructions carefully, multiple times if necessary. While I've tried to organize this content in as digestible a manner as I can, there is a lot of information here and there is no way you'd absorb all of it at once.
Take breaks! One day you're going to be a beast who can draw for hours without breaking a sweat, but right now, you need to be patient with yourself and take it all one step at a time.
Homework and exercises
The homework assignment for this section is as follows:
2 filled pages of the Superimposed Lines exercise
1 filled page of the Ghosted Lines exercise
2 filled pages of the Ghosted Planes exercise
Each exercise in the list above links off to more detailed instructions on how they're done.
NOTE: These three exercises constitute just one section of this lesson. You should hold onto your homework until you're done all three sections (lines, ellipses, boxes), and only submit for feedback once they're all done. You may feel hesitant or uncertain about whether or not you're doing things correctly - that's normal, but it's best you push past the urge to second-guess yourself. Focus on reading the instructions carefully, complete the work, and submit once all of it is complete. This will give others a solid body of work on which to base their feedback, giving you a more useful analysis of what you're doing well and what you may not understand.
All the assigned work for this section should be done in ink, using fineliners/felt tip pens as described here. In a pinch, I will accept work done in ballpoint, but only if the situation is dire. This is an exception only for this lesson as students get started.
Of course, if you're not planning on making use of the official critique program, then this is a recommendation rather than a hard requirement.
The Art of Blizzard Entertainment
While I have a massive library of non-instructional art books I've collected over the years, there's only a handful that are actually important to me. This is one of them - so much so that I jammed my copy into my overstuffed backpack when flying back from my parents' house just so I could have it at my apartment. My back's been sore for a week.
The reason I hold this book in such high esteem is because of how it puts the relatively new field of game art into perspective, showing how concept art really just started off as crude sketches intended to communicate ideas to storytellers, designers and 3D modelers. How all of this focus on beautiful illustrations is really secondary to the core of a concept artist's job. A real eye-opener.