An art director? Why does art need direction?
An art director in games, simple. They are the person who makes sure it all stays on track. The person who gets the final say, And the person who’s vision will be realised at the end.
We all have our own take on the things we read and hear. Unfortunately only one person’s view of it can be put in a game. That person’s ideas are what we see in the final project. That person is the ART DIRECTOR!!! –Insert super hero music-
They answer to no man! Accept the publisher, and the customers, and the developers, and the programmers…ok so maybe they answer to a lot of people, but that’s not the point here. They have control over how the game looks on the whole and the final project. In terms of creativity it’s probably the best place to be when doing the game art. If you are the artist you are restricted by what the director wants doing.
In relation to films and things, it’s pretty similar. The only major difference is between live action films and game art, otherwise it’s pretty much the same. The only difference with live action is that it’s more about getting people to do what you want so there is less freedom.
For an art developer what you would need to be. You would need to be steady; if you keep going off on tangents then you are never going to get your game finished! You need to be brave! You shouldn’t be scared to try out ideas, and you certainly need to be able to stand up to your artists and programmers. And of course you need an imagination! No point making a boring game where you have little input.