I have been toying with the idea of doing concept art for games for some time, while I have played around with it on occasion this is my first serious attempt. Often when I do lots and lots..... and lots of research for archaeological illustration, I have to go with the safe route, sometimes I can be a little adventurous in my interpretations, but I can't go too far. But with concept art I can explore all those other ideas, that have to be left aside as being perhaps too out there as I build a portfolio. Where the image is more inspired by the evidence, rather than restrained by it. Plus all that research (I often end up doing more research than time on an image) just makes me itching to go out and play visually with the information, its great fun! :)
As I said the image is inspired by the evidence though, but also from working with archaeologists and talking with them (sorry if I cant remember which idea came from whom!). Rather than my usual as well of mostly basing imagery off Irish evidence, this image is a combination of Irish and European evidence from the Mesolithic. So for instance the tattoos are based off painted Mesolithic pebbles in southern France and northern Spain, the bow and arrows on Scandinavian evidence, while the back container is from Irish fish traps etc. (No reason they couldn't have used the same technology to make containers as well as fish traps!). It was nice to try and go for the bit more wilder version of the evidence, if you look at Otzi and the items and clothing they found on him, it was way out there, more than one could imagine it being, so the more imaginative interpretations may actually be closer to the truth than we think (or could just wishful thinking on my part too ;) ).