Art Director

Art · Kirkland, Washington
Department Art
Employment Type Full-Time
Minimum Experience Manager/Supervisor

Harebrained Schemes is looking for an experienced, versatile Art Director to work on an unannounced horror project. You’ll collaborate with the Game Director and HBS team to establish and then advocate for the high-level art direction of the game.

You’ve done a fantastic job as Art Director when the game’s art comes in on-time and on-budget, looks great, elevates gameplay, and runs smoothly - with an art team that enjoys working together, goes the extra mile, and is proud of their work.

If you are a thoughtful collaborator, with a deep understanding of—and appreciation for—player experiences across a variety of game genres and audiences, we’d love to talk with you.

This is an on-site, full-time manager and IC role.
(Please note that we are currently working from home due to Covid-19. We will return to the office in stages when it is safe to do so. In the meantime, all interviews will be done virtually.)

What You’ll Do

  • Lead and manage an art team of 10-15 artists (plus outsourcing) on an unannounced new horror-themed game.

  • Collaborate with the Game Director to define and fill an effective art leadership team for the project (e.g. Environment Art Lead, Character Art Lead, etc.)

  • Work with the production team and your art leadership team to regularly scope and schedule the efforts of the entire art team.

  • Be a collaborative partner in the hiring & interviewing process for new artists joining the project, as well as outsourcing and roles in other disciplines as appropriate.

  • Visual Development: Collaborate with your art team and project leadership through conversations, concept art, iteration, and prototyping - to find and define a clear visual target that best serves the design goals and pillars of the game, while also fitting the game’s budget and schedule.

  • Once established, uphold the overall look of the game and get the entire team excited about it through clear concept art and production documentation. (style guide, etc.)

  • Provide effective, timely feedback to the art team during production. Through feedback, keep the project visuals on-target and high quality.

  • Seek visual solutions that support and elevate gameplay and level design, and reinforce this philosophy with the rest of the art team. Collaborate closely with the Game Director and Lead Designer of the project and ensure that the art team maintains a strong relationship with the design team and all disciplines.

  • Balance visual quality with gameplay needs, budgetary constraints, and platform performance, in the service of the best overall game experience.

What You’ll Bring

  • You’ve shipped at least one professional, medium-to-large budget game in an Art Director or similar role from beginning to end, directly managing a team of artists. (Preferably on consoles / multiplatform.)

  • Direct experience in at least one area of game art production: concept art, environment art, hard-surface modeling, character modeling, interface art, etc.

  • Excellent foundational art knowledge, such as color theory, shape language, composition, lighting, anatomy, and perspective.

  • Awareness of current trends in visual communication and how best to adapt those trends into an interactive game experience.

  • An academic approach to visual style - the ability to move beyond a "house style" as an artist to explore different approaches based on the goals of a product or the needs of a specific feature.

  • Excellent communication skills, including the ability to both give and receive (and solicit) constructive feedback in written, verbal, and paintover format.

  • An iterative mindset. Prototype early, iterate often, finalize and polish later.

  • You enjoy working with other artists and helping the group reach strong visual results, and know how to generate buy-in and alignment on project visual goals.

  • A good sense of judgement for when to jump in to tackle a concept or design yourself, and when to delegate to others.

  • You have experience guiding people, processes, and thinking. You’re positive, proactive, organized, and comfortable determining the tasks and priorities of others and yourself.

Nice to Have

  • Professional skill as a concept artist.

  • Professional skill as a graphic designer.

  • Comfort and familiarity using technical game development tools such as source control and Unity.

  • You've played - and enjoyed - past Harebrained Schemes titles.

All HBS employees
Contribute respectfully with empathy, emotional intelligence and self-awareness
Can work collaboratively in a team as well as on your own
Are able to be self-directed in their work and learning
Bring a growth mindset to the work they do 

Working at HBS Means
Work-life balance: a work family that doesn’t replace your family-family
Flexible workday hours and work-from-home opportunities
Time off when you need it: a wellness-first and family-first mindset
High transparency and easy access to studio leadership

HBS Benefits
Generous medical, dental, vision, EAP, FSA, and both short & long-term disability
Paid vacation time
Paid sick time
Paid holidays including the week between Christmas and New Years Day
Matching 401(k) program 
Annual profit-sharing from Paradox Interactive
Easy access off I-405 and free parking
Skilled, passionate, and fun co-workers
Pet-friendly office

You should apply to work at HBS if you want to:
Make amazing game experiences with co-workers who are just as passionate about their craft as you are
Be part of a project small enough (20-35 members) for everyone to have a significant impact
Join a warm, inclusive and diverse team, with a respectful and collaborative culture
Evolve and learn with us in a growth-mindset environment 

Thank You

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  • Location
    Kirkland, Washington
  • Department
  • Employment Type
  • Minimum Experience