Level art direction is undertaken after the game art direction has been nailed down, and I use my collaborative process where I work with the team to generate concepts and ideas that we gradually knock into a single cohesive look that everyone has bought into, well a majority.
Below is a gallery showing my process of taking a level design idea to an in game environment,
When I art director a level I talk to the level design team to see what happens in the level and any other ideas they have, then I research and create a style guide.
The first page of the style guide gives a quick overview of how we want the environment to look.
The style guide gives everyone on the team a good idea of how the final elements should look.
The style guide includes the concept art showing the look and feel.
The final in game environment key, created by visual designer Ken Banks and artists Hung Pham, Robert Santiago and Tu Bui.