My friend Kseniya Tomasheva is producer at Bad Kitty’s Dad, she is very experienced in producing 2D&3D art works for video games. She wrote me an email lately about how to make concept art for scenes with good procedure and high efficiency. I found her points are very helpful, so I share her original mail here, as bellow:
I'd just add from my experience, that we often used very simple, blocking quality 3D modeling for the scenes with complex perspective, for example, the ones having lots of arched windows, or furniture standing in weird positions. In this case we would just make a top-view scheme of the scene, and show where we want a camera to be, as well as main light sources. Then a modeler would do a really quick thing in Max or Maya - as simple, as cubes instead of tables and armchairs, simple cylinders for columns, etc. Even without any textures, just solid grey shading. then We would sit together and pick the best angle for cameras and move the light sources around a bit. Then the scene is rendered in some low quality (often, we would do the shadows from each light source separately). Whole process takes 3-6 hours of work for one person. Only after that it would go to the concept artist who makes a real sketch. Though it seems that it's adding some work into the pipeline, but it actually saves quite a bit of of time the concept artist would spend on building the perspective lines and setting up the lights.
This process works for scenes with complex geometry only, for simple ones it's faster to proceed with a sketch right away. "