Beyond Cylons and Warp Drive: Phenomenal Sci-Fi Concept Art

Beyond Cylons and Warp Drive: Phenomenal Sci-Fi Concept Art

Science fiction art is seen everywhere these days. If you enjoy a good blockbuster movie or spending your Sunday afternoons playing Halo or Final Fantasy, you probably know sci-fi concept art quite well. Sites such as Behance or DeviantART frequently post incredible sci-fi concept art renderings. This post showcases a collection of 40 incredible and stunning sci-fi concept art pieces to help boost your creativity; most of which have been created using Adobe Photoshop or a similar application with the artists bare hands. Enjoy!

Watching For The Last Launch

This stunning matte painting by Bechira Sorin uses some lovely colors, including various washed-out shades, to give the piece a surreal and soft look.


This great painting by Sven Sauer is a concept piece for a television sci-fi series. The painting reflects the atmosphere, mood and the intensity of destruction.

Perry Rhodan

Another piece by the great matte painter Sven Sauer. This piece was specifically painted for a background image for the “Perry-Rhodan” adventure game.


The dark and gloomy atmosphere in this painting by Wayne Haag makes the main source of light from the spaceship stand out like there’s no tomorrow.

Sci-Fi Book Cover

This book cover design by Franco Brambilla uses a cleaner and brighter color scheme compared to most others in this showcase, making it very unique.

Space Scenes

An absolutely incredible piece of digital art by David Fuhrer. The intensity of glowing lights makes this work fascinating to look at, and is very inspiring.

The Luminarium

This piece by Husam Elfaki was produced differently than many others in this compilation. Instead of a painting, it is actually a photo manipulation, and a pretty impressive one!

Shuttle Landing

This shuttle concept painting by Benjamin Penrose revolved around the narrative of “seeding” a new planet with life. The mothership design was based upon a seed pod containing hundreds of shuttles.

Space Sunset

A wonderful sci-fi space illustration by Walter Vermeij, using a lovely selection of colors to produce a dramatic atmosphere.

My Red Tie

This piece by Daniel Conway uses a dull and limited color scheme to make the red tie (the title of the piece) stand out. The background was completed in a short period of time, allowing the user to focus more of their attention on the subject rather than its surroundings.

Hostile Takeover

Hostile Takeover is a digital painting by the talented Marek. This particular piece of art was for a book cover for Polish publisher “Fabryka Slow”.


Another piece by Marek. This digital painting was used as a cover for the awesome comic book “Shrapnel: Aristeia Rising” (Issue #3), published by Radical Comics.

Shrapnel Concept

This digital painting by Ukitakumuki was completed as a ‘pre-concept’ piece for Shrapnel (Zombie Studios).

Inherited Hell

A very impressive monochrome digital painting by Vitaly Alexius, completely specifically for the “Inherited Hell” CD cover for a music band named Stonecast.

100 Years of Force

Another piece by Ukitakumuki, this time completed for the San Diego Comic Con’s souvenir book. The piece was inspired by Heinlein’s concept of cap(sule) troopers.

Delphian Calamity

This great piece of art by Vitaly Alexius was created in Photoshop at a whopping 10,000 x 7,617 pixels at 300dpi. The illustration (and story that goes with it) was witnessed in a dream; several weeks were spent on this project.

China Tower

This piece by Torvenius has a slightly rougher look to it than most others in this post, and took just 55 minutes to complete.


A steampunk piece by Patrick Reilly, using a strong combination of copper tones to really bring out the great highlights and shadows in the piece.

Steampunk Octopus

A wonderful sci-fi piece by Raybender, created for a Steampunk Challenge over at CGTalk.

Feral Nova

This experimental exploration project by Vitaly Alexius was created for the improvement of anatomy, perspective, colors and expanding the artists “dreaminism” style and ideas. This piece was completed in Photoshop and took approximately 2 full days (40 hours) to complete.


This gloomy, dark and grim Warhammer piece by Rado Javor incorporates the differences between light and shadow very well, making it pleasing to look at.

City Docks

A slightly different approach to digital painting and airbrushing by Antifan Real, using vivid colors and dynamic lighting to give the piece a new form of life. This illustration was completed for the digital painting book “Bold Visions”.

Final Confrontation

An incredible piece completed by Lorenz Hideyoshi Ruwwe for a sci-fi/horror saga called “The Lost Launders” written by Matthew Ewald.

Hide and Seek

Hide and Seek is yet another piece completed by the great digital painter Marek. This piece was created for the workshop section of popular magazine “ImagineFX”, and was produced by hand in Photoshop.

Sky Riders

Another piece completed by Marek for the great “ImagineFX” magazine. This particular piece combines various different styles, making it different and unique compared to a lot of others showed in this post.

Heaven 2.0

This wonderful piece “Heaven 2.0″ by Nicolas Ferrand was completed as a challenge. The gorgeous color scheme and highly textured canvas adds a lot of depth to the work.

Future City

“Future City” by Antifan Real uses a lovely warm, glowing color scheme. Based on a crop from another piece, this piece took just 70-80 minutes to complete, incredible keeping in mind the amount of detail this piece has!

The Spiral Staircase

A personal piece of work by Lisa Rye, featuring a spiral staircase that was originally a three dimensional model, and then brought to life using Photoshop and a Wacom Intuos graphics tablet.

What Will Be After

The popular Marek is back again, this time with an apocalyptic-style traumatic painting. Originally this piece was going to be a promotional piece but ended up being a personal piece of work.

Antipodal Evolution

The monochromatic (almost black and white) style of this painting by Vitaly Alexius adds a superb dimension and makes the viewers appreciate just how incredible the lighting and shadowing skills used in this painting are.


This lovely space scene by Antifan Real consisted of 20-22 hours work, and was completed purely in Photoshop CS3 using a Wacom Intuous 3 graphics tablet.

The Sky Opens

By Antifan Real once again, this green monochromatic-style painting puts the power of depth to great use to create this interesting composition. The piece took 15 hours from start to finish.

Aburod Terra

As you can tell from this compilation, Vitaly Alexius is a very busy digital artist. This piece took over 50 hours to complete and it’s clear to see why. Click through to see some of this piece whilst in progress, as well as early sketches.

Into The Fray

Into The Fray by Ukitakumuki is a very detailed experimental piece of digital art, combining modern warfare with zombies and a touch of sci-fi.

Divinity, The Descent

This personal piece by Yap Kun Rong started (unbelievably) as a speed painting on a Nintendo DS. The artists imagination took over, and it was eventually taken into Photoshop to create this stunning and vivid piece.

Our Phantom Skies

Finished off nicely with some white symbols, this huge A1 poster painting by Ukitakumuki was completed as a solo project for a diploma/college class.

Castaway in the Stardust City

Compared to most others in this showcase, this piece by Cyril Rolando may look quick, but in fact it took over 40 hours from start to finish. Its warm color scheme and soft tone make it a pleasure to view.

City T25

This industrial-style painting by Amir Salehi holds such detail that, without very close inspection, it appears to be real life. It was painted in Photoshop CS3.


Kai Spannuth has combined two eye-peeling colors from the opposite ends of the spectrum to create a wonderful first-person style painting completed in Photoshop CS2.

Waterfall City Extreme

The glowing yellow and orange color palette combined with the fine detail of line-work in this piece by Theo Prins is spectacular to look at. Before it became Waterfall City Extreme, it was just Waterfall City. Click through to see the original piece, which wasn’t sci-fi.

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