For now though however, you may need to indulge me in a bit of a text heavy recap...
Back in may I attended the London Conceptart.org event - it was utterly chaotic but met some good folk, my professional games work has always been in the sphere of casual and mobile games so was a good opportunity to see how the high fantasy AAA guys do things.
Mark Taro led life drawing and 'free-concepting' workshops and these definitely stuck with me - very liberating to hear someone talking about the value of originating ideas as opposed to the rendering and polish in executing them. Especially fascinating seeing his initial approach where he just jammed out on a roll of packing paper, and picked out and worked on the most lucid points, while this is not unlike any typical artist's sketchbook actually seeing this in context to a studio's work-flow and process (not to mention how he earned his money) was interesting.
Some other bits covered were some life drawing and using models to generate fantastical or monster ideas which could be the origin for something to explore later.
The rest of the event were mainly presentations and demos, which while impressive and interesting definitely resonated less for me.