My good friend the Spiky Alien Landscape has been getting a lot of grief lately, and I wanted to add my opinion to the chorus of people discussing the subject. The main reason its getting poo-pooed is because if your goal is to make a portfolio that will get you hired as a concept designer, filing it with spiky alien landscapes won't get you very far. They don't really have much in the way of design. They can show you know how to paint or photobash. They can show you know a thing or two about light and atmospheric perspective. But as an actual IDEA goes, they tend not to be very deep. So I agree completely that a portfolio filled with these things is not going to get you that dream job as a designer. But that said, for practice, for fun, for relaxation, for sheer visual joy, the Spiky Alien Landscape is just what the doctor ordered. This landscape was inspired by a painting I saw in the Louvre on my recent trip to France.