I currently work as an independently contracted concept artist at Crisis Response Leadership Training (CRLT).
At CRLT, the goal is to create game simulations that will help train first responders during a time of crisis. I am in charge of making character sheets, environment concepts, menu screen background, and UI icons for the menu.
Depending on the type of concept, I will either start with creating a general 3D scene with lighting. Once I have a render of the scene, I then use the render as a base for the concept to digitally paint over. Other times, I will go straight to digital painting. For UI I begin with a silhouette and continue to simple the silhouette until I have a simple but clean icon.
MAYA 3D software
General concepts were created for marketing use and UI. However, they also provided the environment artists a tonal and visual guide. I was pushed to create more narrative concepts when creating general concepts. Sometimes, I would include the image of a client, when asked.
For the characters, the most important aspect which was highlighted was creating characters who would appear or already be present in times of crisis.