Monday, 9 November 2009

Concept art: Hall of Dead detailed thumbnail

After i decided the perspective I wanted, i decided once again take it one step further and apply some detail. In this picture, I decided to create the room described in the book, but giving it a bit of my own style.
The Skeleton sculpted out of the rock looks fearsome it is wearing an African mask to emphasize the fear felt inside those walls. a spear that resembles to the spears used by the old Egyptian civilizations to catch fish, also I placed the 27 previous kings of the kukuanas around petrified, and the last king, Twala in the center still in the ritual to become a stalactite. To decorate the walls I drew skulls inserted in small hooks around what it looks like to be a small cave.


tutorphil said...

Hi Ruben,

A very satisfying body of work so far; with a project such as this it is so important to 'think via visualisation' - getting drawings and ideas down quickly, and developing them in a very hands-on way. You've been working on this project from day one - and it shows; your thumbnails are very communicative and your 'cathedral of stalacites' is coming on nicely - the addition of the figures instantly gives me more information about the grandeur of that space.

I see that you're now developing the 'petrified kings' scene; can I suggest you consider lowering the point of view so that the skeleton sculpture is more oppressive - so that it appears to looming 'over' or 'coming at' the viewer. Currently, your view seems rather dislocated and 'at a safe distance' - it begs the questions 'whose view is it?' Having that hovering, middle distance pov suddenly makes everything seem rather small and manageable; if you were to put the pov on the floor of the cavern, looking up and along the table, then suddenly the enormity and essential strangeness of the space might be more clearly communicated; it would also give you some more theatrical opportunities regarding the lighting, using down-lighting or up-lighting to give the skeleton a more ghoulish quality; as it stands, that scene feels rather too remote and at a non-human view-point - especially, as you have the sculpture's spear coming forwards like that. How much more dramatic and 'experiential' would it be, if that spear was pointing AT the spectator; using a low, more centralised pov would also invite opportunities for distortion and fore-shortening that would lend more drama to the scene - anyway, it would certainly be worth exploring. There is a word for the kind of shot I'm talking about; a 'subjective' shot - in other words, from the point-of-view of the subject (character). For instance, your 'cathedral' image is not subjective - it provided an objective view of the setting; had you drawn the interior from the character's point of view, your strategy would have been very different.

More generally, your engagement and commitment continues to please - keep it up - and I look forward too, to reading your views on the various movies we're watching together - keep that critical eye nice and sharp. Please see the second post from general stuff re. the written assignment.

tutorphil said...

Written Assignment stuff…

Some general structural advice regarding framing your essay in the more general context of ‘production design’ – by way of introduction to your specific case-study (i.e. the movie or game of choice), you’ll need to demonstrate your understanding of the purpose of production design/designers in enshrining certain ‘narrative values’ within the look of the production; you should discuss the general aims/objectives/definitions of production design – see below:

“Before designing anything, the designer develops a "design concept," an overarching metaphor for the film's appearance that governs individual choices. This "concept" may or may not be established in conjunction with the director. Once settled upon, however, it structures all decisions made, helping the art staff to give an individual film visual distinction.”
Read more:

You’ll find alternative definitions that you may want to include, but your following analysis of your chosen exemplar should be an in-depth discussion of that ‘overarching metaphor’ that organizes all the various components of the production’s design; you need to be looking for recurring motifs, colour values, use of space, set-design etc. that, collectively, create ‘the look’ and be able to talk insightfully about the narrative contribution of ‘the look’ – i.e. – how does it assist in the audience’s understanding of the narrative or thematic framework.
IMPORTANT; try and think of your written assignments as ‘complete worlds’ – i.e., that they must contain all information necessary for your reader to follow your discussion coherently. Never presume prior knowledge on the behalf of your reader; do not, for instance, presume that your reader understands or is familiar with ‘Production Design’ – you always need to define your terms WITHIN the essay; likewise with films and games; give their release date, their director etc. Use footnotes to give definitions or information that would otherwise interrupt flow of argument; for instance, if you don’t want to pause rhythm of sentence by giving reader additional information about a particular artist or designer, use a footnote to put this data into the ‘margins’ of the discussion. On Word, goto to Insert and then ‘Footnote’ to install footnote at bottom of page.

AVOID DESCRIPTION – obviously, you will need to give some plot details to contextualise the scenes you want to discuss, but I don’t want a blow-by-blow account of the game/film; give a brief prĂ©cis and get on with the ANALYSIS.

Below is a list of useful websites; use them in addition to other sources of reference (books, docs, making ofs) to SUPPORT your observations; you need to gather EVIDENCE to corroborate with your analysis. GENERIC observations (i.e. ‘stating the bloody obvious’) are to be avoided at all costs. Tell me something I DON’T know!


The gloves are coming off; the brief asks you to produce 1,500 words… and that’s what want; shortfall assignments will be penalized accordingly – or failed.

Good Luck! ☺

tutorphil said...

More specifically - regarding the choice of Edward Scissorhands; you'll need to do some research re. Burton's influences (German expressionistic cinema being on of them), but also, the 'suburbia' of the 'normal people' is very clearly styled on a certain time period in American history; it's an amalgamation of the 50s/60s + modern day; you have the clash of European Gothic and American 'Homes & Garden' magazine...

Ruben Alexandre said...

thank you! tutor phil

regarding the view of the skeleton I did have that in mind, but i ddint explore it further i just have to do it, the upright view really show awe and fear, i'll produce some sort of view in that matter.

Relating to the essay, i have started to research into the production design of edward scissorhands, the art department and the company who produce them. i just have to get on with the writing also researching into tim burtons peculiar mind and what influenced him.

Ruben Alexandre said...

The 'cathedral' space shall i change to a subjective view?

the camera in that drawing is set in on place that they had been but i put them in the middle to show the difference of sizes.