Wednesday, 27 October 2010

Unit 2.02- Character Design Workshop Week 6

This week, the character design workshop was once again very interesting, as we were taught, how good stereotyping can improve your character a lot and how you can have a clear idea if you stick with a stereotype, how the character looks like and reacts. Also other important thing is the use of clothes, clothes also have their importance when designing a character, as they have to perfectly fit the character and don't create a misinterpretation in them.

For the task,  I was given Vampires and I had to apply what I learned. by creating a line-up featuring different types of vampires,

Also,we explored how silhouettes play an important role when designing a character. For a character, we want a silhouette that can tell us a lot from just looking at it.  

So the second task was to bring my characters and silhouette them, to see if they are working.

In my opinion, they are not too bad, and improvements have to be made, when adding the props, clothes, etc. Nonetheless a good start!

Unit 2.01- Concept: Spaceman Concept

Finally, after so many hazards and delays to get this painted, it is finally done. So here is the concept for the Astronaut, or in this case, the villain in our animation. In this concept the only part with colour are the red buttons, although in our animation everything will be B&W, in the poster we have to get a coloured version, even if minimal.

Once and yet again, this concept was based on a quick sketch by A Flock of Pixels, which gave me a clear idea what what to draw and to paint.

Sunday, 24 October 2010

Unit 2.02- Character Design Profile Sheets

To better understand our characters, we were set the task to create a profile sheet for them. So individually, I started to explore my character in-depth, not only by finding names for them, but also asking questions such as what was his past?, where did he come from? or how does he look? - I attempted to have a clear understanding of the characters. Alongside this descriptive file, I also created some more specific influence maps, highlighting body structure and personality of my characters.

Hero- Young Pirate

Name:  John "Rusty"

Biography: John "Rusty" , is a robot and one of the last experiments done around the 1890' and 1900's , in the attempt to give life to  inanimate metal constructions. These experiments proven be too dangerous, cancelled and the robots dumped. However, the experiment didn't fail, and John "Rusty" alongside his fellow robot experiments, wandered the streets in search of fuel and pieces to renew them. 
At that time, the streets were full of curiosity and this lead the Robots, to venture the sea. Although a safer place, the sea lacks in resources, such as fuel and new pieces, so the robots start to scavenge from commercial and authority ships, turning the Robots into pirates relying on corruption to serve their needs . These outrageous actions were led by the Captain Hidalgo "Bolt", the older and the leader of the Robots, who as leader would get the best of the stolen equipments, while the others Robots would degrade.  "Rusty" seeing this injustice challenges the Captain.

Age: 20 years of degradation

Race: Human-like Robot

Height: 1, 65 m. (approx.)

Body Type: Young, skinny and agile.

Face Type: Round and friendly face.

Complexion: Gold/ silver colour, though getting damaged by degradation, and with some pieces of wood fitting in places of metal. 

Eyes: Dark eyes, and with a friendly and confident look.

Hair: Fringe with a cloth bandana in its place. 

Clothing Style: Pirate-look, with a old and ripped scarf, a pirate belt around his chest , with a a small pistol, a  holding the dagger on his arm.

Speaking Style:  Short to the point, often in rebellion with injustice in the Robot Pirate Ship.

General Demeanor: Often a friendly character, but can get rebel and upset with the Captain and the other robot pirates.

Career: Hero Pirate, steals (against his will) other commercial ships for resources.

Prejudices: He hates unfairness and cruelty.

Best Qualities: Friendly, Funny, Agile, and Big Hearted.

Worst Qualities: Rebellious, Unhappy.

Weaknesses: Agile but weak, when fighting against stronger Robots such as Gertie, the captain's right hand.

Villain- Captain Robot Pirate

Name: Captain Hidalgo "Bolt"

Biography:  Captain Hidalgo "Bolt", is a robot and one of the first experiments done around the 1890' and 1900's , in the attempt to give life to  inanimate metal constructions. These experiments proven be too dangerous, cancelled and the Robots dumped. However, the experiment didn't fail, and Captain Hidalgo "Bolt" alongside the other robot experiments, wandered the streets in search of fuel and pieces to renew them. 
At that time, the streets were full of curiosity and this lead the Robots, to venture the sea. Although a safer place, the sea lacks in resources, such as fuel and new pieces, so the robots start to scavenge from commercial and authority ships, turning the Robots into pirates relying on corruption to serve their needs. Being considered the leader of the Robots, and with the help of his henchman Gertie,  he led the robots to a world of corruption.

Age: 50 years of degradation.

Race: Human-like Robot

Height: 1.90 m (approx.)

Body type: Tall, skinny.

Face type: Long and hard-edged face, which doesn't show much happiness just arrogance.

Complexion: light bronze, gold, with the finest pieces of wood around his body, also his body is abundant with gadgets that they are incorporated in it.

Eyes: Small Black or Dark Brown eyes, with an arrogant look.

Hair: Bald, with a captain pirates hat in its place, long metal beard.

Clothing Style: Captain Pirate look, with a broad captain's hat, a old ripped jacket, a waist belt to rest his sword, and captains boots.

Speaking Style: Long winded charming talking.

General Demeanor: An arrogant, strict character, who at the same time proves to be gallant and charming.

Career: Captain Pirate, orders other robots to steal for him.

Prejudices: He hates to be disrespected. 

Worst Qualities: Arrogant, Unfair. 

Weaknesses: He is a weak robot due to its age, however he uses Gertie, the henchman, as his muscle, while he his still the brains. 

Also, Colin White gave me the idea that maybe I should incorporate gadgets into my characters, Although i had a similar idea before by adding a compass etc., i loved it. It makes a lot of sense also, being the captain and abundant in gadgets, he upgrades himself. So he will be a sort of Inspector Gadget.

Sidekick- Captain's Henchman

Name: "Metal Jaw"  Gertie

Biography:  "Metal Jaw" Gertie, is a robot and one of the experiments done around the 1890' and 1900's , in the attempt to give life to  inanimate metal constructions. These experiments proven be too dangerous, cancelled and the Robots dumped. However, the experiment didn't fail, and Gertie alongside the other robot experiments, wandered the streets in search of fuel and pieces to renew them. 
At that time, the streets were full of curiosity and this lead the Robots, to venture the sea. Although a safer place, the sea lacks in resources, such as fuel and new pieces, so the robots start to scavenge from commercial and authority ships, turning the Robots into pirates relying on corruption to serve their needs. Gertie is the henchman behind Captain Hidalgo "Bolt", and while "Bolt" got the genius to command the Robots, Gertie helps him to take care of rebellious robots, by the use of force.

Age: 40 Years of Degradation

Race: Human-like Robot

Height: 2.10 m (Approx.)

Body Type: Brute, Big and Muscly with a Small head.

Face type: Round, but with really hard jaw (providing its nickname), with small eyes and small nose. 

Complexion: Dark silver metal and Dark Bronze pieces, and no wooden pieces.

Eyes: Small Dark Brown eyes, with a Silly look.

Hair: Bald.

Clothing Style: Belt around his chest, holding a strong cannon strapped to his arm.

Speaking Style: Not much of a talker.

General Demeanor: generally a silent Robot, always body guarding the Captain, assuming henchman behavior, such following orders

Career: Brute yet silly Pirate, who supervises the other Robots working.

Prejudices: He hates water, as it makes him rust, and also the weakness in the other robots.

Worst qualities: Brute, Angry, Silly. 

Weaknesses: He is a slow Robot and with not much of intellect. 

Also in Shrek 2, is a particular scene which can portray my type of henchman exactly. in the trailer is the part with King Harold and the Fairy godmother.

Saturday, 23 October 2010

Maya Tutorials: Car Modeling Week*3

Here is the week 3 tutorial of modeling a car, in this one we started to refine the front part and added also some detail on the doors. 

It is good to know I'm getting more confident modeling such a complex car, and that I'm getting used to the tools. 

Film: The Day the Earth Stood Still,1951 , Robert Wise

This week and part of the narrative lecture, we were shown classic Sci-fi movie, which is often considered a B-Movie, The Day the Earth Stood Still. This film is a Sci-fi Classic and considered one of best sci-fi's of all times. It was directed by Robert Wise and starred actors such as Michael Rennie as the Alien Klaatu and  Patrica Neal as Helen Benson.

The plot of the film starts when a so tranquil American society is invaded by an UFO of an alien race, this happening calls the attention of people, television, army and even the president. While in many films, this invasion is a hostile one, in this one, the only alien invader, Klaatu, assumes a friendly approach, by not only assume an human appearance, but actually to help the human race to evolve in a better. However, the stubborn humans associate Klaatu with an hostile invader and defend against his harmless device. In the same UFO, is Gort, a Robot which is programmed to destroy the all earth if Klaatu fails to transmit his message to the world.
Taken to observation in an hospital, Klaatu asks the scientist in service to help him transmit this important message to the all leaders of the World, though the scientist helps him, it just proves impossible as they would never seat at the same table. Klaatu worried about not being able to inform the world  manages to escape and blend himself with humans, to find a better way to give the information.
Wandering around in the night, he finds a pension to stay for a few days until he can find a better plan, in there he meets Helen Benson, and her son Bobby.
Bobby being a fanatic about sci-fi, and assuming that Klaatu is a FBI agent, draws interest in knowing him better. From time onwards, both of them become good friends. One one hand, Bobby gets fascianted by all the stories Klaatu as to tell, on the other hand, Klaatu is rewarded by asking bobby to show him a bit of the human world.
Meanwhile, Klaatu asks Bobby if he know who is the most intelligent person on the planet, where the kid replies that he knows Professor Jacob Barnhardt, where his mother works.
in order to achieve his mission Klaatu reaches Prof. Jacob and presents him with the part of the situation, after he asks the prof. to gather the most intelligent people of the planet.
Despite, the so well- planned plan does not go the way they want, where Klaatu after long time hidden his found again by the army and shot dead in the middle of the street. However, Helen Benson helps him to get his mission back on track, when she meets the Gort and says some magical words.
The robot itself, saves the alien and helps him to complete his mission, where at the end of the film,  Klaatu explains it is good that the human race is evolving and knowing new means of combustion, but if by any chance, these same means are used to endanger the other races sharing the Universe with humans, he has order to annihilate the planet Earth.

This film is considered one of the best of Sci-fi films of all time, because everything about is just great.
Although, critics often question if this film belongs to a b-movie type of film, the finesse of the graphics and the quality of the script show otherwise.
The plot is so preciously written that everything seems to be in place to engage the audience until the end, it uses well-known term in cinema language, the macguffin, as it doesnt reveal Klatuu's message until the end of the film, which just makes audience engage in the rest of sub-plots easily.
In terms of set design, this factor is often seen in many b-movies where the cheap set designs speak for the pictures, however I do think the in The Day the Earth Stood Still is not outdated at all, although not very expensive sets, they are not also any cardboard models of buildings.
The sound of design, was mastered perfectly to fit the picture, the use of the theremin, to create a spooky yet sci-fi sound and atmosphere to the film, is something to absorb and use in my narrative project.
The acting was really convicing, I shall say that Michael Rennie's version of the Alien was much better Keanu Reeves one in the recent remake, And I shall say that if I ever taught of an alien with an human look it would definitely look similar to him.

Overall, a astonishing film, and really useful to understand the cinema language used insci-fi films, something to take in consideration to my narrative project.

Friday, 22 October 2010

Unit 2.01- Research: Characters Influence Maps

As the new assigned Art director alongside my colleague Chris, I decided to take the characters already designed for our project, and bring them together to the Art style we are going for. In the pitch, the feedback related to the characters was that they despite being good designs, they were belonging to a completely different world, a more cartoony and stylised world.
So in order to move this project forward quicker, me and Chris and the rest of the group are working together to create characters that will fit with our animation style.
The first step is to come up with some influence maps that can be used not only by me, but also by any other group member, to base their sketches on it. For the purpose, to bring the style of the characters create closer to the same style.
Although this job was done a few weeks, ago, due to the circumstances it is needed to redo all the influence maps and forget the old ones as they belong to a different world.

 The Scientist- Influence Map

Working closely with the director, me as the Art director, am trying to portray his idea of the scientist to perfectly fit in our animation. After his description of scientist, I restarted the researching british scientist looks. the description he gave me of a scientist can easily be associated with the term "boffins", which consist in scientists, medical doctors, engineers and other people based in the scientific research area. This term is often associated to a certain type of character, a clever and nerdy person, become a quite introverted person. Litterally, what we are looking for.

General- Influence Map

Another issue, was our general character, where we went for a more American approach of Army, in order to Anglicize the general we have to bear in mind the idea that British Army is completely different from the American. British Army is often known as a more sophisticated body of attack and defense. Therefore, our "destructive" look General was a bit misplaced. To understand this sophistication, I gather some different pictures from real-life generals and some actors playing General in British films and TV Series. Clearly the difference is visible between concepts.

Scientist's Assistant- Influence Map

Our Scientist's Assistant and the main woman in our animation, was again misinterpreted, the idea of a bombshell character was something we aimed for but in the end it would not fit in the animation. To create a truthful British assistant, we have to understand how they often appeared either in TV Series or Films. On one hand, American main actresses were filled with glamour and sex-appeal, British Actresses were more modest, using this modest beauty in their favour. The modest type of women starred in these films, brought cuteness to the film, but also they were associated to British culture of that time.

Names such as Barbara Wright, Janet Munro, Liz Shaw, Sara Kingdom, Victoria Waterfield and Susan Foreman, among many others, are names worth looking for.

Generic Woman- Influence Map

Finally, another character misinterpreted, was a generic female character, although not as important as the main characters, it is a extra character which will be need in our animation world. So a faithful understanding of women in 1950's Britain is crucial, looking at their look, we have an idea how a extra actor would look when featured in a 1950 film.

Unit 2.01- Research: London Landmarks

To create a rather more familiar look for our animation to British audience, we decided to incorporate some lhistorical landmarks that will characterized the metropolis upon we are setting our city. Many landmarks could make the list, however, and in order to follow through the idea that we are setting our animation in the year 2000 but with the vision of 1950's, just some can fit in it.
The use these landmarks and in order to not only saves us time modelling the landmarks, but also to use the same technique of composition tow footages in one, ( even if one is a backdrop and other is the CG Render).

To show our imaginary world in the animtion we have a small sequence at the beggining of the trailer when we show establishing shots of the world. Landmarks such as, Big Ben , Tower Bridge, St Pauls Cathedral or Hyde Park, have a posssibility to feature in our scene.

Big Ben

Big Ben is a must have landmark in the animation, not only for many centuries has been the main attraction for travellers and Britons alike, but also it marked the beginning of the Industrial Revolution, something to constrast with our retro-futuristic style.

Hyde Park 

Our pod will land in some sort of green park, so what about make it land in such a distinguish green park for many British people, Hyde Park, a green park in the center of London, with beautiful patches of green grass, i do think the perfect setting for a menace from outer space. Although Hyde Park is in the center of London, we are not particularly happy of using the existing buildings surrounding it, so our cheap architect in service have to plan some more retro-futuristic buildings to populate the surroundings of the park.

Don't you agree such a beautiful place, with atmospheric lighting shining through. Perfect for a dramatic landing site.

St Paul's Cathedral

St. Paul's cathedral is another landmark building that maybe we will be featuring in our animation, this idea came from a post posted before by Aflockopfpixels, which shows a picture from the Invasion of the Cybermen Episode in one of the first Doctor Who: Episodes. In order, to pay a homage to the so famous series, and to identify clearly with the British audience, we are thinking of using the same type of setting when the Invisible Cannibals attack the human race. 

In order to create a successful backdrop, the concept artist in the group will take on pictures and create a matte painting, which will a cheaper version of actually go on site and record real life-footage.

If you wonder, the coloured images were taken by Ruben, in one of many trips to London, good to see that after sometime they start to be useful. 

Unit 2.01: Research: British B-Movies

In terms, to Anglicize our film, I researched more specifically the B-movies made on this side of the Atlantic. Although American B-movies were a big part of hollywood cinema, British b-movies contributed not only for British cinema, but also to worldwide cinema.

Investigating the importance of British B-movies, we looked at some trailers for the same films.

Devil Girl From Mars

Devil Girl from Mars is a British B-movie, best know for most of cheesiest moments, the cheap special effects, bad lighting and some bad acting, in cinema, however it populated with good things, being a low-budget film, it gave the chance to audience to go and see it more often at a cheaper price. Although the special effects can be define as being bad for today's cinema, for that time, they created one of the most chilling moments.
These factors can be seen already in the trailer, which consists of voicovers, which will basically tell you the whole film. The abundance of sci-fi sound -effects, and the look of cheap of special effects.

The Earth Dies Screaming

The Earth Dies Screaming is another good example, of a cheap version of film, by mixing real life footage with studio footage and with disastrous acting, creates a really chilling yet welcoming film to watch. The idea of using composited footages, will be something to consider in our project. Despite being a CG Animtion, we are trying to recordr footge seperately and later composited into the same animation.

Cosmic Monsters

Cosmic Monsters, is another british B-movie, which explores the imagination of birtish cinema, while in America films were worried to show an alien menace, The very British Cosmic Monsters, brought human together to fight an alien race of another type in so familiar soil. This was something present in many British b-movies, the use of totally different menaces and monsters with the same alien invasion narrative.

The Trollenberg Terror

The Trollenberg Terror, also known as The Crawling Eye in America, is other of many sci-fi British B-movies, It deals once again with composition technique of two footages, one being a small replica of the monster, and other a real fotage acting, although it is visible for the so attentive eye today, it was a amzing use of special effects of that time.

The Quartermass Xperiment

X The Unknown

Another 2 trailers really known to British audience as the story was first featured in BBC TV Series with the same name. Again these 2 trailers, show all the characteristics pointed before cheesy voice-over, cheap acting and poorly written storyline.

Overall, these trailers will helps distinguish our own animation, not only because they are British, but because they bear British characteristic on the B-Movies.

Thursday, 21 October 2010

Film: The Quartermass Xperiment, 1955, Val Guest

Last week and part of the narrative project lectures, we were shown a british b- movie, where by watching it we would be able to find the differences between the British and American versions of B-Movies.
The film shown was the Quatermass Xperiment, or the Creeping Unknown for the American audience, this film is a sci-horror British B-movie directed by Val Guest.
Quatermass Xperiment's plot starts when a a strange object is seen by a young couple, this object happens to be a Missile/ Spaceship sent by the Prof. Quatermass. Being aware of the strange happening Police and Fireman hurry to the landing site, to find that two members of the crew disappeared and the other is barely alive.
Taken to the hospital under supervision, this third member of the crew undergoes a state of metamorphosis transforming into a horrible monster, to satisfy his needs he starts to attack people and animals and retreats from the world, Inspector Lomax, the man in charge to find this monstrous thing, is not fortunate to find until they meet at the last part of the film.
Set in a really familiar place, the Westminster Abbey, the Alien monster is ready to scavenge again, however this time the inspector is ready to capture it.
After beating the monster, Prof. Quartermass realises that Aliens had evolved into superior being and have a different way of trying to capture the human race, however Quartermass is more than ready to carry on his experiment again.

As some people may know Quartermass Xperiment, at first, was a BBC Sci-fi series, that later became a film, and recently was remaked in 2005.
Quartermass Xperiment the first hammer film which set the beggining of British cinema in the realms of sci-fi and horror, has became a landmark in the same genre.
This reputation was earned by different factors, according to Kim Newman, a reviewer for Empire Magazine, 'The Quatermass Xperiment benefits from its documentary-style approach, menacing score, and some sterling performances.', indeed this film although being a low-budget film, has some really convincing acting, not only by the main actors, but principally by the muted survivor of the space rocket, who by not speaking gives shivers down your spine when looking at his poorly state, ho overtime will transform and that only in the last part of the film will reveal its true form.
In terms of set design, being a low-bugget film much is not to be expected, not a perfect use of lighting neither special effects is used, however, in my opinion, this film is successful make the audience of that time or even of today with an uneasy feel and chilling feeling.
Being a British film , many things it derived from its fellow American horror/ sci-fi style, one of them being the use of a different accent, the use of main landmarks to center and clearly in what place this film is from. In terms of styles, british culture being different from American, the whole film has a meaning in his core, which such films like Frankenstein, or Elephant
equally bear. In Quartermass Xperiment and for my whole surprise , is the first time I see a Scientist/ Professor as the villain, as the monster who will sacrifice people for his own studies and where the sacrificed crew members, have no choice to turn into aliens.
Also, I found the last part of the film really intriguing, although the perfect setting for a sequel, I found how cruel a human being can be when the only thing he is thinking is his pride.
This type of ending from that time ownwards, has turned into an cinema formula to create sequels.

Overall an enjoyable film, and really useful particularly for my narrative project, in which British b-movies are being used as main reference.

Watching the trailer now, I realised how cheesy and underdeveloped it looks, surely to take in account for our animation.

Maya Tutorials: Lip-Syncing week*3

Here is the 3rd week, for the Lip syncing tutorial, where we added the eye blink and tongue movement to the previous animated character.
Although, I had done this long ago, I haven't add a chance to post it, but now it is done.

Also, although today was a bit pointless to get some Maya work done in Class because my account seems to blacklisted in some sort of network bug ( why I have my Surname starting in Ma... ?:( ) , I could not access the files, however I spent some time, working with the phonemes, on the 11 second club at home, and Im quite happy with the progress, I will try to finish as soon as possible and then post it on here for some feedback.

Unit 2.02- Character Design:Workshop Session 5

So this week we had our 5th session of Character Design workshop, and how enjoyable it was. This week, we were taught by Justin Wyatt, that to better design a character and give him a recognisable personality we have to rely on body postures.

So our first task was draw from real life poses, so we had a small life drawing class, where we would pose for a few minutes and the rest would be drawing the pose quickly. I found this exercise really helpful, to quickly get some poses right. I'm willing to carry on with this exercise in my own time.

The second task was to use face expressions to convey the personality of the characters. Face expressions are a quite easy veihcle to portray a character, because they lay on something recognisable for all of us. So we did have a go to create some face expressions for our existing characters.

Tuesday, 19 October 2010

Unit 2.01 Concept Art: RAD Device Concept

Here's the concept for the device which will solve the case in this film, although it may not feature in the trailer as we dont want to spoil what is happening in the end of the film, it maybe be use in terms of Marketing. At B3D Studios, we want to sell a miniature version of the RAD device, so everybody can go outside an try to fight the invisible cannibals with a hairdryer look-like device.

Once again, the main sketch was done by Aflockofpixels, the engineer in service, and my job was to take it a bit further into the digital world.

The concept:

The main sketch

Monday, 18 October 2010

Unit 2.02- Character Feedback W/ Colin White

Today, we had the chance to meet up with Colin White for a one-to-one tutorial discussing our characters.
For people who don't know Colin White, he worked as an animator for the film Who framed Roger Rabbit? , creating the bombshell character Jessica Rabbit, he also worked in Watership Down and in Casper the Friendly Ghost, not only he worked as a 2d animator but also stepped into the world 3D, with animation in the film Dragonheart, 1996.

To start, I have to say it is enlightening to have such big names in the industry, being presented to us, and being able to give us feedback in our ideas.
However, I felt a bit ashamed to not have millions and millions of drawings to show to him, as despite I love character design, the narrative project was overwhelming the time I had to draw.
Being aware of this now, I have to know when to differentiate projects and spent the same amount of time in both.
But leaving the excuses out, I was surprised when I explained my idea to Colin White, and he could picture it straight away. After detailing everything about my idea ( robot pirates, set in the steampunk time, a villain captain, a hero and a henchman), I showed him the body shapes drawings, and he mentioned that the shapes I came up for each character were working perfectly and that he could easily look at the character and see their personalities ( something I'm trying to achieve nonetheless).
Also, Colin White pointed that now I should start to draw some more details, maybe add some old clothes, even though they are robots, to have a more pirate characteristic they should have old and dirty clothes. And to incorporate devices inside the pirates, e.g. binocular eyes, or a hook/ hand, this was such a brilliant idea and would create a more appealing and interactive character.

Finally, when speaking to Colin and seeing him drawing I felt an urge to get my own sketchbook out and brainstorm ideas via paper, the most accurate way for me to express, shameful that the 15 minutes were already gone. Maybe next time...

Unit 2.02- Character Design Rough Body Shapes

Having as title for my 1980's cartoon "Robot Pirates", and also having my cartoon idea pretty much developed, i decided to sketch out some body shapes for the different characters featuring in them.
These characters are: the villain, a old cunning robot who became the captain of the ship where the robots execute their acts of robbery and extortion of other ships, he is meant to command them as their leader.
A young pirate robot, who is tired of this type of life, and decides to revolt against the other robots.
For the sidekick, I had two options, it either would be a cute companion of our hero, who would help him in the most opportune times, or either a henchman for the Captain, this character would reflect the captain in strength, but not really in intelligence, he would be the right hand man of the captain, who would obey orders instead of giving them.
This question was arising until I started to draw the body shapes, where I found that the Captain having a henchman would be more appropriate, and a easier target for gags.

Villain shapes: Robot Captain

For these body shapes, I wanted to create a more cunning look Captain opposing to a strong one, my impressions of pirates lies in the idea that they are really clever and tricky , so I wanted to give that aspect to the Captain. For that I looked at characters such as Jafar from Aladdin , Captain Hook from Peter Pan, and Maleficent ( the Witch ) from Sleeping Beauty. Therefore, a more skinny and tall shape was what I was looking for.

The Hero: Young Robot Pirate

For my Hero, I wanted to demonstrate the youth in term of shapes, instead of having a square jaw strong character, I wanted a more humble and simple look guy. However, the shapes had to appeal the eye, so where the captain character design is based on hard edges, the hero have a more smooth shape, not only to look friendly but also to look young. Finally, I gave him a more human-like proportions, this was helped by Justin Wyatt, who taught us that often hero character from other races of specimens often have resemblance with human, for them to be more recognizable to the audience.

The Sidekick: A Brute Henchman Robot Pirate

For my sidekick, it was quite tricky, what actually started to be body shapes for heros and villains, turned into the body shape for the brute henchman, an over-toned and over-worked out muscle.

Having some body shapes down, I'm ready to develop them even further.

Finally, I will be adding a properly written synopsis, over the last couple of days, which will describe the whole main idea behind the cartoon.

Sunday, 17 October 2010

Unit 2.01 Concept Art: Retro- Futuristic Cars Concept

Alongside with the design of the tank, I drew a couple of car designs which will populate, the Metropolis, using the retro- futurist style as a starting point, I developed some designs of imaginary vehicles. Also, I divided them by categories normal, cheap and expensive. having different cars with reasonable basic shapes will help me to randomize the metropolis.

Once again, this concepts were based on a sketch by Aflockofpixels, which later I developed in 3 designs.

Unit 2.01 Concept Art: Army Tank Concept

Here is the complete Concept Sheet for the Army Tank, based once again on a sketch by Aflockofpixels (Ethan), My job was to draw the turnaround version, and a perspective view to better depict the vehicle.
This concept depicts the main vehicle used by the army to surround the Invisible menace.

The Concept:

The Sketch:

Saturday, 16 October 2010

Unit 2.01 Concept Art: Space Pod Concept

Here is the concept for the Space pod, which will carry the scary invisible forces from beyond the stars. Based on the sketch by Aflockofpixels, my job here was to clean up the drawing and paint it digitally, the use of Black and white is to follow through the concept of our Animation, a B&W 1950's Sci-Fi B-movie.. Also, having done an accurate front and top view, this concept is ready to be modeled.

The Space Pod Concept:

The original sketch and some other support material.

Unit 2.01- Narrative: Trailer Title Final Samples

After receiving feedback on the previous uploaded trailer titles, I decided to take the most appealing title and develop it a little further. By changing the white colour for a transparent layer, it will help me to better depict the invisibility quality.
For the title, when applied to the trailer I want to create a small animation within the title, this technique was seen before in the B-movies, such as " Invisible Invaders", and consist in have the normal version of the title, which will then become transparent. only visible by the glow around it or the outline of the font. Just like this:

For a better idea of what I'm trying to achieve here is the trailer.

Invisible Invaders trailer:

Finally, to mention colour, the coloured version is to be used in the Poster and concept layouts, where the B&W version will be used in the final animation.

Wednesday, 13 October 2010

Unit 2.02- Character Design Workshop Week 4

This week's workshop was really interesting, we taught how props in a character actually have also a big deal in defining it. Although, we dealing with 2D characters, the examples presented by Justin Wyatt were from films such as the Lord of the Rings Trilogy, not only they are really good designs but also they associate witht he characters fully.
On the second part of the Workshop, we were asked to get some inanimate objects and create characters out of them, this task reminded me of Unit 4 when we had to do an animation based on a inanimate character and a emotion.

Here are the characters I came up with.

And here is a reminder of the character I did for the previously mentioned Unit 4.

The Ecstatic Pepper mill!

Tuesday, 12 October 2010

Unit 2.01- Narrative: Trailer Title Examples

Having the book Sci-fi Poster Art, I decided to have a go in trying to create a title for the retro film trailer, using the same style used in the 1950's posters, I tried to create something similar for my film title " The Invisible Cannibals from Beyond the Stars", however being a long title I found difficult to get the composition right. But so far here is what I came up with.

Unit 2.02- Character Design Workshop Week 3

Last week we had another of our character design workshop sessions, once again a really helpful session, where we learned how to do the different body shapes of the characters and how to apply them in different views. Either front or side.
The idea was to use already drawn characters such as Homer Simpson or Popeye and apply them in the different view ports.