My first tests were just for fun, and were in really simple formats! They turned out quite nice, but nothing what I wanted. I was kind of in a rough spot at this point, so everything I was doing wasn’t all that great. So I was happy that something was at least being made even if it wasn’t that helpful.
I tested out editing certain textures I had already made and mixed with patterns adapted from Ryans designs that I drew. After that I then put them together and layered them onto simple rock shapes, I thought it gave an interesting look. These textures gave a more artsy feel to the simple things in the set, which is something we wanted to hold in the set.
After this I tested different textures out on other rocks! I thought these textures gave a simple design and composition a little something extra. They don’t particularly look like real rocks, but it’s subtly letting in the surreal to the real like theme we seem to be going with.
I also tried giving a simple set a few textures, but I did a very quick test with awful lighting and I didn’t apply the textures the best way I could have. But I thought the grassy look of the texture on the ground was kind of successful!
But overall this was not the visual look I imagined for our animation. So I wasn’t feeling extremely passionate while I created these pieces, my team seemed to like the rockas alot though.
Gianni and I then sat together and quickly tested out what a transparent layer on top of a solid object might look like. This was something that I wanted to try out from early concepts time. This too was also a really quick test, so I don’t have the best image that I could have but here’s the test.
This idea came from my early concept of ghost rocks from this bad drawing I did! But it was fun to do and I think this is something we would like to try out more!
The concepts started from experimentation. Through the designs of the sets I wanted to experiment with perspective through them, certain things could frame the moon to look as though that the moon is closer than it is. Or to create a whole surreal landscape to accentuate the moon. I wanted to create the set to look flat so as the moon always looked in reach.
I used inks to do a lot of concepts as I thought it gave a nice mystical atmosphere to the simplistic set design. The strong use of black for the foreground allowed for a sense of depth, but gave a 2D sense which is something we all decided for.
The inks gave a more illuminating feel to the sky which drew the eye to the moon, and hopefully that would make the audience know that the moon is meant to be the primary focus of the character.
Gianni then thought it might be good to work together on concept designs as it seemed to work out well when we were doing character designs and I drew ou skeletons for him to draw from, so he did the same for me. He tried to open my mind to drawing less flat and giving more depth and perspective to my concepts. He sketched out perspective lines, and showed me how to use these lines with horizon lines. From that he drew in elements to each drawing. like a piece of land in the foreground and then a small piece of land in the background. After he finished drawing I loved what he came up with, so I only work on top of them a little to clean up the lines and finish them off with coloured inks. (image below)
These pages of my sketchbooks were my favourite concepts as they all looked from the same world. I also liked the colour scheme as an art piece, but I didn’t know if the imagery created with my ink and my drawings would translate well into our animation.
Throughout when I was drawing concepts I thought the choice of camera the thought of design could all create an illusion, create a false sense of hope for the audience and the character. To make it look that the moon is closer and bigger than is rather is.
I wanted to widen our possible choices when it came to style and also colour scheme, which in turn would then affect the general narrative as colour scheme and style affect the entire atmosphere of a piece. So with this I was pushing the possible change of sense and feeling at this stage. Because of this this may have made me a little less passionate about this kind of experimentation as I think I liked where we were going, so I didn’t want to test things out too much.
We thought a nice style that we could maybe play with was the style that gravity falls had, so I tried out a style that looked somewhat similar but I wanted to make it our own, and I gave it a little more depth adapting the style to a more dry rocky land, but the green and pink gave it life and energy.
I wanted to test out a few different styles, but because they didn’t flow straight from my hand and mind I found them more unsuccessful and passion filled. I know that I get into my work quite a bit so when I see others styles and for research purposes and to broaden ideas I try and adapt another hand for a while. But it’s rarely that successful as I don’t enjoy the process as much, which shows through the work. But through these failed drawings, I found that colour scheme helped a piece a lot, by simply changing the gross yellowy greeny one, to a blue coloured piece really helped the entire drawing.
When your passion for creating a dry dead land comes from a stressful day, you end up forgiving that stress and being thankful for it. I thought the land around the character should look as dead as possible or any life(plants, nature, anything) should be far away from the character. This would be stronger for the narrative, the surroundings should show how the character is alone, even in the world around him.