Tuesday, 2 August 2011

Expose 9

When Kinokunia had another of the 20% off sales on art books the other day, it was just a matter of what, not if. After much changing of minds and flip-flopping I walked out with a shiny new copy of Ballistic's Expose 9. 'Finest digital art in the known universe'. The book is graced by an array of artwork pieces across a suite of categories totalling some 444 pieces by 327 artists. There is so much digital candy here that it can actually be hard to stop on each image long enough to see all the depth and refinement. You can see a little preview of the inside on the Ballistic site, but that only gives you a feel for the real deal.

With the purchase come a code that allows download of a set of videos and files (brushes etc) by artists featured in the book. We get Ruoxing Zhang's walk-through vid of her cover above, plus Frederic St-Arnaud's walk-through of his 'The Decline of Babel Myth – Jacobsen War' image.

CGSociety have had a few features now covering artists and pieces from the book. David Fraher's Architectural piece I may have covered before, but I do love Meny Hilsenrad's still life, 'Classroom Scene'.

[Classroom Scene - THE MAKING OF from Studio Aiko on Vimeo]

[Classroom Scene by Meny Hilsenrad creation images via CGSociety]

The production quality of the book, is wonderful and I personally prefer this soft-cover feel. The printing is gorgeous throughout and I do like having the info about the software used with the title and artist of each image. This reinforces how this is all digitally created and gives a little insight into the production (though only a hint really). While the quality and execution of the portraits, still life & architectural work is flawless, it is the character concept pieces that I am drawn to most - all that nifty implied detail.
Current favourite is maybe 'Servant of the Castle' by Yongming Yang (pp104)

Monday, 1 August 2011

MvB Concept Sketch Compilation 8

After a good talk with Steve @ COFA about my project and getting back on track to complete the MDM, I scanned in some of the concept sketches for the Moths and Butterflies of late and have compiled them here.
Some of the things I have been playing with here include a greater amount of 'sexual dimorphism' (I like that term, just a greter difference between male and female). So now the females have the curvy lower half producing that waist-to-hip ratio, plus the eggs can be in the abdomen section quite neatly. The males lose their lower half altogether, replaced with an almost whip-like tail/tendril.

These sketches dont show much emotion, but they continue to flesh out the idea. I was explaining the premise to Alicia yesterday when she asked why I was sketching more Moths 'n' Butterflies. She did seem to like the ideas, though thinking about it later I need to work on how to have 2 main perils. The idea that there is the underlying evil to be defeated, but to do that the protagonists need to elude the peril presented by the ongoing warring between the two species does add complexity until all is revealed.

In talking to Steve he covered a fascinating workshop he was involved in with Ian McCaig where they re-envisioned and developed a story and concept-set for their take on the Pied Piper. Some of the concept sketches were simply superb.
Anyhow, I likes the pics of their whiteboard, showing how their 3 act structure developed and fleshoed out over the period.

For MvB, I might see if I can strengthen the structure with this classic approach next.

Gnomon Student Reel and Blik

Here is a video showing off student work from the Gnomon courses - superb!

Gnomon Student Work Compilation 2010 from Gnomon School of Visual Effects on Vimeo.


While we are in Vimeo and cool animation productions - check out Blik:

Blik from Polder Animation on Vimeo.