Saturday, 23 June 2012

Pirouette Wasteland Sketches

Pirouette Wasteland was a working title I used when playing with a suite of concept sketches some of which are below. The idea was a post-apocalyptic world under siege by mutations and monstrosities of various sorts. The idea that the plague ridden evil horde was out to pray upon the weak, and that includes the last remaining pockets of grace and culture. So the heroes here were to be a secluded holdout of dance students and their teachers who continue their studies while interweaving combat and survival techniques with various forms of dance instruction. Bring in the idea that when the students go out into the wasteland to gather materials they must contend with the mutagenic gases and the creatures they created. Each would wear a mask and take on a persona. The plotlines could involve other hold-outs calling for their help or the tracking and return of critical resources, even just defending the dance school from various forms of beastie would be interesting.

Anyhow, here are some of those concepts straight from the pages of the sketchbook. This book has a rough texture on the pages which gives a different feel. Most of the sketches are head-forms, but I like the visual idea of beautiful dance-based combat vs disgusting mutations.

Actually, these sketches are from a vile wasteland - lets at least inject a little of that with a groovier background for them.

Friday, 22 June 2012

Brave Pixar

With Pixar's Brave almost upon us I found myself looking at a few community created Pixar Montage pieces. What is clever about montages is the process of piecing together from an often vast scope of video (in this case) to impart some feeling, emotion or inspiration. Much like the creation of a showreel actually and with material like the collected works of Pixar to choose from some people do a fantastic job.

While we are here, trailers for Brave and a preview of Monsters University. I cant wait, their work at Pixar is extraordinary.

Thursday, 21 June 2012

Megabloks WoW

One of the cool things We got to see at Supanova the other day was the all the preview sets of the Megabloks World of Warcraft toys. While I may be a Lego person at heart, Megabloks have a similar build logic, but a different take on the aesthetic. Lego is all about converting the look'n'feel of a license to the Lego mould which has a huge appeal, the fact that a little Lego Darth Vader has the same format as other characters is very cute. Megabloks is more open to having the figures match the License - so here in the WoW sets each character is a different height and build with specialised pieces and per element shading or patterns in an extensive way. This promo video explores the union of Mega and Blizzard:

Seeing the sets in person, they certainly have the Megablok feel - they dont have the crisp clarity of Lego at all, but they are very emotive of the License - in this case these famous WoW characters really come to life as Megablokiens.
Though we dont get any female characters at all (what is up with that), Arthas is super and you gotta love the Orcs. I would love to have a few of these on my shelf...

[Megabloks WoW sets - images via their flickr stream]

Other interesting licenses Megabloks have under their wing are Hello Kitty (so so cute), Halo and Starcraft is coming as well.

Wednesday, 20 June 2012

Unity3D interactive archvis

One of the notions that we like about real-time 3D engines for architectural visualisation, isnt just that designers, stakeholders and clients can get a much better feel for the spaces, lighting, setting and all the other elements - but also being able to make some design decisions from within the experience.

Here is a nice example by Juan Camilo Alcaraz using the free version of Unity3D.

The ease of changing the colours in this case is something that any user would be able to do. Though they are a little trapped in how they choose the colours, it is a great way to explore options with the impact visible in first person instantly - not via a rough plan and some colour swatches. Juan used his skills with 3ds Max to bake in lots of the lighting and fidelity before bringing the assets into Unity, this has lent the free version a quality that often lets down this engine, but it is looking good here.

Note you can try the demo using the browser plugin!

Tuesday, 19 June 2012

The Eagleman Stag

Here is a short film masterpiece by Mikey Please (cool name) and his little crew that won the 2011 BAFTA for best short animation and a slew of other awards - it really is that good. The Eagleman Stag stop motion uses foam models to create a gorgeous effect (rather digital looking in many ways) along with some superb sound and voice overs and inspired production all combine to create a wonderful piece full of meaning that is oh so watchable.

The making video is a little work of art in itself with a little narrative, its own humour and wit - plus seeing behind the scenes of these things (as always) reveals so much of the work and talent that is required.

Sunday, 17 June 2012

Supanova Sydney 2012 & Nicola Scott Originals

Another Sydney Supanova is done and dusted and was a complete blast once again. Though I failed to dress up (apart from some cool t-shirts) there were heaps of people who did which continues to add to the whole feel of the event. There were the usual stars for us to see and the actors are much better up there on stage with the questions (by and large) than say the comic artists. Hearing the set stories from Harmony (Mercedes McNab) and Caprica Six (Tricia Helfer) were great fun.

The best part of Supanova for me though is being able to see some serious comic artist talent live and in the flesh. Watching them turn a blank page into a beautiful sketch before your eyes is what it is all about. I got to see Nicola Scott create a few pieces for people and she is a real champion of Aussie comic talent being a local Sydney girl who mixes it with comic legends for DC.

In the end I finally bit the bullet and decided to invest in two of her original pencil drawings for Teen Titans 93. These (once I frame them up) will be able to finally grace those artwork slots we had created in our house - gorgeous artwork on display. These are just photos of the pieces - might get around to doing nice scans another time.

But that isnt all, on the back of these two pages are a suite of sketches that reveal some thinking and layout tests for these pages - so so good.

This is the cover for the issue that these pages are from!

[Teen Titans 93 cover via]