Monday, 16 February 2015

Finn Week 5: Iron John

 So for this week we decided we'd design Iron John. I knew this was going to be a lot of fun to do as it would set the tone for a lot of the other designs for the rest of the project.
Again as with my previous designs I went with a silhouette approach. The description we had to work with from the story was: A wild man whose body was brown like rusty iron, and whose hair hung over his face down to his knees. I played a round with different ideas, sometimes trying to find other ways I could interpret hair and skin. What if Iron John is just a dude in a big iron rusty mech suit? What if his hair is made of wires or dreadlocks? How big is he going to be? Could he be part tree or animal? These were some of the questions I asked myself at the beginning of this week. I made sure to not be limited by the realities of the human form. He could look like anything! He had to be human enough to be relatable, but different enough to be mysterious. 

For these sketches, I played around with what kind of body type Iron John might have. The idea of having some more animalistic elements in his design appealed to me as did having him at a much larger scale than an average person. Iron John lives in the forest so I wanted his design to embody that as well. He had to look like he belonged to the forest but also be able to easily traverse it.

I liked the idea of giving Iron John a more primitive feel. In the description he is a wild man so I wanted to in cooperate some tribal elements into his design somehow.

Head studies are a great way for me to get solid ideas out quickly. One thing I made sure to take into consideration was that Iron John is actually a king under a spell, which is revealed later in the story. I need to subtly imply this in his design so I sketched around with this in mind.

Having found some studies I preferred, I then took some further. I looked at some of the more dominant species in the animal kingdom such as gorillas and lions. I liked how human gorillas can appear sometimes and this helped me strike a balance between human and creature.

Here is a more detailed sketch I created before moving onto my final idea.

Below is the final idea. I like to think I managed to find a balance between human and creature as well as incorporating some of those tribal elements into the design.

Monday, 9 February 2015

Finn Week 4: Wild Animals

This week we tasked ourselves with designing a creature or creatures from the story. The description in the story is simply wild animals so that gave us lots of room to play with. Just like previous designs I began by sketching. As mentioned previously, with the words wild animals to work from, we could do anything. I played around with different body types and shapes and put together some head studies.

After sketching  I’d take two or 3 creatures from my research and reference gathering, mash them together and see what I could come up with. Here are some examples.

For what I had in mind for my final, I wanted to push the tree creature idea more, but taking some elements from my previous sketches and paintings and creating something bigger. I liked the sketch of the butterfly creature from my above sketches and thought of combing that with the tree creature to create something more menacing that the huntsmen would have encountered early in the story. Possibly something similar to what a player might encounter in a boss battle in a game. I liked the idea of possibly having some of the Huntsmen ensnared in the creatures vines. Maybe he uses their bodies for some kind of energy? I also wanted to get the menacing feel of the forest from the story into the appearance of the creature as well.

Sunday, 8 February 2015

Karol Week 3: The Huntsman

There are quite a few huntsmen in The Iron John  story. All of the king's huntsmen go to the forest and vanish without a trace so he forbids anyone to enter it. Although, a few years later a travelling huntsman comes to the castle and he persuades the king to allow him to go inside and find out the reason behind the disappearing of king's people. In week 3 we decided to design that huntsman.

As Finn mentioned in his post below, we wanted to take part in Industry Workshop contest as the topic (a hunter) was quite similar to what we've planned to draw anyway. However, the contest's brief required from participants to design a hunter that was adapted to hunt on an ice planet, whereas the huntsman that I had in my mind was more suited to swampy environment like the forest that I designed in previous week. I was torn apart between those two visions for most of the week and in the end I decided to go with something in the middle, mixture of both.

As usually with character projects I started with some silhouette sketches, trying to find some interesting shapes and proportions.

After that I chose few that I liked the most and I painted on top of them. At this stage I was leaning more toward the ice planet hunter idea.

Although, when I painted these I realized that none of them would work in swampy forest at all, so I grabbed my sketchbook and explored few more ideas, pushing them in a different direction.   

I liked these much better, but I felt that this was a good opportunity to challenge myself and try to figure out a good balance between those two visions and design something that would fit both environments. And I end up with this concept:

Even though I struggled with this week's topic I can say that I'm happy with how it turned out.       

Monday, 2 February 2015

Finn Week 3: The Huntsman

For this week we tackled the Huntsman from the story. In the story the Huntsman volunteers to enter the forest and discover what lies there. On having his hound taken by Iron John he returns to the castle to tell the King of what he has seen.
We also wanted to attempt the Industry Workshop contest which tasked us with designing a hunter on a frozen planet. This also gave us some direction to work with. It was a hectic enough week with me taking a trip to London for the VFX festival and trying to play a bit of catch up, but I knew this would be a fun challenge.
I started as usual with some silhouettes and narrowed it down to my favourites. I wanted it to be a big game hunter and imagined Iron John as some kind of giant. The bottom 4 ended up being my prefer ones.
I then preceded to design sketch, trying to imagine what might be inside the silhouettes and if I could put some different shapes together. I wanted it to be some kind of sci-fi design as sci-fi isn't one of my strongest areas. Helmet studies came next.

Following on from the head studies, I went onto messing around with some suit ideas sometimes referring back to my silhouettes.

Then came the weapon silhouettes. After some late feedback, it became clear to me that my design was starting to look more like a space marine and less like a hunter. I decided to simplify the silhouette and give him some kind of bow to bring back the hunter feel in the design.

Here is my final version. I attempted to use a tutorial on costume design for film as a reference when doing the final piece. It involved a lot of photobashing and paintovers to produce a satisfying design. I feel I managed to reign back the feeling of a hunter in the design.