Wednesday, 25 March 2009

Email correspondence

From Liam:

I don't know if you got my message but the 'new' underlying plot for the animation is that 'chip' is on the run from the Nexus. He has returned to the neighbourhood of his youth and is trying to get to this one person who always beleived there was more to him than just a no-good crook.

He sees murders as the lowest form of people and thats exactly how he sees Nexus, he kicks butt, guided by the enigmatic Mr Meaner who helps him get to the person he is after. However 'someone' read as Mr Meaner secretly alerts Nexus of his destination and he is tracked there and interupted during his reunion. During the skirmish in the room Mr Meaner convinces Chip that the only way he can protect the important person is if he crosses the one line he has put upon himself--which he does--Chip kills. And just like Mr Meaner says he saves the day. Except the important person has seen CChip kill and can never see him in the same light. She has lost what little faith she had in him. He tries to explain but its all excuses shes heard before--she runs away from him--leaving Chip alone in the room with Mr Meaner.

Mr Meaner explains to the weeping Chip, that he is a weapon, and that he was foolish for thinking he could be anything else. THE END

Tell me what you think.

My reply:

Dude that sounds awesome, it really does. But its waaaay more than 30 shots (altho if i have time id like to draw some of it as a comic). Problem is the animation is taking way longer than i had hoped meaning that i'm just starting the origin sequence. Even the the end that i had envisioned may have been to ambitious and i may have to have chip fall from the sky after the orgin flashback, put up a short fight and get shot with a trank, then cutting to a shot of the general saying bring him in. if i do that then id insert the general (unrevealed until the last shot) throughout the film giving orders. Not sure yet, I'm weaiting til I'm near the end of the flashback sequence to decide based on time I have left.

Tuesday, 10 March 2009

Leo Tsang

Head on over to this awesome blog to see how it's really done!

Sunday, 8 March 2009

1st script installment

I have had a working script but after several conversations with a writer friend of mine (Liam Gray) gave me this draft of the 1st few shots assuring me that there would be more to come every day. I think this makes it glaringly clear why he is the writer in our partnership if you look at the comic I produced on my own. I am a little nervous about having a mild swear word in there so this may be edited a little later but I am so pleased with this.

(Chip is running dramatically down a street)
CAP: Sometimes I wonder if it was all worth it. I can't tell you how many nights I spent huddled up in that cold dark cell dreaming of today--but thats all it was wasnt it--a dream.
CAP 2: A childish naive dream for another hopeless fool in way over his head...

(Reveal that he's being chased)
CAP: What is freedom anyway... just another illusion... another lie... thats all my life seems to be these last few weeks--one huge stinking lie after another.
SOLDIER1: "Target in sight vector niner-niner, requesting immediate backup."
SOLDIER2: "We're reading an etheric pulse he's about to--"

(Chip turns a corner, pauses, then shoots straight upwards)
CAP: Souless bastards... everywhee I turn there they are... they're murders thats what they are!--Murders!

(The 2 army soldiers arrive in the alley, annoyed at losing Chip)
SOLDIER1: [distressed/underbreath] "It was never supposed to be used this way..."
SOLDIER2: "ATTENTION--Attention Black Feather Squad be on the ready--the Freelancer has entered your airspace."

(We see his point of view high above the city)
CAP: I can hear them all, like tiny echoing voices in the back of my mind--talking all at once but with nothing to say...
CAP2: Can't anyone else see how pointless it all is! I just--I just need a minute to drown it all out--to drown out the voices--
MILITARY RADIO TRANSM: Black Feather to Talon 12: We're in possition and activating the neuro-scambler-. Hope this chump likes baby food heh.
CHIP: "No--No--I won't let you take that too!--I wont!!"

(Chip clutches at his head as he is mentally assulted by an electromagnetic pulse that causes both his internal and external divices to go haywire)

(Side note; I love that Liam used a neuro-scrambler as both the reason he launches into his origin flashback and is hit by a missile. Really brilliantly connects the dots and makes the sequence make sence.)

Wednesday, 4 March 2009

Art Of The World Of Warcaft

H.L Davis, BRADY GAMES; 1 edition (December 21, 2005)
It's not often that a videogame merits it's own art of book, and this isn't even a game that I've really played. It was recommended to me by a friend who lent me his copy (at a hefty 210 pages I wsn't going to buy it on a whim) but I was glad that I did. The amount of ideas packed into the book is nothing short of stunning, and whilst various art styles were showcased effectivly it was only the final design that were represented. I would have liked more in development work and noted to accompany them. Whilst many of the images were brilliant the lack of text made me flick through the book and spend less time on the work than I would of had they been anotated in some way. However the insight of how to present character designs and particularly 'set' designs are very useful reference to my project and definately give me ideas on how best to show my own work.

New Frontier

Whilst I will give Darwyn Cooke his own research post (him being my current favourite artist) I wanted to highligt this page as it's one of my absolute favourites. His economy of line and the life he can bring from it never fails to stun me. He has the absolute package for me: storytelling, style, compostion, character development- add to that the fact that he often writes, pencils and inks his own work!!! He is one of the greatest advocates of the the 3 pannel format, something I totally agree with because to me the trdaitional 6 pannel page can often look cluttered. I also thik it takes more skill to tell the same story in 3 pannels because the compostion has to be that mch stronger.

Alias 23

This is the cover to Alias #23 (minus the logos) with the pannels in the background by Mark Bagley and the foreground portrait by Davis Mack, written by Brian Michael Bendis. The issue itself deals with the 'secret origin' of the lead character- Jessica Jones, a retired superhero. Bagley himself draw several issues in the series (although not this one) but as far as I can find the art in this cover is original and not re-used from an earlier page. The issue deals with the reality of a girl getting to grips with her own powers- giving a realistic reaction in a fantasy setting. This is typified wonderfully by the contrast in styles shown by the clasically heroic comic book expression against the gritty realism of the painting. Thats about as technical as an analysis of mine can get- what I really love about the image is David Mack's paintwork, the tones and lighting are perfect but he has the confidence to keep the strokes loose which is I think what gives it it's life- and where Alex Ross' art begins to feel stiff.

I'm not entirely sure this will work as it's a gif animation but what you should see is a run cyle of Bolt. Bolt is the new Disney/Pixar film about a dog whos part of a tv show and doesn't realise it, I can't recomend it highly enough. Walking out of cinema the 1st time I saw it was when the fixation on making an animated movie for this project hit- I literally didn't sleep the next night until 5.30am because my brain was to excited- thinking about the possibilities. I've also posted some of the drawings- I'd be interested to know how easily you spot them in actual animation.

Monday, 2 March 2009

Tim Sale

JIm Steranko

There is very little that hasn't already been said about Steranko, he is the artist's artist. For his many skills I consider his uniqueness to be in his skill for composition; for design. He has created images that still resonate and are regularly homaged many years after thier original publication. His impact on the comic medium runs deep, demonstated by the fact that his 3 issue run on Captain America are among the most original and popular stories ever featured in the title. Something that generally speaking escapes the public eye is that during his time as a film concept aritst he created the look of Indiana Jones before Harrison Ford was even cast.

Character design sheets

I got my ideas on how to present my character design sheets from those created for the Spectacular Spider-man tv show by Sean 'Cheeks' Galloway ( My sheets still needs refinaement though- as shown by me not really passing the 'silohette test'.

Alan Lee

Obviously for such a big project I must do substantially more research, at the moment I am looking more at artists that inspire me than ones that might help me move my project on- expect there to be no rhyme or reason as to the ordering of these.

Alan Lee's work is made in a style that rarely interests me, I often find tonal work (particularly watercolours) muddy and unfocused- the opposite of the stark black and white in my beloved comic art. But there is something about his care, his attention to detail, the personality of his drawings that I find endlessly facinatating and enthraling. I, like most I expect, discovered his through his work in the worlds of Tolkien, in the illustrated edition of the Hobbit. I was 10 when I got the book and spent quite some time pouring over the images, hoping to glean some tips by copying them over and over. Several years later the Lord of the Rings movies hit and I was an instant fan, doing all I could to become closer to the lifestyle they represented by spending a great amount of time outside, having wooden sword fights and making my own arrows to practice archery with garden canes with arrowheads taken from the tips of gel pens. I was desperately sad when the final film hit and I realised that the hype about my favourite films series would fade away (But what did I know- they're making the Hobbit into two films right now with one of my favourite directors- Gillmero Del Toro directing). Behind all of that, the head of a vast team of artists, was Alan Lee. I received his sketchbook from his time working on the films for christmas and it has not left my bedside since. Perhaps its not even the art thats the reason I like it so much- its the memories it invokes.

"Drawing, for me, is more the process of editing out than attempting to delineate something that already exists as an image in my mind. The pencil continually corrects itself and trying to veer away from what feels wrong, and I will often do many drawings before coming up with something I feel happy with"

Lee. A (2005) HarperCollinsPublishers, London

Plot outline

Oh and all my characters in the previous post still need names by the way. Anyway heres a plot outline for the story, point by point, as you can tell there are some holes in it that need filling, I'm currently trying to find something to take out- its probably to long at the moment.

At this point the main characters name is Chip- thats definately subject to change.

-Chip is running dramatically down a street
-Reveal that he's being chased
-Chip turns a corner, pauses, then shoots straight upwards
-The 2 army soldiers arrive in the alley, annoyed at losing Chip
-We see his point of view high above the city
-Cut to flashbacks of his origin:
~Chip wakes up in a lab, greeted by a menacing general hovering over him
~Chip panics
~Cut to shot of a heart moniter, showing that his heart is racing, suddenly the equipment blows up
~The room is engulfed in the explosing
~Cut to a shot of Chip stumbling through a burning lab, behind him prisoners attack the doctors
~Shot of a furious general
-Back to Chip in the air, a close up on his head
-He's hit from behind by a missle
-Plumets to the ground
-Lands in a dumpster
-Groggily gets up to see 2 of the army units standing over him
-He Beats them easily, dispacting the second by shooting lightning out of his hand to his own surprise
-Zoom and and the screen becomes a computor screen, revealing that hes being watched by the general, who is not pleased.

thats a possible and probably realistic ending- going on the fact that i can animate a shot a day, meaning it should be about 30 shots long. I'l post the additional story, that is beginning to seem like to much now, later.

However I think its clear from this that there is a lack of character development that need to be adressed- I'm looking at you here Liam.

Model Sheet

This is my current character model sheet featuring pretty much every character I plan on including, also I need to 'toon up my designs for the extremes.

Concept art

1st up I wanted to create a finished peice of concept art for every major scene, here are the 1st time. These were made using entirely a brush, I quite like the effect.

I'm still stuggling with coming up with a name for the main character- any suggestions?

the background...

This blog is an aim to help organise my work for my final major project (A.K.A FMP) and show friends my progress- any thoughts at any point would be very apreciated. I already have the bones of what my progect will be, in fact i have most of the organs to- but am still looking for the mucles to make the whole thing work. The project is 10 weeks long, during this time I want to turn a comic I created some time ago into an animated movie. Below are the cover and the first 4 finished pages that were the starting point for my ideas.

2nd march

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