Monday, December 23, 2013

Vertigo Effect

I have just finished the storyboarding course at CGMA. It was very good. (I intend to do a review post in the near future). I'm currently cleaning up a pretty extensive storyboard sequence of a little boy going off a very high diving board I did for the course.

When I needed to add a pov shot of the boy looking down from the diving board I realized that it would be cool to have a vertigo effect shot. This is one of those things you've seen a thousand times in films and tv shows but when you have to board it it's quite a challenge. I did some research on the actual effect (also known as Dolly Zoom) and this is the result.

It's best viewed by clicking the first image and moving through the image in the lightbox picture viewer.


Friday, November 22, 2013

True Grit Studies

Some studies of True Grit I did for the CGMA storyboarding course I'm currently doing. The course is awesome and I hope to post some more work from it here soon!

(these studies were done digital)

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Goodbye Isabella - Next 5

Another Next 5 inspired by a pic chosen by Lissa Treiman. The original picture can be found here. I always start these things on paper, doing a quick thumbnail to see how I'm gonna approach it. You can see the sketch for this one below.

Digital drawings with Sketchbook Pro and Photoshop.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Torpedo Sketch

A sketch of Torpeo. I'm a big fan of Jordi Bernet and his Torpedo is great. (And I should add that the first two Torpedo stories were of course drawn by Alex Toth, who is also one of my personal heroes.)  I have been sketching quite a few Torpedos recently, he is pretty tough to draw. I think this one turned out okay, though.

Ink on paper (Papermate Flair & Pentell Sign).

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Storm - Next 5

Another Next 5 I did. This one was based on this photo from this blogpost by Lissa Treiman. Check-out her site, if you don't know her work yet, she rocks!

These exercises are a great way to practice new tricks and techniques. I do think that maybe I'm still being a bit too careful with my ideas. They tend to be a bit conservative. Next time I'd really like to do something a bit more out there. 

My previous Next 5 exercises can be found here and here.

Monday, August 19, 2013

Portugal: Summer Vacation 2013

Last Friday I returned from two wonderful weeks in Portugal. It was good to take a break from things but it always feels good to get back home to. I took a couple of sketchbooks and a lot of pens, pencils and markers but I didn't do as much sketching as I'd normally do.

Im not sure why. During the first week I hardly drew anything at all, only after we got to Lisbon did I begin to do some sketches. I still had a great time and took a lot of photos. These are all the sketches I did.So only one post this year. Hope you had a great summer too, I promise to do more sketching on my next trip!

Marker and ink in a Moleskin Kraft cahier sketchbook. 

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Random Scribbles

This week I've been cleaning up my workplace. Earlier this year I moved in to a studio I share with some other guys. I have got my workplace all set up but it is covered in stacks of drawings and sketches, that I still had to find the right place for.

The other day I was watching a documentary about some Dutch architect who kept stacks of sketchs neatly organized in folders. I decided to do the same. More than 700 filed sketches later (!) I'm seeing light at the end of the tunnel. The only stack that stil remains is made up of sketches on folded up paper. I usually work on regular A4 print paper. But every now and then I'll fold the paper in half. These sketches are too small to fit in to the folders, but, because they're small, for now they can lay on the corner of my drawingboard.

I figured you might like to take a look at these so I've scanned these on for your viewing pleasure. As you can see some are real messy while others are actully quite organized. It's funny to look at back at these things, They were not made to be seen by others but there's a spontaneity to 'em I sort of like. 

Monday, July 15, 2013

Lara vs. Oni

A digital doodle of the final boss fight in the latest Tomb Raider game. If you haven't played it, you should pick it up. I didn't like the trailers but picked it up second hand, and it is really good. As in really, really good. Probably one of the best games I ever played.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Checkers Character Design

In between freelance assignments I'm usually working on one or two personal projects. Most of those never get finished, they more like exercises and when something more serious comes along I abandon them. Right now I'm working on a little story exercise, who knows I might even finish it...

These are some designs of one of the two characters, a NYC-based, 30-something head-hunter named Checkers.

Digital sketches with Photoshop.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Divine Wind

Sketch based on a picture of a WW2 Kamikaze pilot. I did some more but this is the only one I think turned out nice.

I'm prety amazed by some of the videos of Kamikaze you can find. Weird to see these guys preparing for certain death. As they say in Ghostdog: The Way of the Samurai: "Ancient Japan was a pretty strange place."

Marker and ink on paper, and some digital textures. 

Friday, May 31, 2013

Smoking Chef - Doodle

A quick digital sketch done from memory. Outside the building of my studio we have an old bus where you can get something to eat. This sketch was inspired by one of the guys working there. The atmosphere is real laid back and the food is nice, and reasonably priced.

In any other place I probably wouldn't have been too pleased with people smoking in the kitchen but here it just made me smile.

Done completely with Photoshop.

Friday, May 17, 2013

Homework - Boarding from Films

Things have been busy, recently. But in a good way! In the spare time that I have, I'm now doing this awesome story exercise introduced by Emma Coats: storyboarding from films. (Yeah, Emma Coats is the same person that inspired me to do those Next 5 exercises. I'm a fan.)

In the past I did storyboard a sequence from a film every now and then but Emma isn't into half work. In her outline of the exercise she recommends to board out an entire feature film (!) drawing one panel for every shot, if there's a camera move you draw one panel for the first, and another panel for the last frame of the shot. 

Emma's advice to choose a film you already know well, preferably one directed by Speilberg. Since I always want to do things in my own stupid way I of course decided not to go for Spieberg. But, to be fair, I did go for someone who is clearly very much influenced by Spielberg: I chose Robert Zemeckis' What Lies Beneath (2000).

A great film that I think doesn't have the status it deserves. During the late '90s /early 00's there was this Hitchcock revival going on. There were remakes of Rear Window, Dial M for Murder (A Perfect Murder) and of course Psycho. What Lies Beneath isn't a remake, it's a film made with the idea that this might be what a modern Hitchcock film might be like. The film is packed with visual effects (no surprise, it's by Zemeckis) but you probably won't be noticing most of 'em, (that's the way I believe visual effects should be used) the camera is constantly moving into impossible places: through walls, the floor etc.

Anyway, I've always felt that this film is terrifyng and extremely well made. It's a great example of filmmaking tradecraft. Zemeckis is a skilled craftsman and he is using all the tricks in the box with this one! I'm aready learning heaps!

Although the first thing I actually noticed was that this film is pretty hard to board using Emma Coats' instructions: so far it's filled with these ridiculous long shots, packed with camera moves. There's a lot of editing going on without there being any cuts at all. (There's an entire sequence of Harrison Ford and Michelle Pfeiffer talking at diner than walking into the kitchen while talking through some needed exposition, that is only one shot!)

So I've changed the rules a little and am now drawing every shot within a shot. Makes sense? No, I didn't think so. Well, for example, if the camera moves from a medium shot to a close-up, I'll draw one panel with the medium and one with the c-u, if the camera's then moving back to a total I'll draw another panel for that. The longest shot I did (that exposition sequence in the kitchen) was 10 panels for just one shot. I do expect that the cutting will get faster as the story moves on.

Jeez, look at me blabberin'! You probably don't get half the stuff I'm talking about! So sorry but, hey, I guess it shows the exercise is working. I'm posting the pages I did so far, they're not much to look at but I wanted to show you that I'm not just sitting here playing XBox all day!

Ink on paper (mostly a Pentell Sign and Pocket Brush Pen) I'm at page 6 now (I continued after I did the photos, they stop at page 5) and I'm currently 25 minutes into the movie. I expect that at the end this will be at least 30 pages.