Let's start by getting some existing work out of the way. As is the case with many alumni and students, I've been responding to the speedpaint challenges over the last few weeks. So, these early paintings are without influence or discussion, just immediate responses to each segment of music.
As is often the case, these early, first responses are without too much design or real understanding. Thus, these paintings are not proposed outcomes, but rather a starting point from which to move from and begin early discussions.
Already, we have been discussing some building blocks for the project. With such an expansive animation, we know that methodologies and structure will be a huge help in finding a pathway through the sequence. Some of these early ideas are really exciting starting points for how the world might be built.
Day Cycle / Lighting / Mood
After the first sequence (The Map), the tone of the music eases us into a new world. Each sequence thereafter seems to become more developed and suggestive of a time of day. For this reason, we've discussed the idea that the animation takes place over a day cycle. Or at the very least, each sequence should require some unique lighting as we change spaces and districts. As I collect and look through the student work, I think this notion will demonstrated. Within my own paintings, there was certainly a feeling of light changes that can be seen when placed in sequence. I'll be posting some personal thoughts on each sequence soon.
The second discussion currently underway (which will change as we push visual development forward) is the aesthetic landing point between realism and abstract. Obviously, realism is an incorrect pathway. This has been proven time and time again with CG animation. But we do want to move into the world of dimensions and forms. It should be an expansive space that becomes evocative of a city, yet still maintain some abstraction. I think we'll find this landing point as paintings progress, but my next task is to start painting abstractly, just to see the potential of this extreme.
Character / Camera Direction
I'm sure Phil will talk more about this soon, but one aspect we've discussed since the beginning, is the camera direction. How do we move through these spaces in an interesting and dynamic manner? Whatever this is, it needs to help inject some narrative and momentum, rather than simply gliding through an environment. Early discussions are moving towards the idea of a murmuration of birds. A big swirling vortex of shapes that moves, expands and breaks up through the city. As we follow them, we lock onto specific characters which help provide some narrative to a specific district. Whether it be the excited, wide eyed starling awe struck by the views before them, or perhaps multiple characters racing through the streets. A simply premise, but something with great potential.
So, consider this my little introduction. This is the starting point for lots of work to come. I'll be posting soon on the following:
- Sequence Breakdowns
- CAA Responses and Analysis
- Visual Development