Hi all, just a quick one today. This week I spent time working on....[drumroll]....rocks! Again, I'm just practicing and exploring. And while the pages and pages of rough sketches aren't much to write about, they did happen. Sketch research: yet another unsung part of the art process...
For the next few months I'm going to be juggling my time even more with another big client project which is going to last a couple months. During this time, I will continue to chip away at Hunted. The updates here aren't going to stop, but they'll probably be just as short as this one. On the upside, less reading! ;)
I studied trees this past week. Drawing principally from native Colorado flora, I've been trying to get better at understanding how they grow. And as a designer, I've been tinkering with ways to distill the shapes into simpler parts.
Colorado has a unique look, and much of this is thanks to the types of trees that cover its mountains. Aspen trees will definitely show up in this film, but pine trees will be bountiful. So I've been studying pine growth patterns. Colorado (at the altitude that this film is set) has ponderosa pines and lodgepole pines. These pines are big and tall, with almost sparse looking branch patterns. Most pine trees in Colorado don't look like Christmas trees.
Early development, especially during the research phase, includes a LOT of bad drawings. This is when artists are trying to wrap their minds around the problems. It's also a time for cheap experimentation. Cheap just means done quickly and not wasting time on a bad idea. Below are a couple scribbles from my sketchbook. It's not art, but it is part of the process. Take a look:
Sketching is massively useful. In a matter of seconds, I can see if an idea has potential or not. Hopefully this is interesting. Until next week!
I've been exploring more of the visual feel for the last couple days. Not sure how much I've talked about this, but I want this film to have a strong sense of lighting. In fact, lighting is my number one priority for the visuals. I want there to be deep contrasts, early dawn moments, sunsets, campfire settings, long forest shadows, hazy lighting effects, leaf-filtered sunlight...all that. As a somewhat moody film with dark undertones, I think that lighting will serve it well.
Well, after a good deal of analysis, Hunted is officially the new priority for Forma Pictures. If you read last Friday's update, you'll know what I'm talking about. Original IPs! :)
That said, I'm still going to be doing freelance work when I can. Remember! If you and I have worked together before, and you like my work and how I work, be sure to tell everyone about me! Word of mouth has brought me the best jobs so far. A couple of you have helped me in this regard already, and I heartily thank you. My stomach thanks you too, because groceries cost money.
This week I'm going to be taking a hard look at the layout and editing of the film, so I'll probably talk about that next Tuesday. Until then!
The past few days have been unusually soul-searchy. I've been examining and trajectorizing Forma Pictures overall, and a good deal of this has centered around Hunted and its future. Every hour counts, and it can be easy to second guess yourself. I'll go into this more on the main blog on Friday, but it is still relevant to Hunted.
It's relevant because Hunted is a mammoth project. At least for me, and at least at this point in my career. Ultimately I want to deliver something top notch that says something meaningful. That's what art is all about. But the fact remains that I need to make sure (to the best of my ability) that Hunted will contribute directly to the success of this business. Money, it turns out, is an unrelenting concern in this world. ;)
The question I've been debating (with all my mental ability) is whether to focus completely on Hunted, or whether to put it on slow burn for a while. The former will result in a much earlier release date, but there will be few updates (besides BTS content) coming from Forma Pictures during that time. The second option would enable me to release new, shorter content (still high quality) where there would be less risk in the outcome of each piece.
As of now, Forma Pictures has a small audience. Principally this is because it has not yet released original intellectual properties. So far it's mostly client work. But as we know, client work will never result in lasting success.
So, this has been the debate. Focus on Hunted now and release this IP when it's finally finished, or work on different IPs that can release sooner. I'm not even going to start on the monetization debate that's been roiling in my mind all week. But I will say that if I finally do make everything and it becomes successful, it will be sweet. Growing up poor, and working my way up step by step continues to be quite the journey!
As always, I'm trying to be transparent about this process. If you have ideas, comments, or anything else...comment below.
I've been thinking a lot about Hunted while I've been on vacation this week, but I haven't consolidated any ideas just yet. This is what I've got for now...
Instead of showing another drab, gray render of the block out, I thought it would be more fun to look at some concept art...
I've been learning that pretty much all of my ideas for films, Hunted included, start from the place of a visual artist. I have some story ideas, but I mostly have mood and art ideas. That's probably just how my brain operates. Basically there are visuals that I want to make, and that's what motivates me first. Out of necessity, I figure out stories for them, but only because they're so important for movies to be interesting. Still, I love movies because they are all about visual storytelling. Other people can do the writing and directing, and then I'll set up the visual language, or design of it. Sound good? Okay, it's settled. ;)
Happy Tuesday! Concept:
If you follow the main blog, you'll know that I've been making daily sketches. I've actually been using them as a way to subtly test ideas and technical approaches for Hunted. I don't know why, but I've been on a massive atmospheric perspective kick. Stylized distance indications, simple shapes, textured planes, and triad color palettes make me unusually happy. So, expect to see more of my attempts at those things.
I'm not much of a character artist, so I tend to stay away from that. But I do enjoy environments, even though I suck at them. That's why the film features the setting as heavily as it does. That's also why most of the concept art is of mountains, flora and buildings. Below is one of the many reference pictures I took in the Rockies a few months back. The day was coming to an end and a storm was brewing overhead (hence the dominance of ambient light). It was also very high up (~11k ft). My California-accustomed lungs were working overtime that afternoon.
Happy Tuesday! This is gonna be a short one, but I have a concept for y'all to look at.
The feeling I'm trying to capture here is very moody and cold, but with a touch of warmth. The film basically takes place during the course of one day. It starts in the morning and ends in the evening. Below is a morning shot, or an attempt at one. And having grown up in Colorado, I'm trying to show what it feels like to be in the high mountains. It's very unique.
This is the first post of the new, second blog that will focus on the development of Forma Pictures' first original short film. Previously, I was posting updates on its progress in the main blog. But I decided that Hunted needed its own place. I have a hunch that some people are only interested in tracking the movie's process. So, there are 2 blogs now.
The primary reason I'm doing this is because of the success that I've had with the daily sketchbook. So, updates and art will come every Tuesday.
Isaac recently wrote some cool new stuff for the score, which has made it even better. On my end, I've been rewriting scene 4. I'm trying to streamline the narrative and clear up the confusing parts. It'll probably require more visuals, but that's okay. But I gotta tell ya, de-clunking stories takes time.