Thursday, February 28, 2008

Made me some little pages for my little books. Won't be able to read the text; too small. But it's still fun to write goofy stuff on them.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Some of the books have titles on their front's; can't really read them, but it's fun to know they're there.

Wee Books

I've found a pretty easy way to make book covers; make a design in Photoshop, then stuff a piece of vinyl wallpaper (pages from discontinued wallpaper books) in the printer, taped to a standard sheet of 8.5"x11" paper. Works pretty good. Though i've found that it's good to seal the ink in with some sort of matte varnish/artist's medium, as the ink rubs off when you work with them.

Monday, February 25, 2008

This week i'm going to be working on assorted junk; books, brushes, furniture, and other misc. items you might find in an artist's studio. I made a book; turned out okay, but could be alot better. Making small items sure is alot less tedious that set building - an hour or two from start to finish, and its no big deal if it doesn't turn out that well.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

I'm getting pretty tired of balsa and brown stain. I'd like to move into 'phase 2', when I really get into the painting, finishing, and putting in all the bric-a-brac crap. It's more satisfying to make small items, that are begun and finished in a few hours. Rather than endless oceans of balsa brown walls.

Built me up some stairs. The lower part will be visible in a few shots. Not much screen time though.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Boy, this prject i'm working on sure is goddamn huge. Sometimes when I come home I look at the thing and go 'what the hell is this thing, where did it come from'.

Its too bad I didn't have a group of people helping me with this thing - its so much goddamn work, and I have a finite amount of youth to do such projects. However, working with groups never seems to work well, unless they're paid, and paid fully. Otherwise, people just have 'off' periods, like I do.

It's been a month since I started working on the 'Interior Cornelisz's Studio' set. Thought it was coming along quickly, but that feels a little slow. I'd really like to have the thing pretty much done in a year.

Gonna have to pick up the pace.

Monday, February 18, 2008

I stuck my CGI 'test painting' in this shot. I like the effect; the bendy floor and the table with the angles top are doing their work.

I started building the upstairs attic thingy; I wasn't sure how it would look with the painting, so I decided to go ahead and build the mega-easel, and put in a mock-up frame the represent the painting. It seems to all be working fine.

I've never seen anything like a modern easel in my research, but my rule of thumb is that if was well within their capability to build, I can use it. As long as it isn't anything that requires an industrial revolution to exist. One example is tubes of paint; they didn't have them. They grinded raw pigments, and mixed them with linseed oil. I'm going to have such a setup in the set,

Sunday, February 17, 2008

The 'window wall & dias' (the only window in the picture, that's the one) is now raised about 4" from the middle of the set. I dig it; looks real uphill.

This is as wide as i'm going to be able to get from this angle; pretty damn wide. In the past when i've built sets, they always seem big, but then I found that I didn't have enough foreground to pull back and see everything. Not this time. I gots assloads of foreground, though we'll usually only see the front half of it.

The idea here is that the floor is 'gesturing' towards the painting, in an abstract expessionist formal sense. When done, it'll feel like the whole room is pointing at the painting (to a degree, it always seems to get watered down in construction'.

Started working on the base. Here's some pictures from yesterday.


I've been farting around with 'hell' in Vue 5 (layman's CGI program, good for landscapes). I'm NOT going to make a CGI hell; I generally can't stand obvious CGI - doesn't get any more lifeless than that stuff. Of course there is good CGI, but i'm not going to get into that.

Anyways, my plan is to make hell in Vue, and then paint over top; literally paint it, with artist's paints. The idea is that the painted version will look like it has some sort of 'force of truth' to it, like as if the painter (main character) was chanelling the underworld.

The painting is going to be visible in the set, obviously. I plan to just paint it, set scale size (24" x 16"). It won't have the appropriate level of detail obviously, but as it will always be seen, within the set, in an in-progress state, I think it will work. I thought of some more fancy solutions, but this one feels right.

Monday, February 11, 2008

Design-y Stuff

It's not terribly fun, but I intend to have a very solid idea of how the rest of the thing is going to be built - previsualization. I'd like to say that I was a smarty pants and designed everything down to the last detail before starting anything, but there's alot you just can't see until you can see part of it built or mocked up. I'm pretty happy with the design though. And there's lots of room for making decisions as I go along. As long as I have a firm idea of the general construction.

Saturday, February 09, 2008

I was also aware of where my highlights are; here's the 'whites' composition.
New Design

I've finished my Photoshop drafting (my favorite tool for it, but obviously not the best tool). It's really not much different from the design I started with, but there were a couple of key changes.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

HRD (High Dynamic Range Imaging)

Dave came over and popped off some shots (just the mock up, alot of what you're seeing is table top and bits of paper/loose balsa. He used some software that compresses multiple exposures into one image, that gives you lots of rich detail, and luminosity. Looks pretty sweet. Even the worst parts of what i've built looks pretty damn good. These pictures are a little over the top, but they show what you can do.

Monday, February 04, 2008

After all that work, I finally found something that's exciting. These are some (very crudely) photoshopped pictures of the mockup. It's going to be alot more work, but that's fine with me. It still contains the good points of my previous design, but it's got more framing possibilites. That's the ideo; I want to be able to frame shots with architecture, beams, etc. Still needs work, but the core idea is there.

Set Design
Today was a tedious day, but a useful one. I mocked up half a dozen different versions of possible set layout - that's the only way to do it, really. Can't tell much on paper. Every permutation looked like ass; very boring and uninspired. They all revolved around the above designs (top picture is the 'old' design, bottom is new). I kept coming back to the bottom design; has a certain logic to it that works with my approach.

Sunday, February 03, 2008

The above image is a photoshop file i'm using to study my set layout; all the little bits represent elements, furniture, etc, and are separate layers so I can move them around.

I've been thinking for a while that my redesigned layout isn't working; I may have made the same mistake I made with my big 'Exterior Studio' set, in that I designed it for one camera angle; other camera angles being therefore awkward looking.

My reasons for this design were sound, I think - i'm trying to make it look a bit like a stage, and intend to use straight on, long-take camera angles rather than alot of 180 degree cuts.

My first layout just looks better from multiple angles, though.

I'm going to try to incorporate the two designs somehow.

I intentionally left all the elements i've made movable- I figured I might want to rearrange things once I had actually built them and seen them on camera.

I made a large 'studio-size' easel. I don't have any specific plans for where it'll go in the set, just felt like making something small. And its rewarding to build things that only take a few hours from start to finish.

I seem to have my painting/finishing routine down; a coat of stain, then very thin washes of flat brown paint to partially hide the grain, and to make it very flat.
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