Tuesday, January 15, 2008
The reality about working on animated pictures is that it is not all pretty pictures and fun conceptualizing. Once the project moves into "production" the job entails that we solve location problems, come up with cost effective design solutions, control sightline placement, or provide for the overall structure or mechanics of ANY given object.
A virtual world is still a world, and so it must be thought of in terms of 3D -- THE ENTIRE WORLD must be thought of as a real physical place.
In this case I had to design Pengu Island, I took it upon myself to work this out. Granted, we never see a top down vantage point in the film, but still the design had to be made to have the 3D modelers create the island.
With every new location, I tried to imagine the most effective way of communicating my designs or art direction to everyone on the project. We had already done several drawings of the beaches, the whale landing station, Reggie’s trinket bazaar, the stage and the Big Z Memorial. Now we had to tie it all together, I thought perhaps an elevation map would be the best way in this case.
The foreground areas marked in color are those areas we modeled, for the rest we used lower res models and matt paintings.
This drawing shows the topography, with added layers of elements for placement -- such as rocks and other various locations. Each new element had its own layer. Ultimately, there were other layers with bush placement, tree placement and prop placement. The drawings were then put into a design package and delivered to the modeling department in a presentation.