Thursday, 28 October 2010

Final Scene + Poker Chips

quick checklist

read She
Highlight key descriptions
100 initial thumbnails
life drawings
research artists
photoshop initials
more detailed sketches of ideas
detailed photoshop sketches

just a quick list so i can keep track of what im doing :) theres more to add, but this is what's in my head at the mo that i need to do to get going.

Life Drawing in negative space

This time, instead of drawing the model, we had to draw the negative space around her and the objects. My first thought was 'oh god no' but once i got into what i was doing and relaxed, i found this to be a lot better than when i draw the actual model. I didnt have to focus on details, just the shape of the spaces around her. I'm pleased with the way this turned out, and i can see the model in my drawing.

This second one, we did the same thing, but with a different pose. I found finding the shapes really easy, and enjoyed this different experience. I think i found a new strength in drawing which is totally different to the way i am used to.

Folder 4- She

This looks quite interesting actually. Still reading it and highlighting crucial sections of description. So far, i think i got a temple image which i can play around with an make look old and ancient. Looking forward to this one :)

Thursday, 21 October 2010

Final piece

Here it (she?) is. Wow this took ages, but i am really happy with the final result. i like the brightness of the colours. I decided to make this more animal than human as i liked the lumps and bumps of the creature.

Life drawings

Really dont know why they're blue.

Tuesday, 19 October 2010

Alien shaders

From top: silver, plastic, glow without background, glow with background, glass, chrome and ceramic.
These were actually quite simple to do, it was just knowing what to set things too to change the way they looked :)

Monday, 18 October 2010

Whisky anyone?

Im so happy with the way this turned out, even though photoshop was kinda confusing with all the layers and stuff.

Animation - Robot

Just followed the PDF :D

Stylistic Lighting

From top its morning, midday, night, sci-fi and fire.
I like the sci-fi one, as its the same blue i used previously for the glow behind the door. Its looking good for me and maya me thinks :)

Alien premiere

UCA alien at the premiere of his own films XD for some reason he looks scared...
I found this scene pretty good to do, i like the way the lighting worked on him, and the way the shadow turned out.
I am slowly taming Maya!

Sunset sunbed

Rather than having him in the midday, I chose to have in laying in the sunset. I like the red tones of this one, although perhaps it turned out too red.

Sunday, 17 October 2010


'Nature's greatest a mistake' is the tagline for Splice, a film about genetically creating a human-hybrid creature from human cells mixed with a variety of animals. Directed by Vincenzo Natali, this film explores the morality behind creating the creature.

There is a lot of emotional feelings towards the creature throughout the film. At the beginning, it was just an experiment and they will destroy it as soon as they have created it so no one will know about it. But once the creature has been 'born' the scientists start getting attached to it, more on the part of the woman Elsa who sees it as her 'child', which it technically is as she used part of her DNA to create the creature. NYT said 'The Cronenberg influence here is evident in Mr. Natali’s interest in the body and birth and in an initially subdued, near-narcoleptic atmosphere that helps build a nice sense of foreboding.' Elsa's husband Clive tries to kill the creature, which they name Dren, but later in the film, he too gets very attached to her. Film4 said 'As in all the best creature features, the creature itself - embodied extraordinarily by Delphine Chaneac and a panoply of weird CG enhancements - is utterly humanised, while the all-human characters are invested with some genuinely horrifying aberrations, so that we are never quite sure where to direct our sympathies or how to orient our moral judgements.'
Dren goes through accelerated growth of her body, but her mind is still that of a youngling. By the time she is a few days old, her body is already that of an adult but her mind is still a child's. This could be considered as the underlying theme of interfering with nature for our own scientific purposes, and in doing so we 'ruin' what we create as the life form doesn't experience life properly, and humans are unsure of how it will evolve and survive; and also if it will go through any sudden changes like Dren did when she turned from female to male.
Another theme that i think is in this film is that humans are afraid of nature and the way it's evolving, and they try to recreate a semblance of life that they could control but that life will escape. IMDB said 'Splice rises out of the gluttony of modern horror and science fiction films. It has the old school charm, and it uses that to its advantage to create a rather unique film for its time.'
I really enjoyed this film, and found the animation and CG effects worked well within the environment. I also liked the concept behind this film even if its probably never going to happen.


Elephant Man

Having seen a documentary about the 'elephant man' on Discovery Channel, i was interested to see how it could be turned into a film.
It is about the life of a man (John Merrick) who has a mass deformity of his body, which is thought to have been caused by his mother being hit by an elephant while she was pregnant with him. John is taken in by a surgeon who rescues him from a freak-show and supplies him with a home and kindness, which helps him to reveal his true character of intelligence and personality which is concealed behind his monstrous form.

This film was made in 1980 and directed by David Lynch, who uses his creative talent to help the audience empathize with John and prove that looks can be deceiving, which is the underlying theme of this film.

This film is not about transformations and actually seeing a person change into an animal through special effects or mechanics, it is based more on the form of the body and how different the anatomy of John is; the way his spine curves and the mass lumps and tumors on his head and face disfigure him.
The way John is kept out of the audiences view until the big reveal adds mystery to his character, especially when all that can be seen is his silhouette in the lecture scene. The audience can see the general shape of his body and the way it deforms.

Throughout the film, there are deep emotional themes and messages. For one, even though John was rescued from the freak-show, he is still essentially on display as all of the staff want to see him. This is worsened by the hospital night porter who starts showing off John to his drunk friends at night, making them pay as if they were actually going to a show. Just as John is beginning to feel 'normal' and like he fits in, he is made a freak all over again. The NYT says: 'retarded as well as misshapen because of his inability to speak coherently'.
There is also the way John is treated as dumb and lumbering, just because of his speech and walking disabilities due to his deformity. But when Dr. Frederick Treves teaches him to talk, his true character comes forth. Film4 said 'David Lynch's The Elephant Man raises myriad questions about medicine, the notion of vainglory and society's prejudices and asks us to wonder whether, over a century later, matters have improved.'

Overall, i quite enjoyed this film. I liked the makeup effects used to create the elephant man, and the way the film played on emotion towards that character. IMDB also thought this about the film, saying: 'The Elephant Man is a perfect film. It is sorrowful but it apologizes not at all for it. It is a film about where our empathy stems from, a film that asks you to feel sorry but rebukes you for your blind pity. It asks you to respect Merrick, not cry for him.'

Company of Wolves

Having been brought up with the fairy tale of Little Red Riding Hood, i was intrigued by how this adaptation would represent that.
This version explores the theme of sexual predation and animalistic lust, using the werewolf to portray this. From this, NYT said: ' in keeping with the original unexpurgated versions of most fairy tales, the sexual subtext is never far from the surface. ' The film gives the audience 'warning signs' of a man with these characteristics; these being eyebrows that meet in the middle as well as a chest of hair. Of this, Film4 said this film is 'bound in a magical, mysterious world where little girls should beware of men whose eyebrows meet in the middle.'

This film follows the story of little red riding hood, Rosaleen being portrayed as little red who is going to visit her grandmother, but gets stopped in the woods by a handsome man, who clearly has eyebrows that meet in the middle. This man not only manages to consume the grandmother but also 'consumes' Rosaleen with his animalistic, sexual suggestions, as in the scene in the grandmother's house where he beat Rosaleen to the house and killed her gran. He then makes suggestive motions on Rosaleen before turning into a wolf when she denies him. IMDB had this to say about the sexual theme behind this film: 'This movie is not really a horror movie; it's more a multiple tale about growing up into adolescence.'

There are also a lot of dream-like sequences thoughout this film, such as in the beginning where Rosaleen is dreaming of her sister being chased by a pack of wolves through the woods, but with giant versions of her toys included. Her sister eventually gets killed by the wolves, because she strayed from the path. This could be seen as people's fear of what lurks in the dark if you stray too far from the path, and of the wild animals such as wolves that haunt the woods at night. There is also the scene where Rosaleen finds a storks nest, when one of the eggs hatches a tiny baby. This comes from the stories that babies were delivered by storks in the night to new parents, which of course is just nonsense.

Overall, i found this film to be funny rather than scary, especially the way the grandmother was killed and her head smashed like clay. I also liked the werewolf transformation where the wolf's jaws came out of of the mans mouth, it was cool.

Cat People

Made in 1942 and directed by Jacques Tourneur, this film explores the theme of lust and forbidden love in the form of a woman who believes she has the curse of her ancestors and will turn into a panther if she kisses a man. The NYT has this rather negative view of this film: 'The strangely embarrassing predicament of a lady who finds herself possessed of mystical feline temptations, especially one to claw people to death, is the topic pursued at tedious and graphically unproductive.'

Throughout this film, there are several references to cats, such as the big cats that are caged at the zoo and several panther designs that are scattered in Irena's room and home. The cat and the woman can be seen to be the same; predatory and sexual. In my view, Irena is bonded with the panther and the predatory side of her comes out specially in the scene where Jane Randolph's character Alice Moore is in the swimming pool, and Irena is stalking her in the form of the panther. Even though all the audience sees is shadows on the walls and the rumbling growl of the panther, it is automatically assumed that it is Irena as the audience knows of her connection to the panther and that Alice is seeing Irena's husband. A quote from IMDB had this to say about this particular scene: 'Tourneur works with his camera the way a painter does with shadow and light to create strange dreamy atmospheres The pièces de résistance are the scene in the swimming -pool that creates a feeling of terror without using the tricks of the trade,and the scene when Oliver and Alice are in the flat,hearing roaring.'

The editing in this film helps to build the tension, as it cuts from character to character quite quickly, especially in the scene where Alice and Irena's husband are locking up, and the sound of the panther can be heard along with shadows on the wall; much like the swimming pool scene. The panther is finally revealed approaching them, but turns when Alice yells at it and claiming it to be Irena. Film4 had this review on this film: 'Has the transformation happened? Or is it all in her mind? Producer Val Lewton and director Jacques Tourneur's magical genre-bending masterpiece still manages to dazzle you with its audacity.'

Overall, i found this film to be strangely intriguing but found the acting to be slightly unbelievable and overacted.

Saturday, 16 October 2010

Alien lands and goes to the cinema

After he lands, he goes to the cinema :D
seriously, i think im getting the hang of this. Im finding them easier to do, and they turn out pretty well which i'm quite proud of. i wanted the cinema one to be darker as its a dark scene in the film.

Maya pen

Maya pen is chilling against the wall :D
ok seriously, this did take a while and the rendering kept going funny, and the nib didnt want to bevel so kinda had to improvise. It turned out good, which im really pleased about.

Thursday, 14 October 2010

Magnifying Glss

Here it is finally. I couldnt get on blogger at home so i had to render at uni >.< cant believe how long this took me. I think it didnt render properly even though smoothing is on..

Monday, 11 October 2010

Life drawing

This session, our life model (Becky i think her name is) was off sick so we had to improvise and use mannequins and each other to come up with compositions, which was a different experience.

The start was a quick warm up and we had a couple of minutes to draw what we saw before moving on to the next persons drawing and carrying it on. This was actually quite fun as each persons drawing was totally different and some of the time incomprehensible heh. That was when you had to take away rather than add which worked for most of the drawings. This is how mine finished up:

After the warmup session, we had to draw without looking at the paper. I found it hard to begin with as i was so tempted to look, but then i managed to get into it. This is how i draw when i dont look at the paper:

Once we were done with the mannequins, we used 3 of the class to pose (fully clothed!) so we could draw them. It was different drawing clothes and the way they fold, but i found it good as i could get the lines of the folds to work the way i wanted, although in some cases i still had trouble with proportion specially on the shoulders and head.

Essay question idea

Ok, i have come up with another idea for my essay question. I'm going to do werewolves, and look at the film Van Helsing directed by Stephen Sommers as my focus but also use other films as reference (yet to decide which ones, planning on using Underworld as possible) and my question is something like:

'How do werewolf transformations vary in films and how do they relate or differ from original folk lore stories'

Basically, my idea in my head is based around the whole story about the full moon and whether the werewolf needs to be in the moonlight to transform, whether they can transform at will or whether the moon affects them regardless of where they are.
What do you think?

Sunday, 10 October 2010

La Belle et La Béte

Having seen the Disney version of this film, i was quite excited to see what the original would be like as that is what it was based on.
Throughout watching this film, i could see how parts of it related to the Disney version such as the father being lost in the forest, and the Beast letting Belle go home to her father. The classic fairy tale is given remarkable treatment by Jean Cocteau as he tells the tale of a beautiful girl who falls in the love with a tortured but charming Beast (played by Jean Maris) who in turn falls for her.
The main morals that stand out in this film are that of greed, humanity and jealousy. The greed and jealousy mainly being protrayed by the two sisters who dress themselves like royals whereas Belle is seen in rags during he first few scenes of the film. The jealousy on the part of the sisters is when Belle returns from the Beast's castle dressed like a queen, for they do not recognise her at first, then try to steal the Beast's gold.

Cocteau managed to create a film that is practically poetic in the way that it is made as well as including dramatic theatrical scenes and characters. I found this quote from IMDB "This famed Jean Cocteau film of the 1940s plays like a poem, moving across the screen." The Beast for example walks round like a king, which he is in his own castle, and makes Belle his queen.

I would have to say the main 'theme' of this film is to never judge a book by its cover because although the Beast is a beast on the outside, inside he is human with human emotions. Belle experiences this when at first she is repulsed by him, but gradually sees him for what he really is and falls for him; transforming him into a handsome prince and freeing him from his beastly curse.
The film also includes a lot of dreamlike sequences such as the big finale when the 'beast' takes Belle and flys away with her. The Guardian said of this film "a film that dared to be naive, asking its audience to revert to childhood, the better to accept its practical magic."This all adds to the theatrical poetry of the film as it takes the audience beyond the limits of the film and its story. This quote i found comes from "La Belle et la bête is an excellent example of Cocteau's continual concern in his film work to provide a "realism of the unreal."
Overall i thought the film was good in the way it used theatrical performance and setting, but compared to todays films its not one I'd readily sit down to watch.