Durian DVD

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    Archive for the ‘Concept-art’ Category

    Wallpapers #1 : Concept art

    Thursday, October 29th, 2009


    I got some comments and emails last days about the availability of some desktop wallpapers with the concept arts. While reading those,  I thought it was a bit early cause I can make them better a good idea. So, I did three 1920×1200 wallpapers  ( if your screen is lower , you can still scale them down ). And while I was playing, I tweaked too the blog wordpress theme.


    Dragon Wallpaper (click to enlarge)


    Revealed: Title, Character Design and 1st Minute

    Tuesday, October 27th, 2009


    Sorry for the lack of updates recently. Yesterday was the last day of the Blender Conference and we’re all still recovering!

    But we haven’t forgotten about you. We have a number of posts coming up to go over some of the stuff we showed off at the Durian talk on Sunday.

    But first things first. For those of you who missed the live stream, we revealed a lot about the movie–including the (working) title!


    Zen & sketchy day at Artis ; Amsterdam’s Zoo

    Sunday, September 13th, 2009

    016-sketch-zoo-artis_revoyI took my saturday freetime to visit Artis , the big Zoo of Amsterdam ; more precisely to enjoy a sketch session in the zoo , and spend time with animals. I worked on my sketchpad ( around 21cmx15cm , A5  bristol paper  , I don’t advice it to beginner cause it will block you to have a “too precious” paper – prefer a paper that you can “waste” without any trouble … btw, I can waste bristol without any trouble ). My pencil is a large 2B and dark sketching pencil from Derwent, but any “soft” black marking pencil are good for this. I use too a soft kneaded eraser , cause sometime I miss a Ctrl+Z feature to my sketching workflow 🙂

    I have some advices if you want to start sketching from life :

    • For beginners , prefer to draw simple things, target simple goal at first.
    • Take your time. If your model move ; start another sketch ( or finish it by memory )
    • Find the main lines of the “essence” of your model. Draw them thick & strong.
    • Don’t focus on details at first. Add them at the end. Draw them thin & light
    • Understand your model (muscle, light, volume, material, expression)
    • Gray shade (when it’s necessary) at the end, do it softly.

    Of course , that’s more easy to say , than to do ; here are my zoo sketches  :
    – David

    PS: I found a cool gang of tux in the zoo , and some zen gnu .

    WIP of an environnement concept art rejected

    Saturday, September 5th, 2009

    I take the opportunity of having a first WIP post about a  “not totally but” rejected early concept art.  So ; I will explain here the key moment of my workflow for 2D environnement ,  It will probably sound strange ; but I’m using mainly at first not Alchemy or Mypaint in this case but …. Blender ! Let’s me show you how and Why:

    1- Build my “lego” like toy : low poly object library


    Simple lowpoly object, fun and speed to do

    Why start with Blender ? Simply cause it’s time saving. as a drawer a city represent a lot of work for the perspective / the design / the light and the angle of camera ( composition too ) ; with the help of Blender I can compress this time to a couple of hour.

    First job is to create some toys ; and have a little library of some objects ; I started here with a subdivided cube for each of those objects ; after removing some faces of the cube to preserve 1/4 of the shape , I apply a mirror modifier and most of the time apply to the Y and X axis. I model this way only 1/4 of each building.I use the last layer of “Blender layers panel” to stock my blocks,  and I take care to name them correctly. When finish ; I do a first Alt+D copy ( linked copy to the original ) , and move the copied object to the first layer. Why I named them correctly ? ( ex : Building_1 / City_Wall  / etc… )  Simply cause this kind of simple 3D object  I like to reuse them in other works with a simple “append”, so it’s always faster to know what to append in the long long object list.

    2- The story of a simple 3D town


    A screen capture of my 3D speed town , while editing the "moutain"


    (too) early concept art, during the prepro-workshop

    Monday, August 31st, 2009

    early concept arts during prepro-workshop

    As a student, I kept drawing / doodling during my classes ( teachers didn’t like that  and -in the end- it’s not helped my studies but more my drawing skills ). I was really surprised to see this didn’t change a lot during the preproduction workshop; so I kept drawing / painting with very few early ideas.

    I basically used  watercolors ( Winsor & Newton ) on a strong bristol A3 paper ; adding some lines with markers / pencil and white lines with a typex like corrector.

    So, those pictures above do not reflect any real concept art I want for Durian, but I just wanted  you to have a look on my table side, and share some comments on those (too) early concepts 🙂

    ( PS: Thx Colin for the photo )


    Durian Style review

    Tuesday, August 25th, 2009

    Today, each artist of the project presented a couple of clips or graphics, and talked about style or visual impact as examples for us to look at. You can see this as an extension of the moodboard.


    Gametrailer link to Starcraft

    I like this clip because it is epic and you can study things like lighting, texturing, compositing, smoke and a lot more.

    For example the texturing is very strong in this clip and you can very well see how the textures fit onto the different objects and how they react to the topology.


    The way they use landscapes and environments lends the movie a sense of scale and weight. Also, they make great use of visual symbolism,
    especially with color. And of course there’s great martial arts.

    Doll Face:
    Nothing at all to do with the genre or style of Durian, but I like the simplicity and poetry of the story. If we can give Durian’s story some real poetry and soul, I’ll be very happy.

    Starcraft 2 trailer:
    The pacing of this trailer is fantastic: a slow, weighty beginning (a calm before the storm/building up tension) followed by kick-ass action. Without the silence before, the action wouldn’t seem nearly as significant.


    diablo Diablo

    As this clip is a game trailer, there is not as much to take from it regarding story telling because it is only selling a much larger story. Most of what I studied it for is the overall mood of the world (visual style, locations, inhabitants and so on) and the editing and shot choice.

    The fact they can convey so much of an epic world in under two minutes of visuals was fantastic. Breaking it into thirds, the first scene is the very humble act of lighting a candle, followed by a much larger scale of decimated environments (without action) and only the final third contains the evil action. Deciding to allocate the pace that way even with the short timeframe was the main aspect I took from the piece.


    I presented to the team some pictures like this portrait from Kim Jong-Sook , that have a “final fantasy” like proportion of face but with a particular work on the skin material and shading. Interresting in my opinion as we plan to render 4K.


    Final Fantasy XIII (Versus)

    Cinematography, the way they build up anticipation to a climax, its not as much fighting as your mind thinks at the end, easier for artists,
    makes climax more satisfying with a build up.

    Final Fantasy XI Opening

    The emotion between sister saving brother, shows a simple story, but brings up emotion and keeps the audience interested and connected. The
    boy at the start pinching over the building with his hand, and again to show its the same person grown up at the end, gives full circle to this
    part of the story, and as a comedian does a joke and refers to it soon after, the audience feel they are ‘inside’ and know the character more
    in such a short time.


    The clip I chose is taken from the movie “Kill Bill – Volume I” (begins at 3:30 – “The Origin of O-Ren”). I chose it for 2 main reasons:

    1- To raise discussion on how blood/gore may or may not be used in project Durian
    2- To discuss the element of character development/motivation

    Although this film is live-action, the flashback is described in dark and gritty 2-D anime style. It gives us a stylized glimpse into this characters head, illustrating why she is the way she is, does the things she does. Elements such as music, pace, camera direction, and even the use of blood effectively work together to fit its specific purpose.


    I decided to talk about the short film Oktapodi, an extremely successful animated short from a bunch of students from Gobelins. If you haven’t seen it, it’s well worth the watch!

    Although project Durian will have a completely different visual style and tone, I think we have a lot to gain from breaking down great animation (and film) of all types. Oktapodi is a really a nearly-flawless animation in my opinion. It tells a simple yet compelling story in an extremely succinct way. They make it look easy. But there were a lot of decisions about pacing and shot design and visual style that just seem extremely carefully considered. The staging, lighting, designs, music… everything just seems to come seamlessly together. I tend to focus more on shot design and editing, and these elements are what really make this film stand out in my mind. There are just a lot of great shots, and they do a lot to make the sequences dynamic.

    To illustrate just one little detail I liked about the shot design, let’s break down the first two shots of the movie. First of all, the entire premise of the movie is set up in the first two shots. In less than 20 seconds into the film, we understand the entire conflict and thrust of the plot. But the spatial relationships between the two shots are what really interest me. The first shot ends with the male octopus looking outside the tank, and we CUT to a reverse shot of what essentially is his point of view. The girl octopus looks helplessly towards the camera as she is weighed and thrown into a cooler… but then the human character removes the cooler from the frame and reveals our main character in the background! What is understood as a point of view shot becomes a wide-angle of the male octopus. This is just an example of extremely clever shot design which I think is a big part of making this film so entertaining to watch.

    I’m looking forward to experimenting with shot design for Durian to find the most effective way to tell our story!