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Friday, March 21, 2008

Linework BG Design - The New Frontier DVD



These are a couple of examples of the completed final line versions of the previously-posted New Frontier BGs...the secret complex got quite, well, complex! As a key establishing shot it had multiple overlays, which of course you can't tell here.They started as line drawings with marker on paper, then finished digitally (cutting and pasting as necessary, cloning, perspective tweaks, etc).

11 Comments:

Blogger Larry MacDougall said...

Brilliant as ever - fun and imaginative with some top flight draughtsmanship. Well done sir.

8:45 AM  
Blogger Paul Rivoche said...

Larry! Thanks and nice to hear from you!

3:51 PM  
Blogger =shane white= said...

You never fail to inspire, man.

Loved these last few posts.

=shane=

2:06 PM  
Blogger Michael Cho said...

I concur with the other commenters here. The level of polish and draftsmanship is astounding. That secret complex is incredible in the level of detail.

One question though -- I know you go through a lot of different steps to arrive at these lineart finals. Approximately how long do these take from start to finish? Is it a matter of days? weeks? I'd love to know.

7:45 PM  
Blogger Paul Rivoche said...

Shane & Michael...thanks a lot, much appreciated.

Michael, hard to give an exact answer (I'm sure you know what I mean)...but: they're done in pieces, but if you added it all up, it'd probably be two-three days or so for a piece like the secret complex, if I worked steadily at it all day. As it happens, I'm usually juggling work, so it never happens in a completely linear fashion.

The stages are:
1. rough version (which I posted), done first as a line marker sketch over a rough blue pencil as I described before, then scanned and fooled with. Once this was liked, I had to kinda go backward and generate a clean-line version, for the BG painters.
2. To do that, I printed out a large version of the rough piece, but reduced to light blue (about 9-12% cyan), printed on 2 pieces of 11 x 17 paper. I also included in the printout a superimposed self-made perspective grid to help keep things lined up (made simply using the free transform tool)
3. Then I pencilled over this, adding, cleaning up, etc...
4. Then I inked with thin marker, the usual Pigma or the like. BUT-- I didn't ink all of it--anywhere I could clone, flop, paste, repeat, using Photoshop, I took advantage of that, left that part blank on the drawing and created what I needed in the digital file. You can see this for example in any repeat elements in the final line image, such as those "wells" in the floor, or the spherical tanks, etc. Why make agony for oneself?
Use the power of the computer, for what it's best at...it's really just another tool in the end, same as a Pigma marker, that's my philosophy...
5. Now I have a final clean line drawing (file, at 600 dpi in grayscale)...I convert to bitmap (still at 600 dpi) to make the lines clean, save as a new file for protection, then comes the final stage...
6. I have to chop the thing into layers, so using copies of the drawing as new layers, I progressively chop the drawing into animation cel levels, so the overlays can slide for the depth illusion (since I haven't yet managed to grab a dvd, I have no idea how many they actually used in the end). I made I think 4 or 5 levels here since this was a big establishing shot, so there was the BG, then the little elevator, then the rocks in foreground covering elevator, the cables, the crane boom...all on separate layers in the final Photoshop file I delivered. And beneath each, once I chopped the drawing, I had to go back in a fill in what was "behind" the element I'd just put on it s own layer. So when I put that gantry thing in th emiddle on its own layer, I had to fill in the background behind it, so when the gantry slid in the final animation, there'd be something there, not blank space...

Sounds tiring! It was, but fun...you kinda really get into it.

10:02 PM  
Blogger Brad Goodchild said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

8:31 PM  
Blogger Dapper Dan said...

Your work is a huge inspiration! How do you find jumping from style to style? How do you ease into it? Thanks for sharing and I look forward to seeing more. Cheers

1:17 AM  
Blogger TotalD said...

Jesus Paul, these are amazing. You frighten me. Awesome.

7:06 AM  
Blogger Paul Rivoche said...

Dapper and total, thanks a lot for the comments!

Dapper, about your question, jumping between styles is a matter of practice I guess. You learn to "feel" the styles different ways. Also what helps is to learn to separate out the foundations or "skeleton" of a piece of art (the main masses & movements all the deeper choices) from the surface "skin" (the immediate rendering frills/inking/etc)

Another point is to make sure you look at lots of different stuff, rather than on only one source of inspiration.

2:51 PM  
Blogger Howard Shum said...

Amazing backgrounds, Paul!

10:45 PM  
Blogger Paul Rivoche said...

Thanks a lot Howard!!

9:10 AM  

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