I was planning on posting stuff in order, but heck, I want to post about this now! Anyways, this fall, I had an amazing opportunity to take Chris Appelhans "BG/Production Design" class at UCLA.
I honestly really knew nothing about anything related to the subject (composition, color theory, etc.) and such, so it was awesome to finally be formally taught some by such an amazing teacher. Seriously, it was incredible-I learned a lot and ALL my artwork is going to be better for it, thanks to Chris.
For about the last month of class, we worked on getting out look of film figured out for the person film we are working on. Through practice in trying to find "the look"- I quickly learned I am HORRIBLE with color. I really admire people who just get it and don't have to struggle at it. But on the flipside, I learned a lot though trying to find the look of film and am really happy with where I ended up, even though I failed a bunch along the way(which is of course, fantastic-by far, the best way to learn.).
Above: 1st attempts...sooooo ugly!
Above: 2nd round, getting closer, but now I have to consider what type of line quality I want and am actually capable of creating for animation but still fits
Above: Rounds 3 and 4-mix of really awful, okay and steps in the right direction. In the process of these attempts, Chris was concerned that my main character wasn't popping out from the crowd so I experimented with a number of things to get him to pop. I will post about that later.
Above: Round 5-WE GOT IT! Things just finally clicked in my brain and it was so exciting to see it happen! The colors are where I want them-saturated and fun because it is prom after all, but it isn't too noisy and the character pop. Besides popping our main guy in a green suit (which I enjoy so much better than the white/silver thing I was putting him in, I love when problems cause better solutions!)-I found lighting was key to helping both set the mood but also focus attention. I watched quite a few prom/high school dance related movies and realized all of them used a spotlight on the characters to help focus attention. On top of that, an overlay layer is on top of our main guy (Chris's brilliant idea), to help him pop a bit more, since black on purple is still a tough read. So relived to have figured out DOG PROM's look because that's what I really worried about muddling up and ruining the film. Yes, it's going to be a lot of work to get this look for the whole film, but work I'm more than willing to do (a labor of love).