Tuesday, 21 February 2012

Making a 'Drive' comic!

 Okay so I cannot contain myself, I need to make a comic based on drive. On sunday after looking at the comics at my dads, I got a little bit obsessive and have decided I have to make one based on drive, I just have to. Heres a few sketches/images from the development of it so far:

I really like how its coming along. My idea is to create a small comic on one main aspect of the film; the relationship between Irene and The driver. I really like the idea of just focussing on one aspect of the film, its almost like you could split it into lots of different stories. I've planned out the main things I want to illustrate, just need to get doing it now!


Okay so I've found a new obsession. Comics and graphic novels. I've always really liked how things look as sets rather than how they look as individual images and comics are exactly this, a compilation of relating images. I love them! Whilst at my dads this weekend, I also came across a few of his comics from the 1970s: 

I think everything about them is just so interesting, I love the use of the really saturated colours, the composition, but most importantly to style, they all look so retro which obviously appeals to me naturally! Similar to like in the book I found at the special collections library in MMU which featured  'Mirabelle' magazines images from the 1950's, I found the adverts particularly interesting. I want to make my own comic..

Monday, 20 February 2012

I had a look at a Manga book, and didn't hate it

Everyone has their own preferences and to me its just a style I'm not drawn to, in-fact I'd go as far to say I actually dislike it as a style generally, I'm not really a fan of how childish it looks, even when its adult themes, and also, my drawings tend to naturally look like this.. which really annoys me!
However, whilst at my dads this weekend, I noticed a book 'the complete guide to drawing manga' and decided to have a look to see if I could find anything useful in there. I didn't find the specifics particularly useful as it was alot about how to create a certain style, however the basics of drawing the figure and elements of it were really useful. Its so difficult to draw hands, and I found this way below of how to do it extremely useful, I really need to remember this!

I have to draw a hand as an important part of an exciting illustration soon.. so this was very helpful!

Animated Drive

As an extra I wanted to start making an animation based on Drive, I started working on this, and it was going quite well, I really like working with sound, and found it really exciting to be able to create a story to go along with one of the songs from the film, especially as the soundtrack is just so good and atmospheric too. I looked at animations based on films, heres a really good one by Tom Haugomat & Bruno Mangyoku based on Drive:

I planned out my animation and began to make the stills on illustrator (above) I animated a short amount but began to get anxious that I wouldn't be able to finish it in time for the end of the brief, I could do it, but it wouldn't be as good as I would have liked it to be, so this will get finished.. but at a later date. The idea of doing a story board of the film focussing on different aspects of the story was interesting though and I didn't want to leave it just at that, so started to think about maybe making something else..

Wednesday, 15 February 2012

Age UK illustration

Late last year we, at university, were set a brief by the charity Age UK (previously Age Concern & Help the Aged for those of you who may still know it as that).  The purpose of this project, was to create an illustrated book/booklet illustrating stories from people who suffer with dementias lives, which would promote the idea of life stories. 'Life stories' is a way in which to help older people and those who suffer with forms of dementia by recording important events and stories from their lifes which they can look back at and keep forever to remind them of these things.
We each met up with a different person who suffered with dementia and spoke to them about their lives (in our case, me and Jadine spoke to the same man). We chose one story or aspect of his life each and began to illustrate it. Our illustration would be featured in the booklet along with a transcript of that particular part of the conversation and also a postcard too relating to that particular story.

Creating my illustration

The man I spoke to was very keen when talking about when he used to visit the pineapple pub in marple with his friends. He spoke of how he and his friends would drink robinsons beer, out of the same glass all night, and how he was the captain of the domino team there too. My first idea was to create a 3D image of the pub and photograph this, I used printed papers and cardboard to create a small scene, I spent alot of time working out where the colours would go, as I was only using 3 different shades of blue, I liked that it was going to be monotone. I lit the background with small fairy lights and then used the photography studio to photograph the whole scene. Below is the outcome:

At this point the brief was finished within uni, but I wasn't happy with it, I didn't want this to be the image Age uk would use in their booklet, I really didn't like it! Well, I liked it, but I just didn't feel proud of it, which made me want to make something I was proud of. So I set out looking at different things which I liked, and began to make my second image.
I knew what kind of image I wanted to create, I really love retro posters, and when I set out looking at these I found some I particularly liked by Justin Van Genderen (below):

I particularly liked these because I'm obsessed with retro style posters and also because I just love images which feature some sort of skyline. I began to create simple ideas, and my idea for the pineapple pub illustration progressed.

I started of with really simple just basic ideas, like the above, which were obviously lacking in detail, but these were just simple ideas at first. A problem I was having is that the pub just didn't look like a pub, especially not the exact pub I was trying to recreate. So I searched everywhere and finally found a photography of the actual pub, here it is:

After seeing this image I got really into creating a whole scene using this image, it was really difficult to create all the background areas and details using only limited colours, but I worked very hard to try and make this work effectively! After lots of planning and labouring over my image I finally was happy and    here is the final image: 

I then created the smaller image which would be used as a small postcard within the booklet, I wanted to concentrate on another aspect of the story he told us, so here I created an image which would symbolise the fact he was captain of the domino team, using the same colours as in the other illustration, here it is:

I am really happy with my final images overall, and can't wait to do more work like this! I can't wait to see all of our illustrations in the booklet, very exciting!

Tuesday, 14 February 2012

Almost finished 'Drive' Illustration

To me before I start working on anything, I really need to know what colours I'll be using in my final piece so I can work accordingly, if I know what colours I'm going to use, all sorts of other ideas start to appear. The colour of the typography used for 'drive' is a neon pink, this works really well in relation to the mood and feel of the film, and I thought it was a colour which must be included within my magazine cover illustration. I created the basic idea for my front cover, and then started to edit to colours to get exactly what I wanted, here it the basic almost finished, front cover (below), featuring The Drivers face with the L.A. skyline in the background, in blues and pinks, I now need to add some more driving-related imagery, tweak some small areas of the whole image, add the title and place it within the template provided by little white lies. The 'moon' area is where the little white lies logo will go. 

I really like how it looks overall so far, I especially think the colours work really well!

Justin Van Genderen, Skylines + Drive Background

Next I needed to work on the background, what would be behind the driver. I had been looking a lot at retro posters for cities and have recently became a little obsessed with city skylines! Drive in set in L.A.  which has a beautiful skyline, it would be obscene to not include this in some way. The work by Justin Van Genderen are some of my favourite images of this kind, my age UK work was greatly inspired by these kind of images (below). I like the idea behind these images, but I also really like the way the flat shapes are placed against the textured backgrounds, I love working in this way.

In an article about Drive, on website ScreenRant.com, it states: "Refn (Director) has continuously referred to the film as a modern Grimm fairytale (unlikely hero rises to battle evil king, saves princess) and I for one always saw the ending as the hero saving the girl, while also being denied the “happily ever after” cliche he may want. Indeed, the implications of the film are such that Driver will likely speed off into new adventures, as Refn claims, albeit still stuck in the lonely and isolated existence in which we found him. The only difference is: he now knows what kind of hero he can be.". This furthers the idea of that the driver was almost a real life superhero, which made me think of the images above. These images show superheroes in the cities they are from, I thought this worked really well with the idea for my drive illustration featuring elements of L.A. scenery as I think its an important part of the story that the driver is from there, working on hollywood movies by day, and becoming almost an alter ego at night time being a getaway driver. I started looking at hollywood scenes and decided that the hills, the scryscrapers and the palm trees are really what make it recognisable, and began to start creating some of these elements to add to my Drive illustration..

Sunday, 12 February 2012

Ryan Goslings face

Drawing Ryan Gosling in 'Drive'

- A view of Ryan from the front and from the back showing his jacket featuring scorpion emblem-

The little white lies covers usually feature a portrait of who is perceived as the main character of the chosen film, so this is the format I intended to follow. The main character in Drive who is never named, only referred to as "the driver" is played by Ryan Gosling. His features are not extremely recognisable to his character, as his expressions throughout the film are almost apathetic and stay almost the same throughout, it is more so his outfit which is, his outfit works within the film almost as how a superheroes costume does. I started sketching some ideas, just simple shapes of his face, but found it really difficult to make it look like him at first, as his face isn't really the most recognisable thing when it comes to his character, so I decided parts of his clothing would need to be visible. I carried on sketching ideas for his face, and began to work on the elements -what his face would be made up of. I split it into sections (below) and decided how the shading would work regarding colours, I wanted really limited colour, so this was important.

Below on the left you can see how the edited photograph I used to plan the shading on his face, and then on the right you can see how I've started to work up the image of his face on illustrator, firstly using skin tones, which I would edit later.

Friday, 10 February 2012

Little white lies brief..

So the the brief we've been working on at university is a live competition brief in which we have to design a cover for film magazine little white lies. We had to create a front cover of the magazine, based on a choice of 5 films, I chose drive. After watching drive I just thought the mood the mood of the film was so intense and interesting, it would be really interesting to explore.

First of all, I think when working on an image based on a film, its really important to be aware of the mood, themes and sounds within the film. The way that I saw drive was almost like a moving comic, a lot of the scenes were really slow and atmospheric, and the separation between each scene was very clear, almost as though you could see the clear transformation from where it had been a storyboard, to where it has been made into the film. The whole film had a 1980's feel to me, maybe because the driving scenes remind me alot of the grand theft auto games that are set in the 1980's or maybe its because of the sountrack which has a really 'eighties' feel to it. The song "nightcall" from the soundtrack was one I particularly liked, listening to it whilst doing research and coming up with my first ideas really helped!

Thursday, 2 February 2012

Secret 7

I recently entered a competition on talenthouse. In this competition you had to design a cover for a chosen song of a chosen artist, there was a choice of 7. The cover could not feature the name of the artist or the song. If chosen, your artwork would be put on the vinyl cover and sold along with the other chosen winners in aid of teenage cancer charity. I made my entries a day before the competition closed, as I heard about it late, so wasn't really expecting to win.. but the bands/songs involved are some of my favourites and cancer charities are important and close to home so I'd love to win, just to be involved.

Heres my designs, not my best work, but not my worst either:

CSS - City Grrrl

Dj Shadow - Riding through the cosmos

The Cure - Friday I'm in love

The entries are currently being reviewed, I received quite a lot of votes so lets hope they stand a chance! Winners are announced on the 7th february, fingers crossed!