As promised a couple MONTHS ago, a BIG FAT UPDATE on Gary Blackburn's film Elyn and the Pirates of Sunderland!!! This was an extremely interesting and new sort of film for me to conceptualize. In one word: STEAMPUNK.
At the beginning, while helping Gary finalize the script, I did a TON of research, and after a lot of doodly beginnings, first laid out a general map of the entire floating island that is Sunderland Town. then, I zoomed in and laid out the town itself, and figured out a rough course of action for the characters.
I don't necessarily care if it doesn't make any sense to you. this was the beginning of the town; without this plan I couldn't have gone on in any sort of organized manner.
Next, the main points of interest! the first being this fruit stand:
and a fish stand nearby that our main character would be running around later. Gary was very specific in that he only wanted to model the set pieces vital to the camera movements; the rest is to be matte-painted to flesh out the look that he's going for. that is why the above map/plan was so vital to figure out exactly what would need to be designed first.
Now, buildings! I had the buildings marked on my map, so I knew exactly which ones would be needed for close-ups and part of the action.
I still don;t think I pushed the steampunk aspect far enough - machiney things are not my natural forte. But to go much more in-depth into research would've taken more time than I had on hand.
Next, I did flat map drawings of each side of the street, to be absolutely clear on building placement, scale, and to give more facade details.
And now, what was a lot of fun - a bit of prop design. :)
The signs for a lot of the buildings were fun to research and design - I'm not sure if they'll be used, but I don't mind.
Here's the production blog on Facebook for the film - if you scroll through, you can already see some of the models made from these sketches. It's amazingly unreal to see them that way. :D