Thursday, August 21, 2014

SUPERHEROS ARE ALL THE RAGE!

It's summer time and the Hollywood popcorn movies are flooding the local theaters. Since the success of superhero movies at the box office there has also been a reawakened interest on the job front for me. Never have I been approached this many times in one year for superhero jobs. The one movie that seemed to have turned the tide in favor of superhero mainstream acceptance was "The Avengers".

Since then the amount of inquiries are just flooding in. This week I finished a one page superhero assignment for a client in Zurich. Just one page but to be displayed in A2, so fairly large. In order to retain a decent amount of details I also had to work in A2. Because from a logistical standpoint the sheet of paper would be too big, I drew the page on 2 A3 boards and pasted them together in the computer. Client was happy with the result which makes me happy in return :)




Thursday, August 14, 2014

STORYTELLING IS THE KEY!

Storyboards are not just an aimless series of pictures but also need to communicate a story in a clear and precise manner. This is where storytelling skills come in handy. Being aware of what a camera can do and using those techniques to my advantage has proven to be an important asset in my creative toolbox. Now what makes for good storytelling? Generally you want to vary the shots and use all possible camera angles that include:

- Long shots

- Medium shots
- Close-ups

As well as upshots and downshots.

Within the frame it is always important to be aware of the foreground, middle ground and background to create depth and clarify the various elements for the viewer. This separation can be created through a variation of color values as well as the lighting setup (warm color and cool colors).

In this rough board the perspective was stretched to make a point. This is just one example...



















For any creative person Wally Wood's 22 panels that always work are an absolute must as a reference point. I refer to it quite frequently and it has proven to be an invaluable resource...


Wednesday, August 13, 2014

COSMETICS & BEAUTY

One of the more difficult subjects to draw in terms of storyboards are commercials that involve cosmetics and beauty. Not because it is technically difficult but because the client is rarely satisfied with the results. I never looks soft and beautiful enough. Since there are obvious limitations in terms of what can be achieved with artwork, it can be very challenging to get the expected results...

This is the initial line art for a Nivea spot. Nice and clean but the lines were a bit too hard.

After an extensive softening phase and some subtle colors the result was more pleasing.

 (Illustrations courtesy Funkyframe Films Agency. Client: Nivea)

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

I LOVE ANIMATICS!

Did i say...I love animatics? I did, because it's true. I just finished an intense animatic for a client (sorry, no details so far, you know those NDA will come and bite you in the butt) and it's so cool when the static images spring to life. Just some motion and limited animation combined with narration or music can add a world of difference to any presentation.
















After Effects and it's fantastic integration with the Adobe Creative Suite makes it possible to create good looking and easy to sell animatics in a reasonable amount of time. But regardless of technology, the artist is still the most important asset. Software is just a tool. In any case, I'm looking forward to the next animated challenge...

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

ANIMATION FOR STAMMFILM!

video

Recently I was asked to create a new trailer animation for Dieter Meier's Stammfilm, an independent feature film production company in Zurich. A film student had created a similar animated logo for them previously but they weren't really happy with it.

To keep the simple logo character I chose Adobe Flash as my animation tool of choice. Once the basic animation was done and approved, I brought the files into After Effects for final touch up and to make it less digital looking for projection on the cinema screen.

So next time you see a Stammfilm movie at your local theater, you might see this trailer before the feature presentation.

Monday, August 4, 2014

MARVEL COMICS!

I updated the comics section with a few choice pieces of comic book pages I did for Marvel and DC Comics. A very small amount of all the the books I did over the years but it will give you a good impression of my earlier works. This started my career and I'm proud I did some of those books. It was a childhood dream of mine that I achieved despite difficult circumstances. Remember this was before the internet age and one had to actually apply for the jobs in person.

You will find more samples at the very bottom of the comics section... enjoy...




























Friday, August 1, 2014

PRESS ARTICLES!

A lot has been written about me in various news outlets and online. Mostly about my books or about some events I attended. In order to give you some insights into my work, my life and my travels I posted a small selection in the Press Feedback section of the menu to the right.

There are some articles in English and some in German, varying from local newspapers to large international papers like The Wall Street Journal and to exotic journals like The Vientiane Times from Laos in South East Asia...