Monday, November 17, 2008

Biomechanical robot project

This was a fun project. It was a concept that required two characters... a robot and a man. The robot represents the sophisticated systems and process of the clients specialized field and the fellow represents the clients service capabilities in that same field. They idea is that the systems robot half of the team is so advanced and powerful, that it can seem a daunting task to control. Like driving a souped up hot rod with a monster engine. Hence, the human "service" half of the team. This is the guy that helps us use the immense capabilities of the systems robot correctly.

Using the above mentioned description as a basis, I knew I needed to stay away from cute, simple, and diminutive. This robot needed to be smart, sophisticated, a little wild, and of course, it had to be _cool. I felt that it was important to keep the gender of the robot as neutral as possible. No curvaceously sexy, or overtly masculine body shapes.

What I ended up doing was creating a mechanical skeletal framework draped in luminescent wiring that was than all covered over with smokey, translucent plastic pieces. Suggesting the impression of a business suit. Pure white hands and solid bio-luminescent eyes help keep the robot just a bit unsettling. Which is precisely what we want. Finally, finish that off with a crown of fiber optic hair with glowing tips, and I think we've got an advanced, yet "hip" android.

I've included some of the robot concept sketches I went through that led to the final, approved sketch.

Another challenge about this particular project was that the client planned to make HUGE, high-rez prints of the robot, so the working file was rendered at one half of the actual size of a normal, full-sized human being.

The Photoshop file was monstrous. Approximately 1.5 gigs If I remember right. My 24" screen imac, running OS 10.5, handled the workload just fine though. The illustration was painted entirely in Photoshop 10 using a Wacom tablet.

Friday, November 14, 2008

pages from my sketchbook

Some sketches taken from my current sketchbook. I 'm posting them as they are. Meaning that I'm leaving in the smudges, the failed doodles and whatever notes I happen to have scribbled here and there. These are a small window into how I think and work out my ideas.

speaking of whales

Here's another whale.... a steam punk version if you will. I admit that I do like to add rivets to my subjects. This little sketch does a good job demonstrating the solid, "heaviness" of the whale.

I think this is a pretty good candidate for a paper model design. Unfortunately, it takes me so long to actually produce the paper models I design that I get bored and lose interest before I can complete them. So my solution has been to work on several different designs at a time. For instance, right now I am working on a space habitat, a flying machine, an electric eel powered transport vehicle, and a two-headed chicken. I'll focus on one design for a week or so... then I'll switch to another for another week... and so on. All of these paper models are moving along well, but none of them are finished yet. Eventually, they'll be completed and I'll finally be able to update my paper models page on my website! Woohoo!