For the past few weeks I've focused on building backgrounds. Throughout my work as an illustrator I've designed and produced hundreds of images, but very few, if any, of them have been just backgrounds or just environments, settings or landscapes. I have typically approached backgrounds as a sort of filler or ambiance, using the characters in the images to actually set up the composition or movement. So - this was challenging.
The animation consists of nine sequences. Each sequence consists of multiple shots. There are roughly thirty-six shots throughout the entire animation. To create this is a different process than live-action film or video work. With live-action, one can set up an environment and by moving or adjusting the camera create different shots (close-ups, wide shots, etc). With animation, (almost) every shot requires its own set, or background.
I've chosen to work at 1920x1080. I was and I suppose still am considering letterboxing the work to create an even more extreme horizontal. You'll notice that some of the shots appear to be a different dimension. For panning, truck-ins and walking shots, I needed to provide more background image to move around in. At any given moment, each shot will be viewed through the 1920x1080 window.
Below are the backgrounds - these might get edited, here and there, depending on time. My goal was to create nine different environments, with their own purpose or character. The woman travels continuously, so she covers a lot of ground; I wanted that to be visually noticeable. I use a limited variety of worn paper textures, shapes and a grey-tone palette to create a sense of cohesion.
The next step will be laying this out to time, in Toon Boom, and posing the animation.
Just noticed I forgot to save the texture on this one...
And a couple of animation experiments to see how this might look...