Author Topic: Background Workshop II - Concluded  (Read 36350 times)


Misj'

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Re: Background Workshop II - Starts the 6th!
« Reply #1 on: 04 Jun 2015, 18:51 »
Original Post:

I can work with this (nice script :)).

Small question: I take it, that Trin the Harbor Master is not, himself, in this scene, as he's presented in the script as a key character and no key characters are present...?
« Last Edit: 21 Jul 2015, 21:07 by Misj' »

Re: Background Workshop II - Starts the 6th!
« Reply #2 on: 04 Jun 2015, 18:56 »
I can work with this (nice script :)).

Small question: I take it, that Trin the Harbor Master is not, himself, in this scene, as he's presented in the script as a key character and no key characters are present...?

The script, written by JudasFm (big thanks!), does feature some NPCs, but I leave it up to the participants if they want to include any. If you feel like including Trin (which the script doesn't mention the gender of btw), feel free!

------------

Gonna use this as my progress post:





















« Last Edit: 07 Jul 2015, 23:12 by loominous »
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Re: Background Workshop II - Starts the 6th!
« Reply #3 on: 04 Jun 2015, 19:34 »
This will be quite a challenge. I can just see the scene when I close my eyes, hope I can actually paint it as well.

Misj'

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Re: Background Workshop II - Starts the 6th!
« Reply #4 on: 04 Jun 2015, 20:12 »
I'm going to reserve this space for my progress in phase I (until feedback).

EDIT 1:

I always start with some brainstorming ideas. While I never write them down, I think that for this workshop it's good to share them.

some initial thoughts after reading the script:
  • why are my trees/plants in pots? - why doesn't anything grow naturally? - Hmm, imagine this being a science fiction background with some plants under glass domes. Maybe they are connected to the oxygen system. But how are you going to get in to get the fruit? - Glass cutter...? - I could also use a force-field and the puzzle is to turn it off. What happens to the tree? - I'm pretty sure it's going to die and people aren't going to be happy about that.
  • The fruit should be used in the jail. Maybe it's a good idea to put the jail somewhere in the background so the player is subtly reminded of it.
  • Trin is proud...his office should reflect this. Proud shapes, a little more Baroque then the other buildings. Gold is good. He wants his office to reflect his stature...

many of the brainstorming ideas will be scrapped, others will change, and new ones will come...just some things to get me going (and if it's useful to you, just borrow some of them).

EDIT 2:

I haven't started on the actual background yet, but - in preparation - I'm trying to figure out the world I want to create. One thing I like to do is to work from the characters. So I created two very rough characters to get me going with the atmosphere and stuff. It's good to have a few extra days to do that.

I decided that this story called for a female lead that I've dubbed Charee. She's going to be a full-blown adventurer straight off, I feel that giving her an origin story will diminish her character. So it's more Indiana Jones, and less Young Indiana Jones. She has no problem pummeling her fist into someone's face if the feels it helps her progress, and if she can't pick a lock then kicking the door down is just as effective. She doesn't believe in terms like feminism or strong independent woman, but rather thinks that everyone - man or women - should be able to rely on themselves (but should not be afraid to rely on others). She doesn't do bright colours, princesses or rainbows; so I'm going to use a desaturated palette for most of the image to reflect this.



Charee was hired to deliver a young girl/mage (less magic, more StarWars' the Force) to the capital city (it's all on a single planet). The way I envision the fictional game you would have three playable characters: Charee, the young girl, and a flamboyant con-man. Since the backgrounds will reflect their particular outlook on life, the same location (and characters) will look slightly different when playing with a different character (the girl for example sees only the good and is easily impressed. She does not see the dangers in the world, the scene is just a little bit more colourfull, and the office of the harbor master just a little more imposing in shapes and decoration).

Also, if Trin has deer-like features, his office will probably be influenced by Nordic architecture. And considering the amount of stuff and the fact that it's a 'fairly wide open space' I might have to think about a scrollable background.

As I said, this is just me creating a world, and getting a feel for the story I want to tell (that this background is going to be just a small part of).

EDIT 3:

Character-size is an important factor when designing a background for an adventure game. I personally tend to design my backgrounds so very little character-scaling is needed (basically that means that the line of action is mostly within a single (fake) 2D plane); for my personal taste, the character can scale between scenes but preferably not within a scene. Even during the thumbnail-phase it is important to take this into account.

I took a look at some of the classics:

and noticed that for me the sweetspot for the character-height is somewhere around 35% of the scene-height. Below that I feel the character is getting to small, and above I feel the scene is too cramped (in reality I never had a problem with Roger being small or MI3 being cramped, but it's just the feel I get from these images). Just something to take into account early on to make sure the scene will work inside your game.

EDIT 4: First Rough


EDIT 5: Second Pass


EDIT 6: Lighting my Scene


EDIT 7: Re-evaluating my design


-- Continued in Stage II --
« Last Edit: 19 Jun 2015, 22:17 by Misj' »

ThreeOhFour

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Re: Background Workshop II - Starts the 6th!
« Reply #5 on: 05 Jun 2015, 02:16 »
Exciting! Quick question, what is the orientation of the screen, if specified? Is the exit to the south at the bottom of the screen?

Re: Background Workshop II - Starts the 6th!
« Reply #6 on: 05 Jun 2015, 07:24 »
Quick question, what is the orientation of the screen, if specified? Is the exit to the south at the bottom of the screen?

I believe it's with south at the bottom of the screen, though JudasFm should probably answer that.
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JudasFm

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Re: Background Workshop II - Starts the 6th!
« Reply #7 on: 05 Jun 2015, 08:18 »
Yes, south is at the bottom of the screen. Sorry; should have been clearer :-[

ThreeOhFour

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Re: Background Workshop II - Starts the 6th!
« Reply #8 on: 05 Jun 2015, 09:29 »
Thank you! :smiley:

I'll use this post as mine, then. I did some very preliminary sketching tonight, trying to cement the idea of the actual scene's layout into my head. Be prepare to marvel at just how rough my early sketches are. Even did notes with a nice font and everything, because it always looks nice when loominous does it! :=



Next step is to take the idea I kinda like from a "mass of blobs" and actually try to find some interesting silhouettes in there.



Time to solve the issue with the foreground exit (hopefully!)



And I did some cleaning up...



Trying to fix some usability issues:

« Last Edit: 09 Jun 2015, 18:26 by ThreeOhFour »

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Re: Background Workshop II - Starts the 6th!
« Reply #9 on: 05 Jun 2015, 13:35 »
Love the shots from Treasure Planet used in the montage! One of my favorite Disney films, and so underrated! A bit of a fave amongst adventure game fans though I would imagine...

Well...except for that Jar-Jar-esque robot....Grrrrrrrr!!! But I guess they gotta throw the kiddies a bone now and then... (laugh)

Re: Background Workshop II - Started!
« Reply #10 on: 06 Jun 2015, 11:56 »
Okay, started! (first post updated).
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Re: Background Workshop II - Started!
« Reply #11 on: 06 Jun 2015, 13:03 »
Ooooo I'm gonna be taking part. Saving this space ;) will update soon

Re: Background Workshop II - Started!
« Reply #12 on: 06 Jun 2015, 13:58 »
Ooooo I'm gonna be taking part. Saving this space ;) will update soon

Good to hear!

Regarding updates, I think it's probably good if people post their progress in new posts, but also update their "main" ones, to make it easy for people to find the new stuff, but at the same time makes it tidy n easy to follow the progress.
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ThreeOhFour

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Re: Background Workshop II - Started!
« Reply #13 on: 06 Jun 2015, 15:34 »
I posted my first set of rough sketches.

If anybody's worried about the big image, I'm happy to put a preview with a link to the bigger thing on click, although I figure since it's specifically a workshop thread it might not be such a problem here.

Re: Background Workshop II - Started!
« Reply #14 on: 06 Jun 2015, 17:26 »
I posted my first set of rough sketches.

If anybody's worried about the big image, I'm happy to put a preview with a link to the bigger thing on click, although I figure since it's specifically a workshop thread it might not be such a problem here.

Excellent way to kick off the activity! Really interesting following the progress.

I usually don't pay much attention to dividing the image into thirds, so it was interesting to see how central it seems to your process (I usually have the golden ratio back in my head, but that's about it).

One nice thing with making it image based (though there are drawbacks of course), is that they can be easily reused in places like the critique's lounge, especially when it's about universal topics such as composition. (Though noone should of course feel compelled to post their stuff in pure image form, text is of course perfectly fine).

Edit: Question: did you do perspective grids for all of them, and do you always place the vanishing points at the thirds (horizontally and vertically) or center if they're inside the picture?
« Last Edit: 06 Jun 2015, 17:28 by loominous »
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selmiak

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Re: Background Workshop II - Started!
« Reply #15 on: 06 Jun 2015, 18:32 »
@304: Do you throw in the values at the size you posted the sketches, so it this the thumbnail approach or is this a resize of all your sketches?

Misj'

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Re: Background Workshop II - Started!
« Reply #16 on: 06 Jun 2015, 18:48 »
Some small comments. Not a tutorial, but some insights into the approach I generally take.
(yes, I'm also doing it via an image, because all the cool kids are doing it. Plus it means that I can easily save the information for a local copy)



ps. for this workshop I'm going to take the painter's approach with values and shapes. Simply because I'm here to learn new things and not just to do what I'm always doing. Using lines or shapes both have their advantages and disadvantages; and of course you can mix them. In the end it's mostly about using the approach you're most comfortable with to find the right structure for your scene (without getting lost in details)

Re: Background Workshop II - Started!
« Reply #17 on: 06 Jun 2015, 20:01 »
ps. for this workshop I'm going to take the painter's approach with values and shapes. Simply because I'm here to learn new things and not just to do what I'm always doing. Using lines or shapes both have their advantages and disadvantages; and of course you can mix them. In the end it's mostly about using the approach you're most comfortable with to find the right structure for your scene (without getting lost in details)

Just to be clear, it's not my intention to force people to take certain routes, which is why I didn't mention 'thumbnails', so I hope noone feels compelled to use them.

I am curious as to how line art focused people work when it comes to rough sketches and values/composition, since if you first do the line art, you have no real way of knowing how the lighting and values in general will work out, and since you've invested all that effort into the line art, it must be a pain to go back n redo everything if the lighting/values turn out to not work properly.
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Misj'

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Re: Background Workshop II - Started!
« Reply #18 on: 06 Jun 2015, 20:47 »
Just to be clear, it's not my intention to force people to take certain routes, which is why I didn't mention 'thumbnails', so I hope noone feels compelled to use them.
I hope you didn't think I felt forced into using thumbnails and working from values. It's more: I think this is a good place to get out of my comfort-zone and do something where I will make a lot of mistakes. And taking a painter's approach does that for me. In the end I will learn a whole lot more; and it's probably also easier for me to take critique ;)

Quote
I am curious as to how line art focused people work when it comes to rough sketches and values/composition, since if you first do the line art, you have no real way of knowing how the lighting and values in general will work out, and since you've invested all that effort into the line art, it must be a pain to go back n redo everything if the lighting/values turn out to not work properly.
It's probably one of the reasons why line-art-centered pieces often end up being harder than painted pieces (there are other reasons as well of course) while applying a lot more contrast. But that is - of course - not always the case.

I'll look into writing something about the way I go about it if I find the time. I don't think it's fundamentally different but rather a different order. The most important thing is not falling in love with a design. If you drew something and you loose it all in the shades that's okay.

In the mean time here's a nice example of a line-sketch to a colored piece: http://www.bobmcleod.com/nmsteps.html
and some movies by Otis Frampton (who often has value-sketches as well):
Indy Community
They Have A Cave Troll
Enemy Mine
The Usual Scum
They don't necessarily apply to adventure backgrounds, but it does show some insight.

Cassiebsg

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Re: Background Workshop II - Started!
« Reply #19 on: 06 Jun 2015, 22:35 »
Those rough shade sketches are just amazing! Honestly, I would play a game with those graphics! (nod)

Anyway, I just did my first rough sketch, just to get an idea of what am aiming at... or trying to anyway. View point I think needs to be lower.
I intent to do the BG using 3D in Blender, but I do enjoy hand drawing once in a while, since it does help me visualizing up what my mind is seeing to what I want to show. Unfortunately, is very rare that I can actually draw what my mind sees... I~m better at drawing what my eyes see (or at least I used to be (laugh) ).

Anyway, here for you to rip apart:


The Trader building is the "big" one in the middle, the tower I'm not sure, I  just felt I needed something high on that side of the picture, to balance the scene... and once I put the stalls in the picture, I lost a bit of the walking area and "south exit". (wtf)

EDIT 01 (10/06/2015, 00:05):

Original scan for sketch 1.

Original scan for sketch 2.



EDIT 02 (10/06/2015, 22:36):

Just posting my second 3D draft model. Am thinking this one works better than my 1st! (didn't post it, but if anyone wishes I can do that).
The Harbour Master's office building, still needs a lot of work, as the current shape looks odd - this happens when you have curves going of several opposite directions. I knew it would be tricky.
Still need to decide exactly where to add the opening with 3 steps to the lower docks level. Slicing the model to add it isn't much of a problem, but I can't later one just move it freely. Maybe some paint over the rendering picture will help, before I commit to it. ;)



Currently unsure if I need to scale the buildings up and/or place them further away. Maybe I should just add a human model to the scene, just so I have some references. (yes, I know there's currently too much light and too little contrast. The top of the wall is blending into the path bellow, atm.)....
« Last Edit: 10 Jun 2015, 21:50 by Cassiebsg »
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