I’ve seen lots of mechs from the out­side, but how should I paint the view from the cock­pit?

ImagineFX: Sci-fi & Fantasy Art magazine - - Imaginenation Artist Q&a -

Damon El­lis, Eng­land

John replies

Let’s say we were pi­lot­ing a mech. What sort of in­for­ma­tion would we want to see on our heads-up dis­play (HUD)? We prob­a­bly want an am­mu­ni­tion in­di­ca­tor (for all our var­i­ous types of weapons), a com­pass, a mech body dam­age in­di­ca­tor, en­gine tem­per­a­ture mon­i­tor (like a ‘ life’ bar), and of course a tar­get­ing sys­tem. We also need some sort of colour-coded threat in­di­ca­tor that iden­ti­fies en­e­mies as red and al­lies as blue/green.

We need to start with a back­ground, with ob­jects and en­e­mies to tar­get, right? A war-blasted waste­land will make a nice back­drop to which we can add sol­diers and ve­hi­cles. For the view from inside the mech, we need a sug­ges­tion of a cock­pit win­dow. You want it to be there, but not so in­tru­sive that it blocks your view. In this ex­am­ple I give it a slight blur to pro­duce a nice depth of field. You want to show in

I have a sep­a­rate Il­lus­tra­tor doc­u­ment open in tan­dem with my Pho­to­shop file. This en­ables me to make quick vec­tor shapes that I can use later.

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