Q&A: pho­to­bash­ing

ImagineFX - - Contents -

Karol Gullen, US

Mar­cel replies

If you want a re­al­is­tic look and feel to your ve­hi­cle, with de­tailed ma­te­ri­als, then the use of pho­tos can sup­port your process.

The soft­ware I use most fre­quently in tack­ling sim­i­lar briefs is Photoshop. It’s ma­nip­u­la­tion tools en­able me to crop and skew the photo ref­er­ence into place. The Trans­form tool will as­sist with most of the changes to warp the im­ages, while us­ing Masks will en­sure you fo­cus on the photo parts that sup­port the de­sign.

While pho­tos will give you speed and sup­port vis­ual so­lu­tions, you still need to choose ref­er­ences to match your ve­hi­cle. Me­chan­i­cal pho­tos, hard sur­face tex­tures and elec­tronic com­po­nents should be se­lected care­fully, or you’ll end up with a mish­mash of styles. Your sketch should re­main the de­sign thread through­out the process, with pho­tos only op­ti­mis­ing this foun­da­tion. This is why, even if de­sign­ing a ve­hi­cle that be­longs in a sci-fi ad­ven­ture, you should re­fer back to real-world ex­am­ples, es­pe­cially if you feel that your de­sign be­gins to lose read­abil­ity.

I be­gin work on this hover­bike and look at the po­si­tion bik­ers take on mo­tor­bikes, du­pli­cat­ing the de­sign sketches around this seated po­si­tion. I feel this in­jects more cred­i­bil­ity into my de­pic­tion of an Arc­tic op­er­a­tive, rapidly scour­ing a tun­dra-like waste­land.

Head­ing to­wards to the next fuel and sup­ply out­post be­fore night­fall. The ve­hi­cle parts are put to­gether in an un­con­ven­tional way to sur­prise the viewer. Once you’ve set up your base de­sign, start roughly lay­er­ing pho­tos to ex­plore dif­fer­ent parts, sur­faces and ma­te­rial di­rec­tion for the hover­bike.

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