During the holidays last winter, I created a few personal works for a project, and here are the results. I will be moving in a different direction from this style of Photoshop painting over the coming holidays. Descriptions below, and of course, click to see bigger.
Here’s the full trailer to Arrival. I did a fair bit of concept art during the early stages of preproduction, and I’m pleased to see a lot of my work in this trailer. It was by far the best screenplay I’ve worked with. The work itself challenged me immensely – in a good way. Denis Villeneuve and his production Designer Patrice Vermette were a joy to work with – brilliant minds both. Intelligent, thoughtful Sci-Fi.
About a year ago, I was contacted to design spaceships for a YA sci-fi novel. Naturally, I jumped at the opportunity and it was a thrill to come up with these ships. I’m pleased to say the book has been released this week and it was a blast to read! It’s the first in a trilogy, and I highly recommend it if you like a fast-paced and unique space adventure. It’s also an amazingly well-designed book, told through transcripts, archived files, text messages, blueprints… and at 600 pages, it’s a surprisingly fast read. This book is going to be a big hit. Thanks to Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff, the brilliant authors, and Heather Kelly, designer at Penguin Random House for this cool opportunity.
Here are my designs for the main ships that appear in the story, and in the book.
I updated my portfolio to include a proper credit for my Race to Mars illustrations. I was contacted by the designer of the vehicles – Kurt Anthony Micheels – through Facebook, in a message dated from 2011 which I just saw now. Folks, check the tab that says “Other” in your private messaging page – tons of missed emails, not just junk.
As I was only working freelance on the show for two weeks, all my drawings went through approval from the production house in town, and subsequently I should have been more careful to find out exactly where the designs actually came from before putting them in my portfolio and calling it “Concept Art” instead of “Illustrations based on…”. I’m glad Kurt alerted me to this – no one like to see someone else’s name on their creations, and I’ve always made sure to play fair in this business.
Here are a few quick sketches – mostly older spontaneous doodles. The John Carter sketch below was the first one I did for the book illustration, but there were already plenty of Carter-versus-Thark images submitted, so they went with my landscape one (https://meinerthansen.com/2011/10/01/john-carter-of-mars/).
I’m starting a new personal project. I’m hoping this will be big. It’s called “The Limitless Ether.” Like many of my projects, the title came first. This is all I can say for the moment: It will be a short story. It will be in motion. It’s definitely steampunk, and it will be a space odyssey.
I will be sketching and developing it this summer and hope to have the pitch ready by fall. No, I didn’t draw this beautiful solar system chart, but it sits on my desktop for inspiration.
I suppose I could use this blog as a blog for writing once in awhile. At this point, I have about three years of artwork which I cannot post online for various reasons. Okay, specifically, I cannot legally post any of it; a film that has yet to be released, another one which has not come out on DVD, one which is still in production and a game which may be another year before I can even say what it is. I’d like to say I have sketches to show, but I don’t. Working on high-profile projects is intense and time-consuming, and I would rather put down the pen at the end of the day and get on with my other interests.
That said, I’m itching to find the time to work on some personal projects I have kicking around in my sketchbooks and my garage. I have been writing outlines and notes for art projects which need to get done soon, for my own satisfaction. I’ll be posting and sharing some thoughts about these in the next post. Meanwhile, here’s a teaser logo for one of my ideas:
This was an intro I created for my demo reel in 2007 during a long weekend, which is why it’s a bit rough. I love doing this kind of retro ephemeral film style.
Meet Joe-Bot, my new mascot. Still working on finding a good balance of logo, text and color, so this is temporary. I like this little guy, and want to make it my new logo, and build my new website based on this kind of iconography. I’m going to build a whole story around this little robot and look forward to refining and rebranding my company.