Concept Art

Following up with my last post yesterday on some of my favorite epic pieces, here is a few pictures from my sketchbook of some interesting concept art that I designed when I was bored. A lot of it is inspired from the psychological horror game Silent Hill that I have been playing the last week. You’ll find a lot of it is also science-fiction types. It’s funny, because I have never been a fan of science fiction and the last time I watched a science fiction film was about one year ago. Anyways here are my drawings:

(Click on an image in the gallery to go to it’s page, where you can view the image in full size)

Hope

Hope is all around us.  In what we believe, in what we do.  It is hard to express hope.  But I believe that it is possible – in music:

This is a few of the most epic movie and video game soundtracks that I have ever known mixed together to provide the most inspiring taste of orchestrated genius possible.

Destiny

The Matrix is full of evidence about destiny.  From the opening scene of The Matrix to The Matrix Revolutions, Neo’s path has always been pre-determined.  He seems to always have a choice, but as we find out, it was never really there.  The Oracle foretells his choosing, knowing he would choose the red pill, knowing he would be the one, and knowing that every single “Choice” Neo made was already answered before he was even presented with it.

Throughout the Matrix there is always two choices.  Two doors, two pills, two paths, two everything.  Yet there is all this evidence with the number three.  Three protagonists, three agents, the name trinity, the very room that Neo is shot in is room 303.  So why is there only two choices?  I believe that there is always a third choice, no matter what anybody tells you.  When Neo faces the Architect before the Source, he is faced with two doors, and is told that he must take one.  Instead of asking for another choice, or asking why he must choose, finding some compromise between the two, like many characters in other novels would have done, instead he simply picks the door on the left, with no hesitancy.

I think Neo finally learned his lesson at the end of the Matrix Revolutions, when he decides to head towards the machine city.  Everytime Neo didn’t know what to do, he always ran to somebody else to write his future for him.  The Oracle, Morpheus, anyone he sees as a mentor.  But in this scene, I believe that Neo realizes that it is up to him to write his own future, the third choice.  He does not listen to anyone around him, because he believes in his choice, unlike he did in the last two movies.

So what I guess I am saying is, it’s up to you to write your own destiny.

In Depth Night

So for In Depth night what I plan to do is have a station set up, where I show off my completed costume.  Mostly completed, that is.  What I intend is to have all my costume except for maybe one boot completed at my station.  Yes, you heard me, incomplete costume.  What I plan on doing is while I am presenting my costume, work on part of it to show people the process of putting together a costume.  That way not only do they see the product, but they see how it is made.  Along with the whole costume part, I’ll probably be playing some inspiring tunes that helped me through the process, and some of my drawings for display.

To fit my display, a big lemonade style booth will be set up with different textures and images to fit my display.  Since my costume is a Northern-Scandinavian themed costume, I want my booth to look like it is made of ice, or snow, or some kind of theme to fit my design.  Maybe the booth part will be like fake ice/snow, and celtic wooden poles will rise up and around in an arch to complete the look.  All in all it will be a truly artistic experience to anyone who visits.  They will learn how a costume is made just by seeing me working on it, glancing at my sketches, and be struck by awe at the whole presentation.  Anything they wish to ask can be cleared up in person.  Since they may be afraid to ask any questions if I am focusing all my attention on making the boot, and since I want my boot making to last the whole In-Depth night, I might just only pretend to make it, and focus my attention to my viewers.

So this is pretty much what I am going to do for In-Depth night.

Why The Matrix

This is kind of late, but here is my first Matrix Post:

More posts coming soon.

Why the Matrix?

A monstrous underwater menace, twisting and turning with each movement, each twitch of its muscle meaning a chance of lethality at the fragile mortal body beside it.  As it’s powerful tail pushes back the liquid prison beside it, it’s stained red teeth rush forward to lock onto the prey before it.

Jaws, the life changing thriller by Steven Spielberg, a masterpiece of a movie, impossibly captures the fear of the unknown- seemingly one of the strongest fears of mankind itself.

Boring.

Gunshots firing down alleyways, the altering of reality to the point of insanity, huge explosions, and symbols littering every nook and cranny; The Matrix is the most exhilarating motion picture experience of its genre out there.

When faced with the choices of literature for our novel study, I was more than excited when I learned that we didn’t have read a book for our study, but instead could study a movie, or even a music album.  As I am a self-proclaimed movie fanatic, my obvious choice was that of motion picture.  In that category, there was a choice between the two blockbuster films, Jaws, and the Matrix.

Now, I’ve watched the second half of Jaws, and honestly, although it is a perfectly executed movie, the only issue I had with it was time.  There is too much talking and waiting, with not enough action.  I love watching thrillers.  They have you on the edge of your seat the entire movie, always something going on, always something urgent that has to be done within an unbelievably short amount of time.  Jaws, however, drags away from that.  Instead of getting right to the point, it delays everything, until you practically fall asleep in your chair.

The Matrix on the other hand, perfectly portrays action, suspense, and the bending of reality in the most original way possible.  There was no debate in the matter.  So now I go to my living room.  Time to watch…

The Matrix

In Depth

Last Tuesday I Met with my Mentor Downtown over a glass of coffee at the Blenz in the Vancouver Public Library.  We discussed different techniques for creating my costume, such as PVC or a cloth mesh for a chainmail substitute.  I learned a very important part of costume design, especially in Theatre, but also in movies.  Usually when we watch a movie, all the parts of the costume we don’t see, we just assume it’s there, like the back of a leather chestplate  under a cloak.  In reality, it’s probably not there.  The basic rule is: What you see is there, what you don’t isn’t.  So applying this rule to my costume, to create the illusion of a chainmail cuirass underneath a leather chestpiece, the two pieces of armour will be attached together, with the chainmail sleeves and bottom sewed onto the cuirass.  Also, the back of the cuirass will not actually be there.  Instead, since the Cloak will block it, the cuirass will be attached on a shirt I will wear underneath. 

My mentor also brought up a good point about my cloak, and the material for that.  He said that for a play he did before, they needed a bear fur carpet, so they stitched together a load of fake bear skins, and presented it to the director, who then realized he didn’t want one that big.  So they ended up getting rid of about 3/4 of the carpet that they made.  He said they might still have some leftovers, and he would see if he could get me any for my cloak.  We also went over leather substitutes like Naga Hide and Pleather.

As for my actual Costume, I still haven’t done much on it, but I am going shopping at Dressew for materials this weekend. I’ve done up a few more sketches of my costume, and in fact it’s got me a bit inspired to do concept art.  On Sunday I did up about 4 or so pages of concept art in my sketch book, mostly on alien settings and horror images.  After playing the game Silent Hill and having a healthy dose of Physiological horror movies, I even began thinking of writing a physiological horror myself.  So in doing so I came up with a neat philosophical statement that leads me to my next post, The Matrix:

Like an unending cycle between that which is real, and the surreal probing of the unconscious, the building and unmaking of the barrier that separates what you see from the illusion that is what mind sees.  A cloak, a shroud of perpetual unknowingness, hiding everything that you know, every sanctuary disappearing, until eventually there is nothing left but your conscious.”

This I Believe, an Essay by Jenn Lamothe

I’m not sure if anyone else has written a post on this essay yet, but here is a nice essay about “This I believe” by Jenn Lamothe.  She is an epileptic writer from Sudbury.  here she writes about how sometimes it’s OK to just give up the fight, and learn to accept the limitations on life.  Here is a quote from her essay:

“What happens if I stop fighting? What happens if I accept the seizures, accept the limitations, and work within them? The answers came so easily I knew it they were right.

I remembered that I am a woman, not just an epileptic. I forgot Dylan Thomas’ battle cry and replaced it with Lennon and McCartney’S refrain: “for tomorrow may rain, so I’ll follow the sun”. I began to do what I could now, because later was so uncertain. I tried new things, as the opportunity may never come again. Even if it did, I may not be up for it. Not only did I get back on my feet, I began to treasure every moment . Every time I laughed it was louder. When I listened it was with a new focus, and I regained the sparkle in my eye.

I began leaving the house, wanting to go all the places I had feared before. I saw that I was not an inconvenience, but I was truly loved by those who surrounded me. The essence of who I am overrules any first aid that might be required.”

You can read the full essay here at: http://www.cbc.ca/thisibelieve/essays/july18_Jenn_Lamothe.html

This I Believe

Yesterday I was up till 10 listening to the American Top 40, narrated by Ryan Seacrest, and I was inspired to make a music video.  This I believe project was the perfect chance.  I mixed together 2 different songs from my immense library of popular music, and with added commentary by the Talons class, through it together to some inspiring pictures I found on the Internet.  It isn’t the best that there is out there, as I have never used Garageband before now, or do I truly understand how to work Imovie, but one thing that I am certain of, is that the entire process of making this was one of the most fun things I have done in my life.  There’s a kinda sloppy transition in there, but here it is:

In-Depth

I was waiting until now to write my In-Depth Post, and for quite a good reason.  I just got off the phone with Jessie at Carousel Theatre, and she has been very helpful to me with finding a mentor.  I emailed her some information about the In-Depth project that I couldn’t explain over the phone, along with some information about the TALONS program, and she has yet to reply.  In fact, if this was Thanksgiving day, I would say that I am truly thankful for finding such a helpful person.  Anyways, since things with finding a mentor for Costume design is going under way, I thought I should talk about the actual Costume making itself.

Material.  Finding the proper material for a costume is one of the hardest part of costume design.  When choosing a material to build your costume out of, you want to be quite careful in your choice.  There are many times where the perfect material for the design would be something along the lines of Kashmir or Silk, but material like that is extremely expensive, so choosing something that looks like Silk, rather than silk itself, is most important.  Rayon, for example, is a synthetic fabric that resembles silk, yet is a lot cheaper.  Materials like these are the types that you want when building a costume, or any type of clothing.

The story behind the Costume.  A costume is nothing unless there isn’t a story to go with it.  Just simple questions like, what culture is it based on, what is it’s practical use, etc., will help build a background upon which the costume is made.  The only problem with my costume design is, whenever I get interested enough in something to want to make a costume about it, I quickly lose interest in that and switch to another subject.  Just 2 weeks ago, I was very interested in the Wild West, but now, I suddenly sparked an interest in the Zombie Apocalypse and the good ol’ walking dead.  It makes it so that if I start a project on a costume, I will soon lose my interest in the subject and making a costume for that suddenly becomes more a chore than something I enjoy.

Well, that’s pretty much most of the deal of how I’m coming along with my In-Depth Project.  Next week, I’ll hopefully be posting something along the lines of media up on my blog.  Thank you for reading my blog!  Sherwood, out.