The Hermit of the Abbey
[x] The Ruins

Over the last few weeks, mostly before my final semester came to a close, I've been getting a lot of incredible feedback from different artistic peers for the various environment concepts for my story about the hermit and his abbey. Much thanks especially to my buddy Brendan, Lawrence, and fellow Shrunkenheadman Gus Dizon.

Gus made a few helpful suggestions with the ruins design and was kind enough to take the time out of his own day to do a paintover of my piece. He essentially expanded the canvas to push the hermit and his alter out of the center while at the same time creating a little visual appeal beyond the foreground pillar.

I attempted to recreate what he had painted and I went ahead and kinda re-oriented the canvas to adjust the "tilt" in the perspective that other peers said they were feeling. I'm not sure if doing that helped or hurt the revision suggestions that Gus had made. Here's my revision...

And here is Gus's paint over:

[x] The Cottage at the Waterfall

Brendan and Lawrence gave me some good feedback for the waterfall piece. It's still a work in progress, but at its current state, B-boy suggested I put in a path on the left hand side - like a set of rock stairs along the cliff face to lead down to the waterfall, behind it, and back out at the ledge where the cottage/cabin is. Both Brendan and Lawrence also suggested breaking up the large shape of the waterfall with other rock formations just to break up the space and perhaps help leading the eye as well. Brendan's paintover is a little more successful than my revision shown here, but then again, this is still a work in progress.

[x] The Orphanage

No, not the Guillermo del Toro film... haha.

I also started thinking about the hermit's childhood... where did he come from, how did he come about to being at the abbey, why did he stay when the rest of the clergy and congregation moved on to other parishes?

I started to think that the hermit was an orphan who had run away from an orphanage on the border of the woods not too far from Vienna. He came across the abbey in its prime and the clergy took him in and let him stay provided he serve the church as an alter boy and assist the aging monks with chores such as cleaning, cooking, dishes, etc.

However, as the years passed, the church was swallowed up by the woods, eventually forgotten among the general city population. The clergy opted to move to other parishes, but the orphan now a teenager old enough to make his own decisions, decided to stay. He grew up, tending to his duties of maintaining the abbey as best as he could over the decades but it eventually started to fall into disrepair beyond his abilities to fix. With no where else to go, he continued to grow up and live in the ruins of the abbey.

Occassionally, he would venture back to the orphanage that he left to see what had become of it, and I pretty much envisioned it to be abandoned by the time he had grown up. All that was left was the brick/mortar deserted structure.

I started with a very simple Maya mockup to help me play with placement and camera angles, and then I did a basic grayscale painting in Photoshop and then started to apply color. This piece is less photoreal, having almost no phototextures in the piece. I wanted to try to do more of a conceptual painting before I did a photoreal matte painting.

1 comment:

Chris Palmer said...

Really nice stuff jon. it reminds me of the feel of Shadow of the Colossus or Ico. I love both those games for their mood-setting environments.

so good...