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Art is all about materialising your expressions. Vishnu PR takes us through his tutorial of how he transforms the expressions in his mind or even the expressions visible in a piece of art into his style and statement by creating a digital portrait.

Creating from imagination and references is one thing, adding your personal touch to these references and imaginative thinking completely changes the structure of the artwork for the good, defining the artists’ style.

 

For the creation of a portrait, inspired from an oil painting, in his own style, Vishnu has represented his personal touch in various forms of detailing like managing the light, shadow and highlights and addition of textures in just the right amount.

 

Follow the step by step guidance to know the secrets of making a digital portrait look real and surprise yourself with your own creation.

Make a Digital Portrait

Step 1

Start by making an outline of the image that you want to create.

Make a Digital Portrait

Step 2

A suitable base colour needs to be added to the created outline. Base colour is an important factor to create a digital art or portrait.

Make a Digital Portrait

Step 3

The next step is to add different tones of colours in order to achieve the desired light and shadow effects. To give the skin a realistic look, use texture brushes to create a textured effect on the skin.

Make a Digital Portrait

Step 4

In your mind, divide the picture into multiple parts and start by detailing out one part of the picture at a time. This organisation helps in a clear analysation of what exactly needs to be done next and is a smooth way of developing the picture.

Make a Digital Portrait

Step 5

Then comes the time to adjust the levels of light, shade and highlights. This will take the picture art a step closer to the actual image.

Make a Digital Portrait

Step 6

The fixing of lights and shades is followed by the addition of textures. The more accurately the textures are added, the more detailed will the outcome be.

Make a Digital Portrait

Step 7

The textures add depth to the portrait. This is then followed by the detailing of the face and its parts like the eyes, nose, lips, etc.

Make a Digital Portrait

Step 8

Now focusing on the hair and detailing it out to perfection. But always keep in mind that doing the hair is time-consuming and requires a lot of concentration.

Make a Digital Portrait

Step 9

Finishing up the hair gets us very close to the finished portrait. Make sure that all different parts are detailed out in the proper manner and in the right amount of detail. As a mistake, as small as that of placing a strand of hair at the wrong place can disturb the portrait.

Make a Digital Portrait

Step 10

The final steps to finish up the portrait include last-minute touch-ups and detailing.
The amount of time put into creating a portrait is directly proportional to the outcome! This painting in particular was done by Vishnu in about 15 hours.

It is not easy for an artist to explain all the details and steps required through just a few words! Every step described above is needed to make it look the way it looks. Missing out on even one step can change the final result.

Published in Issue 43

With the changing weather comes the season of Interns, with fresh new energy everywhere and your talented creatives wanting to test their skills and knowledge in the real world of live creative briefs and super creative professional environment.
This issue is a must-read for internees and fresh talents. Go ahead and order your copy here or subscribe to not miss any future issues!

 

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Satish Gangaiah, a successful independent freelance illustrator and designer, teaches us a few tips and tricks of working in the creative field.

Illustration by Freelance Illustrator Satish Gangaiah
Illustration by Freelance Illustrator Satish Gangaiah
Sticker Design for Facebook
Illustration by Freelance Illustrator Satish Gangaiah
Sticker Design for Facebook
Illustration by Freelance Illustrator Satish Gangaiah
Sticker Design for Facebook

CG. What was the inspiration for you to take up illustration as a career (freelance illustrator)?

Satish. During my childhood, I occupied most of my time by drawing. My fascination for drawing has evolved through time. My inspirations have mostly been from the urban context or pop culture. Later during my career, I was exposed to art from across the globe. This pushed me to further explore and understand international design trends.

Illustration by Freelance Illustrator Satish Gangaiah
Raitha - Landing Screen illustration
Illustration by Freelance Illustrator Satish Gangaiah
Hooghly River

CG. Your artworks depict caricatures. Is that your style in general or do you use it for specific pieces of art? Are there any other styles also that you like to try out or that you follow?

Satish. My style is not exactly caricatured, instead it reflects a sense of lightness and is aimed at easy communication. Stylisations often convey the message far better than realistic depictions. As an artist, I believe in being versatile in style and content. It is important to mould your work based on the requirement.

Illustration by Freelance Illustrator Satish Gangaiah
Life with pets
Illustration by Freelance Illustrator Satish Gangaiah
Diwali Greetings

CG. Your artworks have a lot of Indian touch to them but projected in a very contemporise manner. Could you please tell us a little about this style?

Satish. I take great care to ensure that the style I create connects with the audience. The artworks of this particular style are based on the Indian context and are intended to give a local feel. They carry my lived experience, my influences and my inspirations. The added contemporary feel helps them resonate with the times we live in. They reflect the trends and sensibilities of today’s culture and society.

Illustration by Freelance Illustrator Satish Gangaiah
Chaatwala
Herbs to Home Poster

CG. Your profile showcases an animated version of reality through your work. Is it a concept, scheme that you follow?

Satish. Most of my work draws from my experiences and attempts at thinking out of the box. They all have a common thread that reflects different fragments of my identity. Most of my personal artworks are inspired by things around me.

Tik Tok lady, personal artwork

CG. What are the messages that you aim at bringing across through your artwork?

Satish. One common message is that of joy. I am neutral as far as identity politics goes. Instead, I create my characters in a utopian realm of happiness. My artworks are also a tribute to the things that have shaped and inspired me. My messages are simple, minimal and relevant to us all.

Welcome to the world of corporate culture, personal artwork
Republic Day Tableau, personal artwork

CG. Could you give an insight into your design process, from the beginning till the end to get the desired output?

Satish. I always begin with a systematic understanding of the requirement or the subject. The next step is research; it is vital as it helps me explore multiple possibilities in representation as well as making the delivery of content more efficient. It also gives a good foundation on to base their concepts and ideas. After that, I start compiling mood boards and inspirations for the ideas. I also start making key sketches in tandem. This helps me keep the idea fresh and innovative. I believe by giving this amount of time prior to making an artwork always adds value to it. The next process is all about developing the idea into an artwork.

Chronicles Over Coffee

CG. In brief, what has your journey been like being a freelance illustrator?

Satish. My journey has had its ups and downs, in spite of that, I have enjoyed it so far. Experience has taught me that the more planned and well managed the process is, the more sustainable and easy the journey becomes.

Swayamvara, personal artwork

CG. Being a freelancer yourself, what would be your words of inspiration and a few tips for all the people wanting to start out a career in the field of illustration in today’s times?

Satish. The advice I can give to those who are starting their career is – always be passionate. Being passionate about your art practice also builds empathy to appreciate good art and design. And always try to create your own identity. Success always follows slowly if you are focused and retain the passion to be creative.

Good Morning

Published in Issue 48

A Freelancer’s Life in India! Every day, with a dream of ‘Being Your Boss,’ many creative professionals jump into the pool of freelancing. But many are not well prepared for the life of the freelancer, which brings many challenges along with benefits. So to explore further, we interviewed many freelance illustrators and designers to get answers to the question you should ask before taking the final call of becoming your boss! So, if you are planning to or have already become a freelancer then this issue is a must-read for you.

 

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It’s easy to watch a sixty-minute play, stand up and clap or look at a painting or portrait for hours and be spellbound. In such cases, it’s not only exemplary execution that excites the viewers, but also the impeccable composition that makes for the perfect picture. Aman Chotani, a renowned travel photographer, shares the tricks for compiling the right shot that’s more than just a photograph.

5 Tips for Capturing the Talking Portrait

01. Focus on the Eyes

Eyes are the main element in a portrait because there’s a reason why they’re called ‘the window into the soul’. Eyes can make or break your story and thus it’s advisable to always take them in sharp focus.

5 Tips for Capturing the Talking Portrait
5 Tips for Capturing the Talking Portrait

02. Use Elements and Depth to Highlight Your Subject

If elements were worthless, we’d frame our passport photographs and hang them on the wall. This only emphasises how the use of elements like reflections, shadows and patterns in your composition can make a shot more attractive and exciting.

 

If you want your subject to be the main focus in the image, create a shallow depth of field.

5 Tips for Capturing the Talking Portrait

03. Choose Your Subject Wisely

It is but obvious that a professional not only knows the best process but also understands what raw material makes for a perfect masterpiece. Needless to say, this goes for a photographer as well, when working with portrait shoots, selecting an important face is a quality that is mastered with time and experience. Like good actors make the movie better, similarly amazing and interesting faces make your shot interesting.

5 Tips for Capturing the Talking Portrait

04. Let the Light Guide you

The most important tool is to follow the light. Play along with nature’s incredible phenomenon, for it gives you the perfect colour palette and hues to work with. Make your subject pose according to the light; keep them as silhouettes or bathe them in the golden beam. After all, “controlling light is photography”.

5 Tips for Capturing the Talking Portrait

05. Talk Through Metaphors

Metaphors are considered a powerful tool in language. It can also be employed in imagery where you can use one image to suggest something else. This is really hard and takes time to master because it’s a fine line between corny and effective.

5 Tips for Capturing the Talking Portrait

Published in Issue 25

Creative Gaga kicks off the year with an issue that asks the important questions, is it the web that’s leading the brands or the other way around? With 2014 witnessing an increase in brands investing in digital marketing, 2015 will only be bigger. We can say India has accepted the revolution, where more and more people are opening browsers to e-commerce, literally window shopping, and setting up shops online as well. The issue brings together renowned designers with digital experience, who discuss and throw light on the pros and cons of this change and where we possibly are headed with this in the future.

 

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In a category dominated by sugared beverages, the Brewhouse provides its customers with unique moments of consumption and product benefits by crafting real, organic, hand-brewed ice-tea. Their right to win comes from the fact that they provide their customers’ unique moments of consumption created by real humans. Branding Identity by Bakheda.

Brief

Bakheda Co. was initially assigned to redesign the packaging labels which eventually turned into the development of a brand system that would express their mission of giving people a sense of holistic wellness through refreshing ice-tea – Brewed by humans.

Challenge

As Bakheda Co. wrapped up work on the packaging labels, but overall inconsistency within the language with visuals of the brand became very obvious. That is when they pitched a rebranding to Brewhouse’s leadership. Their strategy rightly rested on their proposition that with a brand like Brewhouse, the biggest challenge is to not sound like a brand, because they deal with organic ice tea brewed by humans, so it is vital to look and sound like a human.

Brewhouse: Created and Branded by Humans!
Brewhouse: Created and Branded by Humans!

Solution

It went without saying that the organic tag is a must for Brewhouse. The logo and wider graphic style for Brewhouse is a portal to what the brand embodies. Graphics language developed to mimic the taste of their ice tea – subtle, organic, and refreshing. It gives the brand an artisan feel – crafted, not engineered. The owy, handcrafted lettering echoes the organic and uplifting characteristics of the beverage.

Brewhouse: Created and Branded by Humans!

As part of the new brand identity, developed an extensive colour palette from warm and refreshing, and neutral and con dent. This way, these colours relate as much to what the brand stands for as they do to their products. The somewhat realistic, yet styled approach speaks of the brands positioning as organic, natural, and pleasant.

Brewhouse ice tea packaged in – 350ml glass bottles and 300ml PET bottles. The use of silhouettes of these bottles as elements for secondary illustrations, creating meditative patterns that have a calming effect, just like tea.

“Anant is someone I can trust to come up with some solid solutions to any given design problem, that too most likely in good time. He is a brilliant designer who also brings a good sense of brand positioning and creating consumer appeal. He surprised us not only with the speed of the execution but also with his ability to listen and use the feedback constructively.”

 

Siddharth Jain
Founder at Brewhouse Tea Brewing Co.

Every year many exceptional design briefs are being answered with brilliant solutions by many talented designers. Some manage to reach the limelight through awards and other recognitions, but not all. And that is where the ‘DCS-01’ comes into the picture with detailed case studies highlighting the challenges, research, and the unique solutions to each obstacle faced in reaching these final design solutions. An inspiration and a collection of quality design projects created in India recently.

 

So, if you are creative freelancer, agency, studio, corporate or a design student, who needs inspiration and want to know the process of making great designs, then this is a must-have book for your collection. Order it today to reserve a copy of this limited stock book.

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Characters – you’ll find them in comics, storybooks and fairytales as manifestations of imagination. Beyond that, elements like anatomy, expressions and plot are key in making a character appear realistic and relatable, believes character designer Aditya Chari. He explains the realistic principles one must incorporate while creating a character.

Kali. Illustration for a gaming concept. Depicts a negative character.

The Story Catalyses a Character

It’s important to know the story before giving shape to a character. After all, the purpose of every character is to tell a story. The story is built around their strengths and limitations. The props help them overcome their limitation and move the story forward. Next, figure out the role of the character in the story and layer your vision on top of it.

Tamohara. Displays how the character can narrate the story when placed in the right setting.

When you get content describing a character, you actually narrow down the choices and attain a more focused approach. This makes it easier to plan your character. However, when you work on your own conceptual art, there is no fixed direction. And you have to take the idea in your mind and put it down as a building block for the design. After that, let your intuition take over.

Character Design

It’s All in The Face

Facial expressions are most important when it comes to character designing. The eyes best convey the expressions, especially when in a close-up. The hands and the spine dictate the posture of the body, magnifying the emotion you try to convey through the facial expression. The expression is a window into the character’s mindset. Therefore, if you want people to relate and accept your characters, you need to design them to be expressive.

Character Design
Devi. The soft curves, posture and the facial expression keeps the feminine essence intact.
Character Design
Zoravar. The massive overgrown character has exaggeration that in no way disrupts the rules of anatomy.

Exaggerate What Anatomy Allows

When you are trying to draw from life or memory, your knowledge of anatomy is your main tool. You learn to look out for the landmarks on the body which help you put down your figure faster. Moreover, it helps you foreshorten the figure and also dress it up where the underlying body is not visible. Anatomy helps you understand mobility and the function of muscles. Muscles look different when they are relaxed and when they are contracted.

Character Design
Devi Comic. A very determined facial expression lends it the power that muscle lends to man.

Exaggeration is just an adaptation of muscle and bone structure to the characteristics of the concept you wish to develop. This depends on what you expect the character to do when playing its role in the story. Characters like Popeye with huge forearms, Hulk with massive overgrown muscles or disfigured creatures from visual effects films, all fit into the same skeletal and musculature structure.

Sea Creature. Irregular and bizarre. Follows the anatomy of sea life like the fins, the flippers and the claws.

Know the Difference Between Muscle and Mental Strength

While working with characters that are either male or female, it’s important to be aware of the differences between the two. Apart from the obvious physical differences, you need to bring forth the emotional difference too. Imagine combining the physical frailty of a woman with a very determined look when facing a larger than life scenario.

Gorg. Complex, surreal and mechanical creature. Manages to get living feel because of its fierce facial expression.

You have to make her look strong but at the same time maintain her feminine side. It’s about her mental strength. On the contrary, a male character would be more about robust physical posing and an exaggerated angry expression with throbbing veins and a muscular built. Even the design of clothing has a different approach for each type just as in real life.

Snake Woman. Body postures and facial expressions bring out the character’s personality.
Character Design
Character Sketch. Reveals many characters need props to help them overcome their limitation.

Published in Issue 14

We dedicated this issue to Digital Art where we explored the connection between our dreams and imagination and how the flexibility of technology can be used to document that. In his exclusive article, Android Jones explains the broader perspective of digital art. Featuring Ankur Singh Patar, Aditya Chari, Archan Nair Harshvardhan Kadam and Aamina Shazi Arora, every article discusses how each of them has an individual way of working and yet they all look at life beyond the obvious to appreciate it’s beauty.

 

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Last few years, India has seen a steady rise in design consulting needs from new mushrooming businesses, commonly referred as ‘Startups’. These are not necessarily the love child of newbies but also some industry veterans or serial entrepreneurs taking on new business challenges, who understands the importance of design. Here, Ashish Deshpande explains the pros & cons of designing for startups.

startup
ASAP. CIIE-IIM-A incubated Bangaluru startup that created this “on the go” snack, design helped strategise and communicate a differentiating visual story. Pic by Elephant

A motivating enterprise environment in India, propelled by several industry & government initiatives has helped create a breed of entrepreneurs high on enthusiasm, technology savvy and willing to take the risk on new product service formats. Design is playing a crucial role in their journey as well as successes and there is increasing acceptance to the use of design in building a resounding brand & quality of product or service application. Paper boat is great example of a recent startup success story where one can observe design playing a key role. However, working with startups has its own unique hiccups and thrills.

startup
Paperboat. A memory drinks based startup where design added emotive value to the brand, identity, language, pack form function. Pic by Elephant

• CHALLENGES WITH STARTUPS

1. Multi-role Involvement

Let’s face it! Startups are ultra lean. Aligning business & technology solutions to a consumer-focused approach needs to be done at multiple levels. Since most startups, unlike the well-established corporate world, cannot afford multiple experts & agencies, a designer is seen as a ‘fix all’ for several needs. Involvement of a designer or design firm goes beyond a specific design assignment. Designer ends up playing a strategic role, trying to balance business strategy with design, brand image, product, pack, quality, vendor development, applications and point of sale, with key design language & marketing messages.

2. Distinct Solution

Most startups are either technology or business focused. Design is a weakness and so is the ability to profile and understand end consumer. Startup tend to get committed too early to a particular tech or proposition without ascertaining appropriateness, uniqueness and distinction of their offering. Despite a new idea, most times, the end offering is neither distinct enough, nor is perceived value appreciable. This grave omission places the fledging business at risk from the word go.

3. Incremental Approach

Paucity of key in-house expertise & resources, especially funds, forces design to be undertaken in an incremental manner, stretching across months at times. Design implementation also takes place at a slow pace so it is difficult to see the full picture or measure the impact of design. A healthcare start up, setting up new format of hospitals launched the service care product with just the new brand identity, However, the hospital experience that would resonate with the brand was placed on hold due to lack of funds. The result was apparent. Customers never experienced the distinction in the hospital value proposition and never understood as to why they should adopt this new hospital chain.

design
SynPhNe. Singapore based technology startup where design helped cutting edge tech become human through Industrial Design of Wearable stroke rehabilitation device focused on needs of patients. Pic by Elephant

• ADVANTAGES WITH STARTUPS

1. Contagious Energy

Startups are a happy lot. Usual work culture is hands-on and people come across eager to learn, share and help. It is great to work with synergies of such teams and be part of an exciting journey. The results reflect on the design output. Client meetings are less of drudgery, are participative and consequently more productive.

2. Willing Explorers

This is one place where Startups score. They are willing to play along as you explore, experiment & test. There is negligible blame game, no departmental silos or ‘mother of all’ presentation to the King of the corporate. Results are quick and decisions are usually part of a co-creative play. Funds are the only constraint but then frugal approach and ‘jugaad’ prototypes are more than welcome. This approach works wonders for the confidence of the design team.

3. Creative Satisfaction

Many startups are working in the healthcare, social impact, agri-tech and energy space. Just the sense of what your work will potentially achieve can layer the designer in you with goose bumps. Each startup is a new challenge, whether it is B2B or B2C, it gives a sense of new purpose and when design helps enable such opportunities, the result is very satisfying. Design as core to startups is understood by the fact that many new enterprises have designers as co founders. Designers in India will have to quickly adapt to this new scenario and draw out a process to work with the Startup eco system. This culture is here to stay.

Plezmo. IOT based education platform that helps you learn program logic while you have smart fun. Pic by Plezmo
Plezmo. IOT based education platform that helps you learn program logic while kids have smart fun. Pic by Plezmo
client

Published in Issue 37

Recent demonisation and changing Taxes has pushed most of us in planning our finances more seriously. So to answer some of the basic questions for designers, freelancers and creative studios, we interviewed some of the creative legends to guide and share their wisdom. The issue includes interactions with Preeti Vyas from VGC on ‘How to pitch for clients or retain the existing one’ and Ashish Deshpande from Elephant on ‘Challenges of working with a startup’, along with some best freelancers like Archan Nair, Shreya Shetty and Paul Sandip, sharing their knowledge of working with various clients. Also, Sachin Puthran from Thatzit.com gave a 10-point no-nonsense guide for studios to handle their finances. A must read, if you are planning for the financial year ahead or worried about your handling your money matter, this issue can give you much-needed insight and guide you to a better financial health of your business or freelancing.

 

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Seerow Unni, a keen animator, takes us through his approach and process. He sheds light on how he arrives at improvising in the course of designing, and why it is so vital to enjoy each and every aspect of the progression.

Key is to Enjoy the Process and Improvise at Every Level
Key is to Enjoy the Process and Improvise at Every Level
Key is to Enjoy the Process and Improvise at Every Level
Key is to Enjoy the Process and Improvise at Every Level

The core intention is to convey the message.

For that, it is essential that one enjoys each and every moment of the process of creation, no matter how small or big the work. For example, rather than just as a simple image or illustration, one may perceive everything as a scene, like in a movie. This leads to adding details, emotions, fun and more to a scene. Similarly, when we get it right, fun or wit and humor are the easiest ways to make people fall in love with what we create. Improvisation, likewise, is a part and parcel of the experience. From the very beginning, one may sustain the habit of keeping a close eye on the developments that are happening in the world of creative designing. For instance, I had started with the traditional canvas and then with time, shift to the digital medium.

Key is to Enjoy the Process and Improvise at Every Level
Key is to Enjoy the Process and Improvise at Every Level
Key is to Enjoy the Process and Improvise at Every Level
Key is to Enjoy the Process and Improvise at Every Level

One may continue to keep familiar and updated with the works of renowned digital artists. This automatically teaches to adapt to the needs of the changing times.

Diversity is a boon in the form of a challenge.

Dealing with different clients from diverse fields means they all have different requirements. They all demand a new approach, something that’s entirely path-breaking in the making of their animated film. This gives the freedom to keep the entire setting as well as characters so different from previous work. One must look at this as an opportunity instead of as a challenge and, no matter how big or small the work is, enjoy it to the fullest. Even if you are good in it, keep practicing and never stop sketching. It is equally important that you follow the famous artists and be updated about the trends and changes in design. There is no shortcut to success; as hard work always pays off in the end.

Changing with the times involves observing the direction.

The trend this year is shifting towards clean and minimal design from the complex, elaborated ones. Flat designs are going to be in the limelight. The idea is to keep things simple and minimal. In fact, minimalism is probably going to be a huge trend this year, not just in design, but in all walks of life. The challenge to come up with new ideas would be of a galactic proportion. But simplicity is the way to go forth, and it has got a lot of untapped potentials. We will be able to see these elements everywhere from movie titles to logos and other mediums. As far as perception goes, our audiences have always been game for positive changes. They will embrace the change with open arms.

Published in Issue 41

Every year brings many opportunities and hopes along with celebrations. For this issue, we reached many visual artists and designers to know their expectations from the year 2018. This issue’s cover designer, Shreya Gulati is exceptionally impressed by the advancement of technology in design, especially how VR & AR has impacted new ways of creating. Honing and sharpening one’s skills is always a quest for every creative. So, whether you have many or none expectations for the year, this issue is a must-read. Go ahead and order your copy here or subscribe to not miss any future issues!

 

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Story-boarding is not just creating beautiful pieces of art. Instead it is presenting ideas and content in a strategical & comprehensible style. Saumin Patel tells us more.

Story-boarding

An illustrator at heart, Saumin started out professionally by joining an animation studio creating online cards. Eventually realizing his plus points, he decided to manage the backstage of animation, which is designing and illustrating for the animated projects, also known as story-boarding.

Story-boarding

What is story-boarding?

As the name suggests, it is a story told through multiple frames in a visual manner, defining an entire process in detail. Used for animated films or even shooting a scene in a movie, story-boards help the director in streamlining his vision and allow the team to align themselves with this vision to achieve the desired result.

Story-boarding

Story-boards are not just pretty pictures, they are the shots which supposed to evoke certain emotions and enhance the story, conveying an overall mood but could be subjective to each individuals’ interpretation.

Story-boarding
Story-boarding

Every element used in here becomes a character, be it fire, wind, trees, water or rocks, thus becoming a definitive source of information about what the scene is going to be like. In short, it is a manifestation of the creators’ thoughts through tangible elements.

Story-boarding
Story-boarding

Story-boarding puts forth the anticipated difficulties and helps in deriving solutions for the scene’s smooth-sailing.

 

The beauty of a story is that it can be expressed by different directors in their own unique style. So as a storyboard artist, it is essential to convey the essence of the director’s idea and vision in a clear-cut manner through these frames.

Story-boarding
Story-boarding

Story-boarding for advertisements is a bit different from that of films. Advertising is all about presenting to the client, hence the story-board needs to be completely finished and aesthetically appealing. Whereas for a film, it is about clear communication of ideas from the director to the entire team, showcasing the flow of the sequence to build the expressions and the mood. Beauty and aesthetics take a bit of a backseat in this case.

An Artist’s Individual Style

Saumin’s style is mostly comic, giving a lot of details about layouts and backgrounds, thus making it simple and easy for the entire team to execute the shoot. For him, the excitement is more about brainstorming and presenting ideas and options to the directors rather than drawing the boards out. His style and work culture helped him carve a niche for himself in this sector and got him working for some of the reputed names in the film industry like Ashutosh Gowariker and Sriram Raghavan to name a few.

Work-life

A big fan of director Sriram Raghavan, Saumin along with his friend created an original graphic novel for the promotion of Agent Vinod, published by Westland Publications Ltd.

For Raghavan’s Andhadhun, Saumin has worked on a few key sequences, creating boards in his own style to function as inspirations and concepts for the sequences. He has also created promo images for the Bollywood blockbuster Stree and has had the opportunity to storyboard a song and the climax sequence for Vikas Bahl’s Super 30.

Words of Wisdom

There is learning at every stage.
Before story-boarding, it is necessary to study and understand films, television shows, comics, performing arts or any other subject that needs to explore. Reading fiction and non-fiction adds up to the knowledge base of an artist, thus helping him in expressing his work better.

Issue 45

Published in Issue 45

When celebrations are all around for the new year, everyone is curious about what this new year will bring. So, the rounds of looking back to the past year and trying to predict the new one starts. We started the same exploration through this issue by reaching various experts for their take on the trends for their respective fields. So, go ahead.

 

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Finding the modern in the ancient is a matter of vision and desire, to renew the old in such a way that is thoroughly transformed in not only its form and look, but its very fibre and perception. That is what illustrator Omar Gilani prefers to do through his rather fascinating interpretations.

Ancient Future
Desert Warrior Aunty.
Ancient Future

CG. Your range of work bears contemporariness as a trend that seemingly defines or represents your style. What inspired this concept and what is your idea behind it?

Oman. I wanted to show what I want to see (more like giving a perspective into one’s outlook, interpretations, and perceptions). Science fiction or fantasy typically falls into very western tropes, and the subcontinent is usually ignored in those regards. That was frustrating, for me – that no one was depicting how this region may look in the future, and so I decided to give it a shot in my spare time just for fun.

Ancient Future
Pindi Boyz.

CG. What impact or effect do you intend this ‘contemporary’ or ‘modern’ element to have upon your audience?

Oman.I just wanted to show that it is possible to create such kind of visuals and interpretations through such representations of everyday objects, many-a-times easily taken for granted. If anyone can look at my work and feel motivated to do something outside the box for themselves, I’d consider that a huge win for myself.

Ancient Future
Sitaar Player.

CG. What inspires you as subjects for your depictions?

Oman. Just everyday things I see around me inspires me as subjects, and I easily find them worthy enough to take shape as depictions. We have a pretty rich culture and ancient history, and to wonder, visualise, interpret and finally depict how that would evolve – or not – in the next hundred to two hundred years is a rather interesting and exciting task.

Ancient Future
The Bounty Hunter.

Ancient Future

CG. What role does lighting have in your illustrations, and how do you approach and apply it?

Oman.Lighting has a rather significant role in any realistic illustration. I use lighting to determine the initial composition of a piece. Dividing the canvas into simple black and white shapes to see if all the various aspects are harmonious, helps me do that. The lighting in the shot helps guide at this step, and it does go on further to play a huge role throughout the development of the piece as a whole.

Ancient Future
Smog City.

CG. How do you conceptualise what you depict?

Oman.I have a fair bit of back-story for the world I’m depicting, and so it is a matter of combining a certain scenario with that back-story. Artistic elements like colours and lighting play a role in conceptualising, composing and finally executing a shot to create the final image. I approach it as thinking I’m creating a screenshot from a movie.

Ancient

Ancient Future
Inner City Tourists.

CG. What kind of improvisations or changes would you like to intend to bring about in your style?

Oman.I’m learning to work with 3D these days, and it’s already hugely improving my flow of work. An essential change that I would like to make is to just get better at showing what’s in my head i.e. depict more clearly and precisely the image that is conceived in the mind, such that it is represented effectively on canvas. Although it must be noted, that is a lifelong, constantly ongoing and evolving journey.

Ancient Future
Panorama1.
Ancient Future
Departure.

Published in Issue 38

With this issue, we try to explore different views from many well-known studio owners and senior designers. While Anthony Lopez of Lopez Design shared tips on what a studio looks for in a designer, Mohar Ray from Codesign highlights the key aspects that play a significant role and make the difference in whether you are hired or not as a promising designer. Also, this issue has an insightful article on ‘Branding with reason and love’ from Itu Chaudhuri, founder ICD (Itu Chaudhuri Design) along with Siddhi Ranade, explaining his tools of story telling through his unique style of illustrations. This issue is a must read for a talented graduate to a branding expert. Order you copy and enjoy reading it!

 

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