Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Style suggestion: children's storybook

Some design suggestions, its a big post so bear with me!

Since I feel our story most closely resembles a bedtime story someone might read to their kid, the art should reinforce that. Here are some designers, some in animation, some in illustration that I think have a style that goes into that general direction.

Tom Oreb: Story Sketches from Toot, Whistle, Plunk and Boom

I can really see a blue ox standing out when he arrives on earth if the barren landscape was painted with more warm colors and reds like the image above. This could also sell the "hard times" feeling we're going for, what with all the dryness and no crops. I think its easier on the eyes too, rather than dark, grey clouds. If its too dark on earth there really isnt much contrast visually from the stars in the celestial scenes.

Here are some from Melody Time, still Oreb:

The above is "Babe the Blue Ox" that Oreb design for the disney short. I think its important to have characters that are as striking visually, and easy to read as the backgrounds themselves. The more simple graphic shapes will read really nicely against a more abstract, softer background.

Jim Flora:

Mary Blair:

Bill Wray:

Simple, relating color schemes, with complimentary bits of interest. Simple shapes too, good use of sponges and texture to convey surface and highlight/ shadow.

Miles Thompson:

VERY bold color schemes, even bolder points of visual interest

I'll try have some more examples of character designs that work on backgrounds like this for the meeting on friday. But I think these artists reflect the kind of style and technique I think might really work with this type of story.

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