Project Name: The Rebirth of Man
Project Type/Genre: Concept Art
Direction/Goal: I will be creating a series of conceptual artworks exploring and depicting an alternate future version of earth, in the context of a video game, with man-made chemical resources altering the course of evolution, mutating the flora and fauna, over many years. Genre-wise, it will primarily be survival based, with the effects of the chemical resources and time providing a unique visual approach to the traditional apocalyptic depiction of a ruined earth. The intersection between the use of natural and (scavenged) man-made resources, both now found in the environment simultaneously, will form the foundation of the crafted items and structures within the game world. Creating an interactive element at the end of the assignment, such as a semi-animated show-reel, will help to create a centre piece in my end exhibit.
Purpose/Aim of Corporation:
To provide global infrastructure and ground-breaking technological advancements, aiming to create a connected Type I civilization, with hopes for humanity to reach and settle near distant stars.
The Galvar Corporation has succeeded in monopolising the manufacture and distribution of most goods, as well as the construction and maintenance of most global infrastructure. Their leading advancement at the time of their downfall was an adaptable chemical; a compound aided by programmable nano-bots, manufactured within automated factories and only overseen by a select few specialists. The ability to alter the purpose of each batch of the chemical allowed widespread distribution, and stockpile, of an efficient and multi-purpose resource. Uses of such a compound included; energy/fuel, nutrition, medical/tissue repair, military capabilities, resource acquisition, tracking and global positioning etc.
The emergence of underground extremist groups, whom were opposed to the ideologies and capitalist monopoly held by the Galvar Company, as well as wide-spread complacency of a promising future for humanity, created the right conditions for the eventual downfall of the global juggernaut via infiltration and guerrilla tactics. The sudden loss of infrastructure, goods, and services was felt by the entire population, with the complacent population lacking many needed skills or crafts needed to survive in a society that had been automated for so long. The gradual fall of society lasted hundreds of years, allowing the knowledge that once was to fade to dust as those who possessed it perished to the advancement of time.
Some clusters of society managed to persist through generations of decay, hardship, and conflict, maintaining their humanity and passing down the knowledge and ideologies they possessed. However, many were not so lucky, instead falling prey to the eventual allure of the chemical compounds that were released into the world. This oil-like substance, adaptable and multi-purpose in its creation, set about spurring rapid mutations and sporadic evolution among Earth’s flora, fauna, and much of the remaining human population; with many tribes using paint to imitate the chemical substance on their body, engraving their monoliths directly with the chemical itself.
Those who were affected by the chemical, and lucky enough to avoid either the sabotaged, corrupted, or military-grade varieties, persisted and formed primitive societies in relative peace. These groups of altered humans re-created the paths many tribes before them took, forming their own culture and way of life around their environment. With many primitive societies, whom do not have a rational explanation to the mysteries that pervade their existence, they turn to religion.
In the case of these humans, they adopted the chemical that drove them to this point in humanity’s existence as their deity.
One sentence description of IP:
“Post-apocalyptic and overgrown world where old chemicals have mutated the environment and its inhabitants.”
Research was conducted into a variety of topics and themes, with a heavy emphasis on tribes, evolution, mutation, and general art, design, and conceptual styles.
The research into evolution helped to inform the IP creation process, as well as how the fauna, flora, and cultures may change over time due to the new environmental factors present. Investigating urban decay, chemical exposure, and mutations in general provided me with a clearer mental picture of how the environment, characters, and shelters may look like in this changed world. In conjunction with that research was that of tribal references, with the looking into of different cultures and societies influencing the prevalence of the chemicals in this world. It would make sense that the humans left over would begin to revere, use, and/or manipulate the chemicals, perhaps even worship it, depending on their societal structure and knowledge levels.
The aforementioned research into tribes also provided a good bank of visual references for the tools, weapons, clothing, and shelters used, with my designs combining influence from a variety of tribes, especially Native Americans and African groups.
Research into other art styles and conceptual techniques was imperative, allowing me to streamline my process and produce more appealing designs.
The vast amount of reference images collected served to not only inform my designs, but be direct reference for the textures, materials, and colours needed to create believable concepts.
Overall, my research has helped inform my designs via context, content, and style, with a variety of sources allowing me to ground my designs in reality, thus establishing them as understandable and comprehensive conceptual works that communicate a possible reality.
Health and Safety: Not many health and safety concerns, however, care must be taken when cutting and mounting the exhibition boards.
Tools and Equipment: Wacom, Sketchbook, Computer, Stationery etc.
Primary Research: The Primary Research, conducted via visiting the Natural History Museum, aims to use the reference images taken at location during the creation of my weaponry concepts.
Secondary Research: The Secondary Research is extensive, with a variety of images, as well as book/magazine-based [Imagine FX] reference, being used to help inform my designs and ensure that they are grounded in reality.
List of Planning/Work to Produce: The prioritised shortlist of conceptual work to complete is thus; characters, melee weapons/tools, shelters, fauna/creatures. Inside each over-arching topic are sub-types, such as clubs, spears, axes, basic shelters, advanced shelters etc.
Planning also included identifying and organising the structure of the world, the societies living within, and the chemicals influence thereof. A structure for the chemicals was planned out, with different types providing different benefits depending upon their original purpose, with the corrupted version negatively influencing those it comes into contact with.
Reference (prioritized selection, many more sources were used; especially for images):
https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/04/130409095414.htm (Environmental change triggers rapid evolution)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P3GagfbA2vo (Crash Course Biology: Evolution)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hOfRN0KihOU (Kurzgesagt: How Evolution Works)
https://artsandculture.google.com/exhibit/tAKCb6QeUuhmLA (African Tribal Weaponry)
Taylor, C. and Sturtevant, W. (1991). The Native Americans. London: Salamander Books.
http://www.native-languages.org/weapons.htm (Native American Weaponry)
http://www.imnh.isu.edu/digitalatlas/geog/native/text/tools.htm (Native American Tools)
Art and Design:
https://www.ctrlpaint.com/library/ (Traditional and Digital Art Foundational Skills)
https://bigbadworldofconceptart.com/6387-2/ (Character and Creature Design)
Alexander, R., Cowan, F. and Walker, K. (n.d.). The compendium of fantasy art techniques.
Edwards, B. (2014). Drawing on the right side of the brain. London: Souvenir Press.
Lilly, E. (n.d.). The big bad world of concept art for video games.
MacManus, F. and Howlett, C. (2017). Film Concept Art Secrets. ImagineFX, (152), pp.80-86.
Mearls, M. and Crawford, J. (n.d.). Dungeon master’s guide.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TPxq0iJ2Qqs (Thumbnails to Silhouettes)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FShRsjeCPQ0 (Silhouette Tutorial)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H5X0MB9XWaE (World Building; Forest)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QcpsWG_idX0 (Character Design)
Urban Decay, Mutations, and Chemical Exposure:
Genre and Visual Inspiration:
https://io9.gizmodo.com/a-haunting-short-film-set-in-a-world-where-evolution-ha-1787060858 (Dust, a short film regarding rapid evolution)
https://dartgarry.deviantart.com/gallery/49897446/The-Forest (The Forest, a semi-modern survival game)
https://kotaku.com/the-art-of-horizon-zero-dawn-1792878981 (Horizon: Zero Dawn)
https://www.videogamesartwork.com/games/wildstar (Wildstar, a futuristic MMO)
ArtStation. (2018). Bobby Rebholz. [online] Available at: https://www.artstation.com/bobbyrebholz [Accessed 20 Mar. 2018].
ArtStation. (2018). Brother Baston. [online] Available at: https://www.artstation.com/brotherbaston [Accessed 20 Mar. 2018].
ArtStation. (2018). Stephen Oakley. [online] Available at: https://www.artstation.com/possum [Accessed 20 Mar. 2018].
Fengzhudesign.com. (2011). Feng Zhu Design. [online] Available at: http://fengzhudesign.com/ [Accessed 20 Mar. 2018].