Monthly Archives: April 2014

Production Design: The concept or visual

Concept drawings are impressions of the set, often starting out as simple pencil drawings and becoming full colour renders that encapsulate the look of the film (LoBRUTTO, V., 2002). These can take on many forms from rough sketches to paintings with many being produced using computer software like Sketch Up or Vectorworks. The concept or visual is also used as a tool to show the set or character with possible colour schemes and overall mood of the scene ( BARNWELL, J., 2004). I have always had a fascination with the concept and while researching my project I have come across so many different styles. The following images are taken from various dystopian/post apocalyptic films and TV shows. Here they show how the concept creates the atmosphere and gives an overall impression of setting, props, lighting and colour.



Above: A visual concept from The Road found at[sourced on 5/3/14]


Walking Dead 9.jpg-large

Walking Dead 8.jpg-large

Visuals from The Walking Dead found at [sourced on 5/3/14]



Visuals from The Children of Men by Peter Popken found at [sourced on 5/3/14]


Visuals:- [sourced on 5/3/14] [sourced on 5/3/14] [sourced on 5/3/14]


Books:- LoBRUTTO, V., 2002. The Filmmakers Guide to Production Design. New York: Allworth press

BARNWELL, J., 2004. Production Design: Architects of the Screen. New York: Wallflower



Categories: dystopian film and designers, post-apocalyptic film and design, The production designer and art department | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Project development: Pre production research

This week I’m working between the practical side of my project and the theoretical research that will back up and influence my design decisions. The main focuses are pre-production, sound stages, location dressing, concepts and the changing role of the production designer. My practical work involves designing the main sound stage build; so completing a model, technical drawings, concept visuals, researching materials and then looking at how CGI is used in the sound stage build. Along side the practical elements I’m also having 2 days work shadowing a production designer; one day on set watching the shooting process and one day observing set dressing. These observations will form part of the production designer case study 1.

Firstly I wanted to look at what exactly is meant by some of the processes of pre-production:-


A span of time in which the production designer conceptualizes the film or TV show researching and producing drawings/concepts, technical drawings for the build. This usually lasts between two and three months on average. It involves everything that needs to be done before filming starts including what parts of the design will be set builds? What will be a location dress? How it will be filmed? (BARNWELL, J. 2004) Also included in this stage is the storyboarding in which each shot is thought through, with ideas coming from the director, production designer and director of photography. More often than not the storyboard is drawn up by a storyboard artist, but on low-budget films the production designer will take on this role (LOBRUTTO, V. 2002).

To complete my project I need to look at these elements in more detail over the next month and how they relate to my own designs:-

Concept art/visuals

Sound stages and builds

Set dressing

Technical drawings/plans/models

Location scouting


How all these relate to production and post production ( CGI and effects in particular)



BARNWELL, J., 2004. Production Design: Architects of the screen. New York: Wallflower

LOBRUTTO, V., 2002. The Filmmakers Guide to Production design. New York: Allworth Press

Categories: MA Practical Project, MA project, The production designer and art department | Tags: , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Thinking About The Future: London Concepts

I will also be looking at the city of London itself alongside designing interiors; how it might change over the next 50 years and producing concepts that could influence the post production side of design. I think it’s important for the Production Designer to have a good idea of how the world will look down to the smallest detail, even if some of the design jobs are done by other departments. The production designer oversees the overall look of the film.

As part of my location scouting day I also took photos with this in mind, so thinking of potential visuals that would probably be developed as CGI rather than built. One is a future Canary Wharf. I took this photo with the goal of adapting it. The visual is an early stage concept so there is still a lot to do to the foreground and some buildings to add in the distance, but just by adding some colour filters and sky detail, I can see what is possible.



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Categories: MA project, sketchbook and visual diary | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

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