Posts Tagged With: the tube riders

Books Versus Film and My Final Project (The Tube Riders)

As a separate part of my project review I wanted to not only share a handful of the designs from my novel to film project with the wider world but look at the book versus film scenario.

We’ve all heard the phrase “yes I saw the film but I preferred the book”. I see these comments posted regularly on social networks, but why is that?  As readers we have a personal experience when we read a book. The author will guide us and entice us with their own vision, but that doesn’t mean we all see the characters or locations in exactly the same way as another reader or even the author. Novels allow us to get inside a characters head whereas  film, by comparison,  can be more selective. It’s probably because we spend so much time with these fictional people. A book can take anything from a day or two to several months to read depending on the reader compared to a film which is normally set around 2 hours.

Perhaps it’s unfair to compare the two given the time constraints for film makers to produce a believable world. All we can do is to strive for the very best rendition we can, using the best technology, scripts, actors, talent available. Some film versions are better than others for this reason. In many cases some novels are just more adaptable.

My own opinion is that films and books should be treated as two separate  experiences, after all, there are a lot of people who don’t read. Films allow a window into an author’s mind albeit for a few hours and makes a story accessible to all.

What’s important is a good story and a set of characters that an audience can relate to.

For this reason I chose The Tube Riders by Chris Ward. Immediately I was drawn into the world from the first page. There was a great blend of character insight and world building without being too caught up in unnecessary verbal clutter. It also had the right pacing for a film and fell into the science fiction/horror/dystopian genre that is currently popular in both film and TV. Given the time constraints of the project I concentrated on a couple of settings and also worked on some visuals as future guidance for VFX. Working without the normal set up of director/art department/producer I had to make my own decisions through discussions with my tutor. I also used some artistic license as there was no screenplay to work from.

The purpose of this post is to firstly share my work, maybe get some opinions or comments and secondly to hear from those who have read books and seen them transformed into films. What are your experiences negative or positive? Feel free to comment below and let me know what you think about the designs or the subject matter.

tube riders visuals

Below are some photos of scale models for the Medical Research Centre reception area and arena.

DSC01001

DSC01047

arena render 4

 

The book can be found at:-  http://www.amazon.co.uk/Tube-Riders-Trilogy-ebook/dp/B007LVFSP8/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1409468188&sr=8-1&keywords=the+tube+riders

 

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The Tube Riders: Plans and thinking about space design (Medical Research Centre)

The next phase of design now that I am building a sketchbook/mood board collection of visuals is to think about the space in relation to the text. I am concentrating on the sound stage build this month so all my work and research is focused on the reception area, stairways, the arena, lift as well as details for the walls and camera angles. I have started working out the dimensions and planning the space to accommodate cameras and movement. In addition to this I am building a gallery of potential details and materials that I can use for the floors, walls, piping, lighting etc.

One thing to consider  is the height of the sound stage as I want to create a sense of being in the bowels of the building deep underground. The space is a little over 10 metres high so to do this it would involve CGI above the main build area.  I will design this to look like a continuation of the main space of the reception and create a concept.

Below is the beginnings of the main reception area and corridor to the scale of 1:50

plan reception 1

 

Below is the arena area which will sit over and into the tank space. This is work in progress as I’m still working out how I want it to look.

arena plan

I’m also considering the wall designs and plan to  have panels with pipe details.

panel pipe detail 1

I’ve added some colour and lighting to the wall panels. I thought that if the panels were lit from inside they would cast a soft light out onto the floor. This will allow lighting to show some of the piping within the walls and reveal the inner workings of the building. First image is the basic colour and textured semi opaque panels, the second is a visual showing the lighting.

wall panel colour final

 

 

pipes and wall 1

 

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The Tube Riders: Corridor concept 2

I’ve had a play around with some more renders and colour filters for the corridor as I’m still learning. I felt the other concept wasn’t quite there in regards to detail. There needed to be more detail in the foreground even though the lighting is more subdued and shadowed. It also needed to be sharper because it’s meant to be a clinical space and the slight airbrushed look of previous attempts looked too washed out for the foreground.

My Photoshop  is a basic one so there maybe other options for future renders in a better Photoshop version. For now it does the job. I want to work on improving the lighting and making it more atmospheric. I’ve added a few notes on materials and textures, but will add to this later when I start looking at materials for the entire complex.

anoted render1

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The Tube Riders: Corridor concept

Taking some of the details from my sketchbook I’ve had a go at piecing together a concept for the medical research centre corridor. Starting out in sketch up with a really basic structure, I built up layers of colour, shine on the floor and some basic lighting. I’m not sure whether this is entirely finished as there are a few problem areas to iron out, but it gives a guide to what the mood lighting will be and a rough size. I may add a figure in at a later stage.

Below: From Sketch Up to Photoshop/digital painting.

cropcorridor abc

corridor abc

cor filters1 and lights

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The Tube Riders Sketchbook: Huntsmen concepts

I have started working on some visuals for the Huntsmen and have had a play around with laying digital painting over a drawing. The following images show a progression from initial sketchbook through to a more detailed painting.

huntsmen1bhuntsmen 4a

huntsmen 4abheadab

head with words

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The Tube Riders Sketchbook: Horror mood boards and ideas

Another selection of concept designs will feature the Huntsmen characters. This is the horror element of the story and they provide various possibilities due to the fact that no Huntsmen needs to be exactly the same. They all have some similar features described in the book such as a dog/wolf like snout, protruding wires, scars, cyborg elements etc. but they can be varied. There are the older models as well as new improved Huntsmen featured throughout the book. In addition to this there are the experimental Huntsmen that were part finished. I will work on a few variations in the sketchbook but settle on one final coloured image that conceptualises the overall look for possible model/mock-up.

horror mood 1

horror mood 2

Above: Two mood boards showing colour inspiration and details that could be used.

Reference for visuals:- http://www.pinterest.com/amandafullwood/project/

Below: Some early sketch/collage experiments.

horror pic 1

face adapt 3

Above image is a digitally enhanced version of the sketchbook, with some added colour, blending of skin tones etc. This is one idea for the head and face area.

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Mood Board 1: Initial ideas

During the reading process I have been adding images to my Pinterest boards for inspiration. London of the future isn’t hugely different in the way that it still has Victorian and Edwardian buildings with a few modern additions. In fact The Tube Riders London shows very little in the way of development. What has been built, has been left part finished. Most of the modern parts of the city are in the east around Canary Wharf, similar to modern-day London. Future London is walled, as are all the cities of the UK. The city is a police state in which people live in fear of the looters, gangs, the government and the Huntsmen. The idea of the mood board is to start to piece together a selection of images that provide a starting point for research.

mood board 1

All above images are from my Pinterest boards at:-http://www.pinterest.com/amandafullwood/

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The Novel to Film Project: The Tube Riders

I have chosen The Tube Riders (part 1) as my novel to film project for a variety of reasons. The obvious one is the genre. It’s set in future London in the year 2075 so it fits into the sci-fi category as well as having a strong dystopian thread to the narrative. I was also struck by the post-apocalyptic feel to the settings the first time I read it; some futuristic architectural elements are present but there are a lot of existing modern-day locations that are in  varying stages of decay or destruction with some areas of London being more well-kept. There are external locations that can be adapted from today’s London, a large underground complex that contains a lab, torture chambers, an arena and various floors and corridors that would be more than adequate for a model/concept designs and government buildings that provide further concept options. In addition to this there are abandoned tube stations, cars, rubbish filled streets and a general look of a war-torn, unkempt London. There is also an opportunity to work on some interesting character/costume concepts and with horror elements in regards to the “Huntsmen” hybrid creatures that feature all the way through the book.

tube riders

The overall visual aesthetic of the story is that of divisions of rich and poor, but predominantly poor and abandoned. There is a sci-fi genre crossover between dystopian, post apocalyptic, horror/gothic with the characters and locations but also in the way that the buildings are described in the text; empty shells, half-finished building work, particularly the bypass road depicted as “a severed arm” I immediately thought that this way of  describing the landscape could work well with all the buildings, adding a sense of  a gothic, almost Frankenstein look to the film design, which fits well with the cyborg/human/animal hybrid Huntsmen.

The next phase is to breakdown the chapters into potential settings/props/concepts and to list all the  designs/types of work that I will produce in order to explore the role of Production designer, initially for the pre-production stage and then possibly for later stages should it be necessary.

Synopsis from Amazon

“Beneath the dark streets of London they played a dangerous game with trains. Now it is their only chance for survival…
Britain in 2075 is a dangerous place. A man known only as the Governor rules the country with an iron hand, but within the towering perimeter walls of London Greater Urban Area anarchy spreads unchecked through the streets.

In the abandoned London Underground station of St. Cannerwells, a group of misfits calling themselves the Tube Riders seek to forget the chaos by playing a dangerous game with trains. Marta is their leader, a girl haunted by her brother’s disappearance. Of the others, Paul lives only to protect his little brother Owen, while Simon is trying to hold on to his relationship with Jess, daughter of a government official. Guarding them all is Switch, a man with a flickering eye and a faster knife, who cares only about preserving the legacy of the Tube Riders. Together, they are family.

Everything changes the day they are attacked by a rival gang. While escaping, they witness an event that could bring war down on Mega Britain. Suddenly they are fleeing for their lives, pursued not only by their rivals, but by the brutal Department of Civil Affairs, government killing machines known as Huntsmen, and finally by the inhuman Governor himself.”

Further information about author Chris Ward is available at:- http://amillionmilesfromanywhere.blogspot.jp/

References:-

visual and synopsis http://www.amazon.co.uk/The-Tube-Riders-Trilogy-ebook/dp/B007LVFSP8

WARD,C., 2012. The Tube Riders Trilogy (#1) . (Kindle Version)

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