You may have seen some of Beastie’s concept art in an earlier post – the following image shows some of our early character concepts and puts the Beastie in some new key poses. Although we had some wonderful key poses to draw from in the book illustrations, we needed to add to this and create some additional ones from different angles.
We were very lucky to inherit such a well designed character from Gabrielle Antonini, and although we produced more 2D designs and sketches, we were keen to start experimenting in 3D. Bare in mind that the below is one of our very early tests, at a time when we had not considered how fur would be represented, and when we were experimenting with how such a great 2D character would fit into this 3D world!
Our early CG tests of the Beastie brought up the issue of fur – how will it work in 3D? In the book, the Beastie’s fur makes such bold, recognisable shadows and works really well as silhouette. To reproduce this kind of look would have meant keeping Beastie in a rather 2D profile – and he would not be able to turn around as much. But at the same time we needed Beastie to be able to allow those shadows and silhouettes.
Below is a sample of fur effects we tried out – from smooth, hair like fur, to the more clumpy, matted look. Early tests have proven 2C to be the most popular, but there is still a lot more testing to go yet!