Wednesday, 6 July 2011

Digital Painting "Outpost 32"

I've been doing some of the weekly Imagine FX magazine forum competitions rather than the monthly ones, which has encouraged me to speed up and improve my techniques. Instead of getting bogged down in extraneous detail, they have forced me to make sure I get maximum effect without spending hours over-working something.

Hospital designs
This was created for the June 2011 weekly challenge entitled: "Highview Hospital design"

The 'Brief': "Your challenge this week is to produce a full colour environment painting of a futuristic mountainside hospital."

The 'Description': "Highview is built high on the side of a mountain range. The hospital is constantly battered by the elements, surrounded on all sides by snow and rock. Highview is only accessible by an advanced lift system built into the side of the mountain below it, or by helicopter (which is more commonly used, and overseen by the hospitals dedicated flight control tower). Their only communications are via a large satellite tower."

Helicopter designs
I thought that perhaps a futuristic building on a weather-beaten mountain would be designed to allow the weather to move around it with as little wind resistance as possible, so I imagined the bulk of the structures to be elliptical (see designs above). The communications pylon is positioned horizontally, so that it will be clear of falling/sliding snow from the mountain, and if damaged, it won't fall on the hospital itself.

As for the helicopter design, I wanted to do something futuristic and unusual, but instead of going wild with multiple rotor arrangements, I wanted to keep that archetypal helicopter feel alongside its futuristic look.

I also thought, why would you build a hospital on a mountainside that is practically inaccessible in the first place? I decided that it was on a different planet where this location actually is one of the safer places to build the hospital. Hence the alien planet on the horizon...

Final "Outpost 32"
This final version is almost the same as the one entered in the competition, except for a few minor details on the helicopter. I gave it the title 'Outpost 32' as a little nod to the film 'The Thing', in which the Arctic base is called 'Outpost 31'.

It's one of the pieces I've been the most satisfied with recently, as I think it almost has a 'movie production art' feel to it. It has also been great practice since I haven't done many landscape scenes of this nature so far.

All work is the © copyright of W.D.Lee and/or the respective companies, individuals or organisations to which the work is related. No infringement is intentional. No reproduction or copying is permitted without express permission.

1 comment:

  1. Ab-Fab, love the feel of it. VERY Movie Production Art - I revisited the Blade Runner Art recently, so YES.

    Too true re. the avalanche avoidance (we had a friend nearly killed in one on Mt Taranaki this winter, and he & his co. climber needed air lifted out!! A most narrow escape) and wind sheer, it can be strong and cold even at a distance.

    How do I get a copy?

    Faith, Taranaki, NZ