Thursday, 29 September 2011

More Drawings (:

Here are some further experiment drawings, I decided to create a character with human intelligence (hence I decided to keep the glasses from the previous experiment drawings) and gulp eel abilities. I did these drawings to explore how the character will move, and stand like. I especially like the last drawing, as it shows a nice movement and a profile view of the creature. Because the pelican eel has light producing organs along the whole body. 
I found out from the further research that the eel has very small teeth which suggests that their diet does not consists of large fish. 
Sort of reminds me of an idea of a whale, which is the largest mammal with a huge jaw and stomach, but only feeds on plankton.

La Belle et la Bete

La Belle et La Bete is a story about a beautiful girl that gets tormented by her very materialistic and selfish sisters. In order to save her fathers life, Beauty decides to live with the beast. With the kindness and purity of her heart she manages to break the beasts curse and melt his heart. 

I like how in this film there's a very large contrast between some of the characters. Lets take for example the huge difference in behavior and clothing between Beauty and her sisters. The sisters behave very vein, thinking much more of themselves than they actually are, which highlights the Beauty of Belle, makes it more innocent and pure. Which most likely is the thing that at the end manages to break the Beasts curse.
This leads me to another example of clash between two different characters, which is between the merchant and the Beast, both which are trying to win Beauty's heart. The Beast may be ugly on the outside, but as the film goes on we learn that there's more to him than teeth and fur, and that deep inside the character is trying to desperately hide his animal instincts. Whereas the merchant however, handsome on the outside, plots to kill the Beast and steal his treasure. 
This leads on to a question, what separates a man and a beast? Is it the way you look, or is it the way you feel?
"Many men are more monstrous, but they disguise it"  Here the Beauty is saying that many people behave like complete animals, but they manage to hide it with the way they speak or dress. Whereas the Beast, even if it looks like a monster, shows much many more human feelings than most men alive. 
Throughout the progress of the film we see Beauty less scared of the Beast and she becomes more and more attached to it.  The only thing separating the both is the idea of being "human".
We follow the film till the end where finally The Beauty and The Beast unite together when Beasts curse gets broken. This could be reflection of domesticating the beast. We can see, however that the beast wants to be domesticated ( in other words, be "normal") throughout the beginning of the film. We can see that he's in pain, especially after he asks Beauty not to look into his eyes. "Do you mind if I watch you dine? You'll see me every evening at 7 o'clock." Animals never get to eat at the table, hence all the Beast can do is watching the Beauty eat, because this is the closest he can get to being civilized, its like he's following his instincts which don't allow him to eat at the table. Just like there's an example of the Beast trying to go against his instincts to try not to chase the deer. 
The Beauty and the Beast start spending more and more time together as the film develops. The set takes place at a beautiful  Le Chateau du Raray, and the producer uses very mellow lightning during most scenes, and very bright lighting back at Beauty's family home. The use of mellow light seems to give more character to the love story going on and gives it a dream- like mood. 
As you can see on the Figure above the house fitted perfectly for the set. As it's surrounded by sculptures of large animals which again add more character to the film.

Figure 1:
Figure 2:

Some of the experiment Drawings

For this project I decided to create a character that gains special skills from being spliced with a Pelican Eel.
Just like in the remake of the fly, when Seth becomes able to walk on the walls, and upside down on the ceiling, my character will be able to breathe and move underwater (hence the gills and webbed hands and feet). From my mood board I've been creating drawings which concentrate on the main features of the eel, which is mostly the tail and the head, because that's mostly what my creature consists of (drawing 2 shows an attempt of drawing a webbed hand, need to look more into the anatomy of a hand to really recreate the desired effect)
Most of the experiments so far been to do with the shape of the head, drawing 3 was one of the first attempts I did to create my own drawing of the eel from the profile view. As I noticed the eel has a very large bottom jaw, and its eyes are very small and close to the bottom of the head.
Just like on that picture above, the position of the eyes gives an impression that this is not a very intelligent creature. Seems like it doesn't have many other instincts other than devour anything that comes its way.
Because of this I decided to take the human intelligence and mix it with the eel's strange abilities (this is why in drawing 5 I decided to give my character glasses to hide the very low positioned eyes.).

I'm still in the process of creating the moodboard I shall post it soon (:

Monday, 26 September 2011

The Fly (1958)

Produced and written by:  Kurt Neumann
Screenplay by:                James Clavell
Cast:                             David Hedison (Andre), Patricia Owens (Helene), Vincent Price (Francois), 
                                    Herbert Marshall (Inspector Charas), Charles Herbert (Philippe), Charles 
One of the first things we find out in the film is when Helene (Patricia Owens) brutally kills her husband, crushing his head and arm under the printing press (twice). For the first couple of minutes the audience can't figure out why she would do this, as there is nothing anyone recalls being wrong with her marriage or family life. The confused family inspector (Herbert Marshall) and victims brother Francois (Vincent Price) are desperately trying to find out the reason, why a loving wife would kill her husband. 

"-You mean you put your husband
  under the press?
 -No, Inspector. He did that himself.
-He put his head and his arm
  under the press?
 -I cannot answer that question.
  Coffee, Inspector?"

Helene speaks of the murder as if there was nothing wrong with it, and she would not explain to anyone why she'd do such a thing. They assume she has become crazy, because neither Francois or the Inspector can think of any motive or reason except insanity.
In the scene when the Inspector and Francois walk into the laboratory we see lots of smashed up equipment and find out both Andre and Helene come from a very wealthy family, as Francois says, they "have more money than they know what to do with it." Also this is one of the scenes where the audience stumbles on the ironic plot of the film.

"-Did your brother
  ever experiment with animals?
 - Never.
 - Or insects?
  No. Though that would be funny, if...
  No. Hélène and André
  believed in the sacredness of life.
They wouldn't harm anything.
Not even a fly."

This is quite funny, considering that later in the film we find out that Andre WAS having experiments with animals, and in the next scene the Fly yet again is mentioned when Helene ends up showing signs of insanity after the nurse tries killing a fly that she thinks is 'bothering' the patient. The buzzing of the fly first creates the tension in the scene, which soon enough is interrupted by the crazed widow. 
So far in the film none of the characters can understand the reasons of the insanity. It's not until the dinner when Philippe asks Francois a weird question, asking about how long do flies live... This made the brother of the victim curious about the fly, considering that it has played a big role in the case so far. 

"-Because I saw that fly
  Mummy was looking for again.
 - I didn't know she was looking for one.
 - Oh, yes, she was.
   It's grown quite a lot.
   But I recognised it all right.
 - Mm, this is good.
   How did you recognise it, Philippe?
- Its head is white instead of black
   and it has a funny sort of leg."
 It seems quite suspicious that the day Andre disappears the fly comes into the picture. Also it raised Francois's  suspicion because
 of the amount of times the insect was mentioned by others. To find out what really happened to his brother, he decided to pretend
 that he caught the fly to see what Helene will have to say in that case. As he enters her room, funnily enough she asks him the 
same question as Philippe, 
'How long do the flies live?'
Yet again Helene goes mad after hearing that the exact insect she was looking for is found.  After Francois described the insect, 
the woman demands he gives it to her. After hearing its safely locked away in his desk, she finally decides to tell the Inspector and
  her brother in law what really happened the day she murdered her husband. 
"-Although I killed my husband,
  I'm not a murderess.
I simply carried out his last wish."
This is the moment when the story goes into a flashback. 
The flashbacks shows a happy family, loving husband and caring wife. Nothing out of ordinary, until Andre Delambre insists for 
Helene to follow him to see the new project he has been working on. It turns out to be a matter transporter, which Andre called 
the disintegrator- integrator. What it did was, it disintegrated matter in one place, the inegrated it in another. Which worked
as a form of teleportation. Shocked Helene couldn't believe it and thought he husband was just making fun of her. However after 
proving it, we realize that the machine is not perfect yet and there's still some work to do on it. This is because after the china bowl
 comes out of the integrator, in the place where it's supposed to say 'Made in Japan', instead it came out in mirror- effect. After this 
incident Andre, the passionate scientist decides to hide himself in his laboratory to perfect his invention. He hides himself in the
 laboratory for two weeks. when Andre finally comes out of the basement he's got some terrific news for Helene. after a night out, he takes her
down to the laboratory to show her when the bowl comes out of the disintegrator with the writing being exactly the same as before.
After he tries to do the same with a guinea pig, Helene doesn't agree with the idea, however, the animals comes out unharmed. 
Unlike the Dandelo, the family cat which Andre tried disintegrating 2 weeks before this event...
"-She disintegrated perfectly but never
  reappeared. I don't know why, even now.
  I redesigned the projecting device,
  and now it's perfect.
 -Well, where's she gone?
 -Into space. A stream of cat atoms."
A very important bit of plot also gets mentioned in this scene. Helene is frightened by her husband's 
experiments and says that it's like 'Playing God', however Andre comforts her and says:
"-God gives us intelligence
  to uncover the wonders of nature."
Oh the irony! Obviously neither Andre or Helene have any realization what's about to happen next. Helene gets a bit worries about 
her husband, after he wont answer the door when she brings his brother to have a look at the invention. Thing that caught my
 attention in this scene was after Helene tells Francois that Andre has something exciting to show him replies 
"- Well, what is it? Flat screen?
 - It's better. No more questions. Come on."
This shows the cultural difference between 1958 and 2011, where a flat screen TV is just as ordinary and normal as water in our 
taps. Yet, in this film it would be viewed as a revolutionary invention. After Emma mentions that Andre didn't eat his dinner though,
 Helene gets even more worried and decides to check out the situation herself. After she does, to her surprise Andre wouldn't open
 the door, and she receives type- written instructions from Andre, asking her to bring bowl of milk laced with rum. After she does 
what Andre asks, he lets her to come into his room. what we see when she does is a man with a bag over his head. Its quite a 
comical sight, seeing a very intelligent, rich, family man with a bag over his head. 
Andre reassures his wife that he is not in danger, however it is a matter of life and death, and asks her to find a fly. A fly with a 
white head and arm...At this point Helene remembers that Philippe caught that exactly fly earlier on in the day.
"-I caught such a funny-looking fly.
  You want to see it?                 
  But this isn't like any other fly
  I've ever seen.
  It has a funny white head
  and sort of white leg."
At the point of the desperation to save her husband, Helene gets both Philippe and the family servant to look for the strange fly. 
After the countless attempts, there are changes that are starting to appear to Andre, he gains a more wild character and keeps 
loosing controlof his left arm. He asks Helene to destroy his laboratory and kill him, she refused and said that theresstill chance to
 cure Andre, and that he haven't been trying hard enough. To prove it Andre gets into his invention, and at this point it's the first 
time we finally get to see him without a blanketcovering his head.
Helene screams with fear after seeing her deformed husband. To my opinion this was one of the
most effective scenes in the film, when we see the monstrous creature that used to be Helene's husband curl in fear after he hears his wife's scream. we even get to see with the eyes of the
half fly, half man. We see the fright on Helene's face, and after she passes out we see Andre
picking her up and putting her on the bed. This gets us to question, whats the line between a monster and a human? A human with flies head still has feelings, even if they become weaker each day... Andre decides to destroy his laboratory while Helene is passed out, so no other person will make the same mistake as he did and tries to play God...
After Helene wakes up and sees the laboratory ruined she decides to follow her husbands orders (another reference to 1950s of the wife being loyal to her husband). She follows Andre to the factory. he willingly puts his head under the press and asks his wife to press the button to release it. Unfortunately due to Andre's wild instincts his arm gets out from beneath the press when Helene pressed the button, that's why she had to do it twice....
 So back to the reality...
Francois isn't sure whether or not to believe the story Helene just told. 
However, Inspector Charas is certain of her insanity and decides to phone up people to take her away. Desperate Helene asks Francois about the fly, thinking if she shows everyone the evidence of this surreal story they'll believe her. Unfortunately Francois just admitted that he lied about catching the fly so they could find out what actually went on in the past couple of days. 
Considering to the lack of evidence, the lack of the fly, no notes or writing on the blackboard, since it have all been destroyed, Inspector decided to just accept the fact that Helene became insane. 
It's not until Philippe runs up calling for his mother, when Francois finds out that he found the "Funny looking" fly.
Francois rushes off to show the Inspector the evidence. And its this moment, I'm sure a lot people would agree is the most dramatic, hilarious and yet creepy moment of the film.

"Help! Help! Help! Help!....."
  Creeped- out Inspector grabs a rock and squashes both, the spider and the "Fly" with a rock.
"-You've committed murder
  just as much as Hélène did.
  You killed a fly with a human head.
  She killed a human with a fly head."

This is the moment when both the Inspector and Francois decide to cover up Helene's murder.
Because no one would believe a story about a human with fly's head, they decided to tell the judge that Andre Delambre commited suicide. 
The story ends happily with Helene being not guilty for killing "The thing"
Funny fact about the last scene that I found out from Hal Erickson's review on Rotten Tomatoes: 
"If you're wondering why Vincent Price and Herbert Marshall do not look one another in the eye during the spider scene, it is because they couldn't deliver their dialogue without dissolving into laughter"
Quotes taken from: 

Figure 1 The Fly Poster : 
Figure 2 :  
Figure 3:
Figure 4:
Figure 5:
Figure 6: 
Figure 7: 

Wednesday, 21 September 2011

Eurypharynx pelecanoides

 As propably all of you already know, for our project we're getting spliced
with another 'creature'. The whole brief of metamorphosis and being fused
with an animal gives me an idea of giving your creature a personification which
then will make it easyer to decide on the aesthetic looks of 
the final outcome.

Sooooo, during my adventures I managed to somehow get spliced with
a pelican eel (didn't even know such thing excisted....). 
The eel actually has pretty unique physical aesthetics, which is going to make
this project pretty exciting. There's a lot of imagery online, which shows that
people have already played around with the shapes and created quite awesome
digital images.

I don't really want to fill this page with lots of gibberish that obviously been copied
from Wikipedia, explaining the behaviours, origin of my animal etc... But I guess I can't really NOT do that, and just jump into the project not knowing anything (in the past that has worked but I guess not now... ) So yeah, there's some nice boring stuff that 90% of you aren't going to read (I usually just look at pretty pictures):

  • The Pelican Eel or Eurypharynx pelecanoides (which one of you preffer) is a deep sea fish- means it lives well under water in tropical and sub- tropical seas. Reminds me of the viper fish, which attractes its prey into the deep ends of the sea with its photophores. Hence if I had to personify my creature I would give it the character of someone sly and that hides in the shadows. 
  • The Pelican eel's most notible feature its the mouth, hence the name. Because it resembles a pelican. The jaws take up about 25% of the animal's total lenght (They should have used the pelican eel instead of a shark for the film "jaws" that would of been way funnier.)
  • Just like the viper fish and most deap- sea creatures the pelican eel gives out light to lure its prey into its trap. In this case it has long pink flashing tentacles that occasionally fash bright red.
  • The Pelican Eel can grow to be about 1m long and lives from 900m-8km under water.

So there you go that was all the "interesting" facts for you, meet the Pelican Eeel! In next post I shall post some drawings, after I get around to doing them....


Monday, 19 September 2011

Previous Work

 Final Major Project Work

       The Project was about war and ancient conflict. The photographs show a person doing fire spinning, as it's a form of martial arts and is viewed as a form of spiritual event (ex: Beltane the fire festival in Edinburgh, which was created by a small group of enthusiasts. The event was intended as a celebration and also a protest against the Thatcher goverment's restrictions on rights to gather)
       I decided to use fire shows to represent the similarities between ancient and modern conflicts and that even though they're seperated by centuries, the cause of all conflicts is pretty much the same (intolerance and the will to have power over other people). 
      The reason for using the fire was because in the far history it's always been associated with war and misery, even though it's also used for good. Native Americans covered themselves in charcoal face paint and performed  fire dances as a form of celebration and preparation for battle.
      The photograph of the log was taken at the same place as the pictures of Emily doing fire poi. I thought it was another good represantation of conflit because the piece of wood was split into 6 parts, then set on fire from the inside. When the photograph was taken from above it looked very surreal. 
I used it as a metaphor for Nations, Religion, Social background (just people in general) being split apart and categorized into groups during the time of war. Also because this photograph also involves fire it linked with the rest very well.