Friday, 11 November 2011

Unit 2: Space - Thumbnails 101 - The Desert Of Colours (1-21)

Hello Everyone,

I've been working away on my thumbnails - after my precursor evening snooze. I've had many ideas about the Desert Of Colours and considering Phil's advice about the Blancmange that could be the Desert Of Colours I have been trying to consider a new approach.

I started simply, I don't want to force my thumbnails, I just like them to come out naturally so I started in the sketchbook with some simple charcoal with blocks of shade.

I don't mind number 3 (in the image above) as it shows a rock face of sorts dividing the mounds of sandy plains, I even had the idea of incorporating a small cave below... the spiral staircase was a bit of a long shot here.

The rest are not ideal for a concept piece...rather empty. They are just angles of the same mound after mound... The idea of a cave intrigues me.

From these (above) I find 15 rather interesting... A kind of cave arch that almost traps the suns light. 11 is also rather interesting to me I like the style of the sand mounds with a perspective rock face possibly a close up object could sit there in place of the figure. Maybe a rock or a tree...

The rest are yet again (mostly) more mounds of sand objects need to populate these areas if they are to work as concept pieces. A concept piece cannot be just a pure golden haze of sand plains.

I decided to follow the sketch work with some digital concepts (above). I felt this would give me more room to maneuver and test a colour palette. 17 was to get the flow of the sand mounds correct with a gradient colour test. I was never going to commit to this as a concept (just a note for Phil).

18 was my very first attempt at a rock mound but It kind of ended up looking like a little alien critter or something. I was going to have a sand waterfall there which I still may use as I think that's something unique for a desert to have... something magical even.

19 Was a shot looking down at an open desert from a fronted plane taking the ideas of original sketch 11 and putting them into practice. The tree really works with the protruding rock faces.

20 was looking at a rock face to try and get the textures correct I like the angle of this concept as it really shows elements of spacing.

Finally 21 was a chance for me to look back to see if I could rejig any sand mounds into a more interesting shape. A typical pyramid structure appeared from nowhere... Again just playing to find the right way.

Well that concludes the thumbnails for this post. I'll see you all in the funny pages.

Over & Out,


  1. Yes, number 15 is interesting - it's great that you're seeking to install some 'bone structure' to this particularly difficult space; it's my understanding that it's the forest that gives way to the desert of colours - a sort of erosion. For some further inspiration check out Cappadocia, Turkey - and also

    and 'striation'...

  2. Hey Phil,

    Thanks for the advice I will look into this when I get back into my thumbs (hopefully got some time tomorrow) :)

  3. Hey Stitch,

    I totally agree with Phil, number 15 kinda reminds me of the cave/ abyss from finding nemo.

    I love number 21- the one you've showed me in Photoshop class and teaching me about the blues, red and green edges, it does stand out from the greys. I also like number 19 and 20, but you could also move the cliff slightly to the right more if you want to show space? just a wee suggestion!! Keep going Stitch!! Its all coming good!! ;D