Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Daily Report: A few things including architectural descriptions

The next book illustration is well under way now. The final pencil drawing will be done tomorrow and then I’ll do my contrast study in soft pencil before starting on the final ink drawing.

This new drawing shows the interior of the heroine’s father’s mansion. It is very Gothic in design, lots of boxes and angles. The hero’s people favor more curves in their architectural designs, much more like Art Nouveau. I like the fact that I’m developing two distinct looks for the two different cultures. Of course, I’m much more a fan of Art Nouveau’s organic shapes then severe Gothic and am having a blast designing things of the hero’s culture. The other culture (the more Gothic one) has a more dour quality to me. But that fits in with their culture.

I’m also designing several alien cities on Earth and many of these have rather sinister retro-futuristic, post-modern looks to them. Of course, if you’re not an architectural scholar you won’t know what that means, leaving me to describe it for you in the book. I have to laugh here because, even the descriptions of “Modernism,” “Retro-futurism,” etc. you’ll find on the web are in terms that most people will have little connection with.

For example, Antoni Gaudí’s Retro-future - “Hotel Attraction,” designed in 1908, was a skyscraper he proposed for New York City (and interestingly enough, one of the new designs recently suggested to replace the Twin Towers.) The Hotel Attraction is described on the web as being full of “Gaudinian forms including a profusion of parabolic arches and conoidal cupolas.”

Without a picture you’ll probably have no idea what that means.

I might say, “this building has a central cone-shape surrounded by several lesser towers also shaped into torpedo-like cones. The overall effect is much like sand dropped from a height and built up into organic shapes, many ridged as if tortured by the wind. The central tower is encircled three-quarters of the way up by a metal ring and the very top is adorned with a radiating star.” Or, perhaps more simply, "Gaudi's design appears like a conical rocket tipped with a star and whose nose is delineated by an encircling ring. The main tower is surrounded by a ring of accompanying conical shapes, similar but smaller. These secondary towers look like they've been created by wet sand dripped from a height."

Gaudi's Hotel Attraction
Neither are easy descriptions but that’s how it looks to me. Here’s a picture of the Hotel Attraction. What do you think?

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