FRANCO RABBIT / ORI ANIMATION
In the clip above you will see a short animation containing many concept elements I created while working at Ori animation studio. It is always a pleasure to see your work brought to life by a creative team, and each time one of these elements shows up on the screen it adds wonder and interest to this world. The below images will show the work and tell some of the stories behind them.
At the bottom you can see the early design for the room. This was a rich and spoiled panda character, and I wanted to give his room an abundance of items with a tacky feel. Whenever I concept, no matter the project or medium it is always my goal to create something that tells a story. I believe I have done that with the chair and mirror, as well as the cat table seen in the top image. Each of these gives a little more interest to the shots and helps to enhance the feeling of the character.
Design is always an iterative process, with feed back from peers and higher ups. Everyone has an opinion about design. This was compacted working on the show, with my Mandarin being pretty lousy. Some of the miscommunication that happened on the design was incredible.
The Rabbit was suppose to be wealthy with a butler and lived on an island. So I modeled the home after South Florida homes. The studio was looking for something a little different (Top Image) compared to what I gave them for the interior.
This was a minor bad guy in one episode. I really wanted to go all out on the throne. The candle light bounding off on the stones above the throne, create the silhouette of a tigers face. I wanted to have a subtle nod to the tiger cave from Aladdin. I think the spacing in the cave and the pool of water behind the throne all come together to make for a pretty unique environment.
Cat Science Lab
The Cat character is somewhat of a detective and scientist. originally there was a mutant goat / pig in one of the tanks. HR came back to me explaining this was far to strange for Chinese youths and that it needed to be removed. The giant carrot got to stick around though!
I suppose with the Chinese economic boom showing the home of every character is really important to them right now. This poor guy was living a life of freedom in easily transportable housing, when lightning ran wild and struck his home. This was part of the season long story arch.
This is a great example of needing to change your design to fit the character of a show. More times then not, I am able to sit down and read the design language of a show or project and fall into the style immediately. I had the bright idea to model this character after Krang from Ah Real Monsters. I was focused on the silhouette and wanted this character to be memorable from the moment he appeared on the screen. Unfortunately the studio felt a more Disney, or cute approach was the way to go with this fella. They did like the home I created for him though, I had never seen a mole home done like this before.
The top image was one of the most elaborate and detailed I was able to create while working there. In true Chinese fashion they told me it needed a turn around…and to do another. So each plank, every flower position was recreated from another angle. The other image is of a dirty night club in space. This had something to do with the storyline at the main characters meet up with the four Cow Gods. Each of their designs was a blast to create, with some fun original ideas.
The work at this studio was preformed extremely quickly. With 6 day work weeks, sometimes seven with one Sunday off a month. I was riding my bike 3 miles to get there each day. There was no internet on the computers, the USB drives had been turned off. To get reference files on the computers we had to go through three locked doors and the files were inspected. The air was turned on during the summer in the morning for 45 minutes, and another 45 after lunch. The heat worked the same way in the winter with two feet of snow on the ground. It was one of the happiest times of my life.