The Electric Company Season 3 (sorta): Character Design
June 2, 2011
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What can be fun to draw than astronauts, puppies and badgers? Why drawing Paul the Gorilla of course!
Still, these designs were not without their challenges. Sesame does not have a studio style, so one had to guess at what the execs want. To make the situation more challenging, I was designing from 2000 miles away. What I would do to have been able to draw right in front of the execs to figure everything out. Live and learn, and I learned that my design interpretation talents are limited when I am working with people who don’t have extensive knowledge of animation and design history. Producers are money people, not art people.
And now the difficulties and work behind the clean ups:
This is closer to the style they wanted. Why didn’t they just say a hybrid of Joe Murray and Matt Groenig? Because…they have a different educational background.
This sprinter was too Disney. He does look like Ichabod Crane. I was thinking “make funny looking guy, not a cat-nip male”. It backfired.
Exploring styles: A Spumco Badger
My default 40’s drawing style which is interpreted as Disney to contemporary non-animators.
They liked Groenig badger at the bottom left, but I didn’t want to get sued, so I suggested further exploration. Time got too tight on the Paul the Gorilla sketch, so they went with photographs.
Pity. Nothing beats drawing in front of people IMO. Buzz word adjectives like quirky, are not sufficient to describe: Make a hybrid of Groenig and Murray from those who don’t know to say so.