Thursday, November 25, 2010

Movies: Creating locations I

To get the impression of a location, we learn to combine every aspect of what we see. So, what we did for Darkness & Light in 1992 (mustaches were still common those days;-) was a combination of different approaches.

Still from 'Darkness & Light', 1992, directed by Michael T. Bhatty

The stone wall with the ancient runes is a 1 m * 1 m cardboard, painted with black colour and sand and dry-brushed later. 

Still from 'Darkness & Light', 1992, directed by Michael T. Bhatty

The entrance to the cave was just a narrow stone bridge. A car almost crashed into the riverbed while we were shooting and the driver gawked fascinated...

Discarded CGI-test for 'Darkness & Light', 1992, directed by Michael T. Bhatty

An this shot one was one of the first experiments with CGI using Truespace. As we were unhappy with the result, we actually built the rock for live action, using chicken wire and plastering it with paper, then we painted like the wall (see above).

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Photography: Going into the movie style...

This might be one shot who draws a connection between my movie making interests and photography as an artist. 
In 1991/ 1992 when I was right in my art and media studies, some freidns and I came up with the idea of doing another movie again and this time it should be traditional sword- and sorcery-fantasy. So we created a series of test images, just to see how costumes and light might work.

There isn't a costume yet, just a 20 cm * 20 cm piece of chainmail (it took me 10 hours to work it ring by ring) and the backside of an old leather jacked, where I cut the arms off. The most demanding experience was the sword, which was a great collaboration of two friends and myself. They created the rawform out of wood and I did the sculpturing of the dragon's head at the 'Forte' (below the hilt) and wrapped the leather for a better grip.
The metallic colour was from a model shop. something called 'polished steel'. this colour was dull at first, but could be brought to a shining surface by polishing. But the best part was, that the sword was so well balanced that we could use it for swordfighting in our movies 'Flashback' (1994) and 'Darkness & Light' (1992).

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Photography: My Caradhras

In 2006 an overnight snowfall changed the vista of Germany's hightest mountain, the Zugspitze (Alps). I created this shot which became my personal Caradhras, the famous Mountain range from Tolkien's Lord of the Rings.

Photography: Object II

Another early example for a more graphical approach. Here the idea was to combine the organic with the industrial structure of the paper background...

Monday, November 15, 2010

Photography: Object I

In 1991 I experimented with light and textures you can create. Paper and cardboard, ice and plants. Ans always I was playing with light and shadow. This is one exercise I did (and I guess none of my models where available that day so I used a flower instead;-).

The whole idea was inflienced by photographer Robert Mapplethorpe, who inspired this type of shots.

Photography: Hollywood Glamour Style

I wrote my M.A.-thesis on the history and marketing of Hollywood-Glamour-Photography in 1995. As a result I did a lot of research on Geroge Hurrell and Clarence Sinclar Bull.

I developed a love for this style and in 1997 with one of my models I experimented with sharp high key lighting, giving a certain glow on hair and skin.

Photography: Self portrait II

Sometimes you run out of a model and you have to pose yourself. As early as in 1992 I started experimenting with a Hollywood-Glamour-style lighting and posing. Here, this shot was inspired by Alfred Hitchcock's Psycho.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Photography: Freezing Water in Time and Space

During my later studies in 1993 of Art and photography a fellow student and I were sent by our lecturer out to produce a series of shots, using yellow roses. As it was a hot day in summer, we spent most roses on the pretty girls in the park at the campus.

Anyway, we found a well and when my male model tossed the last roses into the water, we came up with this idea. Using a fast shutter (1/500 s) and Agfa PAN 25 film material with a high contrast in the gleaming sunlight produced this result.

Photography: Self portrait I

This self portrait was done in 1992, during the production of a documentation. It was the first time we got hands on a 'real' camera. These were my first experiments with the topic of creating icons in the style of the Hollywood movie makers.

Photography: The female Terminator

During my studies of Art in the early 1990s I experimented a lot with photography and movie making. During this period this shot was produced, which was strongly influenced by Terminator 2 from James Cameron. A fellow student posed for me and we came up with the idea for a female terminator. Well, that was in 1992, long before part III...

She became my first permanent model, as she prefered to pose only for me... Also, she provided me with a lot of feedback.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Novels: Runes of Magic - Origins of the knight Fantur

Sean Connery in Robin Hood - Prince of Thieves, 1992

I often  work with movies to get a feeling for my characters. Look and feel, mimics and gestures are often influenced by movies I like. A good example ist the Knight Fantur, whom you might know if you have read RUNES OF MAGIC - SHAREENA (sorry, in German only - for the time being). Have a look at the cover and you'll rekognize the familiarity. 
I am plastering my walls during a writing session with images, so my characters can 'talk' to me, look at me, helping me to get them to know...

Actually I like the idea of a normannic knight and used as full name 'Guillaume Nathaniel Fitzfantur' for 'Fantur', with 'Guillaume' as the normannic/ french version of William. And 'Sir William' provided a good knightly feeling for me as well as the 'Fitz', which is used as 'son of';-))