Tag Archives: design

Using abstract shapes to design plants

Shapely Plants

What to do with those emotional shapes?

Now that we’re telling stories with nothing but shapes, how do we use it in design?

In my UVU concept art class what we did next was to create eight new abstract shapes that we really like, purely in the design sense.

Abstract Shapes - by Bryan Beus

Abstract Shapes

We took those eight shapes and mixed them together to create two different plants.

From the outset we understood that the plants would be nonsensical—that was part of the fun.

But, as you see when you look through the next few pictures, we didn’t just stop there.

Once we had those plants designed, we used them as a base for drawing more designs within the black silhouettes—this time with a white pen drawn over the black.

This is a way for artists to plan out the smaller shapes that reside within the design.

Take a look below, see if you can pick out the building-block shapes above with the final results.

Using abstract shapes to design plants

Using abstract shapes to design plants
Bryan Beus

Shapely Plants

Using abstract shapes to design plants
Bryan Beus

Using abstract shapes to design plants

Using abstract shapes to design plants
Bryan Beus

Using abstract shapes to design plants

Using abstract shapes to design plants
Bryan Beus

 

And, as promised, here are the answers from the last blog post:

1 & 2: Centered

3 & 4: Vigorous

5: Bored

6 & 7: Vulnerable

8 & 9: Hatred

10 & 11: Panic

12: Tormented

 

How did you do? Let me know in the comments section how close I came to capturing those emotions for you.

Bryan Beus - Abstract Emotions

Abstract Emotional Shapes

Abstract emotional shapes from my UVU Concept Art Class.

All in all, this is a really fun activity.

This assignment I thought up as an opportunity to use shapes—in their purest sense—to create emotion and stories. Shapes are the building blocks of all solid design, so by cutting out the narrative element of shapes—that is, not worrying about making the shapes resemble anything we might recognize—it’s easier to focus on just making stuff that’s neat, no matter the context.

We started with a list of a dozens of different human emotions—such as pain, fear, melancholy, etc.—and then together we came up with shapes that we felt described those emotions.

We all brought these emotional shapes to class to show to each other, and everyone made guesses as to which emotion each shape was supposed to evoke. If everyone guessed the correct emotion, then the creator of the shape knew s/he was on the right track.

Here are a few from my attempts from the first pass at this exercise.

Can you guess the emotions? Let me know what you think in the comments.

(I’ll post the answers with my next blog post)

1:

Bryan Beus - Abstract Emotions

Bryan Beus – Abstract Emotions
www.bryanbeus.com

 

2:

Bryan Beus - Abstract Emotions

Bryan Beus – Abstract Emotions
www.bryanbeus.com

 

3:

Bryan Beus - Abstract Emotions

Bryan Beus – Abstract Emotions
www.bryanbeus.com

 

4:

Bryan Beus - Abstract Emotions

Bryan Beus – Abstract Emotions
www.bryanbeus.com

 

5:

Bryan Beus - Abstract Emotions

Bryan Beus – Abstract Emotions
www.bryanbeus.com

 

6:

Bryan Beus - Abstract Emotions

Bryan Beus – Abstract Emotions
www.bryanbeus.com

 

7:

Bryan Beus - Abstract Emotions

Bryan Beus – Abstract Emotions
www.bryanbeus.com

 

8:

Bryan Beus - Abstract Emotions

Bryan Beus – Abstract Emotions
www.bryanbeus.com

 

9:

Bryan Beus - Abstract Emotions

Bryan Beus – Abstract Emotions
www.bryanbeus.com

 

10:

Bryan Beus - Abstract Emotions

Bryan Beus – Abstract Emotions
www.bryanbeus.com

 

11:

Bryan Beus - Abstract Emotions

Bryan Beus – Abstract Emotions
www.bryanbeus.com

 

12:

Bryan Beus - Abstract Emotions

Bryan Beus – Abstract Emotions
www.bryanbeus.com

Collection of Studio Ghibli Background Paintings

The following YouTube video is a montage of backgrounds by Oga Kazuo painted for animated films produced by the Japanese production house, Studio Ghibli.

Animated backgrounds are an art form separate from plein air painting (painting landscapes) in that they must read quickly and then fade away from the viewer’s eye in order to allow the characters to step forward. The background painter has to maintain the entire progression of the film in mind so that each individual backgrounds may contribute to the overall pacing and mood.

Oga Kazuo excels at creating scenes that show contrast between human architecture/civilization and environments produced entirely by nature.

YouTube video posted by user foo9883

Studio Ghibli
Oga Kazuo on Imdb

“Heart” – United Airlines Commercial by Jamie Caliri

This commercial, by director Jamie Caliri, won the Best Animated Television Commercial category at the 2009 Annie Awards.

I’m always impressed with the way commercials force us to tell stories in extremely short amounts of time. One has to establish the characters is just a few short seconds, show them struggle to be where they want to be and live life how they want to live it within another twenty seconds, show a solution and relate it to how their business can support the audience to do the same thing in just a few more seconds. It’s quite a task and when successfully done I find it very effective.

Jamie is closely associated with Duck Studios.
Related Post: United Dragon Commercial
A blog post on “Heart” by Dragon Stop-Motion Software.