Saturday, 31 December 2011

Thumbnails, Thumbnails

After faffing with the kitchen-come-field-hospital idea somewhat I found that it just wasn't working, so I looked back at the idea of the lone surviving, intact building surrounded by desolation. I looked at photos from the Blitz as reference, particularly this one;

Apologies for the ugly watermark, couldn't find a copy without it.

Working quicker this time (the previous batch took stupidly long), I started to play with potential settings other than 'generic road #362'. #19 I quite like, but it doesn't feel uncanny enough. Similarly #20 is a decent enough idea - nature overtaking a ruined back garden - but again, lacks uncanniness. #22 was an a-ha moment - I needed a living element involved to make it seem less like just a delipidated old town. The horse tracks (I can hear the groaning from here) were actually consciously chosen for reasons other than 'yay ponies' - it could either be a horse and rider, or just a feral horse passing through. #25 isn't as strong, the twisted trees just make it seem cluttered.


  1. Hey Meg,

    Got your email! Okay - so, the idea of the stand-alone isolated house has potential obviously, but I can't help wondering if going with the scenes of destruction etc. surrounding it is a sure fire way to 'undo' what is peculiar about your scene. Afterall - there would be nothing 'odd' about a house surrounded by ruins if we first understand we're looking at a war scene or similar. Perhaps you need to be thinking more surrealistically - i.e. yes, you've got a stand alone house, but what if it was in the middle of a beach - with no explanation or apology - just an assertion? Often - familiar objects out of place in discordant surroundings can be a recipe for 'cognitive dissonance' or a 'wtf?' moment. It feels to me as if you're bring a rationale to your thumbnails - a narrative - when I think you may need to mix things up a bit to create the imaginative sparks you're looking for. You might also want to consider how 'perfection' and neatness can disturb - which is the opposite to dereliction. If your stand alone house was in the middle of a perfect, Teletubby-style green space, that might be interesting too. I think what I might be suggesting is for you to move away from the 'post-apocalyptic/aftermath' imagery, and adopt instead something less decipherable... and remember too, thumbnails are NOT supposed to be decorative and take you days - they're meant to be down and dirty instructions to your own imagination - don't polish what is supposed to be entirely utilitarian.

  2. Hey patner. These are looking good though Phill has a point, get down and dirty with your thumbnails, it may be in your ruff drawings you see something that was not intentional but looks good and you get more ideas. Happens to me all the time. I really like 9,10 due to they give (for me at least) of a unease and unrest compared to the house. it gives it a gloom that I don't feel in your stand alone house. But yet again I'm very doom and gloom and thats what I like :) But keep it up, I want to see more of you good work :)