Homage to Franklyn (2008)

In 2008, I had been working at DNEG for a bit, at the time it was called Double Negative, and the matte painting team was in a separate room, second floor of Shaftesbury Avenue, London, UK, and had around 8 people.
Gurel Mehmet had brought me in a few months earlier to work on Stardust, Neil Miller, Christophe Hunger and a few others were here. Dimitri Delacovias was putting some Led Zeppelin every day at 5pm, we didn’t have any Linux Machines, it was only Windows and we all had 2 massive Sony monitors which were heavier than a cow.

My English was really poor and I was still struggling to understand the briefs or feedbacks I was being given, but it was some of the best time I’ve had in my life!

Anyway, we were then involved on the movie Franklyn, directed by Gerald McMorrow. Here is the trailer of this movie, featuring Eva Green and Ryan Philippe. As you can see, a very interesting project in term of Design and Artistic Creation.

I had been asked to work on some concept for that one, trying to see how to mix giant statue and religious buildings into the normal city. It was an awesome project and here is the sort of things I had done at the time.

This last one actually had been used directly, as it is, for the poster of the movie. That was quite surprising as it was just a 8Bits JPG… They tweaked the grade heavily.

I always really enjoyed the atmosphere of this movie, so I decided to recreate another visual based on that.
I only spent something like 3 hours on this one, but the goad was to bring back the sort of atmosphere, the mood of the actual movie.

To show you the whole process, I’ve recorded a video. You’ll see the entire creation from the very beginning to the final image. It’s all about the mood, the haze, the smoke, and of course the scale. Composition is important in this sort of image, because they’re by nature very busy. You want to make sure the eye is travelling everywhere, without missing any important area. In this case, as it’s a night shot, I’ve used the lights and the contrast between the sky and the building to create a V shape which would guide the eye towards Big Ben.

Hope you’ll enjoy!
If you want to try, the sources are available on my Patreon page

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