Posts Tagged ‘Duck Studios’


The Little Prince, 2015

March 31, 2016

It was a pleasure to have been asked to work out some visual problems for the animated film, The Little Prince. The stop motion sequences were being produced by Duck Studios in Los Angeles and directed by Jamie Caliri. Following are a few samples of before and after shots; they include notes from Jamie.

The problem: “[This scene] doesn’t look epic.”

Screenshot 2014-11-20 11.29.37

Digital paint-over solution: I tried to give the illusion of expanse by repainting the surface of the sand. Then I placed the characters on a kind of ridge, at a seemingly higher elevation. The long shadows were added to bring more visual weight to the characters’ plight.


The problem: “…too much pink.”  This scene is from the point of view of the aviator, who upon nearing the  wall with seated boy, realizes the little prince  is speaking to someone or something on the other side.  To his dismay, the aviator discovers it’s an asp. The scene is ominous, but the little prince remains unafraid.


Digital paint-over solution: Pink sky replaced with yellow. A yellow sky may indicate a dusty atmosphere and can be associated with threatening weather events–even apocalyptic. I tried to emphasize the light on the character’s backside, so when the aviator turns the corner of the wall, the scene would be in shadow, dark and moody, and hopefully increase the element of surprise.


The problem: (Characters are crossing the desert); “[these scenes] don’t look hot enough.”

Screen Shot 2014-09-02 at 11.04.17 AMScreen Shot 2014-09-02 at 11.04.18 AM

Digital paint-over solution: Instead of an overcast look to the light, I gave the colors and tones more of a sunlit effect. Below are stronger and hotter highlights, reflected lights, and illumination; and a more flushed face for the aviator.


Screen Shot 2014-09-02 at 11.04.18 AMFix






Venice Biennale Project, Austrian Pavilion 2013

March 31, 2016

Film director, Mathias Poledna won the distinction of representing his country for the 55th, 2013 Venice Biennale. His film, Imitation of Life, can be seen at the Austrian pavilion and the exhibition runs from June 1- November 24.

Mathias worked with Duck Studios in Los Angeles to produce the film. Much of the director’s work pays tribute to 1930’s films, and in keeping with his personal vision, requested that a number of traditional Disney artists come together and make an animated film reminiscent of, Snow White, Bambi, and Pinocchio. In order to achieve that goal, it was important the background art be done in like manner. After a number of test-runs the studio conducted a more extensive search for a background artist skilled in watercolors. I had the good fortune to land the opportunity. Once there I recommended two phenomenal painters to see the project through: Xiangyuan Jie and Kevin Turcotte. We completed the work in record time.

Following are  a couple of my background production examples used in the film as well as digital keys designed to establish mood. Imitation of Life puts forth the existential question of why we are here, in a historical context of a culture involved in war and economic depression.