I have done some further work on this double-page spread. I have inked over the 3D models. I used a pencil layer to very roughly sketch in Uccello's clothes. I don't do 'full pencils' - that seems to defeat the purpose of doing it on the computer.
I have also added in parts of the drawn image, which corresponds to Uccello's actual painting (first in the series of three) - those shown are all pasted in from earlier pages, where we seen them as studies, or else imaginary images, as seen on Page 1 where Uccello is imagining the scene as described by various witnesses.
It doesn't seem to read as elegantly as the 3D models over a photo of the actual painting ( as previously posted), it looks a bit messy and cluttered, but I hope that will be solved simply by colouring the figures and room. The figures in Uccello's drawing won't be in colour. I'll omit the drawing when I create the bitmap inks layer. So by these methods i should be able to make the drawing read as a discrete element in the overall composition.
Note that this is a double page spread - so intended to be seen rather bigger than it appears here. This spread doesn't fall in the centre pages, so it'll be printed on two separate sheets, so i avoided having any of the figures cross the centre line/join.
It seems an easy thing to paste components together, but these were all drawn separately in different line styles and weights, and different scales, so there is a lot of work in placing them accurately, so I can build up the rest of Uccello's careful composition around them. Also I've had to spend some time getting the relative tonal balances looking right.
The next panel (bottom left) will show an essentially complete drawing of the finished composition, that i will make by adding to the in progress version in the main panel. I actually have some more finished drawings of the riders (used individually on earlier pages) that I kept back to use in panel two.
I was pleased with the composition of panel two - it's important here to let the reader see the whole drawing on the wall, and I though this was quick and elegant solution - Uccello on the floor asleep fits well with the story - after Rocco's initially menacing but ultimately helpful intervention, I am trying to suggest in this page that Uccello is in an almost manic state, obsessed with getting his vision down, and working until he dropped. Initially I had omitted Rocco from this panel, but I felt that in narrative terms, as this is the climax of the story, he should appear. It wasn't easy to fit him into the scene: Salimbini needs to have just entered, to convey the precise moment where he sees the sleeping Uccello, but has not yet noticed the drawing. It wouldn't be consistent with their relationship for Rocco to enter before his master, so the only option was to glimpse Rocco in the doorway behind Salimbini. I tried to create the impression that Rocco was trying to catch a glimpse into the room over his master's shoulder. The composition was perhaps slightly better before I added Rocco, but given the difficulty, I think it works pretty well. I'll see if I can do something with the colouring or tone layer to keep Rocco in the background, although his costume being less colourful than his masters may achieve that in itself.
I haven't entirely worked out panel 3, but I think it would have a good symmetry to make it a wide panel to match panel 2. I will show Uccello waking/sitting up, Salimbini admiring the drawing. If I can for it all in, I will have Rocco slightly doff (or at least touch) his hat to Uccello, in ackowledgement of the latter's progress, the success of Rocco's intervention, and to suggest some sort of 'in it together' bond between these two.
I had a nagging sense that the sleeping Uccello in panel 2 was reminiscent of a classic figure from art - I've just realised it's this painting of the death of the poet Chatterton, by Henry Wallis.
Leave a Reply.
Graham Johnstone ~ Master of Design - Comics and Graphic Novels student 2016-17