Splacement 1 & 3

January 13th, 2018



Splacement 1 & 3

These two are a little experimental. I did these for the Aurora exhibit in 2017. I had not done abstract stuff in a while and felt the itch to try something. Especially with a tool called JSplacement. It creates some really nice patterns that can be used in heightfield or displacements for 3d objects. So I decided to have some fun with it. I also used my terrain freebie on pic #1 for the big sphere. Overall I had some fun with trying something new and different. Now why is it #1 and #3… well, #2 is still wip and I’m not entirely sure where to go with it yet.

JSpacelemnt – Photoshop – Lightroom

Created for AURORA – a collaborational effort of both artgroups The Luminarium & The Cosmosys Collective in a crossover exhibit.

The artwork on:
DeviantartArtstation

Regards

signed

Sabrina Summer Shoot #2

January 6th, 2018

Sabrina Photoshoot #2

June last year I had the opportunity to collect first experience photoshooting a model. I learned quite a bit, we both had a good time and together we decided to give it another shot in early September 2017. I really wanted to play with her amazing red hair and some neat golden hour, natural evening light. Right before the sun disappears. It was quite tricky catching the right day but we got it. I also managed to lend me a neat Canon 200mm L lens from a buddy. Again we had nice time and managed to get some really nice shots that evening. I certainly tried to use the experience I gathered from our first shoot and in my humble opinion it does show.

Model: Sabrina Kreiner
Equipment used: Canon Eos 5D Mark 2 – Canon 70-200mm L – Photoshop – Lightroom

Regards

signed

The Hidden

January 3rd, 2018



The Hidden

The first one for 2018! This project was started in late 2017, when I decided to take a more concentrated look at a tool called ‘Mandelbulb 3d’. It’s a free, open source fractal generator. Over the past years I stumbled over a number of artists who work with it. May it be for purely fractal based images or using the fractals as plates for concept art. I’m a plate guy and love to work with them. And the possibilities of Mandelbulb 3d are sheer limitless. For more info about the tool just check the google machine or youtube. Fantastic stuff to find there!

So yes, this picture was an experiment. And for a first experiment I’m fairly happy with the result! Style wise I wanted to keep it rough and concept arty. What I found is that it’s quite the balance act to use the fine details the fractal render gives you. Sometimes the detail is almost too much. But yeah, I’m still learning the tool and already found ways to handle the fractal detail level.

I will definitely look more into it and see how I can incorporate it into future projects. I’m sure you can agree that it’s fantastic for some alien, weird looking landscapes!

4000×1708 – Mandelbulb3D – Photoshop – Lightroom

Plate 1
Plate 2

The artwork on:
DeviantartArtstationCGSociety

wallpapers available

Regards

signed

Star Wars: The Last Jedi – Movie Review

December 26th, 2017

movie reviewBurn it to the ground! It surely is one of the most complicated tasks of our time, to continue a series of movies that is so beloved (almost religious) by such a crazy amount of people. Yep, Star Wars. So much mythology, so many characters, so many details! Now imagine you want to give it a new spin. You want to try to not only build on what came before but also enhance it by doing new stuff and play around a bit. Subverting expectations is something you could try, to find an entry point for something new. That ‘new spin’ you’re looking for. J.J. Abrams’ ‘The Force Awakens’ (TFA) played it pretty safe. A lot of familiar beats in that film. No question. Still, I enjoyed the film a lot and also noticed the new stuff – the film trying to open up new opportunities for future installments. But the main point it had to fight with was the resemblance to Episode 4 – A New Hope. Still, fans were into it and a lot of fan theories (which I personally couldn’t care less about) showed how invested fans were for the next film. Episode 8 – The Last Jedi (TLJ) tries and goes down an almost entirely own path. It seems the makers of the film listened to their audience. At least to a certain degree. But did the film in itself succeed? Let’s see what a new director (Rian Johnson) can bring to the series and if he is able to build on what we were left off with in the previous film by J.J. Abrams.

The first surprise is that this film starts exactly where we left the previous film. It feels like almost no time has passed between the films. After the desperate but successful attack on Starkiller base, what’s left of the Resistance/Rebels/Alliance (the good guys) evacuates the base they were stationed on in the previous film. All while a New Order fleet (led by General Hux (Domnhall Gleeson) and Kylo Ren (Adam Driver)) is trying to block the good guys from jumping into hyperspace and escape. Which brings up a continuity problem (one of many in this film). After some nice space battle action the Rebel fleet escapes. Unfortunately the New Order has a device that makes it possible for them to locate the Rebel fleet. Soon after the Rebel fleet jumps into safety, a New Order fleet shows up right behind them. That includes a super massive flagship. So now it’s Hux, Kylo Ren and Snoke right at their tails. The small rebel fleet (very very small) manages to get out of effective laser range of the New Order. The shields of the rebel fleet hold but their engine energy slowly drains. So a cat and mouse game starts. Which brings up another plot hole. Why doesn’t the New Order just start some of their fighters and long range bombers to catch up to the rebel fleet that outpaces the capital ships of the New Order? As far as I can evaluate the situation in that scenario… the rebel fleet would have been toast… space toast. In a matter of minutes. Not to mention some inconsistencies (story wise) with the shields on that rebel ship. So instead we have this cat and mouse scenario going on for almost 3/4 of the film. It maintains a certain level of suspense but feels odd at the same time.

In the meantime Rey (Daisy Ridley) met up with Luke Skywalker (Mark Hamill) and tries to talk him into training her. He refuses. His standpoint now is that the force (as a whole) is the root of all evil. And I’m completely on Luke’s side here. Even if the Luke we’ve seen up to this point doesn’t really represent the Luke Skywalker I grew up with. Rey doesn’t stop trying to convince him to train her and follows Luke across the island. We meet the Porgs and I actually like these guys. They (for me) represent the humour parts that work in the film. And there are too many that do not hit the mark at all. Luke changes his mind and tries to teach Rey at least some basic things. tries to make her understand his standpoint in regards to the force. That’s something we should have seen more of though. I’m very conflicted about the portrayal of Luke in this film. Luke’s character swings back and forth between the Luke we know and some other character. The argument is that we’ve not seen him for so long and people change. Still. Mark Hamill does a fantastic job with what he’s working with though. I liked his performance a lot. He managed to give Luke some depth and here and there we get that version of Luke we learned to love.

While Rey is with Luke and the rebel fleet fleeing from an overwhelming display of force by the New Order, it’s time to start a subplot for Finn (John Boyega) and a new character named Rose (Kelly Marie Tran). Finn wants to get Rey and after some misunderstandings with Rose they ultimately decide to find a way to disable the tracking device that enables the New Order to find and track the rebel fleet. For that they visit a ‘Casino Planet’. This (estimated 45 minute) plotline leads to nothing. It introduces the character of Rose, which I actually enjoyed a lot. She’s a good addition to the set of characters and the chemistry between Finn and Rose works too. But that’s not the actual problem here. Instead we should ask ourselfes why this plotline got included in the film. More screentime for an asian character to make this movie more attractive for asian markets? Sounds cold but plausible, right? I mean, it’s Disney we’re dealing with here. They try to cover up this very weak plotline with some political and social statements about the rich, poor and the face of war. It’s very on the nose and wreaks of poor writing. This whole subplot does. Finn and Rose meet a codecracker named DJ (Benicio Del Toro) who helps them with their task. DJ is a neat character too! But in the conclusion of that subplot he is completely wasted. This Finn and Rose part felt incredibly like the prequel movies. Even down to the overall CGI’y look of the Casino Planet. Very uninspired writing. I’m sure that part already got cut to the shortest possible result. But I feel there are at least another 5 minutes we could lose there.

We learn that Kylo and Rey seem to have a certain way of connecting through the force. While on the island with Luke, Rey and Kylo talk out some things that ultimately lead to Rey leaving Luke behind. She begs Luke to come with her but he refuses. A decision I can understand at this point in the film. Rey voluntarily meets up with Kylo on Snoke’s flagship. This meetup eventually leads to a confrontation with Snoke. This is probably one of the stronger parts of the film. The back and forth between Snoke and Rey. Kylo’s reactions to what’s going on. You may say whatever you want about the results of that confrontation… but it’s effective. I’m very split about this direction. The scenes between Rey and Kylo are the best though. Both actors do a good job of portraying the conflict between them.

Things on the last remaining ship of the rebel fleet become tense as the fuel levels fall. Luckily they managed to come close enough to a planet that contains an old rebel outpost. They begin to leave the ship while Finn, Rose and DJ are on Snoke’s flag ship and manage to find the tracking device. Unfortunately a betrayal happens. Which almost entirely renders Finn’s and Rose’s subplot useless.

Then one of the most epic scenes in Star Wars history happens.

For a moment it seems like Kylo and Rey team up. Finn and Rose manage to catch up with the rebels that managed to escape to a planet that was their destination right from the beginning. Everything is ready for a final battle. And a battle we get. Along with (again) one of the stupidest character moments. However, I don’t want to go into every little detail and stop the plot discussion here.

After seeing that film I feel that there will be Fans 1.0 and Fans 2.5 (Fans 2.0 would be the folks who grew up with the prequels I guess). The film doesn’t even try to hide the fact that it, almost literally, wants to burn down what came before it. And while I’m not entirely opposed to that… I really feel it could have been done with a little more respect. Not just respect for the previous material but also respect for the fans of that material. There are parts of the story that I felt were useless and could have been avoided. There is this mutiny element on the fleeing rebel ship that could have easily been avoided by the leaders just telling their plans to everyone. Wouldn’t a competent leader do that in a dire situation just to avoid unnecessary complications? There weren’t many people left anyway! Just tell them! No, instead we create some artificial conflict. A conflict that plays out kind of fine in the film but falls apart as soon as you think about it. We need to keep some characters in the dark because otherwise they would have zero character growth in this film. Character growth and how it’s handled is a general issue in this film.

Talking about respect for the material. Give Admiral Ackbar a better death! Some might argue it’s a ‘non-character’. But enough fans have read enough books (of the old, now cancelled, extended universe (thanks Disney)) where he did play a larger role. Let him initiate that wonderful epic scene I mentioned earlier! There is no need to introduce a new character just for that. Well, ok, it’s Disney… they probably want to sell some stuff with that new character. Sometimes it’s too obvious. Or is it just to diversify the cast with more females? I don’t care. All I know is that they had a perfect character for that scene and felt the need to go with someone no one ever heard of.

From a technical point of view there is almost nothing to complain about. Almost. I think it is certainly one of the most beautiful SW films yet. Some great camera angles and well composed shots. John Williams composed a nice score for it. The sound design is pretty much flawless (Dolby Atmos really brought out the best in that department). Only the writing could have been better. It is weird how at the end of the film our characters have undergone a change… but not necessarily grown. Some of them end up where they started. Even after an 2 1/2hr movie where tons of things happen. The Casino part feels staged and too much. Unfortunately the film splits up the characters we had fun with in TFA. Finn and Rey had such a nice chemistry in that first film and they don’t share anything in this film. Rey and Poe seem to meet for the first time ever at the end of this film. Which is completely odd. That said…

…I must say that I did like the film a lot better after a second viewing. It doesn’t change my opinion about it and I still stand with the flaws I pointed out. The casino part still felt misplaced. The humour still fell flat most of the time. Character development still felt weird. However, I was able to see through it a little better and here and there understood what the makers were going for. And it will be interesting to see where they go now. They managed to establish a clean slate. It could have been done more smoothly. It’s not the feared re-hash of Empire Strikes Back and now the third movie can pretty much do what it wants. I can even imagine them doing a time jump of a couple of years. And that’s as far as I am willing to venture into ‘fan theory’ town. Did the film make me jump up and say: “oh! now I really want to know how it continues!”? Absolutely not. The film left me indifferent. Much contrary to TFA… which definitely made me want to see more.

For now, let’s see where this almost clean slate brings us.

A 7.7/10 for me. Yes, it may be a surprising high vote after reading my review. It’s always easier to write about stuff you didn’t like. But there is some good in this film too. This film planted a seed for something entirely new. We may agree or disagree with elements of the film… but the fact that from now on it can really become its own thing is worth honoring. I feel it’s one of these films that need time. And I’m willing to give it that time.

Star Wars: The Last Jedi on IMDb

An Illustrated History Of Science Fiction

December 23rd, 2017

The Astounding Illustrated History Of Science Fiction

The Astounding Illustrated History Of Science Fiction – Quite a long title! For someone who is entirely new to Scifi, this book represents the perfect entry point. How did it start, where did it go and when did it become popular. All these points are discussed in an easy read, coupled with a great collection of movie stills and illustrations. I’m proud to be a part of it with having one of my artworks used for the front cover and inside the book. Big thanks to Flame Tree Publishing – You guys delivered a quality book!

Find the book here: The Book On Amazon

Regards
signed

Things To Come

December 12th, 2017



Endeavours – Things To Come

“Finally being where I belong, I cannot wait to discover what this new world has to offer!”

Here we go with the final piece of part two in my Endeavours series. I don’t have too much to say about this one except that I wanted a final scene that shows our small family finally united again. Along with a (maybe a little too obvious) hint of where the journey might go next. I have some ideas. Although I’m not sure how and when I’ll tackle those. As usual there are parts in the scene I’m more happy with than with other parts. But that’s just how it goes I guess. =)

I did use the base scene I used in the previous three parts of the series and changed the camera angle and lighting a bit. There might be elements that are a little adjusted and changed but I tried to keep it minimal to not ruin the continuity. In Photoshop I played around with a more stylized/dreamy look and found it works nice to conclude part two of the series.

Overall I’m happy with how part two turned out and it gave me two or three pictures I really like. With this picture concluding my year 2017, I hope you enjoyed the ride so far too!

To be continued…

5000×3333 – Vue – C4D – Photoshop – Lightroom

ENDEAVOURS Part One – Six

ENDEAVOURS Part Seven

ENDEAVOURS Part Eight

ENDEAVOURS Part Nine

ENDEAVOURS Part Ten

ENDEAVOURS Part Eleven

ENDEAVOURS Part Twelve

ENDEAVOURS Part Thirteen

ENDEAVOURS Part Fourteen

The artwork on:
DeviantartArtstationCGSocietyBehance

Regards

signed

Thor: Ragnarok – Movie Review

November 23rd, 2017

movie reviewTo me the Thor movies always felt a little out of place when looking at the overall collection of movies in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). The first one took itself a little too serious. The second film was not able to find a good balance between the more serious tone and the lighthearted stuff it tried to sprinkle in. Then Guardians of the Galaxy appeared on the map. Its whacky sense of humour, paired with some neat scifi elements, showed that audiences don’t always want that it all super gritty, dark and enjoy some more ‘far out’ stuff as well. Then we got Doctor Strange, which is also a property you just cannot take a 100% serious and Marvel understood that by giving Doctor Strange a similar treatment like GotG. Now with the third movie in the Thor series it seems they have found the right balance and tone for this property as well. You just cannot be dead serious all the time when you have gods, magic and all kinds of weirdo things going on in your story. Thor: Ragnarok did that right I think. Minimizing the drama and maximizing the fun.

How do I describe the story to this film? It’s actually rather simple. Thor (Chris Hemsworth) and Loki (Tom Hiddleston) have a sister they don’t know about, Hela. Hela (Cate Blanchett) wants revenge on her/their father Odin (Anthony Hopkins) for leaving her behind and being a traitor to their original plans to extend the power of Asgard. Thor and Loki didn’t even know they had a sister. While trying to stop Hela from entering Asgard, Thor and Loki get split up. Thor lands on a strange planet, ruled by a figure called the ‘Grandmaster’ (Jeff Goldblum). He rules that planet by distracting the population with gigantic shows of Gladiator battles. Thor soon finds himself in the ring to fight the most powerful Gladiator this arena has ever seen. The Hulk. (Wouldn’t it have been awesome to not have this spoilered in the trailer? What a fantastic reveal it would have been in the film itself!) A neat brawl ensues. In the meantime Loki, who is also trapped on this planet, sees how Thor is crossing all his plans to make friends with the Grandmaster. Soon they have to work together and find a way off this planet to get back to Asgard and save if from Hela. That’s pretty much the base of the story. Straightforward and simple.

The question, again, is… would this film work without all the other films in the MCU? In this case I actually think it could. Yes, it has plenty of cross-references to the other films (especially regarding Hulk) but still, it’s more than enough its own thing. Especially when it comes to the production design, presentation and music. This film really has its own voice which separates it from the rest of the films in the MCU. It feels more like a comic than most of the other MCU films. Especially with the colour palette they go with, which orientates strongly on the comic source material. They don’t shy away using strong and shiny colours that stand out and create an appealing style throughout the film. The costume design was quite ridiculous even in the first Thor film and therefor felt a little out of place since the tone was a little to serious. In Thor 3 the costumes and their ridiculousness work perfect and completely mesh with what the movie wants to be. Fun and over the top.

With all the FUN in here, is there any room left for some heady stuff? I fear not. Don’t expect anything here that will make you think about this film or a hidden message or something. You may even forget most of it within one hour after seeing the film. It really is just about having a good time and escape this dull and full of bad news world we live in. And for that it works pretty much perfect. The direction (Taika Waititi) works and makes every one of the characters shine, especially in the scenes where they interact with each other. I already said that the art department did a great job. The camera work is good enough. But the music, with its synthi style, elevates the film even more. Most of the other MCU films do not have a really memorable soundtrack. So, while there aren’t too many topics in here that will keep you busy thinking about it… there is enough stuff to satisfy. So it’s kind of the classic cheeseburger of movies. It looks good. It tastes good. You don’t necessarily miss it when you don’t have it. Does that sound a little dismissive? Maybe. Maybe not?

Overall I think the film is a valuable addition to the MCU. It embraces the comic aesthetic more than most of the other films and does well with that. It is a little long (which film isn’t these days?) but I never felt bored. Will I see the film again as soon as it’s on home video? Probably not. But I will watch it a second time, sooner or later. It is a popcorn movie in the purest sense. Maybe a little hollow, forgettable and not all of the gags work… but it’s just a fun time. Also, Cate Blanchett finally gives the MCU a villain with a hint of depth.

7.8/10

Thor: Ragnarok on IMDb

Endeavours – Reunion

November 23rd, 2017



Endeavours – Reunion

“I’m overwhelmed seeing you two again. Holding my little girl in my arms again. Seeing my wife’s warm smile. Finally reunited, it’s time to build something new and discover all the secrets of this place!”

This one is probably the scene, of part two of my Endeavours series, I’m most unhappy with. I played around with it a lot and it’s probably my first ever square format scene. Maybe it’s just the format. I definitely wanted to show a reunion scene with all the characters. To bring the series of images, from a more distant point of view, to a more closer (maybe even emotional) level. A part in me says it works and another part is still missing something. However, I put far more time into this one than I originally intended and ultimately I think it serves its purpose just fine.

I worked with the same scene I created for picture #13 and used a different angle/position for the camera. Due to the changed angle I had to work in some additional details. Especially on the house. Rendering went fine and bringing the scene together in Photoshop was fun. As usual I had to do some additional renders to fix stuff. The characters were also rendered in a separate pass. Overpainting and added optical effects helped to define the overall look a little tighter. In the end I decided to give the scene a (fake) depth of field blur to guide the focus to our characters and not have the eyes distracted by other detail in the scene.

4500×4500 – Vue – C4D – Photoshop – Lightroom

ENDEAVOURS Part One – Six

ENDEAVOURS Part Seven

ENDEAVOURS Part Eight

ENDEAVOURS Part Nine

ENDEAVOURS Part Ten

ENDEAVOURS Part Eleven

ENDEAVOURS Part Twelve

ENDEAVOURS Part Thirteen

The artwork on:
DeviantartArtstationCGSocietyBehance

Regards

signed

Sabrina Summer Shoot #1

November 16th, 2017

Sabrina Summer Shoot #1

I wanted to try myself on more serious Photography for a long while now and finally mustered up the courage to challenge myself this year. I contacted that lady in the pics up there, told her I’m a total noob and that I would love to try it. I found her on a model page on Facebook. Fortunately she was very open and had no problem working with a beginner. Well, I certainly knew/know how to work with a camera but haven’t tried it in a ‘Photoshoot’ context before. She was able to give me some valuable advice and together we managed to get some neat results! I’m quite happy with how the pics turned out. Is there room for improvement? Sure, there always is. But for a first run we both were happy enough I think. Not just a productive shoot but also one of these pretty much perfect sunny summer days you love to remember and keep in your memories.

Model: Sabrina Kreiner
Equipment used: Canon Eos 5D Mark 2 – Canon 75-300mm – Photoshop – Lightroom

Regards

signed

Scifi & Fantasy Calendar 2018

October 25th, 2017

Tigaer-Design Calendar 2018

Alrighty. Here we go again. As some of you might have noticed, I took a break last year. I took the time to create some new stuff that you will, of course, find a selection of in this new calendar. I couldn’t resist and put some oldie goldies in there as well though. Some of my all-time favs and perhaps new all-time favs. =) Hope you enjoy the selection, which may help you make yourself (or a loved one) a cool neat christmas present. =)

Find it here: https://tigaer.deviantart.com/art/Scifi-And-Fantasy-Calendar-2018-711447916

Regards,

signed