Friday, January 1, 2010

Drew Struzan Paints Hellboy

Drew Struzan’s movie posters from the last three decades have defined the look of modern American cinema. And with this new decade beginning, his influence on hand-drawn posters is still unmistakable.

A new 95-minute DVD video shows exactly how he creates his classic poster images. Using the Hellboy poster as a case study, he demonstrates each of the steps.

The footage includes plenty of close-ups, lively editing, and Struzan’s voice-over explaining his thinking with every step:
1. Black and white presentation comps to show the client.
2. Projecting the photo reference onto the illustration board.
3. Refining the graphite drawing on a light gray-toned gessoed board.
4. Painting in the black shapes with acrylic.
5. Cutting a quick frisket from tracing paper.
5. Splattering textures with acrylic using a typewriter-cleaning brush.
6. Airbrushing transparent color over all the areas.
7. Modeling and defining the light areas of the forms in Prismacolors.

It ends with a one-minute time lapse montage of stills showing all the steps, as Struzan says: “Two days to draw, one day to paint, and two days to render it out.”

Along the way, he also shares valuable insights into his aesthetics: reserving values to save the ultimate light and dark punch, how to make men and women even more attractive, a tasteful approach to edges, and cultivating a professional attitude.

Here's a trailer.
For more information, visit Reel Ideas.
Film by Kris and Jim Sanders.
Hellboy I is ©Columbia TriStar 2004.
Drew Struzan's website.


Super Villain said...

one of the most amazing artists ever! i will be getting this soon, thanks for the post!

Super Villain said...

oh by the way happy new year james!

and for anyone else interestd in drew struzan here is a great bio/documentary about the LEGEND!!

but man, might have to wait a bit to get that dvd....$100....? do they actually come with drew for a few hours to teach you? haha..

SVSART said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
SVSART said...

Ok Gurney Journey is informing me of too many wonderful things I have to have and do! I shudder to do the mental calculations for the sum total spent.....But hey it's a New Year! So I can start the tally anew.

Year to date = $107.00 Drew DVD


Erik Bongers said...

Happy new year!

Unknown said...

LOL - Me too! I just started my new tally as well! Thanks James - you keep me so inspired - Happy New Year!

Unknown said...

Amazing!! I wish I had 1/4 of his talent!! Great posting!!

treplovski said...

DANG! I definitely want this. Maybe I can claim it as a studio supply on my taxes. WOW.

Jon Hrubesch said...

James, you and Drew are two artists that are on the top of my favorite artists list. Thanks for the heads up on this DVD.

Super Villain said...

just out of curiosity, and just plain noseyness...what made you decide to post this for drew? did he approach you? are you guys buddies...and if so thats an amazing friend to have! or did you buy the dvd and think it was so good that everyone should know.....haha

sorry to be nosey, maybe i'm just hoping that you guys are buddies and there will soon be a HUGE Gurney Struzan project coming out!! oh one can hope cant he!!

dsc said...

Wow, I want to buy it. However, it's sad that in this particular poster his depiction of Selma Blair didn't went well at all. She looks like a guy. And it's not only the weird haircut to blame (I think that actresses should be able to get legal protection against such things), but her face, barely looks like her.

Other than that, anyway, it's very interesting. I didn't even remember he uses airbrush that much, I thought he used it only for some sort of lighting effects, more or less like Alex Ross (from comics), I think. I think it's because it's so different than typical super-smooth airbrush art, much more texturized.

100 bucks, plus transport, and in my case, taxation, and probably even taxation over transport itself. I'm not going to see it so soon. I'll keep consoling me with the fact that Selma Blair does not look right in that piece. -_-

James Gurney said...

GooGoo, no, I haven't met Drew, but the producers generously sent me a copy of the DVD to look at. I normally don't do reviews on GJ, but I thought information about Struzan's process would interest the readers, and I believe as behind-the-scenes videos go, this was particularly well done.

SVSART said...

Mr. Gurney You're Right! I greatly appreciate finding out about these things, I don't always have the time to stalk... Ahem... follow all my favorite Artists out there, so I probably would have missed out on getting this DVD had you not mentioned it. I will admit I was hoping you'd get some kick back for your effort though, but I suppose it's even better unbiased.

Side Note:

Where is your DVD How To??? I can't wait to get it too!

nystudios said...

Thank you for telling me about this video. I ordered it, and it no way disappoints. That has to be one of the best how to art dvds I own. I like too that everything is at an accelerated pace, when you are on a deadline you have to get things done. Also, there are some great "Tricks" of the trade in there as well.

I am still trying to incorporate many of the ideas in Creative Realism into my work. Now, I have Drew's inspiration to deal with as well.

Life is good, when you are creating beauty isn't it?

by Stfn said...

Thanks for the extra info on this! Probably getting this though the pricetag is a bit.. Yeah. Thanks again :)