Creature and Concept Designer Neville Page took to San Diego Comic-Con last week -with a panel aimed at looking at Design and Technology for Film and Television. He was joined by Special Make-up Effects Artist / Designer Glen Hetrick with whom he shares the distinction as a series judge for SYFY’s FACE OFF.
Week after week, we love hearing the input from these two phenomenally creative heavy-hitters in the industry and seeing all the creations that spring to life in each episode so we knew hearing them talk about their craft would be a special treat.
I didn’t know much about Neville Page or his career other than tidbits shared on FACE OFF so it was really awesome to find out through his presentation that he worked very carefully with James Cameron to develop the look and feel of the creatures that would live on the planet of Pandora in the 2009 blockbuster AVATAR. These are creatures that you can see today in Disney’s Animal Kingdom Park at Walt Disney World. He talked about going through the process with Cameron and developing creatures such as the iconic Banshees.
For all the creatures in AVATAR, Page held strong to his overall mantra of making sure that creatures all have believable anatomy that stems from realistic, believable, and functional means. No creature should have a horn coming out of its eye socket or otherwise useless details that don’t tell a story as to the creature and its origins. Form and design language is very big for Page so he showed us some of his process for creating those creatures.
He also went on to show his process for creating more humanesque type creatures, the likes of which you’d see in Star Trek… which he’s also worked on! He has a whole system whereby he has digitally scanned his own head into the computer and is then able to make specific conscious decisions to morph his anatomy to create and stylize new types of creatures. Starting from an actual organic base (his own head) he is able to mould and essentially digitally sculpt creatures of all sorts from the most humanoid-looking creatures to the most foreign-looking aliens.
He also went into a bit of detail about the idea of re-creating the Klingons and adapting their iconic look (which has been significantly modified over the years in various instances) to create something that felt fresh and interesting but also distinctly Klingon. The minor adjustments and tweaks, along with decisions to play off of hair and facial hair created some truly stunning looks for the familiar alien race.
It was super exciting to have the opportunity to hear from these heavy hitters; exactly the kind of geeky stuff you want and expect from San Diego Comic-Con.
More to See!
We are at San Diego Comic-Con 2017 the entire weekend with plenty to see! Check it all out by clicking below!