For Blade Runner 2049, London-based Territory Studio was tasked with creating all the on-screen graphics for Denis Villeneuve’s bleak dystopian world. At Nicer Tuesdays, creative director Andrew Popplestone explained how they achieved the “organic and grubby” aesthetic through hand-made experiments and macro photography.
“You can have the best graphics in the world,” he says, “but if it doesn’t add to the story, it’s useless. Our work furthers the story and it’s a world-building device that helps ground the film in reality.” To that end, the studio “stepped away from the Mac” and went back to analogue visual tests. “It felt like going back to art school, two weeks of making stuff, to create this lo-fi feel.” This included photogrammetry and macro photography of fruit, printing images then drawing into them, crumpling them up, scanning and printing them again. Look closely, he says, and you’ll see that an image used to depict Ryan Gosling’s brain is actually a close-up photo of a grapefruit.
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