“An illustrator is someone who creates art for books, newspapers stories, instructional information or in this case a film.“ – Ian Wilcox
Imagine having to create a film (pre-production, production, and post) in just a week – while it isn’t impossible, it certainly is a lot of work. Now, imagine having a week to illustrate for that said film. Like any other creative work, things have to be redone, redrawn, and recreated. Leave it to this week’s “EXPOSED” crew member, Ian Wilcox, to give us a glimpse at what that process is like for a short film illustrator!
“People have this misconception that you get to make something once and move on. Nope. Like a director reshooting a scene, you may have to do a few versions to get the art just right…” – Ian Wilcox
For 1001 Afternoons in Chicago, the project began as a live performance of just the musicians and radio play actors. Dave Less (Director) was struck by how these nearly 100-year-old stories of Chicago were still inspiring artists, and being interpreted into different mediums. He handed Ian only audio to use as a reference for the film, which was both the most fun (and challenging) portion of the project; Mr. Less wanted the characters to be based off the personality of their voices versus the looks of the voice actors themselves.
“Dave was serious about this…in fact one character was scrapped due to the fact that it looked too much like the real actor. The scene was still used, just parts where I drew him were omitted.” – Ian Wilcox
The final cut of the film contained footage mixed with old photos that moved in the background – adding more dimension. Ian also edited his personal style to create a more hard-boiled, edgy and gruff aesthetic to match the characters. In order to get that old-time look, the art was mostly black & white with sepia toned coloring:
“The art itself was inspired by old photos, as well as cartoon and comic book art of the era.” – Ian Wilcox
Thank you, Ian Wilcox, for sharing your insight as an illustrator for 1001 Afternoons in Chicago! If you would like to contact Ian to illustrate your next project, please CONTACT US, and we’ll connect you with him!
Thank you for watching this week’s Exposing the Crew “EXPOSED” short film!
See You Next Tuesday,
Samantha George (Producer, JJack Productions)