Monday, July 16, 2012

A decade has now passed since I did my very first designs for the Ice Age franchise. And though the series is perhaps a little gray around the tusks, it shows no real signs of slowing down--at least according to the Almighty Box Office. Ice Age, Continental Drift is apparently breaking all kinds of records overseas and isn't exactly tanking at home either. And yes, I have my quibbles with the final result but I won't use my space here to delve into them. The little ones seem to be enjoying the film anyway, so who am I to argue?

Instead, now that the movie is finally released, I would like to share some of the drawings I did this time out. As usual, Blue Sky Studios has delivered a gorgeous movie, and I am once again honored to have worked alongside so many amazingly talented people in order to get these characters up on the screen. 

The Sirens.
Silas, a salty petrel.

Sid's Granny.

Dobson, like a few other characters I designed for this film, ended up having a non speaking part.

A hyrax learns how not to ride an eohippus (who is not in the film).

The squid didn't make the cut either.

Nope. No horses.

Squint, a nasty looking bunny pirate, was originally written as the pirate captain and leader of our villains.

It was fun to finally figure out what Sid's Uncle Fungus actually looked like. He was referred to only once in the history of the franchise. In fact, it was in Sid's very first scene.

Granny takes a bath, oblivious to the prehistoric sharks who also, by the way, did not make it into the film either.

Captain Gutt was originally written as a bear, but frankly,  I could never  nail him down in a drawing.  Somehow,  I just got the feeling that ursine was not the way to go.
It was only when I stumbled on the idea of making him an orangutan that things started to flow. What creature could be more at home swinging from the rigging? I think the animators were very relieved to have a character they could really have fun with and one who wasn't simply a biped. After all, an ape has four hands to work with.

Louis, the mole hog in love with Manny's teenage daughter,  Peaches.

A siren from the films creepiest sequence. Boy, lighting and materials did an incredible job on these guys!

And of course, there is Scrat. Always the survivor.

As requested, a few more Gutts.

These first two are early versions.

This one and the next are closer to the finished design.