A couple of years ago I got the opportunity to design some title
backgrounds for Tim Boxel’s feature film “Valley of the Heart’s Delight”.
Overall the the designs hit the mark for the aesthetic (emulating orange
crate label art, circa 1930s), though audience testing found that these designs
gave the impression that the film was animated. Well, the film is definitely
live-action, so the final titles used in the film moved away from the fruit crate
label concept and was given a treatment that captured the genre quite
Thought I’d share examples of my approach to creating this art. Starting off with pencil
sketches on bond:
The image below combines all the layers, from sky and distant hills to mid and
foreground elements. I used a light box when I drew each layer to make sure
I was registering the elements properly. The lines around the art indicate where
I needed to paint beyond to offer safe amounts of overlap for the big screen.
I used Photoshop CS to paint each layer. The layered file was given to an
Aftereffects artist that put small amounts of movement and parallax to the image.
Here’s the final digital painting: