W.D. Minihan

Catch me in the NARRATIVE, jackin’ your MECHANISMS

Populate the Landscape: Conflict in Strange Lands

-2 Stars-

I chose Populate the Landscape for one of my visual assignments. Why? Because the prompt to fill an empty landscape made me think of a stage where I got to decide what play was being performed there. Filling empty landscape with inhabitants fundamentally changes the whole subject in such a precise way. The actions of 1 human in a landscape can completely overwrite the initial subject matter. On top of that, the prompt specifies Bob Ross paintings, which are created for an aura of peace and serenity. I selected his work “Winter Evergreens”, as it evoked the sense of a place where things come to an end.

“Winter Evergreens” courtesy of PBS

And I proceeded to turn it into a location final conflict. A true “boss fight” encounter, where two forces of cosmic power resolve their character arcs. Only one will be walking away from this place.

“You’re a big guy” – CIA

Bane and CIA from “Batman: The Dark Knight Rises” meet in this remote location to put and end to their ongoing enmity. Of course this scene was spawned from the film’s intro “plane sequence”, in which the character on the right introduces himself with “I’m CIA”, grammatically implying that is his actual name. This became an entire meme shortly after the film came out. It was a very good meme though.

CIA has been waiting in the trees to capture Bane off guard, only to find Bane more prepared than ever. His arms are wide open like the landscape, waiting for his foe to approach him. The sun is getting low and the merciless winter night draws closer, like a tundra wolf closes in on its prey. You could say that this is the end of a “The Revenant”-esque tale.


Tutorial Time

This was all done with photoshop.

1: Load your Bob Ross landscape
2: Use quick selection to make another layer out of this little bit here. Our CIA will use this to cover his lack of feet.
3: Load up our CIA image and use object select on him. He is on a white background, making our lives much easier. Make a layer mask out of this.
4: CTRL + C and CTRL + V our CIA into the landscape.
5: He had some outlines left from the masking, so we smooth out his edges with the mask settings on the right.
6: Right now he is looking off the edge of the painting, so let’s flip him the right way.
7: Now that he can face his adversary let’s scale him down to size. Use the trees for proportion (pine trees can be quite small).
8: Load up your Bane. Repeat steps 3 through 5 for him.
9: Bane’s background is a bit too dark for us to get a perfect selection. Use your eraser tool to clean up obvious chunks on his edges.
10: Mask smoothing settings on the right for our big guy.
11: Same process as CIA. paste him in and scale him down. I decided to put him more towards the middle. It compliments his lighting and dark silhouette better.