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Spreading Your Wings with Ward Jenkins

spreadyourwings
Our Spreading Your Wings posts are about looking for other places in the industry that your children’s market style can find a home. Learning to not limit ourselves to thinking that the only place our style can find us work is strictly doing children’s books. That’s simply not true.

In this post award winning children’s book illustrator, Ward Jenkins drops in to shed some light adn show some sketches from his recent foray into co-directing an animated public service announcement for the NBA and NRDC  about going green and recycling. Ward storyboarded the commercial, did layouts, and illustrated some key frames while another studio used Flash to animate the commercial to completion.  I’ll let Ward explain it better.

Enjoy!

NRDC NBA Adds Up PSA – Ward Jenkins/Paul Golden from FFAKE Animation on Vimeo.

It’s been a while since I’d directed anything lately, so it was a welcome pleasure for Paul Golden of Ffake to contact me about co-directing this fun public service announcement for the NBA and NRDC. That’s National Basketball Association (of course) and the National Resources Defense Council – they’re all about going green and recycling, etc. The PSA was a simple walk through of all the ways that the NBA has been working with the NRDC to make sure the league is going green – mostly through the basketball arenas and facilities.

Paul wanted to emulate the look and feel of M. Sasek and his “This Is…” children’s book series, and I – of course, couldn’t say no to that. It was quite a fun adventure working on this spot. Below are some of the first sketches I did of the NBA player and the NRDC scientist guy: Sketches 1 Sketches 2 Sketches 3

After some more sketches, finally got it down to a decent look for the scientist – more of a goofy guy who’s a little behind the times with his basketball outfit: characters 3 NBA/NRDC characters in color

Of course, we ended up having to change the gender of the scientist, which is perfectly fine with me. Just meant there was more work to do, while the deadline never changed.

Here are some of the rough, penciled layouts:
rough layout sc02a rough layout sc02b rough layout sc03a & b rough layout sc05 rough layout sc06

And now, here are the final backgrounds with final color treatments for the characters (they were all eventually reworked and animated in Flash).

Scene 01:
sc01

Scene 02: This scene required the most work. I referred to a lot of Sasek’s books that had lots of downtown buildings to get the look right. Here’s the regular version of the arena scene:
sc02 main
And here’s the same shot, but with a cutaway of the arena:
sc02 open

Scene 03:
sc03

Scene 04 with the characters:
NBA/NRDC sc04

And here’s Scene 04 background only:
NBA/NRDC sc04 background

Scene 05 with characters:
NBA/NRDC sc05

And here’s Scene 05 background only:
NBA/NRDC sc05 background

Scene 06:
NBA/NRDC sc06

Scene 08, wherein we have to put all the appropriate logos at the end tag:
NBA/NRDC sc08

I know that I’ve shared a lot of images here, but you can see all these as well as a few more in this Flickr set: NBA/NRDC PSA.

Enjoy!

Original post here!

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