Among interpretations of gods and goddesses research shows that wings seem to be used as a symbol of Empowerment to portray a god like status. Nike is a popular symbolized figure seen with wings in most statues and paintings. Most other winged deities in the Greek pantheon had shed their wings by Classical times. Nike is the goddess of strength, speed, and victory. .Wings can also be show in a negative or positive light with reference of animals, for example bird wings are show on gods n angels and demons have bat like wings possibly because they aren’t as pretty to look at. My research on nemesis connects her to some more popular stories from the greek mythology genre. its interesting the she isn’t as well known in popular culture compared to various other gods. This is another reason she was used for the basis of my story. I wanted to make use of some less familiar sources to base my story upon mainly because I wanted room to not consider what other people had done with the same idea. Nemesis is also depicted with wings in her statues and paintings, so as I began to consider ways in which I could portray empowerment from the gods with VFX wings seemed to be an obvious choice because there would be so much I could do visually. Nemesis also believe that know body should have too much good happen to them so I have considered the wings to be curse and not just a tool of retribution to thicken the content to bas my designs on. See images of Nemesis below with wings!
So now the main challenge is to consider my story line, The wings have been handed down as a weapon or armament that gives strength and power to its barer but at the same time the wings are a curse controlling the barer to carry out revenge without fear or awareness Similar to The Mask (1994) with Jim Carey. The design of the wings will need to interpretation both intimidation, protection and style whilst still retain there god like representation.
I began looking at references of wings for from different perstectives to become more familiar with there shapes by looking at anatomy, nature, fiction and animation.
A look at wings, thinking about wings shape and movements. Getting a general feel for the anatomy of wings.
Nature Provides the best source of wings from birds that come in many different shapes and structures. From this point I have decided that the main task will be to convert these wing references into a mythological type of functioning automation in the same way weapons and mechanical contraptions work in fantasy film & games like the game Skyrim with its Dwemer Automatons.
Whilst the design isnt really the main focus of the project, i keep becoming more and more draw in by thinking about the design of the wings because I want them to look good. If they don’t look good then I feel the rest of the project will suffer. This time Ive allowed reference to overtake the design to speed things up rather that using my artistic senses allow which I normal prefer to do. This was advised by a contact I made who works for Frame Store whilst giving my advice on this project. Whilst the design and concept is the most fun to me I need quicker results so by using reference I can take the creative weight of my shoulders and focus on other tasks. Using reference images I developed a few concepts whilst considering the story and allowed feedback to transform the look as I went along. Mood boards help me figure out how the wings would work, especially looking at other ideas of woman with wings. (see mood below)
I decided that feathers on the wings could be replaced by blades to better follow the story, my character had to look powerful and mean business regarding the concept of revenge and retribution, looking at other ways this had been done in my mood boards you can see that blade do just that.First concepts Below I find it useful to take my sketches in photoshop and chop them and switch them around so I cant begin to see functionality and other ideas
This lead me onto looking closer at flick knifes as they retract in slightly similar ways to wings and some of these knifes like the Leatherman for example have great style and beauty also, Looking closer at leatherman knifes, I found that they have many holes cut into them to make them a much lighter weight, I felt this was a great idea and decided to implement this into my own design because not only would it give my wings more style it would also make them seem lighter and less bulky. (knife moods below)
I wasnt happy with the previous concepts because Feedback from my course friends and tutors indicated that the shape wasn’t very wing like and I wanted to step up to this challenge which meant starting from scratch whilst baring everything else id done up to this point in mind. I started chopping photos and overlaying the blades over wing images to get more ideas. ( see 2 examples below)
May problems were presented as far as the functionality, I really wanted the feathers to work more like a flick knife than real wings but at the same time I wanted them to appear like wings, so Id decide to fuse bother ideas together by allowing the wings to spread out like a fan. once the concept was done I decided that it worked quite well and as time was running out I need to begin modeling at this point so I chose I final design and took the plains into Maya (See final concept image below) Also some how a tail was suggested so I took that in as well.
The final concept above was technically planned to that the rotations would work in Maya, though adjustments were made once the modeling had begun, Ill leave the modeling for another post.