I do a lot of pro bono work for companies and charities that I believe in. Whitestone Motion Pictures is a company that creates short films. They originated from 12 Stone church creating their promotional short films and have since went out to make their mark. Being a part of their “protege program” I have developed some graphics and promotions for their short films. A recent one I created was for “Fear Itself”, which is an homage to Alfred Hitchcock and his films.
They obviously wanted a promotional to reflect the style and period of Hitchcock. I designed a tabletop of common items you might see in that era. There are a few subtle things in this design. One being random bird shadows on the table. I wanted to give the feeling that there were birds you could not see flying around in the room. Also, if you mouse over the birds on the typewriter they will fly off and randomly come back. Notice that the watch hands are moving erratically. Another vague item is Hitchcock’s famous profile that is watermarked on the book.
I had a lot of fun creating this as I do not get be so creative at times with my clients. You can see the live promo here.
Occasionally I will bid on freelance projects on site like Guru and Elance. My favorite projects are for designing movie posters. They are rare and hard to find on these sites but once in a while I find one that is posted. It’s also difficult to win the project as the bidding war is very competitive. Many “designers” will put in ridiculously low bids as their estimate represent their skills. Many individuals and businesses will be attracted to the lowest bid as everyone I know has a shoestring budget, yet you usually get what you pay for. Sometimes I will initially give an estimate that is competitive to get the project as I know that after the client works with me it will potentially lead to more projects.
When I ran across a project for the design of a movie poster for director Jim Wynorski I jumped on it. Jim directs B movies like Chopping Mall and “Return of the Swamp Thing”. His newest film was named “Monster Cruise” and I wanted this project. Not that I follow or respect Jim and his films, but my passion is designing for movies and I do not get the chance to do this very often. I was excited when my bid was accepted and I was awarded the project.
The client originally said they wanted an illustrated look similar to the Animal House movie poster. The design guidelines progressively changed as the client wanted to add every character on the poster. The worst part was that they did not give me many reference photos of the actors. After several revisions and busting my hump to do everything that was asked of me, the client decided they were not happy with the progression of design. I was very disappointed and angry as I did not ask for a deposit and the project was a wash. I bend over backwards for my client’s and it is frustrating for me when I can’t make them happy.
I actually lost money on this project as I had spent money on some stock photos since the client did not supply me many to use. Oh well, live and learn.
I love designing for films. Whether it is a movie poster, promotional website or as in this case a DVD cover. I was contracted to design two DVD covers for Laguna Films. The movies were “25 to Life” and “El Padrino 2″. Apparently “El Padrino I” was Laguna Films most popular movie and they were making a second one n which they needed artwork for. The first movie had a cast of actors such as Damian Chapa, Jennifer Tilly and Faye Dunaway.
Although the subject material was mainly based on gangs and the mafia, I had a really great time designing for these films. I am not sure when or where these films will be released, but keep an eye out for them.