Some ARRRtistic Liberties

Boy howdy so much has changed since we last spoke dear blog readers!

As we approach our filming date, we have had to reexamine what it is we want to accomplish with this project. We see our project as having two primary goals:

  1. Make a beautifully accurate ship that tells a story in the details.
  2. Make the ship practical for real-life use.

After much discussion, we have decided that what is most important to have prepared for shooting on Monday is all of the small and intricate details of the ship. With this being said, we are not completely benching the practical-ness of our end product. Instead, we will simply focus on making the shots look amazing, and THEN continue the process of engineering our systems for our final artifact presentation on December 10th.

In light of this, we have done a LOT of painting. Kaan and I have spent many an hour in the scene shop working to bring life to our creations. Kaan and I are not painters. Painting is hard. Luckily, we have the BEST resources in the world and have the wonderful Karen Maness and Ashton Bennett Murphy, the scenic charge artist and assistant respectively, helping us along the way.


Look! An engineer with a paint brush! how does he do it?

While working on the details, we have noticed some weird things with our source video. The primary one being that it is HEAVILY stylized; this means that colors that look good in the cinematic do not look as good as in real life. There is also some architecture and material that we just can pin down. In light of this, we have had to make some opinionated calls and educated guesses on how we think certain this should look.


One example of this has been our captains quarters. In our source, it is unclear what materials the roof and pillars are made out of. As you can see in the image, it just seems to be some form of vague… canvas-y.. thing? We decided to take some liberties and make it a copper roof! Of course this also implied that that roof must have oxidized somewhat in the 11 years this ship has spent underwater, so we learned how to layer on copper and rust! Woo!

Close up on captains quarters. What is half of this stuff??? Fix your cinematics Blizzard.


Profile of completed quarters

As far as the pillars, our video only has one long distance shot of them and while staring at it I noticed that it looked oddly… Elvish. (Please forgive me as the rest of this paragraph will be WoW lore and theory nonsense). From a distance, the pillars resemble the stonework pylons of the Quel’Dorei of northern Lordaeron. I decided to lean into that as, though not officially canon, it would make sense, assuming that this ship was built before the beginning of the Third War (before the Humans ruined their alliance with the Quel’Dorei) that they would help construct this prestigious ship and, in the process, incorporate their own unique style of stonework and mana infused architecture into the vessel. (Lore theorizing is now over)

High Elven (Quel’Dorei) pylons. Fun fact: these elves now go by the Blood Elves (Sin’Dorei) in honor of those elves who lost their lives when the Scourge ravaged their homeland.

Front view of quarters



But, I digress.

To wrap up, what we’ve learned this week is:

  • L A Y E R   Y O U R   P A I N T
  • Prioritize what matters!
  • Don’t let the source limit you. Infer! Extrapolate! Succeed!