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Thursday
Mar022006

Leica Camera Marker Renderings

leica1.sm.jpgYears ago, when I was in my last year as a graphic design student at MATC, I had the opportunity to prepare a presentation for my Design II class. The assignment was quite simple: choose a topic which interests you and prepare a 15 minute presentation, which you will design, prepare the art for, and read to the class.

At the time I was fascinated by antique cameras, having bought a few twin lens reflexes, bellows cameras and even an Argus 35mm box camera built like a tank. But most of all I was intrigued by the Leica and German optician Oskar Barnack who in 1913 had the crazy idea of using 35mm movie film to build a portable still camera. Naturally, Leica cameras and their history were my topic of choice.

leica2.sm.jpgIn the end, I decided to tell the story of Oskar and his Leica with marker and pencil renderings. In the late 90s we still did renderings, as computers hadn't permeated the schools sufficiently enough to be available to us all for comps and such. Besides, I quite enjoyed creating marker renderings, and in this case, I wanted to try rendering on warm gray boards, using more pencil than usual for a unique effect.

I did my research, wrote a script, rendered around 15 panels and shot 35mm slide film of each one. Then, I recorded myself reading the script, timed out with the slides I'd created and presented it to my class in a darkened room. The presentation went very well.

leica3.sm.jpgJust a few weeks ago, I came across several of those marker renderings while preparing to speak to design students at MATC about portfolios. I happen to still have, intact, the very portfolio I graduated and got my first job with. I thought it'd be fun to show the students my old portfolio and talk about some of the presentation techniques.

Fast forward to speech day. I happened to peek in one of the pockets as I spoke to the students, and there were 4 of the 15 marker rendering boards! The students loved seeing this kind of work, and I had the idea of scanning the pieces to show here on the weblog.

The images you see throughout the text are the 4 marker and pencil renderings from that presentation.leica4.sm.jpg If you click on each small image a larger image will open, so you can see the renderings in a bit more detail.

It was both challenging and fun to work with a mid-toned gray board like this, as I could use the mid tone to build upon; first the shadows and colors, then highlights of white and grays for the metallic surfaces. Finally, dark gray and black highlights for edges and shadows.

I'm still not sure where the rest of the renderings are, nor where the slides I'd shot of the full set have gone. I may just have to do some digging to see if the rest can be found, so I can turn it into a full slideshow. Still, even with just these 4 it's fun to look back at a project from college and recall the good 'ol days. :-)

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Reader Comments (2)

Just wanted to comment that I like your blog :-)

Those Marker Renderings are really nice.

Best regards

Thomas Boesgaard

March 7, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterThomas Boesgaard
Thomas, thanks for the kind words! I had fun creating these! I should pick up some new markers and get back into it. :-)
March 19, 2006 | Unregistered CommenterMike Rohde

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