I enjoy creating props that look like they could be real. And I like using digital software like Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator to help me design them. I also like to create them in the traditional or physical ways, but digital gives me a lot of latitude. I could print this card on the correct type of paper and it would look quite authentic. Depending on how close or how long it would be in camera, I may print the stamp separately. But this particular card is a shameless resume plug.
How I Made This Post Card
The very first thing before creating anything is research. Research is a must. I knew that I wanted this post card to look old and so I searched the web for post cards and stamps (I wasn’t wholly true with the stamp, since this post card was meant mainly to advertise myself) of the early 1900’s.
Once discovering the looks of various historical post cards and stamps, then I started with the basic dimensions, edge quality, surface texture of the card. Then I added stains and coloring so that it would look old. I utilize the net as much as possible to simplify the process. This post card uses the paper texture of one document and the coloring & stains of another, along with blending modes and opacity levels in photoshop.
About the stamp, it’s very similar to the process of the post card. I used a previous image that I created of myself. I used the edge quality of an old stamp to begin the process…
Text needs to be handled in the same way as any other element. I typically use blending modes & options, opacity levels, and masks to capture the the paper age and texture.
Interested in Film Art Direction
Besides having knowledge in film, it’s good to have a diverse knowledge in various fields of art and understanding of basic construction. It’s critical in knowing how to draw just about anything, especially architectural drawings. It is without saying, but having a solid grasp of the principles of art and color is critical. These skills come into play from concept design to the finishing elements in set dressing or prop completion.
Though an art education is extremely helpful, more importantly is the continual study and practice. So study Art History, Illustration, Graphic Design, Color Theory, Art Principles, Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator to build personal knowledge. Understand the basics of typography is very important. And remember, the magic is in the details.
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