Case: Finncon/Animecon 2011 (Part 1)

Finncon | Animecon 2011 for which I made all of the visuals (graphic design and paintings) was held in Turku last weekend. I thought it's high time I post all the stuff I did for the Con. Better late then never, right?

I've been meaning to do it for quite some time but found out that tiny things like writing your thesis, graduating and starting a new job and running a business takes quite a lot of time. But now I'm officially student no more and have settled at the pace of waking up at 6am to go to work (instead of working until 6am and hitting the bed in the various hours after that) it's finally time to get the show on the road.

I have posted some stuff before but never really went through the whole project. So here's an infodump for the beginning.
 "Finncon-Animecon 2011 is a cultural event held 15th to 17th of July 2011 in Turku university facilities. It is Europe’s biggest free, non-profit, and volunteer-organized convention for aficionados of speculative fiction and Japanese popular culture, and it is expected to have more than 10,000 visitors of all ages, from Finland as well as abroad during these three days. As the name suggests, Finncon/Animecon is formed by two jointly organized events, Finncon and Animecon." -
What was my job then? I was asked to do this tiny list of things:
  • Logo
  • Web layout
  • Advertising
  • Flyer
  • Poster
  • Business card
  • T-Shirt
  • Bags
  • Program
  • Buttons

Yeah, that is a lot of stuff. Especially as I had to do all of it twice.
The idea was that all the advertising would be done in two different styles. Finncon was western (american comic) and Animecon was Japanese (Anime / Manga). As the theme of the happening was technology meets mythology there were two characters portraying these concepts. Finncon Ry who commissioned the work from me had the idea of using a phoenix. As I felt that only portrayed the mythological side I suggested adding an android for the technology. They liked the idea so that's what we went with.

I started the project like any other, by doing concepts and figuring out the backstory. When same characters are used in all the marketing it is very important ot know them inside and out. It is impossible (at least for me) to portray personality or any kind of feeling in characters if I don't know what makes them tick. Quite quickly I realised that the story would be a perfects backdrop for all the pictures. So all the pictures I did for the project can be put side by side and like that tell the story of how the android and the phoenix met. I shall post the whole story (sadly still only in Finnish) later in this post. But now, concepts.

Early android concepts
The final Finncon android concept
Early Animecon android concept
I am really NOT a manga artist so as I you can see I had no idea what I was doing in the beginning

Final Animecon android concepts
Early phoenix concepts. At this point I was just trying to figure out bird anatomy.
Final phoenix concepts
Phoenix color concept

I didn't really have as much time for the concept stage I would have liked to and had to do most of the color testing when making the web headers and designing the layouts for both the Finncon- and Animecon pages. I decided early on that I wanted the bird to land on the androids reached hand in this picture.

Here are some early color tests.

This one has the original Anime version. Later on I realised that anime characters are rarely showed from the side and tilted the head more.
The final Animecon lineart but the colors still need tweaking.
The final Finncon lineart but the colors still need tweaking.
Final Animecon header.
Final Finncon header.
The final layout for Animecon
The final layout for Finncon
As you can see I had at this point also designed the logo and decided the color schemes for both cons. All through the marketing Finncon is black and Animecon white.

To prevent this text from becoming the longest post known to man I think it's best that I divide it to few different posts. And well, because I need to get up in a few hours to go to work :D So this is the end of part one. If all goes well part two will follow soon.


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