A bunch of soft, bright beams of late afternoon winter sun is playfully sneaking through the grated window of the old alchemic lab, graciously eliciting its velvet warmth on all those thick books and manuscripts, full of ancient knowledge and forbidden secrets. It lightens up the strange equipment, various flasks and objects scattered all over the room (Fig01).
This vision attracted my attention and involved my imagination in the making of my Alchemic Room. The project itself occurred to me as a natural result of my passion for fantasy genre and my deep interest in medieval history.
In the next few paragraphs, I'll describe the main stages of my creative work process.
As in all projects of this kind, before getting to the modelling and building of the scene, the first step I usually take is to gather all the necessary background and reference images, which will give me a better idea for the design and the specific atmosphere of the future work.
In this particular case my interest was focused on collecting a variety of reproductions of medieval pictures and engravings, representing different varieties of alchemic laboratories. Thanks to that I got a better idea of the objects and equipment typical for medieval alchemic labs (flasks, scales, furnace blowers, etc.), as well as about the architectural peculiarities of those days (supportive columns, forms of the windows and so on) (Fig02).
In this case, collecting suitable references was of special importance, as in the making of this project I skipped the usual initial stage of creating a preliminary 2D concept of the scene.
From a technical point of view, the idea of the project itself was to create a visual representation of a medieval room, full of different, scattered objects lying around, giving the idea of the occupation of its owner and the messy ambience that he resides in. With this line of thought, it was reasonable to create the scene starting with the specific terrain on which all the rest of the elements would be presented. In this case, the terrain was framed by both the form and size of the room (Fig03 and Fig04).
Modelling The Room
The room model alone consists of several main sub objects - modelled separately, then unwrapped and finally combined together (Fig05 and Fig07). These main parts are: the walls, the floor, a patch of wall tiles, a patch of floor tiles, stone frames for the windows, a doorstep, a doorframe, and finally the main columns (Fig06).