Making-of: the Evil Wizard
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In this update, we'll take a closer look at the main villain in this story - none other than the Evil Wizard.
The process of creating the Wizard's final look was a little different than the one of the Good Queen. The essential part remains the same - we have the story, we have the character, we know who he is and what he wants - but this is where the similarities end.
As I mentioned earlier when talking about the Queen, I had this idea for designing TSIOQUE which was to stay close to the the roots of original fairytales, and avoid modern influences. In the Wizard's case it wasn't easy, as records and references for real medieval-era wizards are rather scarce, and the romantic-era depictions just didn't do it for me.
Fortunately, from the very first sketches (below) I had a very clear image of how I wanted the Wizard to look.
HIs unique quality was his darkness - a literal darkness of his silhouette, caused by evil magic corrupting him from within.
This image "clicked" very quickly in the sketches, allowing me to focus on visualizing the other aspects of the story until I needed a more specific vision.
When time has come to design the real contents of the Wizard's silhouette, I caught myself completely abandoning my idea of staying "to the roots" and exploring away in all kinds of directions, including the regular fantasy lane. It's an EVIL WIZARD, damn it! Why fight it.
Having played some Witcher 2 at the time, I even tried picking up some motives from the wizards there (below left), but it didn't work. I'm happy it didn't.
As I kept on sketching, I did some explorations in color as well.
The sketches eventaully helped me catch the Wizard's real character, which in turn helped me understand what he should be wearing.
He's not a showoff. He rarely leaves his study and cares more for his conquering-the-world business than for his clothes. His qualities are similar to that of a monk, or an alchemist, so visually he became a mixture of both.
My one last technical dilemma was how much outline should be visible on the character in "full darkness" mode.
I eventually decided to drop the outline, and tada! The Evil Wizard was born.
With his spell, the Wizard has caused a real mess, beyond his original intentions. The consequenes can be catastrophic...