It's been quite a few months since I worked on this project together with ShopAround, but I can finally show you the final outcome and some behind-the-scenes goodies! The illustration was made for the new 'Creating Tomorrow' campaign for the University of Applied Sciences in Amsterdam (HvA) that the wonderful people at lemonscentedtea came up with. Each faculty has been represented by a different illustrator and I got the honors to make a piece for the School of Economics & Management, which apparently has the largest group of students (a number of around 17,000 has been dropped on an occasion, but don't pin me down on this one!).
Lemonscentedtea had a very clear briefing from the start. They showed me this sketch which already consisted out of six boxes, each with their own theme relating to the Economics & Management faculty: data management, sustainability, connectivity, international, economics and Amsterdam. The hands are a recurring and connecting element throughout the entire campaign.
My first sketch looked more like a diorama of landscapes, with the boxes for connectivity, economics and Amsterdam looking pretty similar to the final output. In the end the box for sustainability had to go and some style adjustments were made to clear up the image.
The process of creating the mini-people look was a bit cumbersome, as you can see. What was I thinking?!
Building the final boxes was a pretty straightforward task, as I couldn't stray too much from the approved sketch. The only box that went through a bunch of iterations was the one for management. The earlier versions had larger and smaller characters to visualize hierarchy, but in between an embarrassing amount of color tryouts (not to mention the embarrassing color schemes!) that idea got cancelled and the client opted for the version with same-sized characters.
Piet Oosterbeek photographed the hands and supplied me with high-res images that I could map onto a digital placeholder hand. Or rather fingertips in my case, as I only needed the little elements to drop shadows on small parts of the fingers. This way I could get an almost Hollywood-like quality integration of the 3D elements with real-life photography!