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The Techniques of Syd Mead 4

Final Gouache Rendering


In the conclusion to this series on the techniques of Syd Mead, starting with a piece of blank cold press illlustration board, Syd takes the viewer through the process of creating the final gouache rendering of his initial composition. He talks about how to create and prepare a transfer sheet in order to trace down and block in the original line drawing. Once the illustration is transferred, Syd uses the color preliminary as a guide and demonstrates how to use the pre-mixed custom color palette to add detail to the illustration one area at a time. Using this method, he adds detail from background to foreground, retracing at each stage, re-establishing detail areas and completing the illustration.

Duration: 2h 00m

Format: HD 1280x960

Syd Mead

Visual Futurist

A professional career that spans over fifty years started just out of high school in Colorado Springs, Colorado creating characters and backgrounds for animated cinema intermission trailers. After three years in the Army Corps of Engineers, Syd graduated with great Distinction from the Art Center School in 1959 and was immediately hired by Ford Motor Company’s Advanced Styling studio where he began to be recognized for his futuristic style. This led to his being recruited to create corporate promotional books with Mead-Hansen Company in Chicago for US Steele and other clients over the next nine years. By 1970, Syd's reputation enabled him to found his own company, Syd Mead, Incorporated, to create industrial design and corporate graphics and, after a fortuitous move to Southern California in 1975, concept designs for the motion picture, television and electronic game industries. His cinema entrée was fortunate, starting with the creation of the V’GER entity for Star Trek: The Motion Picture followed by two cult classics: BLADERUNNER and TRON. His professional work continues to the present including numerous presentations to audiences all over the world. Syd considers his legacy to be the body of work that has provided day-to-day challenge over many years while offering clients his unique design and problem solutions. He has also provided inspiration to an audience of all ages, which has been the most satisfying of all. Syd considers the opportunity to be a guidepost for ambition in others as a priceless gift of fortunate circumstance.

  • "After nearly 50 years, Syd Mead's work continues to be the standard. His step-by-step methodology is the foundation for how to create new concept art that is imaginative, communicates clearly, and has substance. Needless to say, Syd Mead's design work has stood the test of time, because it has substance at its core, as well as being masterful."

    - Farzad Varahramyan
    Creative Visual Director Darkwatch High Moon Studios