Introductory: G1 Cartoon Backgrounds to Use for Backdrops - Part One

Discussion in 'Tutorials and How Tos' started by OptimusTimelord, Mar 25, 2014.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. OptimusTimelord

    OptimusTimelord Masterpiece Reanimator

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2011
    Posts:
    5,199
    Trophy Points:
    247
    Likes:
    +3,568
    (Note that this is an image-heavy thread. Just be patient while your browser uploads all of the images. ~Superquad7)

    Here is a gallery of Sunbow G1 art. I always use backdrops for my photoshoots, and whenever I post a custom I get asked where I got the background. So, as well as those pieces in here, [there are] other backgrounds I've collected from the G1 cartoon.

    The main Ark exterior, interior, and desert-scape are all large scale images. Originally, these were screen grabs from the cartoon; I had to upscale them, smooth out all the pixels, and rework all the detail, as well as generally tidying them up to be presentable (such as giving the mountains in the distance a blur effect).

    The other G1 backgrounds here are a selection from the many to be found in the cartoon (mostly season one). In cases where the camera zooms in during a shot, such as the Cybertron planet image, or the waterfall with the Ark in the distance, I have overlaid multiple screen shots to get the most detail in the central area.

    Hopefully this will be sort of a library of reference for folks to use if they need any G1 scenery.


    Although I have touched up the three main images, the base artwork in these and all the rest is as produced by Sunbow for G1:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    This is the periscope-style entrance to the Decepticon undersea base. [It is a] rare case of it being painted rather than animated:

    [​IMG]


    Panning shots have allowed me to capture a series of screen grabs and compile them into extra-tall and extra-wide panoramic views, giving an overview of a scene which you don't get just by watching it onscreen:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    It's true, a lot of G1 background paintings were well done (especially the Cybertron landscapes, which remind me of the Chuck Jones' futuristic Tom & Jerry shorts). Of course, I've cherry picked the best here, and there was an awful lot of shoddy bad art too, but going through the episodes it's amazing the volume of painted scenery they got through.

    Most of them only once or twice, surprisingly. Some, like the Cybertron planet shot and the first Decepticon undersea base shot, were reused quite often.

    I'm not sure on copyright, being 30 odd years old and rarely seen since I don't think anyone would jump down your throat for using them. Maybe the movie would be more of an issue. One of these days I should go through the movie for stills.

    (Note: In instances of legalities, it’s always best to err on the safe side. Hasbro has always been very generous in regards to fan-made things. However, if you end up using these in any way to profit, know that brings things into another arena. Regardless, TFW2005.COM takes no responsibility in such involvement, so proceed at your own risk! ~Superquad7)


    There is a wider shot, but obviously it's smaller in frame so the details are even more blurry. You could comp that onto the missing bit, but it would be blurry (note how the left hand side is more blurred than the middle and right, because I've patched in close up shots of the middle/right). I haven't been through every single episode though, so if there's a close up of Cybertron's lower edge anywhere that would be ideal.

    Well the first three images exist in very high resolution, as I've had them printed as posters and they look good. If anyone wants them I might have to email them because of file size. The rest haven't been upscaled to the same extent, but again, my files are by default bigger than can be shown here. Heck, there are hundreds of painted backgrounds throughout the cartoon, probably enough to fill a book!

    I'd be surprised if it has never been done sometime, somewhere by somebody, but I've never seen it.

    How does this content awareness thingy know what's behind a character to fill in the gap? (assuming it isn't just doing what I'm doing and using other frames).
    Thanks!
    I don't have a Detolf but it does seem to be rather a TF collector standard :D  So if anyone can provide the sizes, I could even post some images specifically tailored to fit?
    Lol cheers :thumb 
    Good to hear :) 
    So how do they look? I'm thinking, as a continuation of the thread and if folks are interested, of 'remastering' some of the images posted here using the techniques I used for the Ark one, basically trying to reconstruct the original painting in proper high definition. If I were to do that, which of the shots I've posted would people like to see worked on?

    Yeah that's my intention, to hopefully make you 'see' a familiar G1 scene in a new light.

    Pretty good actually. I took this for the Cubex Huff thread with just the G1 DVD paused at a shot of Teletraan 1:

    [​IMG]


    Interesting. So far I haven't struggled much with anything (apart from the time-consuming ones that needed dozens of frames) and I've been fairly strict with myself about only using shots where all the information is available (either with no animation cells or where characters move across shot). Once you start 'inventing' new information to fill in gaps it becomes something else (like my large Ark background I use for my custom backdrops).
     

    Attached Files:

    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 30, 2014
    • Like Like x 2
  2. Arkvander

    Arkvander Optimal Optimist

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2004
    Posts:
    1,295
    News Credits:
    10
    Trophy Points:
    217
    Likes:
    +36
    Ebay:
    Instagram:
    I found some of the original storyboards for the '86 movie, and thanks to your work, it is very clear the backgrounds are almost exact copies of the storyboard layouts.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    From this, we can also see what a larger version of this room would look like if it had been animated!
     

    Attached Files:

    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 29, 2014
    • Like Like x 1
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Share This Page