Wacky Reference Wednesday, No. 178

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Amazing Spider-Man #638, Page 12. 2009. Ink on Marvel board, 11 × 17.25″.

When faced with a complex scene, I often find it helpful to draw a crude plan of the setting from above, complete with notes and directions for the major players. In this case, I had to match a scene from Amazing Spider-Man Annual #21, in which Electro and his gang have just been caught by the police.

To be completely honest (with myself), I probably didn't need this level of accuracy since it's doubtful that anyone would take the time to compare the sequences (even when featured on a blog). Nevertheless, I not only drew the plan, but curated a 3D scene in Sketchup using existing models.

While not all the details from the issue matched up exactly, I did my best to arrange them in a similar manner. Joe Quesada provided me with the buildings, which he commissioned Jason Christiansen to build, along with many other models for Marvel. You can see the model used from a different angle in a previous WRW, No. 164.


  1. Hi Paolo!

    The plan drawing idea is very useful and I think I'm going to borrow it. :) I don't know why, but when I try to visualize the sorts of action scenes with unusual perspective that you do, I get lost and don't know how to make it look good on paper - despite knowing the theory behind it. Blocks of buildings just happen to seem too complex for some reason, maybe because I'm very perfectionist and anxious, and I tend to fear making mistakes (which is very silly, I know..). Your method of planning the scenes from above seems to be what I needed to overcome it, plus some help from Sketchup. :)

    Thanks for sharing it!

    1. It's all in the plan. Once you know everything that needs to be shown in the scene, it's much easier to select the right point of view from which to render. Best of luck!


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